Safari now officially available for Windows

Apple today released a public beta of Safari 3, the latest version of their web browser. It has quite a bit of new features, but the biggest news is that Apple Introduces Safari for Windows. Yep, Safari is now officially available for Windows as well as for Mac OS X.

I think it’s great. Windows users need more browser choices, and with an official Windows version of Safari it will be much easier for Windows-using web professionals to test their work in it.

Obviously I had to take the Safari 3 beta for a quick test drive. My first impression is that it seems like “beta” really means “beta” again. First of all I had problems getting Safari up and running on Mac OS X. It turned out to be caused by two extensions I had installed: SafariStand and Safari Tidy. Both need to be removed before Safari will work properly.

With those extensions out of the way, Safari started working again.

The next problem I ran into was while preparing to post this. The version of Movable Type that I use opens a little pop-up window when you want to enter multiple categories for an entry. Well, in Safari 3 I can’t close that window by clicking on the close button in the title bar or by using the keyboard shortcut. Ouch.

Problems aside (it is a beta after all), what’s new then? Well, the resizeable textarea is nice. Inline search is cool. Unless I’m imagining things it feels a little faster. Other than that, most changes seem to be under the hood (which is not a bad thing).

About the Windows version… I downloaded that as well, installed it, launched it, and… it crashed. Hmm. Uninstalled, then downloaded the installer that includes QuickTime, installed it, launched Safari, and… it crashed.

So I don’t know how the Windows version of Safari compares to the Mac version. Maybe you’ll have better luck. Download the Safari 3 public beta and give it a try.

Posted on June 11, 2007 in Browsers, Mac


  1. hehe, just sent you an email about that but I was almost certain that you got to know ;)

    My windows version (without quicktime, cause I had quicktime alternative installed before) didn’t crash at all, it seems solid to me for the first 20 minutes.. at least it didnt crash once.

  2. The windows version works fine on my Windows XP under VMWare under OS X.

    The perhaps most interesting thing is that they chose to implement the font rendering engine of OS X in SafariWin, so the text looks exactly like on OS X. I don’t know how good it is though. The fonts obviously looks a lot better than standard Windows text, and it makes websites look consistent across platforms, but it’s completely inconsistent with the rest of Windows.

  3. My favourite part is how the inline find is designed. I like the subtle fade-out with the big orange highlighted box around the text. Smooth.

    Plus, hey, new Finally.

  4. Just downloaded the beta for OS X and so far it works like a charm (that is, just like the old one).

    Also had to remove a couple of plugins to get it going thou…

  5. Unless I’m imagining things it feels a little faster.

    Steve did make a big thing of how much faster Safari is at certain HTML and JavaScript benchmarks than Firefox and IE. You know Apple. Simple messages: Safari Faster.

    The perhaps most interesting thing is that they chose to implement the font rendering engine of OS X in SafariWin

    But of course. Safari Windows is there so that developers can test their iPhone-targeted web apps. If the text didn’t look the same, it might screw up their testing.

  6. I have noticed you can right click on any element on the web page and select INSPECT ELEMENT you get a pop-up that seems like built in web developer toolbar stuff… anyone else find this yet?

  7. June 11, 2007 by Roger Johansson (Author comment)

    I just noticed that SafariSource doesn’t work either.

    magrolino, Olof: Good to know that it works on Windows. Guess it’s something with my setup. I guess it could possibly be related to me upgrading Parallels to 3.0 today. No idea.

    Geof: Yeah, new I can’t say I like the super-wide design or that weird top navigation, but at least they got rid of the layout tables :-).

  8. As a non-mac user, I just downloaded Win-version 3.0(522.11.3), mostly to verify my own new website, and noticed the following:

    • Something wrong with the rendering engine: I frightened when my site showed no tekst in headings and navigation-buttons, but took relief in the fact that thís site (456berea) also didn’t show tekst on de red navigation-buttons.

    • The window doesn’t comply with the taskbar window arrange commands.

    • Safari crashed at filling in this very form.

    (WinXP SP2)

  9. The font anti-aliasing was the first thing I noticed after installing on Windows XP. Is it just me or does it look real blurry compared to everything else (using an LCD monitor with ClearType)?

    I didn’t have any problems with it crashing but I noticed that it didn’t have a shortcut icon after installing — guess they haven’t gotten around to it yet.

  10. June 11, 2007 by Vahid M.

    I myself installed on Windows XP and when I launched the browser, all I got were blank spaces everywhere. No text in the web site that was loaded ( or the browser toolbars. Weird.

  11. I was able to install Safari on Windows XP, but it was pretty much unusable. Didn’t crash, but it wouldn’t allow me to use the keyboard at all. Rather strange…couldn’t navigate by keyboard, couldn’t type into the address bar, etc.

  12. Installed it but it didn’t show the headers on my blog and neither did it show the first rows of my blog entries.

    Very very nice initiative - but still very beta :)

  13. June 12, 2007 by Paul Walker

    On windows, its still, very much a beta. for mac, however, there’s a signifigant speed boost, rearrangable tabs & windows, & improved rendering. Well worth it.

  14. June 12, 2007 by Alejandro Moreno

    I installed it in WinXP SP2, and noticed that once a textbox, any textbox, got focus, I could not click on anything else within the webpage (including the page’s scrollbars).

    So, on a long page, say, I clicked on the search box, and then I couldn’t scroll or follow other links. Mouse overs were detected, but not clicks. Clicks on the safari toolbar itself were fine.

    I uninstalled it, but eagerly await the next version.

  15. June 12, 2007 by Margot

    Safari “had an error and was forced to close” whenever I tried to create a bookmark (re-installed, tried it 3 times).

    Funny, still kinda beta I’m thinking.

  16. I’m having the same no-text, no typing’ bug when installing on XP. Pretty disappointed. One of my friends says his company tested an really large HTML file. 13 seconds on Safari, 47 seconds on IE7.

  17. Could this mean that, in the future, I won’t have to use a screen-capture service to see how my designs look in Safari? Sure, it may be filled with little insects, but with time this could be another major competitor for Internet Explorer, if it isn’t considered one already.

  18. June 12, 2007 by DigitaLink

    Yep, worst beta ever. Completely and absolutely unusable on XP SP2, with the same no text, no typing problems already noted. How on earth can I test it when I can’t see the menus, or type in a URL??? Maybe next time …

    Too bad, really. I was very excited to finally get to try Safari on Windows for browser testing!

  19. June 12, 2007 by Rob Lowe

    I have been toying the with beta for a few hours now and upon looking through the comments, have noticed none of the aforementioned bugs on WinXP SP2. It’s nice to have a running copy of Safari in an non-mac office, however that won’t stop me from buying a MBP come October!

    (I installed the beta WITHOUT Quicktime, fwiw.)

  20. No problems so far on my Mac. So far, the only nuisance is that there still isn’t a “open new windows in tabs” option. Other than that, I wish SIMBL would be updated for plugins - Inquisitor works though.

  21. June 12, 2007 by Carmel Lisciotto

    No problems here either..

    Carmelo Lisciotto

  22. June 12, 2007 by Alex

    My Saf3bWin (there’s an abbreviation for you!) experience is so far so good - no install probs (Saf+QT on XP SP2) and it relaly does fly, and so far isn’t taking any more memory than Fx would (some multiple tabs and a bit of Web 2.0-y stuff).

    One thing I’ve noticed from my first half hour with it from a web dev perspective is that I’m having issues with how SELECT elements are drawn - they either appear in Aqua if left as default, or in some strange “3D-esque” look if styles are applied to them… Yes, they can be (partially) styled, although padding doesn’t seem to work, which stuffs things up if you add say a background-image to give SELECTs an “icon” (I know that’s not technically supported for replaced elements, but it works in Fx, and should either be done right or not at all imo).

    Adding/removing OPTIONs also draws strangely for me though when populating dynamically (e.g. if growing from 2 to 7 OPTIONs, the last 5 may appear black-on-black which isn’t really helpful). And in the case of creating say a WYSIWYG editor via a contenteditable element, I’m having “focus” issues relating mostly to SELECTs stealing the focus and then Saf losing the bounds of a selection (e.g. to apply a font family or size).

    All in all though, congrats to Apple for getting this out there, it’s an amazing achievement and I can’t wait to see the final!

  23. I downloaded the Windows version and had a pretty good experience. However, none of my bookmarklets work. Hmm.

  24. I’ve installed on XP SP2 and not been experiencing most of the problems other Windows users are reporting. Only bug I’ve come across so far is that I can’t tab through links with the keyboard although I can tab through form fields OK.

  25. I have surfed around with it and haven’t had any problems at all.

  26. June 12, 2007 by Freddy Leitner

    On my install (on XP SP2, German), I found this Safari beta to have serious problems with fonts. Most noticably, most of the Windows default fonts — Arial, Georgia, Times New Roman, Trebuchet MS, Verdana — in italic and/or bold. Same goes for Postscripts fonts in any font style. The fonts would be rendered “invisibly” with their respective width but a very tiny height.

    This major bug aside, the browser’s rendering and JavaScript engine do very very well with just about everything I throw at them. I’m very much looking forward to its progress.

  27. Wow, I feel so lucky. Installed it on my Windows XP SP2 (without QuickTime, without Bonjour) and my only problem so far is that I miss the Firefox shortcut for cycling through tabs (ctrl+tab, ctrl+shift+tab). Otherwise Safari has been working out wonderfully for me.

    Just as a side note, did anyone notice the fact that Lucida Grande is built-in into the software? You don’t get it in your fonts folder, but it’s obvious that it’s here (just look at the uppercase “G”).

  28. it works on my machine (xpsp2). but it crashed as soon as I type a character on an input text.

  29. Well, it seems to work quite well on Windows XP SP2. In fact, I’m posting this comment from Safari right now :)

    One thing that really bothers me is the font rendering — it’s really smudgy, and that’s saying a lot since I’m used to FreeType2 rendering to begin with (no, not the typical crap you seen in screenshots of clueless people. it’s tweaked to looked way better than Windows)

  30. One immediately annoyance to me is that now I have a beta Safari, and no full version Safari. They should be able to run next to each other. The nightly builds are able to do this just fine.

    The resizable textfield thing doesn’t seem to work on some textfields with scrollbars though.

    Except for that I’m looking forward to installing it in XP on Paralells to do some real comparisons side by side.

  31. Ardilla: Lucida is bundeled with Safari, but it’s not installed in the standard font folder. The font files can be found in the C:\Program Files\Safari\Safari.resources folder.

    An interesting observation is that the Saf3bWin passes the Acid2 test, but the main page of looks really bad on my Vista machine.

    The most annoying bug in the UI is that if the browser is maximized and you click in the top right corner, the maximized window behind Safari is closed. If an application is maximized, a click in the upper right corner should close the currently visible application.

  32. Crashed and burned on me as well. Doesn’t even start properly… XP SP1

  33. June 12, 2007 by Anders

    Pathetic beta! Random chunks of text disappear on google’s search result page, and on any other page for that matter. Text in the main navigation of this site is missing. I couldn’t even make this post through safari since the browser crashed every time i started typing in the input field…

  34. So… anyone know whether something has changed in the HTML/CSS field?

  35. The windows beta works ok for me but it’s seriously rough. The font smoothing is a bad idea, too - it just looks like the text has been done in crayon. It hasn’t been seriously converted to the Windows UI, so I get the impression it’s only really intended for developers/testing purposes rather than end users.

    Either that, or they’re specifically providing a browser with all the OSX keyboard shortcuts; to cater to the mac-people-stuck-on-windows-boxes market.

    Windows users need more browser choices

    I’m not really sure they do, so much as they need to seriously try some of the choices :)

  36. I’ve had the same problems with the tidy plugin. I also installed Safari with Quicktime on my Win XP Machine and it also doesn’t start up. Hope the next beta version is better.

  37. June 12, 2007 by Arnaud

    Same story as everybody: crashed as soon as trying to fill in a form (on three different XP computers).

  38. Hopefully it’ll be the same as the Mac browser, rather than a different browser with the same name (see IE/ Mac vs IE/ Win).

    We really really need another browser, don’t we?

  39. I have the same problem as some of the others on my WinXP sp2 machine; No texts are shown on the tool bars or on the start page and I can’t type anything in the URL box.

    I really hope they’ll release an improved version soon, this would be very useful for testing purposes :)

  40. I installed on WinXP SP2 and found it ok, if a little clunky. One thing I did spot that I haven’t seen yet is that I didn’t get any tool tips on any images/links.

    I think it’s a good move though and will save me having to wheel myself over to a designers Mac to test my sites.

  41. Installed on XP SP2, haven’t experienced any of the problems reported above. It looks weirdly out of place with the rest of Windows, but the fonts are really smooth and it is pretty fast. I think the alphas of FF3 are just as fast, however.

  42. It’s working here, but has a few bugs - maximizing it on my second screen sends it off to where my fourth screen would be, if I had one (based on how long it takes to move it back with right-click on taskbar->move then pressing the left arrow until it appears again!), links don’t tab through, it doesn’t like opening a new tab using Ctrl-T if there is only one page open in the window, for some reason (works if you middle click links, or select New Tab from the file menu), and the font rendering is off, somehow.

    Still, it’s a Webkit browser on Windows, from a big enough player to ensure it will probably keep being developed for a while.

  43. It crashes for me too unfortunately. :(

  44. I installed the Windows version and it works. Except when it doesn’t. It took me 3 crashes to put “wwdc07” into Google only to find out that no bold typefaces were visible. I’m now waiting for the next update…

  45. Roger, if you experienced any issues while testing the Safari 3.0 beta on Tiger or Windows I would strongly encourage you to file bug reports at either or

  46. There do seem to be very inconsistent experiences across the board really. My own is that the windows version will not let me type into the address bar or google search box so I can’t actually browse with it. None of the menus appear either. I opened the bookmarks toolbar and clicked on the links (couldn’t see the text of what the links were) so managed to get to some random websites. Again the experience was inconsistent. CNN rendered well, Apple did not. I’ll be waiting for the official release before trying it out on my Mac.

  47. June 12, 2007 by Paul S

    Sounds like the Windows version is more of a public alpha than a beta!

  48. June 12, 2007 by Ryan

    I couldn’t get the windows version to work either, rather than crashing through I just get a failed to load website error. Although it works with my localhost sites ok.

  49. Well, a lots of bugs indeed, but hey, it is still a beta. Scrolled fast through the comments and found one with the same problem I think; i found a new bug i think. Safari won’t display any/some h1/span tags.. Full post here:

  50. June 12, 2007 by Chris V.

    I think Windows-users already have a big amount of browsers they can use. Ever checked the browscap.ini that is distributed and maintained by Gary Keith (

    I think there is a bunch of browsers. OK, many are based on the Gecko-Engine (the one Netscape/Mozilla-browsers) or on the IE-engine (Maxthon for example) but there are also some other.

    But I like the fact that a Windows-user is now able to test with the Webkit-engine which is used by Safari and Konqueror.

  51. I experienced several of the bugs described in comments above as well as not being able to see any css background images the first time I ran Safari after install. Once I rebooted my machine, though, many of the bugs went away.

  52. June 12, 2007 by Luciano

    It seems like an alpha with a lot of errors than a beta to me. Under windows vista crashes on start. =(

  53. June 12, 2007 by Dawn

    Has anyone heard whether the Windows version actually uses the same rendering engine as the Mac version? If so, this just made my life as a web designer SO much easier! If not…gawd, do we really need another unique browser to test on?

  54. Official support thread about the various missing-text bugs in the Windows Safari beta: Safari 3 Beta for Windows - app text not showing

    The consensus seems to be that the developers seriously underestimated how many fonts the average web designer would have installed…

  55. June 12, 2007 by Calophi

    I haven’t had any issues with start-up on Windows XP at all.

    However, I went to look for the “always show tab bar” option, which used to exist, and it isn’t there. That was sort of annoying. =D

  56. June 12, 2007 by test

    Text/fonts are blurry, even with Font Smoothing set to Light. The browser is undoubtedly faster than Firefox. Until they improve text rendering, I’ll stick with FF.

  57. June 12, 2007 by edbm

    It is NOT a beta, rather an early alpha, as many functions are not even implemented, quite apart from the various display bugs and crashes. A beta should contain essentially everything that is in the finished product modulo bugs, final productification and optimizations.

    Still, it seems to be fast enough to be interesting for Windows users. It’s going to be real interesting when it starts maturing on the platform…

  58. June 12, 2007 by Scott

    It’s TERRIBLE. Why does Apple refuse to stick to the Windows UI standards and keep their OS X look and feel. It’s ridiculous because it makes me LOSE functionality and makes the programs themselves harder to use for people who have never touched an Apple PC product in their life (which is still a lot of people). My big two hates about the product right now are that the middle mouse button doesn’t scroll the window when held down and that you can’t resize the window from the sides (only the bottom). Also, the font in this version is really blurry, but I’m assuming they’ll fix that by the full release of the product.

  59. Just found out that an update to Safari Tidy which should work on Beta 3 (OS X) has been posted -

  60. June 12, 2007 by Alex Ciobica

    I’ve installed it on Windows XP, and you can really notice the difference in the text rendering (it’s quite nice). It din’t crash, works as intended I guess but I have some usability frustrations. I can’t mouswheel-click on a bookmark to open it in a new tab and I can’t add a new tab using my mouse which might be firefox-embedded needs. I kinda dislike the fact that I don’t see the favicons of the bookmarks in the bookmarks bar (I know it has never been like this, but still, I’d like to be able to choose). And I feel it really slows down my computer, especially when I have many tabs opened (unlike firefox). Did anyone noticed this ?

  61. June 12, 2007 by Gary

    I installed the beta on two machines side-by-side. One was fine and the other (identical I thought) got the same as some others have seen no text and blank boxes. The machines that works has been up and rock solid.

  62. June 12, 2007 by Roger Johansson (Author comment)

    Ok, found a solution to my problem with Safari not launching. I created a new account in XP. I’m posting this from Safari 3 beta running on Windows XP.

    It feels very weird that the entire browser GUI looks more or less exactly like it does on the Mac. But hey, finally Windows users can browse the Web with properly anti-aliased text ;-).

  63. Roger, I wouldn’t call it that a great success, the PC version. Just compare (mac version) to (pc version) or open Google with Safari 3 (PC) and you’ll see why.

    I’m suddenly getting IE Mac vs. IE PC flashbacks here … sigh

  64. Since I haven’t got a Mac, I’m pretty happy that Apple released Safari for Windows. I use UNIX (FreeBSD) for my development works but whenever I’m designing or just surfing the WWW, I use Windows 2003 Server.

    The wonderful thing that I noticed about Safari for Win is the font rendering engine. The RSS reader is cool and the browser seems to be pretty stable on Win 2003 Server. With the avalability of Safari on Windows operating systems, my web designing life is going to be a lot easier.

    In other words, I’m loving this browser.


  65. June 13, 2007 by zcorpan

    Safari crashing on startup seems to be because the Windows account user name contains non-ASCII characters. Maciej said it is a known issue and that they are working on it.

  66. June 13, 2007 by Roger Johansson (Author comment)

    Bramus!: I think that missing text is caused by a font problem. Once I got Safari running on Windows I used it pretty heavily last night. I encountered no problems at all, and couldn’t find any rendering differences compared to the Mac version.

    BTW, I love that Safari 3 finally, finally makes form labels clickable :-D.

  67. June 13, 2007 by Carlton

    It is definitely much faster and the text on most pages looks a whole load better…2 things though…if you edit your preferences and want to cancel…there isn’t a cancel button and I really don’t like the way RSS works…it is nice in Firefox how I can check my bookmark bar for the article title of an RSS, couldn’t do this in Safari, but hey, I’m still learning :)

  68. Roger, I doubt it’s a font problem as I’ve narrowed the problem down to em elements not being rendered visibly. A bit of further thinking let me to suspect my non-English XP is the guilty one and this idea now is backed up by some other commenters out on the web.

    Guess I’ll have to wait for an new build …

  69. No problems running on Windows XP for me although looks like there are some fairly serious security concerns with exploits already found so be careful using it for real! http://erratasec dot blogspot dot com/2007/06/niiiice.html

  70. I downloaded build 3.0 (522.11.3) and have some font-rendering issues and lots of Javascript that simply doesn’t go off in Safari for Windows (does work in Safari for Mac). Secondly a number of websites that normally do open without the www (the way to go nowadays, www is so passé), don’t in Safari for Windows, or render without the CSS. It’s very fast though, even compared to Opera and Firefox. Good to have all browsers on one platform. My testsuite is even more completer now. Thanx to Apple for this browser ;-)

  71. June 13, 2007 by Anders

    Found a fix for the blank font rendering:

    Close the safari browser. Move the common web fonts out of the c:-windows-fonts folder (copy them to a temp folder and then delete them in the windows folder). Move them back from the temp folder into the windows-fonts folder. Quite simple fix, which shouldn’t really be needed, but at least it worked for me.

  72. Perhaps this link from MacOSXHints will clear up the crash:

  73. June 14, 2007 by Diaschisis

    Like the look/interface a lot more IE, and it did seem faster-when it worked on my laptop-but mostly it was crash, after crash after crash. Does not run Yahoo mail beta, Google calendar and about 50% of the sites I tried to visit. And trying to send a bug report always caused a crash. Oh well, just have to wait a bit longer…

  74. June 14, 2007 by Lorenz Paulus

    What I like about Safari 3 is, that it amazingly fast, really fast…JavaScript performs like hell…that’s just great! And HTML-Rendering is also truly fast…

    And the coolest part is, that WIN-users now get the pleasure to enjoy a really cool and smooth browser…besides IE…hahaahh

  75. apple just released an update, they did’t update anything on their website but the version number is now 3.0.1. (app shows release number 522.12.2)

    still crashes when I start to use ajax functionality ;)

  76. June 15, 2007 by Zsa

    Safari for Windows is a dog. First of all, any software release. beta or not that immediately crashes the first time that you install it or won’t run… is not ready to be released as even a beta. The installation is software heavy. Microsoft deserves it’s reputation for designing bloatware. Apparently, Apple has simular designs. Why is this installation so big? Obviously Apple realizes this as the firt questions in installation regard to allowing it to install 2 completely unnecessary components. For most users they can count on the fact that they will timidly say yes (since they won’t have the vaguest idea what these components are for or if they can run Safari without them). Then Safari goes on to stuff the awful Quicktime software unto your drive. I hate the stuff. Quicktime reminds me of Flash Gordon’s space vehicle and belongs in a deep bunker along side with those mysterious rock guys that could melt into the walls and disappear. Talf about your resource hogging bloatware. It makes anything designed by Microsoft look like a diving leopard. If it isn’t obvious enough yet… I give this a don’t waste your time thumbs down. It probably was a real stock booster for the people at Apple for a day or so. I hope they won’t come back to us with “Windows compatible” betas until a day when let’s say, 95% of all users have a chance in hell of getting it up and running, (that is, instead of what I’m betting is more like a 5% bunch.)

  77. June 16, 2007 by linh

    I tried it on Windows XP SP2 and can’t test it either. Keep crashing every time I open bookmark or new tab, etc.. I don’t have Quicktime, but I had Quicktime Alternative codec before installing Safari.

  78. June 19, 2007 by Jack

    Sorry but I do not want any apple software on my windows pc. Everything I had of apple where crap and did install some kind of background services that where not needed(Itunes for ex sample) or send info to apple without asking me (Quicktime) or like there OS and the mac sucks worst system ever!

    Sorry but I keep with Firefox!

  79. June 22, 2007 by Alexander Adderly

    I can’t get Safari for Windows to work at all. It just crashes and crashes and crashes. I don’t this can qualify as beta. Beta software should at least work with basic functions. I’ve found a lot of posts where Safari is crashing all over the place, and a few who say they have no problems. Has anyone figured out why it crashes on Windows?? Is there a trick to getting it to run?

  80. update to 3.0.2 released today, avaible at the same adress as the former “version”.

  81. Installation of Safari on my XP was the worst thing i could do. After installation i could not use Internet Explorer multiple or 7..

    Most weird thing i have seen…

    I have no idea but next weekend is reinstallation the system totally… and for sure no Safari BETA…


  82. And OS X is now available on a PC. Google at OSX86. It works!

Comments are disabled for this post (read why), but if you have spotted an error or have additional info that you think should be in this post, feel free to contact me.