Why do I have problems accessing GMS Webmail with IE 5 on a Mac?

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Question

Macintosh users who access GMS Webmail via Netscape 4.7x get the new Professional interface but IE 5.0 w/MRJ 2.2.2 users get the old limited mail interface.

From a PC, both browsers get the newer interface. When will IE 5.0 on a MAC be supported or is this an Apple MRJ related issue?

Answer

IE5 is not supported on a Mac due to an Apple MRJ issue. Netscape on a Mac uses its own Java virtual machine, which supports LiveConnect; IE on the Mac uses the Apple Java VM (MRJ), which does not support LiveConnect. LiceConnect is fundamental to the operation of GMS Webmail.

The last time the IE-Mac mailing list was checked, Microsoft came back saying there are currently no plans to address this.

There are three options available to you:

  • Continue with IE5 and use the GMS Webmail Mobile interface.
  • Install Netscape 4.x on a Mac and use Netscape instead.
  • From release 8.1 or later of GMS Webmail use the Express interface

GMS Webmail Professional operation is dependent on LiveConnect, which is the facility allowing JavaScript to communicate with Java and vice-versa. This is how the dynamic content in WebMail works:
for example, when switching between folders, the list of
messages in the Java applet is changed by JavaScript in
the bottom frame. LiveConnect is not supported by the Apple
virtual machine: this presents no problem for Netscape 4.x,
which uses its own VM; in the case of IE, which uses the
Apple VM, this is a fundamental problem. There is a dropdown
in IE for selecting the VM to use, but there is only one
entry in this dropdown, so they’ve obviously thought about
it but have not done anything yet.

See Also:

Keywords:GLWebMail, IE5, Mac, macintosh

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