NetPositive 2.2 under BeOS R5 showing Wikipedia (no CSS support)
Developer(s) Be Inc.
Stable release
2.2.2 / November 1, 2001 (2001-11-01)
Operating system BeOS
Type Web browser
License Proprietary

NetPositive (often called Net+) is the default browser that comes with the Be Operating System (BeOS). It has partial support for JavaScript, but no Java or CSS support.[1] NetPositive was originally developed as a stop-gap measure [2] and was the only web browser available for BeOS, but that is no longer the case. The last official version of NetPositive before the Be, Inc. dissolution was 2.2/2.2.1 for US customers, but there also exists a 3.0d3 beta version, and a leaked 2.2.2 which changed from the RSA Encryption Engine to OpenSSL, possibly indicating that Be were cleaning the source of commercial code with an intent to open source, like the OpenTracker project.

Built binaries of NetPositive, including all encryption libraries, and other tools not provided by the OS itself, such as the HTTP and FTP engines, weigh in from 1.4 to 1.7 MB in size, uncompressed, depending on the strength of encryption provided.

NetPositive can be embedded into another application, or into the desktop of the OS itself, using the replicants system provided by the OS. When Active Desktop was launched on Windows, Microsoft promoted it as having been a major achievement. Be later claimed to have cloned the functionality using NetPositive (where Internet Explorer is used in Windows) in "nine lines of code".

A number of projects exist to clone NetPositive for BeOS, due to BeOS users' familiarity with its interface. The most advanced of these is Themis, which aims to capture the feel of NetPositive in a browser with modern features. There is also Net++, which aims to use the Gecko layout engine in the shell of the failed NetOptimist browser. For Haiku there is a successor for NetPositive, based on WebKit, called WebPositive.

It is still included in ZETA as the default browser for opening saved files and links from other applications, due to unfinished implementation of the native OS bindings in Mozilla Firefox for BeOS. However, Firefox is promoted as being the primary browser on the platform.

Error messages in Haiku

The browser's haiku error messages were noted among BeOS users, which led to the name of Haiku, an open-source BeOS clone. A late 1990s email joke which claimed that Microsoft was moving to Haiku error messages in Japanese versions of Windows was almost entirely made up of NetPositive error messages. For instance, a user might see the following error message if they try to access a website that is unavailable:

Cables have been cut
Southwest of Northeast somewhere
We are not amused.

If the user tried unsuccessfully to authenticate against a website, they might see:

Server's poor response
Not quick enough for browser.
Timed out, plum blossom.


  1. "BeOS". The Stoa Consortium. Retrieved 2015-09-10.
  2. "Browsin' on BeOS". Ars Technica. Retrieved 2015-09-10.
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