Methods, systems, and software for installing and operating selected software applications on a client computer that is in communication with a server computer on a computer network is described. In one aspect, a method for installing and operating a selected software application on a client computer that is in communication with a server computer across a computer network. In one embodiment, browser software is provided on the client computer that includes a browser user interface and is effective to identify and download selected software applications from the server onto the client computer for execution thereby. A data transfer communication link is established between the client and server computers across the network, a desired software application is selected using the browser, and the desired software application is transmitted across the network from the server to the client. The browser user interface is then transmuted into the user interface of the desired application to allow operation of the downloaded software application using the transmuted browser user interface. Using the methods, systems, and software described herein, software can be distributed to client computers without the installation and other management difficulties common with managing software on multiple computer systems. More importantly, the methods, systems, and apparatus provided by the present invention allow for the distribution of software that is platform-independent; thereby freeing network and system administrators--and users--from the frustrations and difficulties created by the need to manage various platform-dependent versions of software.