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  1. #1
    iNET Interactive
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    TOP STORY

    IE 9 puts Microsoft back into the browser game


    By Woody Leonhard

    Internet Explorer has been a distant third-string player to Firefox and Chrome for so long, we thought it could never catch up.

    But with a slick new interface and enhanced Windows 7 features, IE 9 — now in public beta — just might put Microsoft back at the top of the browser game.

    The full text of this column is posted at WindowsSecrets.com/2010/09/23/01 (opens in a new window/tab).

    Columnists typically cannot reply to comments here, but do incorporate the best tips into future columns.
    Last edited by revia; 2011-01-19 at 15:04.

  2. #2
    New Lounger
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    As usual, great input Woody but IE9 seems to be absolutely no use to me whatsoever.

    I, along with millions of others, still use XP.

  3. #3
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    Yes, there is a huge alienation of XP users. Story needs better clarification at the start as well; IE is not running a distant third to FF and Chrome in usage so it kind of lost my interest right from the start with "muddlemumble." Kicking XP to the curb probably means the 60% share will generally decline, maybe significantly, maybe not.

  4. #4
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    I don't see what there is in IE9 to get me excited, let alone Woody. Who wants to fill their Task-bar with shortcuts to websites? Has Woody not used Windows 7 Jump Lists? You can pin any site you like to the Jump list. So IE9 has the potential to be a right-click quicker.

    Let's curb all this excitement: IE is playing catchup whilst Chrome and Fire Fox will shortly shoot ahead again.

  5. #5
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    A poor review with far too much emphasis on clever things one can do with tabs which I guess don't do anything for most of us. Nothing about website compatibility, compliance with W3C, customisability etc. And apart from a single one word mention at the end, no mention of Opera which is a serious contender as far as browser speed is concerned. Of course being on XP for the foreseeable future IE9 doesn't even come into the equation.

  6. #6
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    If you asked me a few years ago, should Governments interfere with software 'manufacturers', I would have said no.
    However since MS software is crucial to MOST businesses, we have to intervene, if complex messes are being created.
    Governments should legislate to force MS to keep Windows simple (KISS).
    One small step in that direction would be to insist that MS stop integrating software into Windows, that does not need to be integrated..
    I am sure there are a few examples, but let us start with IE9
    Boycott it, until it becomes a stand alone program.
    Rob.
    PS Who knows, it might then run in XP ?

  7. #7
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    Informative review. I also use Firefox as the main browser, and IE8 only for a few pages. No saved sessions, multiple tab rows, or ability to determine maximum width, (using TabMIxPlus ext. which enables 16 tabs per row with a 19" monitor) or change colors (Colorful tabs), embed and save the url of a page, no Googlebar, no themes, and multiple other things one can do with FF or add to it, and which is more the work of a user community. And IE9 has even less tab or address bar space. I only have XP, which i like better than Vista, so IE9 is out anyway, but thank God i can even surf.

  8. #8
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    I tried IE9 and found that a number web sites didn't load, hung up. I have 1and1 for my web page and couldn't do everything with it. Went back to ie8 and back to using google chrome, to many compatibility issues at this point.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobCr View Post
    If you asked me a few years ago, should Governments interfere with software 'manufacturers', I would have said no.
    However since MS software is crucial to MOST businesses, we have to intervene, if complex messes are being created.
    Governments should legislate to force MS to keep Windows simple (KISS).
    One small step in that direction would be to insist that MS stop integrating software into Windows, that does not need to be integrated..
    I am sure there are a few examples, but let us start with IE9
    Boycott it, until it becomes a stand alone program.
    Rob.
    PS Who knows, it might then run in XP ?
    IE9 is NOT integrated into Windows in the way that IE6 was with XP. Windows was re-architected starting with Vista to allow a much smaller base OS and to comply with legal decisions around the world. One reason IE9 is not compatible with XP is that IE9 relies on Direct2D libraries that are not available on XP. I'd guess there are other reasons also - such as another not so subtle push to XP users to upgrade.

    Joe
    Joe

  10. #10
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    Doesn't matter how many "improvements" MS makes to IE as long as they don't make it easy for thousands of contributors to write extensions. The true value of FF is the boatload of free extensions available to enhance it.

    For us geezers and others who are visually impaired, Zoom Toolbar alone is worth the price of admission for FF, but add to that Adblock Plus, FlashBlock, Ghostery, IE View, and Tab Mix Plus, and you've got yourself a truly useful browser. Finally, if you're into capture, add Abduction and Downloadhelper.

    MS can bump the number up after "IE" as many times as want, but they'll never provide the ability to do any of the above. MS, along with its partners, are too invested in jamming unmitigated web crapp down our throats exactly the way they want us to swallow it, you know, sort of like the way ducks are force fed to produce tasty foie gras. And you have to remember, MS is all about no choice. Sort of like Obamacare.

  11. #11
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    The Direct 2D API that XP does not support is what enables IE9 to use hardware acceleration. I might be wrong on this, but I have never known MS to add new features to an old OS for which they have discontinued support. And except for security patches, MS support for XP is over for us consumers.

    As to government intervention, I do not know about other governments, but in the US, when the government sticks its hands in a matter, it magically manages to royally screw things up, and ultimately increases the financial burden on overtaxed citizens. The last thing MS needs (and consumers) is for government talent(?) to run their business.
    Deadeye81

    "We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give." Sir Winston Churchill

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Asok Asok View Post
    Doesn't matter how many "improvements" MS makes to IE as long as they don't make it easy for thousands of contributors to write extensions. The true value of FF is the boatload of free extensions available to enhance it.
    <snip>
    Exactly. The whole point of Firefox is the extensions (ooh, sorry, "add-ons" ).

    All these tab functions that are "new" in IE9 are either of little value to me or are already do-able in Firefox.

    'Tear-away tabs' - yuk! I always use just one window.
    'Shortcut to website' - I use the 'DeskCut' add-on
    'Pin a site to the taskbar' - you can put it on your bookmarks bar in Firefox, favicon and all:

    Have a look at the top of my FF screen. See anyone you recognise, Woody? (7th icon along, 3rd row) :



    'Fastest browser' ? Hmm, in a country where the Internet crawls along, there doesn't seem much point in displaying the top 1/4 of a web page in nano-seconds when you have to wait another 30 seconds for the rest!

  13. #13
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    I've been trying it and just can't get excited about it!
    I tried the HTML5 test with the Beta9, FF 3.6.6 and Opera 10.62 and found Opera & FF to be better with smoother videos and Opera is fast. I repeated my testing with each browser over a period of time this morning....

    Using these browsers with a couple sites I still maintain with MS Expression Web3, currently without HTML5, revealed a different rendering.
    Opera & FF looked correct but IE9 messed up some layouts.
    Makes me scratch my head....built/maintained with a MS product that isn't rendered correctly with their latest browser.?!

    I currently have XP, Vista, and Win7 computers each equipped with IE, FF, & Opera so I can test my sites. IE9 doesn't do me any good on my XP computer, as has been said several times...
    People that have me work on their PCs always ask about an upgreade from XP. They don't have enought memory, even for XP, nor is their video adaper up to the task. If their current programs meet their needs and they don't need a new application that won't run on XP, they really don't have much of an incentive to move to Win7.

    If it's not broke, don't try to fix it.
    When it's broke, deal with it.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobCr View Post
    If you asked me a few years ago, should Governments interfere with software 'manufacturers', I would have said no.
    However since MS software is crucial to MOST businesses, we have to intervene, if complex messes are being created.
    Governments should legislate to force MS to keep Windows simple (KISS).
    One small step in that direction would be to insist that MS stop integrating software into Windows, that does not need to be integrated..
    I am sure there are a few examples, but let us start with IE9
    Boycott it, until it becomes a stand alone program.
    Rob.
    PS Who knows, it might then run in XP ?
    I partially agree, but you have to remember that there are a mass of non-nerdy users out there who are quite satisfied that Windows provides all their needs with one install. MS just need to integrate MSE and all the WMP codicies too.

    A version of Windows bereft of all the add-ons such as IE, WMP, defrag, etc., would be welcome to many.

  15. #15
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    MSIE 9 beta simply appears as a big white space on my computer ....

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