[Windows] Lunascape browser offers ability to switch rendering engines on the fly (Webkit, Gecko, and Trident)

LunaScapeDo you like how certain browsers display pages better than others? What if you could use one browser and actually auto assign certain pages to be loaded with different rendering engines from different browsers? Well now you can with Lunascape internet browser.

WHAT IS IT AND WHAT DOES IT DO

Main Functionality

Lunascape is an internet browser that has multiple rendering engines built right into it. This allows you to actually switch engines on the fly or auto assign certain pages to be loaded with the engine of your choice. It offers you access to three different rendering engines: Webkit, Gecko and Trident. The program even supports three different types of add-ons, so you get the best of every world.

Pros

  • Can be set up as portable during installation
  • Gives you access to three different rendering engines: Trident, Gecko and Webkit
  • Allows you to use add-ons designed for Firefox, Internet Explorer or add-ons made specifically for Lunascape
  • Fast browsing experience, even when compared to other browsers that use the same rendering engine (quickest results when using the Webkit rendering engine)
  • Auto assign your favorite rendering engine to load certain pages. So you can have Gecko open certain pages and Trident open other ones without having to tell it to switch every time
  • Offers cascade view to show multiple tabs open side-by-side
  • Auto backups your data in case you accidentally delete your bookmarks or other settings
  • Offers mouse gestures
  • Sync your bookmarks with iLunascape or with FirefoxSync
  • Offers custom skins

Cons

  • Browser may be a bit advanced for basic users

Discussion

LunaScape ScreenshotLunascape is a great browser that I had actually never heard of. The browser itself is helpful because it allows you to use three different rendering engines. If you are already lost or don’t know that browsers use different rendering engines, the great features this browser has to offer may be lost on you, and I would suggest sticking with what you have. If you cut out Lunascape’s ability to use different engines, you are left with a pretty good browser, but not one that you will want to switch for.

After you download the program, it takes you through the setup. During installation you can choose advanced setup or even portable setup. This is nice if you are looking for a strong, portable browser that you can keep stored on a USB device. I recommend that you select advanced setup, because, if I remember correctly, it does not have the Gecko engine selected by default.

Since we brought up the topic of engines, let’s cover the different rendering engines it offers you. The three it comes with is Trident, Gecko and Webkit. To give you an idea of what browsers use which engines, Trident is used by Internet Explore and Slim Browser, Gecko is used by Firefox and SeaMonkey, and Webkit is used by Chrome and Safari. There are a number of other browsers under each engine, but this gives you a basic idea.

One of the coolest features about this browser is the fact that you can actually assign different engines to different webpages. So maybe you like the way that your favorite gaming site looks with the Gecko engine, but you like the way a certain forum looks like with Webkit. You can actually assign these different pages to different engines. So now, whenever you visit those pages, they will auto load with the engine you like best.

Also, it is worth pointing out that Lunascape is extremely fast. For example, it is quicker than Firefox when using the Gecko engine. However, the browser does seem to run quicker with the Webkit engine than anything else, so keep that in mind for your basic browsing needs.

I also really liked the cascade view. This is a view that allows you to open up multiple tabs side-by-side in the same window. You can even have each tab run by a different rendering engine. This way you can see how each page looks different with the different rendering engines.

There are tons of different features we could talk about, but the last one I am going to cover is the add-on support. I know that people like different add-ons for different browsers. Well this program allows you to install different ones. For example, you can install add-ons for both Internet Explorer and Firefox. Not only that, but you can even install add-ons that are made specifically for Lunascape.

CONCLUSION AND DOWNLOAD LINK

There is way too much to cover with Lunascape. The browser is extremely effective and offers more features than any other browser I have ever used. If you are looking for a great portable browser, or maybe you are just sick of your current browser, I recommend giving Lunascape a try. With how good it works, I am shocked that more people don’t use it.

Price: Free

Version reviewed: 6.8.2

Supported OS: Windows XP/2003/Vista/Server 2008/7

Download size: 16.46MB

VirusTotal malware scan results: 0/44

Is it portable? Yes

Lunascape homepage

Share this post

Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

12 comments

  1. willyneu

    [@AT]
    This very thought occurred to me too. I prefer not using internet explorer and some designers seem to ignore other browsers when designing websites. I prefer not using I. E,! this may enable me to use this browser for those sites that open in I.E. by default.

  2. David

    May use old v3 gecko engine still.

    I tried this when I wanted to use Roboform when Roboform changed its license terms, because it still used the old v3 gecko engine. Last I knew, Lunascape still used v3 gecko – way out of date.

    It was extremely hard to get Roboform configured for use in Lunascape- but the forum was very helpful.

    A few of the skins are ok- most not (in my opinion!)

  3. Seamus McSeamus

    I have tried Lunascape in the past, and while I never had any problems with it, there wasn’t anything that really made it stand out from the crowd, either. Sort of a jack of all trades but master of none sort of thing, I suppose.

  4. Chasman

    I have used Lunascape for a few years and it is also available for android and ipad.

    In addition there is Avant Browser Ultimate Edition that also supports all three engines. I have used Avant almost since it first came out and it is my favorite browser.

  5. Meh

    Still way too buggy to me, although it has gotten a lot better in the last year. Still no extensions for Web Kit and no real built-in ad blocker so the Web Kit engine is sorta, like, worthless.

    Gecko extensions are waay buggy too, to the point where they’re hit or miss. Trident add-ons also don’t work — only toolbars — so ad blockers for Trident are also non-existent.

    Add-ons for Lunascape work across all engines EXCEPT, of course, that there aren’t any.

    Bottom-line: After 3 years, Lunascape is still not ready for prime-time (and probably will never be). Don’t bother is my advice.

  6. AT

    [@AFPhy6] Web pages load differently and/or have different functions with different browsers. In some cases, the page won`t load at all if it is setup to reject a particular browser. Using this multi engine browser allows the user to choose which engine to best use for whatever page gets loaded. Currently, you have to have several browsers installed. That can cause some conflicts.

  7. AFPhy6

    Just ran across this a few days ago myself but didn’t load it, figuring, ‘what the heck do I need to use the different rendering engines for’ since I don’t do web design.

    Perhaps, due to this review, I will check it out further. Thanks.