Microsoft researchers are developing a new Web browser that they say could offer a far greater degree of security than Google's Chrome, Mozilla's Firefox or Microsoft's own Internet Explorer.
The browser, called Gazelle, relies on 5,000 lines of C# code called a "browser kernel" that helps enforce security rules to prevent malicious access to the PC's underlying operating system, according to a recently published paper.
So far, Gazelle is just a prototype, with other parts of the browser based on Microsoft's IE. Due to the complex nature of the way it processes Web pages for better security, the browser's performance is more tortoise than gazelle, but the researchers think a few tweaks can make it faster.
Gazelle is different from some other browsers in that it considers each part of a Web site -- such as iframes, subframes and plugins -- as separate elements. Some of those elements can pull in malicious content from other Web sites. Google's Chrome runs a Web page and its elements in a single process.
The Microsoft researchers argues that their approach brings more reliability and better security since processes can't interact with the underlying system and are mediated by system calls supplied by the browser kernel.