MR Browser

Shared by: that-ben
On: 2022-09-28 11:00:57
Updated by: that-ben
On: 2022-12-27 08:29:30
Rating: 9.46 Clarus out of 10 (13 votes)
Rate it: 12345678910

  • Main interface + About window 
  • Main interface 
  • App and .mrb archive icons 

What is MR Browser?

MR Browser is a small utility app allowing very old Macs from the 90's that are too old to use a normal web browser, but are new enough to connect to the internet through TCP/IP, to access Macintosh Repository online services, e.g. to directly download files without the help of a modern computer.  For now, it's limited to only listing files smaller than 1GB, considering it's only meant to run on mid 90's System 7 environments.

Note: Before downloading files with MR Browser, to prevent crashes, make sure that the hard drive on which it resides has enough free space to account for your downloaded files.




Under the Basilisk II emulator, if you see a "Runtime Failure: Failed Assertion" error popping up after submitting your PIN (right when it does the update check) then just quit the app and re-launch it again.  This likely is an issue with the Basilisk II ethernet proxy and probably will only happen once, the first time you launch MR Browser after a fresh boot.  It's unlikely to happen on subsequent MR Browser uses until you completely exit Basilisk II.

Under Mac OS 9.1 to 9.2.2, if your Mac locks up completely near the end of an update or a .mrb file download, this is caused by not enough RAM being allocated to MR Browser.  You can fix this in the Finder by clicking MR Browser once to highlight it, then in the menu bar at the top, choose FILE > GET INFO > MEMORY and edit the "Preferred Size" field to at least 2200 (more is better) then close the window and then re-launch MR Browser.


Change Log

Version 0.21 (2022-12-18)

  • Added the "Expand .mrb file..." menu item, useful for .mrb files without a proper type/creator code (downloaded from the internet).
  • Fixed a long standing bug: MR Browser crashed when dragging an icon/window for more than 5 seconds while downloading files.
  • Fixed a typo in the help/instructions window.

Version 0.20 (2022-12-15)

  • Thanks @Xenocide for reporting the issue where chat text was jumping back to the top on new messages.  Fixed.
  • Thanks @OxYGeN for reporting a cosmetic issue (connection time out message was too large to display in whole).  Fixed.

Version sys6 v0.01 (2022-11-08)

  • First release for 68000 (B&W) Macs. Works on any Mac running System 6.x (512Ke and up).  Requires MacTCP (included).

Version 0.19 (2022-10-21)

  • Thanks @Sukaro for reporting a >= Mac OS 9.1 issue, requires more RAM allocated otherwise locks up on update (caused by MMU).
  • MR Browser now checks if it runs under >= Mac OS 9.1 and attempts to auto-increase its RAM allocation then re-launches itself.

Version 0.18 (2022-10-21)

  • This version (0.18) is the first to have an implementation of the MR real time chat! You can only post 1KB of text at once.
  • Pictures, video embeds and other HTML objects are all stripped from the chat, only raw text is sent to MR Browser.
  • Beginning of chat transcript is constantly cleaned so that it holds no more than 12K characters at any time (low RAM usage).
  • Fixed a bug, when the sign in connection timed out, it would remove the PIN from the field and proceed, now behaves as it should.
  • Fixed a soft lock that could happen if the sign in connection timed out BUT finally succeeded after the time error window popped up.
  • Fixed a NIL exception crash if the user quit the app less than 1 second after the main full screen window (after sign in) popped up.

Version 0.17 (2022-10-17)

  • Thanks @Aeolus85 for reporting a runtime error under System 7.6, just before the update check, probably fixed in this release.
  • Introduced a 1 second delay after the main full screen window is opened and before the updater socket connects.

Version 0.16 (2022-10-15)

  • Thanks @Sukaro for suggesting: MR Browser now allows users to save their PIN to a preferences file so it auto-signs in on launch.

Version 0.15 (2022-10-12)

  • Added a quick links menu near the FIND button, allowing users to instantly get System 6, 7 and Mac OS 8 install floppy disk images.
  • Added a macro-ish functionality that allows to auto-search and auto-download files based on their filename (for quick links menu).
  • Fixed a crash that could potentially happen while downloading .mrb files if the system was busy/halted for more than 1 second.

Version 0.14 (2022-10-11)

  • This version (0.14) is now the lowest that is supported, due to an unavoidable change in the .mrb file format (.mrb size checksum).
  • When QuickTime 3 is not installed, asks user to auto-download the QuickTime 3.0.2 installer as .mrb (no need for Stuffit or Toast).
  • Fixed regression bug introduced in v0.11, incompletely downloaded .mrb files don't result in wrong error displayed anymore.

Version 0.13 (2022-10-09)

  • Detects QuickTime version and if older than 3.0, gracefully downgrades to bitmap screenshots, requiring no QuickTime at all.
  • Before downloading screenshots, checks if we're on a locked or low free space volume, prevents crashing by showing an error.

Version 0.12 (2022-10-09)

  • Screenshots carousel (KB arrows supported) thru the MORE INFO window; pics auto-resized on server to 400x300 GIF.
  • Warning: Viewing screenshots (as GIF) requires QuickTime 3.0 or newer, otherwise it'll display an error.

Version 0.11 (2022-10-07)

  • Disk space is pre-allocated on app's volume before downloading to prevent incomplete downloads when not enough disk space.
  • Disk space is pre-allocated on app's volume before decoding .mrb files to prevent a misguiding error when out of free space.
  • Fixed regression bug re-introduced in v0.08, queueing the same file for download multiple times is no longer possible.
  • Warning: Regression bug: Incompletely downloaded .mrb files will result in "not enough RAM" error instead of "incomplete file".

Version 0.10 (2022-10-05)

  • Fixed regression bug re-introduced in v0.08, app can no longer crash when downloading files w/ name >= 30 chars long.

Version 0.09 (2022-10-05)

  • Fixed a bug in the .mrb encoder/decoder that prevented large files to be decoded properly. Max size now = 999,999,999 bytes.

Version 0.08 (2022-10-05)

  • The server files browser list now also shows the software page ID in the (previously named) FILE ID column.
  • On the left of software page entries (italic) there's now a tiny button that pops up a MORE INFO window (description).
  • All communications time out threshold is now 12 seconds to prevent false positives on very slow internet (e.g. 56K modem).
  • Warning: Regression bug: App might crash when downloading files w/ name having >= 30 characters long.
  • Warning: Regression bug: Queueing the same file for download multiple times is possible when it should not.

Version 0.07 (2022-10-04)

  • Slightly improved the .mrb file type BNDL to include the tiny 16x16 icon set, shown in the Finder under a folder list view.
  • Reports basic and anonymous Gestalt DATA such as the Mac model and Mac OS version for usage stats and debugging.

Version 0.06 (2022-10-02)

  • Shuffled code around, reduced RAM usage when decoding .mrb archives and now they can be opened from Finder to decode.
  • Made a custom Finder icon for .mrb files :)
  • Note: If you run out of RAM while applying an update (or decoding a .mrb file) just quit MR Browser and double click the .mrb file.

Version 0.05 (2022-10-01)

  • Improved the version updater, it asks if you want the update, auto-downloads and re-launches the new MR Browser afterwards.
  • Now warns the user when running out of RAM to fully decode a .mrb file instead of silently leaving the user with an useless file.
  • Slightly modified the .mrb archive format to embed the original file name, instead of assuming it's based on the .mrb file name.
  • Slightly modified the .mrb archive format to embed the original file size, which is used as a basic checksum when decoding it.
  • .mrb archives are now automatically deleted by MR Browser immediately after they've been decoded (both success or failure).
  • Note: The .mrb decoder still needs a couple more tweaks, namely to reduce the amount of RAM required... due next release.

Version 0.04 (2022-09-30)

  • Added a resource fork to binary encoder/decoder, allowing to download .mrb Mac executables without requiring Stuffit Expander.
  • Added a version update check after signing in.  It will warn you once per session if there's a new release available for download.
  • .mrb files are automatically decoded to executables upon download completion for a smooth, seamless experience :)

Version 0.03 (2022-09-29)

  • Added a help/instructions screen, accessible from the FILE menu (or via the CMD-H keyboard shortcut).
  • Added first and last 4 SHA1 hash digits to each listed file to help users quickly find out if a download failed.
  • Queued (and in progress) downloads can now be canceled/removed at any moment by pressing the DELETE or BACKSPACE key.
  • Download progress (%) is now shown with a higher precision to help see progress is being made on large files (0.1% instead of 0%).
  • Added a (lol) responsive-ish design so that the queued downloads list properly shows all information properly even on 512px screens.
  • Added an intelligent pre-queuing check that prevents the user from adding the same download file twice.
  • Fixed the bug that crashed the app when downloading a file that has a name longer than 31 characters.

Version 0.02 (2022-09-28)

  • Initial public release, lets a member sign in, search and download files.
  • Warning: There's a bug that will crash this release if you attempt to download a file that's more than 31 characters long (e.g. a long named OSX DMG file).


Download MR Browser for Mac

(434.78 KiB / 445.22 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.21 / compressed w/ Stuffit
357 / 2022-12-18 / d893bc3ab5af4136e0eed013b11e8e440fc81950 / /
(434.66 KiB / 445.09 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.20 / compressed w/ Stuffit
22 / 2022-12-15 / 077057f4bfbff3dc484d8903455e3fcf944a636f / /
(434.6 KiB / 445.03 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.19 / compressed w/ Stuffit
186 / 2022-10-21 / d79f730ec087291c4e10b56043977a898ace0f45 / /
(432.56 KiB / 442.94 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.18 / compressed w/ Stuffit
6 / 2022-10-21 / a07aa830b5c2ce8af898f37195346fc4e7544f15 / /
(415.41 KiB / 425.38 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.17 / compressed w/ Stuffit
18 / 2022-10-17 / 78daeb73fc2df990c879cf6d83d94673e77df4cb / /
(415.39 KiB / 425.36 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.16 / compressed w/ Stuffit
13 / 2022-10-15 / 90da07d08e599d18fe02399457565a73d67cb3f7 / /
(414.65 KiB / 424.61 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.15 / compressed w/ Stuffit
25 / 2022-10-12 / e6542118a0b6927a333224e86ebc52889b133af6 / /
(410.14 KiB / 419.99 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.14 / compressed w/ Stuffit
4 / 2022-10-11 / c1593c8bd71f90c1ecbd953cbe8e392ca2be7a46 / /
(408.8 KiB / 418.61 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.13 / compressed w/ Stuffit
5 / 2022-10-09 / 8d9ead0b8ff0a2351a97626c542656d203015f1d / /
(407.36 KiB / 417.14 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.12 / compressed w/ Stuffit
0 / 2022-10-09 / 90ae1860e376b55818842eea4ff36cd70906606a / /
(402.67 KiB / 412.33 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.11 / compressed w/ Stuffit
15 / 2022-10-07 / 0ba321384ea336d773d48cdc4388f4cdb00789f5 / /
(401.9 KiB / 411.54 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.10 / compressed w/ Stuffit
10 / 2022-10-05 / e0a2fb648b083aa50fdad396dfe3b6325def3b5e / /
(401.91 KiB / 411.55 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.09 / compressed w/ Stuffit
3 / 2022-10-05 / e5365e94d9c79adcad9d439fb6d644224a6d32f8 / /
(401.96 KiB / 411.61 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.08 / compressed w/ Stuffit
0 / 2022-10-05 / 85215ec65041269ae1c602f23a24ae8c494df1f9 / /
(399.55 KiB / 409.14 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.07 / compressed w/ Stuffit
1 / 2022-10-04 / 2022-10-05 / 8ea59d78ea8bdc3d1a081aaaa7abd5bc0822c924 / /
(398.63 KiB / 408.2 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.06 / compressed w/ Stuffit
8 / 2022-10-03 / b27ec201b6a9666a06c01be7916b0f98c29b34ca / /
(397.11 KiB / 406.64 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.05 / compressed w/ Stuffit
3 / 2022-10-02 / af4fab27bb51d34838036fc3e1b9c41e53ac2c9f / /
(393.66 KiB / 403.11 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.04 / compressed w/ Stuffit
4 / 2022-09-30 / b3fe028552840b3116e822a4b3ed207bbaf6db94 / /
(389 KiB / 398.33 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.03 / compressed w/ Stuffit
3 / 2022-09-29 / fa7c3ed80a9b6a4f5b40d940f4ba0f5b3bb865f4 / /
(384.03 KiB / 393.24 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.02 / compressed w/ Stuffit
11 / 2022-09-28 / 2022-09-29 / 0e97fea38fc95520839d98021da437825e2c0399 / /
(433.78 KiB / 444.19 KB)
MR Browser 68K v0.19 (as a 800KB floppy disk image) / DSK image, zipped
44 / 2022-10-29 / 5edea7a420ccc11715c7002a2469585878edb448 / /
(99.57 KiB / 101.96 KB)
MR Browser for 68000 System6 v0.01 + MacTCP (as a 800KB floppy disk image) *FOR B&W MACS* / DSK image, zipped
22 / 2022-11-08 / 136bde8866ade39f3923340b0540d6893d6ad97c / /


Motorola 68K

System Requirements

From Mac OS 6.0 up to Mac OS 9.2

Compatibility notes

MR Browser sys6 :

Architecture: 68K (68000 or newer, could work under PPC too, but it's pointless, use MR Browser 68K instead)

At least 157KB of free RAM (lol, yup)

Mac OS 6.x or Mac OS 7.x

Note: You need the MacTCP control panel installed and configured with a valid IP address.  It's included, just drag and drop onto your System Folder, reboot and configure your IP address in the control panels before launching MR Browser.


MR Browser 68K :

Architecture: 68K (68020 or newer) or PPC

At least 1.6MB of free RAM (recommended 1.9MB)

Mac OS 7.x - Mac OS 9.2.2

Note: You need a color (68020 or newer) Macintosh with TCP/IP internet connectivity to run this, so any 68K or PowerPC Mac starting from the Macintosh II running System 7.0 or newer should work.

Note: QuickTime 3.0 or newer is highly recommended to view GIF screenshots, but a fallback (slower) is in place to get bitmap screenshots when QuickTime 3 or newer is not installed.


Emulating this? It could probably run under: Basilisk II

To date, Macintosh Repository served 2275414 old Mac files, totaling more than 463447.4GB!
Downloads last 24h = 1378 : 291196.5MB
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