back to article Ready or not: Microsoft preps early delivery of IE10 for Windows 7

Get ready for Internet Explorer 10 on Windows 7 – it’s coming sooner than you might expect and faster than Microsoft had planned. Microsoft’s IE team has accelerated its ship date for IE10 on Windows 7 and is now targeting “end of February/beginning of March”, sources tell The Reg. According to the insiders, the IE unit had …

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  1. JimmyPage Silver badge
    Meh

    Does anyone else feel

    that we might be moving towards an XP-in-a-virtual-machine direction, where corporates just virtualise what they have, and rely on the wrapper security of the environment ?

    Sure MS worst nightmare - effectively immortalising XP.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Windows

      @JimmyPage

      We're already there, and its not MS' worst nightmare either...

      Check out Windows XP mode. A freely available add-on for users of Windows 7 Professional and up; you basically get Microsoft's virtual PC combined with an ISO image which contains a full version of Windows XP Professional.

      I'm using this critter myself and can say it works excellent. My main usage is when I have software which I need to use temporarily; as such I don't want it to "pollute" my Win7 environment. Then I simply install on XP and run it using the virtual environment. Eventually I roll back a snapshot and I have a clean environment again.

      The best part is the integration; software inside XP can be propagated in my regular Win7 start menu. So I can start programs seemingly fullscreen as native Win7 applications while they obviously retain their specific XP look and feel. Best of both worlds IMO.

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: @JimmyPage

        >Check out Windows XP mode

        Also check out: XP-More ( http://xpmore.codeplex.com/ )

        A very handy tool to help administer Windows 7 VM's ...

        If you are feeling a little more adventurous you can download Microsoft's Hyper-V Server 2012 for free (need to login to Microsoft) and use this as the native machine manager (unlike VMware's offering this isn't a cut down version). [Aside: I'm assuming a preference for MS products.]

    2. Lee D Silver badge

      Re: Does anyone else feel

      If it works, why not?

      I still know places that have actual DOS machines (not even virtualised, though they could be as they only really communicate with serial and network interfaces). If it works and does everything you want and isn't a liability, that's good. In fact, I'd say it's probably safer to have something in a virtualised instance rather than forgotten about, exposed to the network, and instead put in an even more locked-down environment than it had ever been deployed physically (i.e. virtual networking on the same machine preventing exposure of inter-machine communication to the network).

      Certainly the deployments I've done so far of Server 2012 and Windows 8, I've kept in a VM while I'm testing to ensure a) I don't break my existing network and domains by playing with the settings and b) the settings from the network don't interfere with my tests. I see no reason why things like public-access kiosks, internal processes and obsolete software that can't be replaced can't just run in a VM. Hell, if anything, it guarantees you against a Microsoft "cull" of products. Who cares if the OS in the VM isn't supported or updated so long as it's not acting on untrusted data or connected direct to the network - the easiest way of which is to virtualise the machine and then put a REAL machine around it to sanitise access to it with up-to-date security (and on the OS of your choice).

      I also personally hate anything that tries to lock itself to a particular machine. The damn door-control software I have does it for a start, not to mention boiler-control software for a huge, proprietary, £100,000-a-shot boiler. Who cares about the £40 bit of software that can only control that brand of boiler anyway, especially if it needs reinstalling and reactivating every time the old machines in the boiler room go a bit funny. Virtualise it (to be honest, if you do it right, the installers would NEVER know the difference from a real machine!), then - within the bounds of your EULA of course - re-deploy and shift the base hardware as much as you like.

      Though I'm still reluctant to work inside a virtual environment ALL the time on a desktop, I think that's just my old-fashioned side coming through. The amount of things that can benefit from being virtualised is humongous. Hell, we've even been virtualising our old games for years - we call them emulators.

      My girlfriend works in a genetics lab in a hospital. It's taken the IT guy there five days to rebuild the old custom interface running on DOS that runs a million pounds worth of microscope. Sure, the manufacturer has more up-to-date software... for a price. But the old stuff does EVERYTHING you ever need to do already, and the attached bog-standard PC dies and is replaced all the time because of the amount of work done on it. The microscope's still going, the software is still licensed. Virtualise it and never have to pay the license fee even if someone stops making PC's with that interface - so long as you can get an adaptor and convince the virtual machine that it's direct hardware, it's all to your benefit at much, much, much less cost. Hell, I wouldn't be surprised if the manufacturer update was their old DOS software running in a licensed VM that you can't see.

  2. Refugee from Windows
    FAIL

    Making me sure to turn "auto updates" off then

    Would it be fair to expect that the usual hype is to be ignored? It sounds very much like their idea of the internet experience is not one I'd like. My opinion of IE9 is "why did they bother" and no doubt of IE10 will be "why should I risk taking on this when I can use something else I'm used to?"

    1. CreosoteChris

      Re: Making me sure to turn "auto updates" off then

      Yes you can ignore the hype - not much difference from IE9 in everyday use. Using it on Win8 is quite pleasant because

      (1) Your favourites follow you around between machines by default, if you log in with a Hotmail or similar account - but that feature isn't likely to appear in non-Win8 implementations

      (2) The tabs are detachable - real handy if you have a multi-screen setup

      Overall though the big issue is lack of support for decent ad-blocking - Firefox with AdBlock and NoScript (or the equivalent Chrome setup, I haven't investigated) will be preferred by most readers here.

      1. dogged
        Boffin

        Re: Making me sure to turn "auto updates" off then

        I thought that, and had despaired of protecting my mum from this nonsense - she can't seem to keep using Firefox no matter how many times I install it and Chrome just sends all your traffic to Google so fuck that - but then I was lucky enough to discover Tracking Protection Lists.

        http://ie.microsoft.com/testdrive/Browser/p3p/Default.html

        Throw EasyList and Fanboy's List on there and it's like you just put AdBlock on IE.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Making me sure to turn "auto updates" off then

        (2) The tabs are detachable - real handy if you have a multi-screen setup

        They are in ie9.

        1. JimmyPage Silver badge

          Re: Making me sure to turn "auto updates" off then

          and chrome

          1. P. Lee Silver badge

            Re: Making me sure to turn "auto updates" off then

            and ff

    2. Darryl

      Re: Making me sure to turn "auto updates" off then

      Or you can leave updates on and just download the IE update blocker mentioned in the article.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Making me sure to turn "auto updates" off then

      "why did they bother"

      Primarily because it has far fewer security vulnerabilities than Chrome or Firefox for instance. Likely IE10 will widen the gap...

  3. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

    My gut instinct--not having run it--is broad adoption of IE10 will make webdev's life easier, since it implements more of the standards more completely. It may not be perfect, but it's better than IE9, which is itself better than its diabolic predecessors.

    Now, if only we convince MS to implement webgl too...

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Weren't there valid security reasons against WebGL?

      1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

        Yes there were / are. It's a great idea in principle however getting lower level access to GPU hardware is frought with security minefields, particularly given just how capable and powerful modern GPUs are.

        I believe the Win 7 driver model helped a bit with this, as more drivers, or more accurately their interfaces, run in user mode than at kernel level but this isn't something I'm particularly up on.

        1. Spearchucker Jones

          Some detail here - http://www.contextis.com/research/blog/webgl-more-webgl-security-flaws/.

          The other reason Microsoft doesn't support it, is that WebGL is not a W3C standard. It's interesting that the WebGL Wikipedia entry states that "...WebGL is integrated completely into all the web standards of the browser...".

          Whatever that means.

          In other news, Eadon isn't at work today.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Eadon not at work? No he signs on today....

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            The other other reason

            Could the other "other reason" Microsoft doesn't support WebGL is that is it based upon OpenGL, and thus erodes their lock-in of Direct3D?

            1. Spearchucker Jones

              Re: The other other reason

              @David D. Hagood

              WebGL is a specification for a JavaScript API and as such has no dependencies on anything. It so happens that existing implementations are based on OpenGL butt there's nothing technically stopping Microsoft from wrapping DirectX with a WebGL -compliant wrapper.

              1. P. Lee Silver badge

                Re: The other other reason

                Perhaps the issue is more that if MS supports webGL, more people might use the web standard rather than code native windows apps.

            2. StooMonster
              Headmaster

              Re: The other other reason

              Seeing as you mention DirectX, on Windows 8 IE10 uses DX 11.1 for rendering. Which is why Microsoft had to port IE10 back for Windows 7. The reason being that for marketing purposes DX11.1 is not coming to Win7 and is Win8 exclusive.

              So if instead they had "allowed" DX11.1 for Win7 they would've had an easier time making a version of IE10 work on this popular flavour of Windows.

              Also might've encourage game developers to use DX11.1 features, which is plainly not happening ATM due to tiny markets share of Win8.

    2. ChrisBoy

      I'd be inclined to agree...

      ... if 'broad adoption' of IE10 meant we could effectively ignore the various shambolic incarnations that went before it, but I fear this is unlikely to be the case for a long time.

      Upvote for the reminder that optimism is the cheerful upside to weary cynicism.

    3. P. Lee Silver badge

      > it implements more of the standards more completely.

      Herein lies the conundrum: the more standards-compliant it is, the less reason there is to install it.

      Has to be a good idea for corporates though - the more often you deal with change, the less likely you are to end up with entrenched oddball apps which can't with change.

      One of my current clients mandates that browser stuff must work with IE, chrome, ff and safari. That sounds sensible to me.

  4. El Presidente
    Windows

    IE10 at the end of Feb you say?

    I'll start not using Internet Explorer 10 round about the end of February in the same way that I don't use Internet Explorer now but at least I'll be up to date.

  5. JDX Gold badge

    Anyone tried it in anger?

    IE9 is a massive step from IE8, how does IE10 compare against IE9 for compatibility, performance and miscellaneous gadgetry? Big changes or evolutionary?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Windows

      @JDX

      My guess is that it will at least support HTML5.

      My hosting provider uses KVM and thus provides console access to the VPS using a HTML5 enabled browser. Because it is a Windows server I'm hosting there I figured I might as well use MSIE9. Needless to say; that didn't work too well.

      SeaMonkey otoh has no problems at all with the HTML5 interface, pretty odd indeed given MS' touting of HTML5 and JavaScript as of late.

      Even so; I'm not so sure I'll be implementing this update myself. For the sporadic use I have for MSIE the current 9 suits me just fine.

      1. JDX Gold badge

        Re: @JDX

        I thought IE9 already supported HTML5, or at least some of the core bits?

        edit: using http://html5test.com/ the answer is that it supports canvas, video, audio and many other things including local storage and geolocation. To me, that means it does support "HTML5".

        1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

          Re: @JDX

          HTML 5 support in IE 10 is okay but they're still playing catch up. I was looking at our stats today: for the first time ever IE (all versions) was behind both Chrome and Firefox on a 60 day average.

  6. Will Godfrey Silver badge

    New aggressive virus detected

    Severity: Critical

    Propagation: Enters the brains of the browser developers via unknown vector.

    Symptoms: Rapid increase of version number, ridiculous expansion of 'features'.

    Treament: Place developers in dark room without power. Feed on cold porridge for three weeks.

  7. Philippe

    Internet Explorer?

    isn't that the thing one uses to install Chrome?

    1. thegrouch

      Re: Internet Explorer?

      I tried Chrome after giving up on the indeterminably slow IE9 and found it wasn't much better. Plus it had spawned numerous processes in the background according to Task Manager. So I've gone for Firefox instead. So far, so good.

      1. Fuzz

        Re: Chrome?

        The numerous processes is a feature of Chrome, every tab runs in its own process so that one dying doesn't take down your whole browser

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @thegrouch (Re: Internet Explorer?)

        Chrome spawns a process for each tab. That way, a pathological web site can only crash one tab, rather than the whole browser.

        1. Ian Yates

          Re: @thegrouch (Internet Explorer?)

          I know from work that IE8 does the same (pity me, please), so I assume that this isn't removed from IE9 and IE10?

          Not personally a fan of Chrome, but the process thing isn't really a reason to not use.

        2. Ken Hagan Gold badge

          Re: @thegrouch (Internet Explorer?)

          "That way, a pathological web site can only crash one tab, rather than the whole browser."

          Does that happen much for you? I've been surfing the web for 15 years or more and I can't say I recall *ever* losing a browser due to a dodgy page.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Meh

    Using Chrome 26 Dev.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Meh

      Meh...

      Using Iron, don't like the spyware....

      Nah nah na naaa naaah...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Meh

        Bet you still use Google search engine and all their spying scripts.

        Double nah nah na na ;)

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Meh

          How do you know? He could using duckduckgo (as I do)

          Should we all start a tinfoil hat club? Feel free to email me for membership

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Mushroom

      Re: Meh

      Lightweight. I am using Cobalt 60.

      (where's the hipster icon when you need it...)

      (icon to prevent it from being used by the next guy who take this to the logical elemental extreme).

  9. Steve Knox
    Mushroom

    NO.

    That means developers must code appropriately, meaning they are still getting locked into each manufacturer’s browser.

    Developers who code appropriately will not code to the pieces that are browser-specific.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Go

    ooh I cannot wait

    ... to ignore it and continue using Chrome.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    one problem with newer browsers I've experienced

    is that web interfaces on older devices don't like them

    I've got a network switch and a router which don't like being connected to by recent versions of IE or Firefox Fourtunately I've a old desktop with a 3-4 year old version of Firefox on it that they will talk to.

    I understand the problem is down to too many sessions being opened to the web interface but given how little I need to use the interface I'm loathe to spend too much time on fixing the browser and while the device is working I see equally little incentive to upgrade the firmware with the result of interupting work and the risk of bricking it.

  12. Eradicate all BB entrants

    IE10 on Xbox ......

    ....... is massively faster than the PS3 browser (but still fiddly (and yes it will play that stuff but add html5 on your search term)).

    But seeing the option to add easylist to IE means I might see how it compares next to Firefox.

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Re: IE10 on Xbox ......

      Never thought of that. A decent browser on your console is kind of useful for video sites, and the PS3 one is definitely terrible (although Flash support might be the primary problem).

  13. Tom 35 Silver badge

    Will it?

    Install two different versions of IE10 to give the true windows 8 feel?

  14. wiggers
    FAIL

    IE9

    I've tried many times to upgrade from IE8 to IE9 on a Win 7 x64 platform but it stubbornly refuses, just giving vague error codes. Utterly hopeless.

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Re: IE9

      >>Utterly hopeless.

      Don't be so hard on yourself.

      1. wiggers

        Re: IE9

        How is it my fault? I've just had to repair the C: drive after CHKDSK trashed it by replacing all the security IDs with default ones, so I have a pretty good idea of what I'm doing, unlike Microsoft.

        1. JDX Gold badge

          Re: IE9

          It's the people who [think they] know what they're doing who seem to most often have problems, maybe because they broke their system. The rest of us 'idiots' just find the new version works fine.

  15. 1Rafayal
    Joke

    What, an article that practically begs to be flamed - and Eadon isnt about to tell us why he is right?

  16. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  17. Charlie Clark Silver badge
    FAIL

    The trouble is…

    A lot of the companies that are still on XP and are planning to move to Windows 7 (and there are quite a few) this year already have their software distributions sorted and that includes IE 8 / 9 plus either Firefox or Chrome on Windows 7 with no plans on changing that before rollout is complete.

    Not releasing IE 10 for Windows 7 at the same as it was released for Windows 8 was a total fuckup. I can imagine some companies might bring forward migrations, assuming IE 10 can still be used on their fucked app "web apps" that require IE 6, but for the rest even Stevie B on his knees in a gimp suit isn't going to move them.

  18. Mark Dowling
    Thumb Up

    IE10 in corporate

    Spellcheck in forms is nice. (Typed on IE10PPR/Win7SP1)

    1. Wibble

      Re: IE10 in corporate

      > spel czeck

      Every other browser has this...

      1. JDX Gold badge

        Re: IE10 in corporate

        Was that a comment that they have _finally_ added SC or a dig that they haven't?

        I have an addon for IE9 which works great but yes I do not understand why it's not built in. You'd think AT LEAST installing Office would give you SC!

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Facepalm

    Get ready for Internet Explorer 10 on Windows 7 - yawn

    Seven mentions of Microsoft and four mentions of Windows on the main page. I realize you have to earn a crust but this is getting embarrising. These kind of advertorials reek of someone desperatly trying to sound relevent ...

  20. Richard Lloyd
    Meh

    IE10 scores much higher than IE9 on html5test.com

    Maybe feature-wise, the end-user doesn't see much difference between IE9 and IE10, but at least Microsoft have finally broken the 300-point barrier (out of 500!) at html5test.com for the first time with IE10.

    IE9 scores a wretched 138 out of 500 which is why many web developers still hate IE - at least IE10 manages a mildly respectable 320. It should be remembered, however, that most recent browsers have already exceeded or are about to exceed *400* points, so even IE10 has a lot of work to do to catch up.

    We might see Windows 9 and IE11 catch up to where other browsers are now, but that's probably almost 3 years away! Essentially, IE remains the least HTML 5 compliant browser of all the major browsers and it's probably going to be that way for a very long time. It's still going to be cursed at by the vast majority of Web developers!

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Re: IE10 scores much higher than IE9 on html5test.com

      Several of the sections on html5test are not part of HTML5, they are 'related' technologies or unratified standards. We're back in the land of "standards are what the majority support" since the official HTML5 stuff is such a small subset of "HTML5".

  21. Madboater
    Joke

    the real question is

    once I upgrade, will I be able to download Chrome faster?

  22. Silverburn
    Windows

    installing vs uninstalling

    Frankly...if they'd make the IE uninstall process a lot better (ie by actually removing it), I'd be a lot happier.

  23. Charles Manning

    Care or not: Microsoft preps early delivery of IE10 for W7

    Fixed that for ya.

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