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July 1999


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Review: NavCom Cache Control 2.0

by Edward Goss,


Product InformationnavComSlogan

Published by: Day Job Softwerks



Shareware Fee: $3-$5


System Requirements

Power PC, Mac OS 8.0 or higher, Netscape Navigator 4.x


Ask any group of computer users—regardless of choice of platform—what their largest problem is with computing, and you are likely to get overwhelmed with complaints about the time it takes to get anything done online. The “World Wide Wait” is not just a slogan for those with slow computers or modems; even those blessed with the latest in modern technology are limited by their browser-of-choice’s ability to render today’s complex web pages quickly and accurately. For Mac users of Netscape’s Navigator or Communicator, a new tool has been created to help speed up your daily surfing: NavCom Cache Control by Jack Browning. You can try the time-expiring demo for 14 days without registering; afterwards you can register for a very nominal Shareware fee of $3.00 (cash or cheque sent to Jack Browning) or $5.00 (via Kagi). A registration program is provided with the download.

Both Netscape Navigator and the full-featured Communicator (I’ll just call them both Netscape for purposes of this review) use disk caching to enhance their performance. Information gathered from Web pages is stored locally on the hard drive in a folder called Netscape Cache in the Netscape Preferences Folder. When a page is reloaded or the “Back” button is activated, Netscape searches the Cache Folder for as much information as possible before seeking the rest from the internet connection. This effectively speeds up page reloading; and when visiting sites that do not change often, dramatically increases loading speed. The limiting factor in this process is the hard drive access speed, which varies from model to model. Faster processors, faster SCSI data throughput, and hard drive speed itself can dramatically alter the perceived response of the browser.

It would be much faster to use your Mac’s memory to store the cache files, since memory access is many times faster than disk access. The Netscape Preferences do not allow the user to adjust the memory cache without modifying Netscape’s resources with ResEdit—not for the timid. NavCom Cache Control is an application that modifies your Netscape Preferences to use Memory Cache instead of Disk Cache in an easy-to-use window.

The installation of NavCom Cache Control (NCCC, or N3C) is very easy. It is an application and thus can be stored anywhere, the only caveat being to keep all the installed N3C files in their original folder so the program can function properly. N3C does not install any extensions, and is only active when you set up (or modify) your Netscape Preferences. N3C comes with an excellent HTML-based user’s manual. It is one of the best, most easy to comprehend manuals of any shareware program that I have ever seen. Kudos aplenty to Jack for this.

Using N3C is also very straightforward. Launch N3C (with your browser off), and you will see a dialogue box allowing you to select your individual user preferences if there is more than one user on your Mac. After selecting your preferences file you will see the main N3C window, where you can modify your settings. navComControl

The first button controls Disk Cache size. Since we want to use memory cache, set this to “None.” The second button controls the Memory Cache size. You can let N3C set the size based on your available memory by selecting “Default,” or you can select any size you wish, with the only limiting factor being your available memory. The last button controls how often your browser compares its files to the Internet. Since you are using memory cache, the cache files will not be saved after shutdown. Save your selections, close N3C, and you’re ready to go!

My experiences with N3C are difficult to objectively quantify. The vagaries of Internet connection rates from connection to connection make it nearly impossible to provide figures for perceived improvement. So I will only attempt to try to explain what I encountered in my use of N3C. I did not get any real sense that pages loaded a lot faster upon revisiting later in a session, but I did notice a general perking-up of Netscape‘s activity. Although I have chosen Netscape as my preferred browser, I have on occasion used various versions of Internet Explorer. One of the most noticeable differences to me between the two browsers has been IE’s ability to cache pages for more rapid (nearly instant in some cases) reloading. I think N3C now puts Netscape squarely on an even ground in this feature. Pages reloaded very quickly when I hit the “Back” button, a definite improvement over my old settings.

I think NavCom Cache Control is a very well-executed, viable option for Netscape users to evaluate. Your results may vary, but for the price it’s hard to beat. Since you can demo it for 14 days, I’d recommend that everyone who wants faster browser performance download and try NavCom Cache Control.

apple Copyright ©1999 Edward Goss, Reviewing in ATPM is open to anyone. If you're interested, write to us at

Reader Comments (2)

Karen Bonell · August 7, 2003 - 16:42 EST #1
Hi. Since reading your review, I've started using the NavCom Cache Control software. However, the trial period is over. I prefer to not be continuously re-installing it and the creator of this software seems to not be around. Kagi no longer handles his products. I sent an e-mail from their site to the creator. It was returned by the Mail Administrator.

I was hoping you might know where writer of the software has gone to ground.

Thanks a lot, (and for the very helpful review).

Lee Bennett (ATPM Staff) · August 11, 2003 - 00:12 EST #2
Karen - I found the following text on the Accelerate Your Mac site.
NavCom Cache Control is No More

[This] was the subject line of this e-mail I received from the program's author. (It was a utility noted here in the past that many readers used.)

"Hello, As you may (or may not) recall, I am the author NavCom Cache Control (a somewhat popular caching utility for Netscape browsers). I am writing to relay a bit of bad news. Day Job Softwerks, the distributor of NavCom Cache Control, ceased business operations on July 1st, 2001. NavCom Cache Control is no longer being distributed or supported, nor are we accepting any further registration payments. The Day Job Softwerks web site ( will remain active until September 1st, 2001. For our customers who need registration codes, we have posted a registration code generator at the site. The generator can be accessed directly at: Since our web site will eventually be going dark, we urge customers to download the HTML source of the generator page. Instructions on how to do so are contained on the page. We also plan to post an abridged FAQ to address any known technical issues relating to N3C. Until then, the current FAQ page will remain available. It (and the future abridged FAQ) can be found at: Thanks for your attention and assistance.

Jack Browning
Day Job Softwerks"
As this post indicated, the sites mentioned have, indeed, gone dark. However, I managed to pull up the HTML code generator through the site. I can't say whether you'll be able to continue to pull it up indefinitely, but if you follow this archive link, you should be able to plug in your registration key to obtain a registration code. I'll explore the possibility of offering a more permanent source of this generator in the event forgets about the page. You can, of course, save the source and just run it locally. If, however, you need other information, including the ability to actually buy the software, it seems you're out of luck. I haven't used (and don't plan to use) this software, so I don't know this for a fact, but I'm wondering whether the developer just gave away registrations after development was ceased. If your trial copy has the aforementioned registration key, the HTML generator will produce a code for you.

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