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How to access a subset of Web Archive pages from a vintage web browser on vintage hardware?

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I am in possession of an old 1998 Powerbook looking to browse era-specific websites (1995-2000, roughly) from the Web Archive using Netscape Communicator 4.08.  I'm doing so specifically to demonstrate the full capabilites of this specific browser, not simply trying to view the websites from any other browser, nor on any other machine.  Furthermore, I need to show that these web sites are, in fact, web-accessible, so simply saving the web pages on a modern computer, removing the offending incompatibilities, transferring the files over to the Powerbook through other means and opening the files locally using the browser doesn't cut it.  Obviously, there are many issues with this, incompatibility with the modern https protocol now used by Web Archive and the version of JavaScript it uses chief among them.  The solutions I'm thinking of attempting, are as follows:

1) Save the web pages I want from Web Archive, manually strip away the incompatible elements, host the pages on local servers on my network using protocols compatible with my vintage browser.  This is my "brute force" option.

2) Write a transcoding proxy that automatically strips away the incompatible elements from the Web Archived versions of the web sites, so that any attempt to access the site by my vintage browser will return these transcoded versions.

Both options are time consuming, and I was simply wondering if this problem has already been tackled, before I waste my time reinventing a solution.

asked Sep 29, 2020 by EriolGaurhoth (130 points)

1 Answer

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You can request the raw, unrewritten archived web content from the Internet Archive Wayback Machine by appending "id_" to the date string in the URL (e.g., https://web.archive.org/web/19961022173245/http://www.geocities.com/ https://web.archive.org/web/19961022173245id_/http://www.geocities.com/). See https://web.archive.org/web/20130329115724/http://faq.web.archive.org/page-without-wayback-code/.

answered Oct 9, 2020 by nullhandle (280 points)