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MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. (March 31, 1998) -- Netscape Communications Corporation (NASDAQ:NSCP) today announced that the first developer release of its Communicator 5.0 source code is available for download from the mozilla.org Web site. Targeted at the developer community, this unprecedented release of the client source code promotes acceleration of the evolution of Communicator 5.0 development by allowing the company to harness the creative power of thousands of programmers on the Internet, incorporating their best enhancements into future versions of Netscape's software. This strategy is designed to accelerate development and distribution of future high-quality versions of Netscape Communicator to business customers and individuals, further seeding the market for Netscape's enterprise solutions and Netcenter business.

In conjunction with this announcement, Netscape's developer Web site, DevEdge Online, will feature a special section called "Communicator Source Code" that will contain information about Communicator 5.0 features found in the source code, as well as a link to mozilla.org.

"Releasing the Communicator source code rallies the developer community while leveraging the incredible talent of the net," said Marc Andreessen, executive vice president of products at Netscape. "Everyone wins with the evolution of the Netscape source. Developers and programmers can participate in generating state-of-the-art products, and Netscape maintains its role as a standards-based technology leader in innovation and product development by delivering quality products that customers demand."

Industry-leading companies including Independent Software Vendors (ISVs), corporate customers and other partners have already demonstrated support of the release of the Netscape Communicator 5.0 source code. Some of the partners supporting the release of the source code include Adobe, @Home, Amteva, Blue Lobster Software, Conextions, Inc., Digital Equipment Corporation, Insession, Intel, Intuit, JustSystem Corporation, NetObjects, Neuron Data, Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation (NTT), NovaSoft, Oracle, Red Brick Systems, Inc. and Sybase.

"Adobe is pleased to see Netscape take this innovative next step in engaging the industry in the development of their new products," said Ross Bott, executive vice president, product divisions, Adobe Systems. "Customers are increasingly seeking better integration between products they use for their Web projects. By releasing the Communicator source code, Netscape is helping developers provide optimum integration and ultimately a better Web experience for end-users."

"Digital Equipment Corporation applauds Netscape's bold move in releasing the Communicator source code to the development community. This reinforces Netscape's commitment to be a premier supplier of Internet technology," said Tim Yeaton, vice president, Digital's UNIX Systems Group. "The availability of the source code will allow us to deliver greater customer value by ensuring that Communicator is optimized, both for 64-bit UNIX performance on our award-winning Alpha line today, and for IA-64 when it becomes available."

"For the past year Intel has supported Netscape's efforts to enhance and optimize Communicator 5.0 for the Intel Pentium II processor," stated Ron Whittier, Sr. VP and GM of Content Group, Intel Corp. "The results of this effort benefit developers by allowing them to readily take full advantage of the Pentium II processor features as they develop new web content and advanced e-business applications."

The source code released by Netscape today represents an early snapshot of the Communicator 5.0 development effort to date. Developers can access the source code from mozilla.org, a dedicated team within Netscape that will promote, foster and guide development of Netscape's source code base. In parallel with the open development of Communicator 5.0 source code, Netscape will continue to release fully supported and tested point releases of Netscape Communicator 4.X to enterprise customers who have deployed this version. In addition, Netscape will take enhancements made by developers to the source code from mozilla.org and incorporate them into a future commercial version of Communicator 5.0, also targeted at business users and individuals. Communicator 5.0 will be the first Netscape product to leverage free source development.

Included in the first Communicator 5.0 source code developer release is programming for the next-generation versions of Netscape Navigator and Netscape Composer on multiple platforms including Linux, Windows 32 bit platforms and Macintosh PPC. Included in Navigator, developers will find the next generation of browsing tools, based on Resource Description Framework (RDF), which allow end users to more effectively navigate the Internet by dramatically improving ways in which they perform searches and navigate their way through Web sites. The source code also includes XML support, user interface enhancements, modular Java support through Netscape's recently announced Open Java VM Interface, and integral software components from various third parties who have given Netscape the right to release their source under the terms of the Netscape Public License (NPL). Released to the developer community as a draft for review three weeks ago, the final NPL is available today, along with the Communicator 5.0 source code by accessing www.mozilla.org. In addition, more information outlining the client software direction and source code strategy is available at http://home.netscape.com/communicator.

The Netscape Communicator 5.0 source code is also available on CD through DevEdge Online, Netscape's dedicated developer technical resource that provides the information needed to plan, develop, deploy and market Web applications, Web sites, intranets and extranets based on the Netscape platform. Available to DevEdge members for $10.00, the CD contains files for Linux, Windows 32 bit platforms and Macintosh PPC.

Netscape Communications Corporation is a premier provider of open software for linking people and information over enterprise networks and the Internet. The company offers a full line of Netscape Navigator clients, servers, development tools and commercial applications to create a complete platform for next-generation, online applications. Traded on NASDAQ under the symbol "NSCP," Netscape Communications Corporation is based in Mountain View, California.

Additional information on Netscape Communications Corporation is available on the Internet at http://home.netscape.com, by sending email to info@netscape.com or by calling 650/937-2555 (corporations) or 650/937-3777 (individuals).

Netscape is a trademark of Netscape Communications Corporation, which is registered in the United States and other jurisdictions. Netscape Communications, the Netscape Communications logo, Netscape Navigator, Netscape SuiteSpot, Netscape Composer, Netscape Messenger and Netscape Communicator are trademarks of Netscape Communications Corporation.