Title: Gopher Browsers

Published: 2019-07-17 21:39

Author: Fr. Robert


Template: Blog


For Linux I have found four ways to browse Gopher space.

1. Lynx

2. ELinks

3. OverbiteNX

4. Gopher Proxy

The first method I used was Lynx. Lynx is a text based browser that supports Gopher out of the box. The nice thing about Lynx is that if a Gopher site has an HTML document as one of its documents it will render the HTML document as HTML.

The second method I used was ELinks. ELinks does support Gopher but in most distribution packages the package was not compiled with Gopher support. To use ELinks you will need to download the source code, edit the configuration to support Gopher, compile, and install.

Gopher browsing with ELinks is very similar to Lynx. ELinks will also support rendering HTML documents as HTML even on a Gopher site. ELinks does support tabs and a few other features that Lynx does not.

The third method I found was the OverbiteNX extension for Firefox. It allows you to browse Gopher Space within Firefox. OverbiteNX does not use a proxy so Gopher sites with queries actually work. All documents accessed are shown as text. HTML documents are not rendered as HTML rather the html source is shown.

The fourth method is using a proxy server such as Floodgap Public Gopher Proxy https://gopher.floodgap.com/gopher/ The advantage of the proxy server is you need not install any additional software on your computer. The downside is most if not all queries do not work.

Each of the four methods will work for browsing Gopher space. Only Lynx and ELinks has no issues while in Gopher space. But both Lynx and Elinks have compatibility issues with modern websites. Both OverbiteNX and a proxy server have limitations while in Gopher space but have no compatibility issues with modern websites.

So none of the Gopher solutions will work for both Gopher and HTML sites 100%.


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