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retroweb:getting_started

Getting Started with ProtoWeb

To start using ProtoWeb, all you need is a computer with an Internet connection and a web browser that supports HTTP and FTP proxies (almost all web browsers do!). You can use a direct connection to the Internet. All you need to do is add the Proxy Server addresses in your Web browser setting.

Terms of Use

By using any of the ProtoWeb services, you agree to the terms outlined in the User Agreement.

Please note, ProtoWeb is currently in BETA. Many features are still in progress, and you may see some sites and resources not working properly, but we're working hard to bring these resources online. If you would like to get updates, or participate in development including web site restoration, we'd be happy to hear from you! Feel free to join our Discussion groups!


Quick Start

  • Install a web browser if you haven't done so already and make sure the computer is connected to the Internet. You can use any web browser that supports HTTP and FTP proxies. To see a list of tested browsers, check out our comprehensive list.
  • For the best experience, we recommend using the service with the following web browsers (depending on your platform):
    • Windows 3.x: Netscape Navigator 2.0 - 3.0, Internet Explorer 2.0 - 3.0, Opera 3.0
    • Windows 95/98/Me/NT4: Netscape Navigator versions 2.0 through 4.5, and Internet Explorer 3.0 - 6.0.
    • Windows 2000/XP Internet Explorer 6.0 - 8.0
    • Windows 7, 8, 10 RetroZilla 2.x, please read the article Classic Web Browsers on Modern Computers, then return to this manual.
    • Other platforms Use a web browser that works best on your computer.
    • For more information how to make older web browsers work on modern computers, please read the document Running Classic Web Browsers on Modern Hardware for instructions how to accomplish this.
  • Run the web browser and open up Network Settings. Under Proxy settings, add ProtoWeb as your default proxy server.
  • Now you can start using the service. Navigate to http://welcome.inode.com/ to begin.

Once you have added the proxy settings, you can start browsing ProtoWeb! The proxy serves pages from an archive of classic web sites, and the user experience should be close to the real thing. To visit a web site, you can type in an archived web address as it existed in the past.

  • If you're a first time user, or don't know where to start, we recommend going to the welcome page at: http://welcome.inode.com.
  • For an index of classic domains, go to http://www.inode.com
  • Please note, while using ProtoWeb, you will not have access to other Internet websites with the browser as long as ProtoWeb is configured as your primary Proxy server. You can restore Internet access by turning off access through a Proxy server.

Dial-up Experience

If you are sligthly deranged, or just want to simulate the page load times from back in the day, you may want to choose a proxy server which simulates a 56k modem. If you would like the full Windows Dial-up experience, including dialing phone numbers, you may want to build the Raspberry Pi Virtual Modem. See Raspberry Pi -based Virtual Modem for more information.


Detailed Instructions for Individual Web browsers

For the purposes of scope of documentation, we can cover a limited set of vintage web browsers, but the setup is similar with all browsers.


Internet Explorer 3.0

  • Go to ViewOptions
  • Click on the Connection tab
  • Tick the checkbox Connect through a proxy server

  • Click on Settings…

  • Under HTTP: type in the following address: wayback.steptail.com
  • Under Port type in the port number of your chosen server. Consult the server list and choose a port number.
  • Tick the checkbox Use the same proxy server for all protocols

  • Click OK, then OK to exit network settings.
  • You may begin using the service by navigating to http://welcome.inode.com

Mosaic Netscape 0.9 beta

  • Open Mosaic Netscape and go to OptionsPreferences
  • At the top of the Preferences window, expand the selection box, and switch from Styles to Mail and Proxies


  • Under FTP Proxy, Gopher Proxy and HTTP Proxy type in the address wayback.steptail.com
  • Under Port type in the port number of your chosen server. Consult the server list and choose a port number.

  • Hit OK to close out of the Network Preferences window.
  • You may begin using the service by navigating to http://welcome.inode.com

Netscape Navigator 1.0

  • Open Netscape Navigator and go to OptionsPreferences
  • At the top of the Preferences window, expand the selection box, and switch Styles to Mail and Proxies


  • Under FTP Proxy, Gopher Proxy and HTTP Proxy type in the address wayback.steptail.com
  • Under Port type in the port number of your chosen server. Consult the server list and choose a port number.

  • Hit OK to close out of the Network Preferences window.
  • You may begin using the service by navigating to http://welcome.inode.com

Netscape Navigator 2.0

  • Open Netscape Navigator and go to OptionsNetwork Preferences
  • In the Preferences window, open the tab Proxies


  • Under FTP Proxy, Gopher Proxy and HTTP Proxy type in the address wayback.steptail.com
  • Under Port type in the port number of your chosen server. Consult the server list and choose a port number.

  • Hit OK, then OK again to close out of the Network Preferences window.
  • You may begin using the service by navigating to http://welcome.inode.com

Netscape Navigator 3.0

  • Open Netscape Navigator and go to OptionsNetwork Preferences
  • Open the tab Proxies


  • Under FTP Proxy, Gopher Proxy and HTTP Proxy type in the address wayback.steptail.com
  • Under Port type in the port number of your chosen server. Consult the server list and choose a port number.

  • Hit OK, then OK again to close out of the Network Preferences window.
  • You may begin using the service by navigating to http://welcome.inode.com

Netscape Navigator 4.0

  • Go to EditPreferences
  • Under Advanced, open Proxies
  • Select Manual proxy configuration and click on View.
  • Under FTP Proxy, Gopher Proxy and HTTP Proxy type in the address wayback.steptail.com
  • Under Port type in the port number of your chosen server. Consult the server list and choose a port number.

  • Hit OK, then OK again to close out of the Preferences window.
  • You may begin using the service by navigating to http://welcome.inode.com

  • Press ESC on the keyboard, go to SetupNetwork options
  • Hit TAB until Proxies is highlighted and press ENTER
  • Type in the following while using TAB to move to the next field.
  • Under HTTP Proxy, and FTP Proxy type in the address wayback.steptail.com:xxxx. Replace xxxx with the current port number of the proxy server. Consult the server list and choose a port number.

  • Press ENTER to accept changes. Use TAB to highlight OK, hit ENTER to close out of Network settings.
  • You may begin using the service by navigating to http://welcome.inode.com

Questions? Comments?

retroweb/getting_started.txt · Last modified: 2020-12-26 20:41 by omolini