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Microsoft has agreed to implement a browser ballot system with Windows 7 in Europe. DailyTech has exclusive details from Opera on how this system works.
We have exclusive on how browser balloting may work under Microsoft's proposal to the EU

Microsoft has long offered one -- and only one -- browser with its market-leading Windows operating system -- Internet Explorer.  That inside connection helped it gain over 80 percent of the market at one time, though its lead has now slipped to just below 60 percent of the total browser marketshare.  Now, thanks to a 2007 complaint from third-party browser maker Opera and a subsequent investigation by the European Commission (the branch of the European Union that handles business law), that artificial advantage may finally be at an end.

The European Union ruled it was anticompetitive for Microsoft to release Windows 7 without rival browsers to Internet Explorer, which came installed by default.  Initially Microsoft opted to release Windows 7 in the EU without IE 8.  However, it now has come around and has made a proposal along the lines of what Opera had originally suggested -- a browser balloting scheme.

DailyTech spoke with Opera's Chief Technical Officer Håkon Wium Lie, the man who first proposed the CSS web standard and a pivotal figure at the browser company, about the development.  Mr. Lie expressed happiness that his company's browser might finally get a chance to come directly to users with Windows.  He states, "This is good news, we think, that Microsoft put this proposal forward.  This will give users access to more browsers.  It's good news for users.  It's good news for browser makers.  And it's good news for web standards."

According to Mr. Lie the currently proposal from Microsoft is to present users a ballot screen during Windows 7 installation.  Any browser maker with over 0.5 percent Windows browsing marketshare would be eligible to be on the screen, with a maximum of 10 allowed options.  This would mean that Opera, Mozilla's Firefox, Google's Chrome, and Apple's Safari would likely be the browsers presented.

Currently Microsoft is proposing that the user choice of a third party browser triggers an automatic download via a link to the company's site, requiring the Windows 7 user to be internet-connected.  Opera is a bit concerned about this, but thinks it's better than the former lack of competition.  Opera would prefer a "carry" option, with a copy of each third party's browser prepackaged with Windows  Mr. Lie states, "A link could work (but) the benefit of the carry (approach) is that you don't need a fast active internet connection."

While the freedom of choice may place a dent in Microsoft's desktop dominance, one sector that it can expect to stay strong is in corporate deployments.  One advantage Internet Explorer does have is strong availability of central management tools which save money and time for IT deployments.  Inertia is also on its side; most businesses already have IE deployed as their PC browser of choice.  On the topic of the business market Mr. Lie concedes, "It's been very hard to break into that market.  It's hard for Microsoft itself to break into that market.  You have many businesses still using Internet Explorer 6 or 7."

Mr. Lie believes that mobile and console markets are one of the most promising areas, though, for third party vendors like Opera.  Opera's Mini and Mobile browsers are very popular on the mobile market at its browsers are also featured on the bestselling Nintendo Wii.  Mr. Lie says that the mobile industry is among the "more receptive" markets to free browser competition.

The Microsoft proposal is still in the formative stages and may see changes.  The EU and Microsoft must agree to the exact balloting scheme, but at this point both parties have agreed in principal to make a balloting screen happen.  This decision to give third parties a chance is good news for Microsoft, users, and the free market says Mr. Lie.  He surmises, "We'll see stronger competition and stronger support of standards from this."

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Still kind of limiting
By TMV192 on 7/25/2009 2:33:49 PM , Rating: 2
My idea would have been similar to how some stores carry free Ubuntu CDs. Just have the computer stores with free installers from the various companies. That way small companies don't need to wait for the .5% market and it can do better for marketing, have details on the back of the case, seeing what others are picking up, etc

RE: Still kind of limiting
By DarkElfa on 7/25/2009 3:05:17 PM , Rating: 2
Is Opera a European based browser?

RE: Still kind of limiting
By oab on 7/25/2009 3:08:21 PM , Rating: 3
Yes, Opera is developed by a European (specifically Norwegian) company.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By TBK0000 on 7/25/2009 7:14:57 PM , Rating: 2
European yes, or more specific Norwegian.

And just to clarify, Norway is NOT member of EU (European Union).

Not all Europeans (like me) support the harassment of Microsoft.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Master Kenobi on 7/26/2009 1:48:32 AM , Rating: 3
I find it strange that Opera is complaining when Firefox is not, and in fact Firefox is doing quite well and they aren't bundled.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Zurtex on 7/26/2009 4:49:57 AM , Rating: 3
I don't know whose blogs you haven't been reading. But you should start reading these 2:

Mozilla has been more than happy to provide evidence of Microsoft's monopolistic behaviours from day 1 of this EU thing.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By dark matter on 7/26/09, Rating: -1
RE: Still kind of limiting
By ipay on 7/26/2009 6:18:41 AM , Rating: 5
Forcing Microsoft to offer competitors' browsers ON ITS OWN OPERATING SYSTEM makes about as much sense as forcing every Mercedes salesman to inform his customers that there are other car brands available while he's making his sales pitch.

I live in Africa, and I think you pesky European countries should pull your heads out of your asses and take a good look at your own hypocrisy and stupidity.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By BZDTemp on 7/26/09, Rating: -1
RE: Still kind of limiting
By hadifa on 7/26/2009 7:10:06 PM , Rating: 5
Living in Africa means not living in Europe in this case.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By SilthDraeth on 7/26/2009 10:37:20 PM , Rating: 5
It means, he isn't in America, so he can't be called a typical American with Microsoft putting money in his government's pocket, which is what people call any American that supports Microsoft, or opposes the EU.

Well not anyone, but the pro EU crowd.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By dark matter on 7/27/09, Rating: 0
RE: Still kind of limiting
By mikeyD95125 on 7/27/2009 1:50:30 AM , Rating: 4
First off, I am not sold on calling 60% market share of an internet browser a monopoly. Second, it is VERY easy to go and download another competitors browser. No one is stopping you from doing that. Why is Microsoft now expected to provide you with it's competitors products? Does Apple have to include IE, FF, Chrome, etc because 85% of the OSX market uses Safari? Do I have to choose through 30 different versions of crappy photo management software because Vista includes Live Gallery?

I think the whole idea of this is ludicrous. I don't see how the consumer is getting hurt in this situation. After all, IE and every other browser are FREE PRODUCTS. I use Firefox because of all the great add-ons, but most people just do not care. They want something to just browse through web pages.

Are we going back to 1995 where I have to go to the store to pick up a web browser CD?

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Solandri on 7/27/2009 2:44:41 AM , Rating: 5
First off, I am not sold on calling 60% market share of an internet browser a monopoly.

I'm not convinced that different browsers bundled with Windows is needed anymore, but it's important to remember the history of how we got where we are today.

Netscape was the first commercial browser. They were the commercialization of the NCSA Mosaic research project (the first browser). Back then you had to buy a browser, and initially Netscape owned the market.

Microsoft, as it seems wont to do with any market it doesn't own, made IE and gave it away for free, bundling it with Windows. That torpedoed Netscape's business model. Eventually in 2002-2003, Netscape's share dwindled to less than 5%, and IE owned about 95% of the market. Netscape folded.

What happened next is important. Once Microsoft owned the browser market, the rate of improvements to IE slowed to a crawl . For 3 years IE barely changed, including a 13-month stretch where they only released bug fixes and security updates, and a 23-month stretch without a minor version update. Two years with only a minor version update in the application software market is ludicrous. It wasn't until Firefox came onto the scene in late 2004 and introduced tabbed browsing that Microsoft was forced to improve IE.

Like I said, I'm unsure if all this is necessary anymore. But competition in the market is vital to promote progress and innovation. We are in a good state now, but we have to be careful never to repeat the doldrums we hit in 2002-2004.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By robinthakur on 7/27/2009 9:18:56 AM , Rating: 3
Agreed, designing web pages back in the dark days of IE6 was a living nightmare! Certain hacks worked for IE and others not for Firefox! Certain CSS features just didn't work at all in IE6! If it wasn't for FF, Opera et al stirring the pot by incorporating decent competitive features, we'd probably all still be using IE6, I kid you not. It *was* a massive monopoly and a problem because nobody could ever design a website that rendered CSS properly because hardly anyone at the time would ever see it! The amount of hacks needed to get anything to render semi-accurately in IE6 was legendary. Situations like this really hurt MS more than anything else, because they annoyed 99% of people who design all websites, and we are a chatty bunch. Geez even thinking back to it stresses me out!

I would like to say though that IE7 and 8 fixed a lot of the problems with rendering accuracy for CSS, although I believe FF and Safari are still a bit more accurate. History with browsers tells me that choice is VERY important for standards compliance, and I can't see anything wrong with offering other choices as long as MS is not expected to support them! MS already offers things like the Google search provider within IE, so the amount of business they lose through this is probably negligable as IE is free anyway.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By MrPoletski on 7/27/2009 3:34:14 AM , Rating: 1
you can whinge all you want about government involvement, but if somebody hadn't been keeping microsofts monopolistic behaviour in check then we wouldn't be having this conversation because there would be no web browser other than IE. In fact we wouldn't even call it a browser, we'd call it the internet explorer and pine over somebody making a better functioning internet explorer.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By foolsgambit11 on 7/27/2009 5:03:26 AM , Rating: 1
A more accurate example would be forcing Mercedes to offer multiple tire options, where one of the tire manufacturers was a wholly-owned subsidiary of Daimler AG (the parent company of Mercedes Benz).

Still not perfect, because Mercedes Benz hasn't been ruled a monopoly, but it gets closer.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By DotNetGuru on 7/27/2009 4:16:57 PM , Rating: 1
I agree with your point here. MS is being treated unfairly.
You can say what you want about the Europeans, but at least they don't live in Africa. aahahahahaha Africa sucks

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Regs on 7/28/2009 9:53:40 AM , Rating: 2
Mercedes? Mercedes is not a market. MS is. In face Mercedes would even be considered a niche market for the premium they charge for their cars. They're not as bad as Ferrari, but comparing the two different organizations is ludicrous.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Integral9 on 7/29/2009 11:31:21 AM , Rating: 2
Except your mom knows the difference between the road and a Mercedes, whereas I doubt she knows the difference between the Internet and Internet Explorer. No offense to your mom, just using her as an example of the knowledge of the general public.

I agree w/ you about forcing M$ to put it's competitor's browser's on it's OS. And I don't think it would be necessary if Microsoft hadn't integrated their browser to the point of not uninstallable.

Truthfully, M$ gained browser dominance through customer ignorance and used that ignorance to their advantage by bundling their browser w/ their operating system. They then drove a stake in the ground, by integrating the browser into their OS to the point where it cannot be removed. While M$'s initial intentions may have been good and decent (especially when it took 20 min to download a megabyte) they definately took action that negatively effected any competing products then and the future.

How else can you explain IE's rise to near ubiquity only a very short time after Windows 95 was released. It certainly wasn't better than Netscape 3, at least until IE5.0 came out, 2 years later.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By dark matter on 7/26/2009 5:00:39 AM , Rating: 2
Oh come on.

This is the SAME issue that Netscape had with MS, and they were found guilty then.

This isn't just a European issue, its just that the EU actually did something about it.

The problem with MS is that they don't just make the OS, they also make Applications too.

And it seems many have short memories. When this was lodged firefox wasn't doing nearly so well and MS had taken around 2-3 years to update their IE6, which as you all know was a pile of shit.

So although things may be different now, back then it was dominated by IE.

And he who controls the browser, controls the very first page you see on the Internet.

Thankfully the rapid adoption of Firefox forced MS's hand. If that didn't happen you would be so grateful for this ruling.... I doubt Opera had a crystal ball when they lodged their filing.

I think it is a great thing, MS are notorious for trying to control the Internet via the proprietry hooks and code on IE6. Ask any developer how they feel about IE6....

You need to learn a bit of history to fully appreciate this case. Seems a lot of you guys have short memories or have only just started using computers...

RE: Still kind of limiting
By InfantryRocks on 7/26/2009 6:04:16 PM , Rating: 4
And he who controls the browser, controls the very first page you see on the Internet.

And yet, I can very easily change that first page, can't I?

Thankfully the rapid adoption of Firefox forced MS's hand. If that didn't happen you would be so grateful for this ruling....

But it did happen. Competition solved the problem. Not intrusive government edicts.

You need to learn a bit of history to fully appreciate this case.

You first, though you'll have to go back further than the early-mid 90s.

The simple truth here is that the EU is running out of OPM (other people's money), they saw a cash cow, a big, slow-moving target, and they went after it with guns a-blazin'.

You think the EU bureaucrats or the average John/Jose/Jean Six-Pack give a damn about what browser is included in Windows? Hell no.

But they do like that money.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By dark matter on 7/27/09, Rating: 0
RE: Still kind of limiting
By tmouse on 7/27/2009 7:38:57 AM , Rating: 5
I wonder what the internet would be like today if Netscape had no competition? I think it would be a shadow of itself since most companies would not have shelled out $40 per box and I highly doubt most home buyers would have. Free browser distribution was most certainly a way for Microsoft to gain control, but it had the side effect of instantaneously providing a huge audience not tied to the web portals. Before that all shopping and social activities were controlled by the portals and in a paid browser market they probably would have kept that strangle hold.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By oab on 7/27/2009 1:36:34 AM , Rating: 2
There was also the issue of MS deliberately stalling the release of APIs that competing programs (Lotus, Netscape) needed to run on the brand new Windows 95 operating system to improve the market position of Office and IE.

However, the EU has gone pear-shaped over this. It is not hard to install a new browser onto your computer (download, double-click, press next a few times, then install), and to download a new browser, you need to have a browser (or an FTP client)!

I still think that MS should have released Windows 7 without a browser, media player, desktop patterns, hyperterminal, calculator, wordpad, defrag, scandisk, firewall, etc. call it the "Everything Uninstalled" edition [as someone on here had recommended before] and put a box beside it on retail shelves (for $5, or however much the packaging/shipping costs) that contains all the software windows itself no longer contains. They should also take $5 off the price of windows itself, so it is in effect 'free'.

That or just refuse to release any more windows products in the European Union and revoke all licenses to government agencies thereby making it 'illegal' to operate all government bureaucracies. That will of course never happen.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By AraH on 7/27/09, Rating: 0
RE: Still kind of limiting
By themaster08 on 7/27/2009 5:23:02 AM , Rating: 2
I fail to understand how this would benefit anyone.

Microsoft would be running away from it's problems as opposed to solving them. This leaves the gap wide open for competitors to grow in market share, and makes Microsoft look cowardly.

On top of losing market share, they would lose vast amounts of money. They are better off cooperating with the EU as they are doing to save themselves, and satisfy the demands put towards them by the rulers of that market. If the EU market is not satisfied with the changes made then I'm sure things can be altered.

Having said that, not everyone who is part of the EU supports it. If you've actually spoken to many people whose countries are members of the EU, you'll find that's the case.

I'm from the UK. The majority of people here wish to pull out of the EU entirely, but are forced to stay in it by the acts of our incompetent government.

How is it fair to take something away from people who don't even support those forcing these demands?

Finally, having done some research on the history of the whole situation, I feel Microsoft owe a debt to the browser market. With the demise of Netscape and the lack of innovation afterwards, this seems like a way of paying that debt off.

We're all well aware that IE has very healthy competition, but this prevents a repeat of yesteryears actions. With Microsoft willing to cooperate, there is no harm to the consumer, which should be at the forefront of everyone's mind in this whole case.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By dark matter on 7/27/09, Rating: 0
RE: Still kind of limiting
By michael67 on 7/28/2009 7:47:56 AM , Rating: 2
I live in Norway (not EU) and i see this as a great postie thing, dose it hurt sales of there OS?, i think not, so there is no downside for MS there, dose it hurt consumers?, no they get a easier way to pick a different browser. (specially people that don't know a lot about browsers)

Multiple browsers keeps competition going and also forces all party's to follow the same standards.

So how is this a evil socialistic EU scam ?

I just see win win and a littel loss for MS.
(they have to put more money in dev, of IE, got a plus also some browser developers are keeping there job's)

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Sazar on 7/28/2009 3:16:06 PM , Rating: 2
If it costs Microsoft more money on the part of IE, which they are offering for free, they are more inclined to pass on some of the costs to the customers. A higher cost on the OS usually would translate to fewer sales. And higher costs affect consumers too.

We already HAVE multiple browsers. It is upto those browsers to fight the good fight and advertise and do all those wonderful things. FF has a large market share. Chrome has a growing market share. Opera needs to do it's own work to get out there on the PC market. You'd think a company which has a large mobile presence and owns the Wii space would have figured this out.

Forcing another company to bundle a competitors product by default and incur those costs is definitely a definition of evil. Maybe if the EU did this for ALL the other companies on the market, it would be fair. Don't see Apple getting called out.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Smilin on 7/27/2009 10:43:07 AM , Rating: 4
I actually have a long memory...and all that netscape stuff was a LONG time ago.

MS Now has competitors in the operating systems market. MS may be leveraging a "dominant market position" but they are not leveraging a monopoly. One is illegal but one isn't.

I don't recall ever seeing a browser selection screen on OS X. I don't recall seeing one on the iPhone either.

Opera is getting it's ass handed to it by IE and Firefox because they are better made and better marketed. I'm sick of whiney bitches.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Smilin on 7/27/2009 12:08:56 PM , Rating: 3
-3 ?

Apparently others still like whiney bitches. Sorry if I offended. :)

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Chocobollz on 7/28/2009 2:49:02 AM , Rating: 2
You surely haven't tried the other browser do you? Let me tell you, when browsing using Opera, I could finish faster than using FF. Why? Here's why for example:

1) When copy/paste a link in the address bar:

Opera: I could select "Paste & Go" (or CTRL+SHIFT+V)

FF: Paste the link in the address bar, move my arm to the keyboard, then press enter, and lastly move my arm again to the mouse.

Opera advantages over FF: approx. 1 sec.

2) When visiting a website which have flash contents you don't want to load:

Opera: to disable the loading, you could just right-click on the page, select "Edit site preferences, switch to tab "Content", and then deselect the "Enable plugins" option. That would disable the flash content only for that particular website.

FF: I don't really know how to do it. Maybe it needs an addons, so I'd say it's easily took more than 10 minutes to find and addons to do that "simple" thing so,

Opera advantages over FF: more than 10 minutes.

3) When zooming a webpage (useful/commonly used in a social-networking sites; to zoom a picture, at least for me):

Opera: There is a zoom list on the status bar at the bottom-right corner of the browser's window or you could press -/+ key to zoom (in/out). And the most importantly, a zoom is applied only to current page.

FF: There's no zoom button or whatsoever (at least in the default UI). You have to press CTRL+MINUS/PLUS, and it is applied to ALL page so if you want to zoom only the current page, you'll have to redo the zoom-in/out for each page!

Opera advantages over FF: maybe 3 sec to infinity. Example: when you need only to zoom a particular page, lets say you have 1000 page, with 100 of them being a photo pages and 900 pages being a news page. And you want to zoom only the photo page and keep the news page at its default zoom, that means in FF, you have to zoom only once (if you only switch between the photo pages), but if you switch back and forth between the photo page and the news page (this is the most common because the photo page is usually loads longer than a news page), you have to zoom-in/out for every page. The worst, you have to do 1000 zoom-in/out. With Opera, the worst you can do is redo the zooming 100x. Could you see how much time you would save if you use Opera? ;-)

4) Managing bookmarks..

Opera: Ok.. I could say this is one of the primary reasons I switch to Opera (after being with FF for maybe 4 years?) Managing and transferring bookmarks in Opera is amazingly easy with the Opera Links. So no matter where I go, I have all that bookmarks with me.

FF: I don't know how to do all of those works done with Opera Link, really. Yeah there's some "portable" FF but still, what if I don't bring my flashdisk with me? What if I use FF in a public place and want to access my bookmarks?

Opera advantages over FF: priceless.

5) Addons..

Opera: There's no addons so there's nothing to worry LOL

FF: Hmm.. after several years using and trying many of the FF addons, I would say, SCREW THEM! I'm tired of managing those addons, especially when a new version of FF became available and suddenly it tells me that most of the addons I have is incompatible and needs to be updated and when I try to update it, it says that those version is the latest. And then I read about the addons being closed by the author, thus makes it unusable. SCREW YOU! My life is better without you anyway! So bye2 addons!

Opera advantages over FF: Bye2 addons!

6) You do a lot going back and forth in a page..

Opera: No worries! Opera usually does it almost instantaneous, except for some page with heavy ads or dynamic content but usually it don't takes more than 5 secs in a 256 kbit/s connection (like mine).

FF: Well.. so far.. my own experiences have shown that FF is a little slower than Opera in this matter so I have no comments. And the one thing I hate the most is why is that the "forward" button being smaller than the "back" button? Is the developer of Mozilla somehow thinks that the "forward" is less important?

Opera advantages over FF: depends on the page, maybe ranging from 1 to 5 secs?

7) You want to save a webpage in MHTML format?

Opera: No worries again mate! Opera has a long history of supporting MHTML file format natively and in 99.99% cases (from my own experiences), it have no compatibility issues. The page you saved will be fully compatible with IE and any other browsers/office software supporting the format, except maybe FF LOL.

FF: No native MHTML support? Yeah right.. and even if there's an addons (like this addons: ; ) who will provide the functionality, I'm very much doubt it will be even 80% compatible with IE (more infos here: So there's really no choice here. For you who need to have a browser with MHTML native support, Opera is the way to go.

Opera advantages over FF: priceless.

And that's just a few small examples of what Opera can do for you. The another examples is: better sessions management, better tabs management, etc.

I know it's hard to believe, just like I do when I'm first switch to Opera after using FF for so long. Actually, back then, I was one of those Opera haters, I've always say Opera being too complicated, not very user-friendly, no addons, FF is the way to go because they're open-source and have a lot of addons, blah blah blah. But now I realize that my initial thoughts is not entirely true. When you first using it, yeah you'll feel that it's a little difficult to get used to, but I assure you, in less than a few days, you'll be glad you've using it. IMO, Opera is such a wonderful software.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Smilin on 7/28/2009 10:30:15 AM , Rating: 2
Oh yeah??

But does Opera have a plug-in that truncates posts? Some zealot posts are so long that nobody reads them. Any valid points are lost.

You've seen them somewhere I'm sure.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Chocobollz on 7/28/2009 11:06:53 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah and if you don't have anything to add to the discussion, you'd better GTFO and don't even bother to make replies. Thank you very much for your useless reply.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Smilin on 7/28/2009 1:09:32 PM , Rating: 2
A reply as long as that one above is equally useless. You overestimate how much your opinion matters to me.

Just FYI - I actually did go back and read it. There was one gem in there I didn't know about opera. Unfortunately this also supports the "marketing" statement I originally posted. Perhaps Opera is the best browser in the universe but having a sh1tty marketting dept is no excuse for whining and crying to the EU.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Chocobollz on 7/28/2009 2:12:54 PM , Rating: 2
When I write those reply, it is not only for you but for any other ppls who visit the page so I don't think it's useless. It's also not entirely opinion, yours is. There's a lot of facts there that nobody seems to care but oh well even if nobody reads it I wouldn't care. And I think I'm not a zealot, I think I maybe some kind of unofficial Opera supporter? :P I do use Opera as my primary browser but I also use FF occasionally. Do you also use Opera (besides using FF)? If not, maybe you're the one who's a zealot LOL

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Smilin on 7/28/2009 2:43:12 PM , Rating: 2
I don't use FF or Opera.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By brybir on 7/28/2009 11:24:26 AM , Rating: 3
Ill be quick unlike your post.

1. At most its paste and enter, or mouse paste and click the little logo. I hit three keyboard buttons to go to a webpage, apparently you do as well in Opera)

Opera Advantage: None material, three buttons one way or the other. And if you have to move your hand from the mouse to the keyboard and back to paste and go to a webpage you must be a one armed man.

2. The add-on takes 1 min to download. Then you only have to right click once per page to disable flash. Not four clicks per page.

Opera Advantage: None

3. Its Ctrl+[Plus] and Ctrl+[Minus], or the really fancy and useful Ctrl+Mousewheel up or down. Or, use the page zoom addon that adds the same Opera functionailty and even more zoom features than Opera, all in about 45 seconds!

Opera Advantage: 45 seconds (the time it takes to get the add-on for firefox)

4.You must use a lot of bookmarks. I dont use them because I can remember the names of the sites that I use. If all else fails I just google the site and it pops up. No need to log into a site to store my links...

Opera Advantage: None to me. Good for people with bad memories or who have a lot of bookmarks for places they cant remember the name of.

5. Wow, what are you smoking, Add-on support is one of the things that make Firefox great. I will take full customization of my experiance over just being "given" what I need by the Opera folks, thanks. What add-ons do you use that cause you so many problems. Mine work fine. In any event you DONT have to use any add-ons with FF and you get a fine browser with lots of tools. So really, no add-on support is a "feature" for

Opera Advantage: None

6. The difference in speed of the rendering engine is very small when moving between pages. In FF 3.5 the speed was improved quite a bit. And besides, Chrome is faster than both anyways.

Opera Advantage: 1 sec

7. Its nice the Opera supports this. So does IE. Maybe Firefox will get it someday. From what I can tell this is not much of a feature for 99% of people in the world, probably why its not in Chrome, Safari or Firefox at this point. I dont even think its a web standard from what I can tell. From Wikipedia:

"Few browsers support this format, and the process for saving a web page along with its resources as an MHTML file is not standardized across those browsers that do. Due to this, a web page saved as an MHTML file using one browser may render differently on another."

Opera Advantage: If you need MHTML you better get Opera or IE, if you do not then this feature is worthless


If you need MHTML and want to save 46 seconds up front and then approximately 5 seconds per hour of browsing then you should download Opera. But then again it will take at least five minutes to download it. So, it will pay off after a few weeks of use. But then you lose add-on support and are just using the product of another company rather than the open source community.

Id say saving a few seconds a week is not worth the cost of losing the features of FF. Your mileage may vary.

RE: Still kind of limiting
By Chocobollz on 7/28/2009 1:49:20 PM , Rating: 2
Ah! That's actually a good one ;-) Well I guess it really depends on the persons, right? :-) Well, to counter your reply:

1) Good point but it we doesn't need to be a one-handed man to desire an easier life :-)

2) A good point too but I don't like addons actually so I prefer the Opera way :-)

3) Actually, CTRL+PLUS/MINUS shortcuts are supported by Opera too so I guess it's a tie :-)

4) Well, for me, and I'm sure for many guys out there, bookmarks and sessions management is an important thing, so Opera is the clear winner for me. And I usually have 1000+ tabs simultaneously opened in for about 40+ window (don't ask why LOL) and Opera does it great with only 2 GB's of memory. I don't know if FF3 could do that too but I guess it won't.

Opera Advantage: None to me. Good for people with bad memories or who have a lot of bookmarks for places they cant remember the name of.

I don't think that's a good conclusion really. IMO, it's quite the opposite. There's nothing wrong with keeping information in an organized manners like bookmarks. Bookmarks help us being more organized, and more organized means making memories more efficient, and so helps us to remember things better. At least that's from my point of view. And also, there's nothing beats a written knowledge. Writing information is an exercise to train your memories. So I would say I strongly disagree with you on this one.

5) I'm smoking tobacco, thank you LOL. Addons, for me, like all things in this world, have a diminishing returns. Yes, having a lot of addons sure helps but if it's too much, then it'll just distracting you from its main purpose. Let's say there's 10 addons which provide a similar functionality. Its easy right? But then, say there's 1000 similar addons, each with its own advantages & disadvantages, which one would you choose? :-)

6) Good point but I've never tried Chrome before.

7) Yes it may not useful to many peoples out there but I surely wouldn't say it is as worthless because it is a feature that makes our life easier. You can't always depends on search-engine because they're dynamic, they don't keep their database forever so lets say you want to view an old information (for example, a driver page for an old OS). If you already keep this information before, you wouldn't need to search it anymore because it already there in your local storage.

Some question for you: what browsers you're using? Have you actually tried Opera? I've actually tried FF1, FF2, and FF3 and I know maybe I'm a little biased to Opera but I'm trying to be unbiased. Maybe you could explain to me why is that you think FF is better than Opera?

By probedb on 7/25/2009 3:14:01 PM , Rating: 3
Surely this is going to confuse the hell out of users?

Most people I speak to look at me with a completely blank face when I ask them if they've tried any other web browsers.

RE: Confusing?
By Marlonsm on 7/25/2009 4:29:51 PM , Rating: 4
Those people usually don't install the OS themselves, so it's not a problem, as the manufacturers will likely have already selected the browser.

But in the case they see that screen, they will just select the Blue E they know and click OK. Or maybe they will call their geek friend and ask what to do.

RE: Confusing?
By Camikazi on 7/25/2009 4:37:06 PM , Rating: 3
True and the people who do install OSes already have a browser (and CD/USB Drive with utilities on it) already so this won't do much for other browsers :/

RE: Confusing?
By BZDTemp on 7/26/2009 12:35:52 PM , Rating: 2
I beg to differ. In many corporations it will make a huge difference. Being in that menu along side IE is like a stamp of approval for those in management which think anything you get from the internet is made by the devil.

RE: Confusing?
By Camikazi on 7/26/2009 1:51:14 PM , Rating: 2
Except that those scared of the internet managers still won't pick anything but the IE they have always worked with, it's better the devil you know then you devil you don't.

RE: Confusing?
By Sazar on 7/28/2009 3:18:01 PM , Rating: 2
From a cost perspective as well, this is true.

But overall, IE is just easy to use in the corporate space and easy to deliver. Chrome I use to browse but I have to log into the network twice to actually get to any sites. FF has a single log-in and won't do it automatically.

RE: Confusing?
By foolsgambit11 on 7/27/2009 5:09:51 AM , Rating: 2
I imagine for EU sales, OEMs will have to leave the browser selection up to the end user. Otherwise it would defeat the point. And considering the last few laptops I've purchased have walked me through some initialization steps at first boot, it shouldn't be difficult to include browser selection in there.

Although I agree most will choose IE, especially if the option says something like "Microsoft Internet Explorer 8.0" (or even better, though they probably couldn't get away with it, "Genuine Microsoft Internet Explorer 8.0"), rather than just "Internet Explorer".

I assume, too, that IE will have to be downloaded like the rest of them, too? Otherwise, it would give them an unfair advantage.

RE: Confusing?
By Smilin on 7/28/2009 4:16:38 PM , Rating: 2
OEMs can do whatever they want. They ARE the customer. MS is selling to them, not the end user.

As for making IE be downloaded when you already have a DVD in your drive? That's the same f'n retarded mentality that got us here to begin with.

RE: Confusing?
By rburnham on 7/25/2009 5:19:37 PM , Rating: 4
Well now people can learn something new.

RE: Confusing?
By Marlonsm on 7/26/2009 3:09:03 PM , Rating: 2
I wouldn't be so sure...

RE: Confusing?
By rudolphna on 7/26/2009 9:45:38 PM , Rating: 3
They CAN learn something new... But I don't think they will CHOOSE to.

RE: Confusing?
By jonmcc33 on 7/27/2009 1:09:25 AM , Rating: 2
This seems like it will only be during install? So most people that buy brand name PCs will already have had it set up with IE from the store.

I personally think it's funny that Opera wants Microsoft to bundle their software with Windows.

Now I'm waiting on Apple to get sued for doing the same thing (only putting Safari on their Mac OS).

RE: Confusing?
By FITCamaro on 7/27/2009 8:58:43 AM , Rating: 5
This is retarded all together. Its Microsoft's OS. They shouldn't have to install anyone else's browser. People can do that on their own. Browsers are free and easy to install. This is nothing but anti-Microsoft crap.

And if Microsoft has to do this for Windows, Apple should have to do it for OSX.

RE: Confusing?
By SlipDizzy on 7/27/2009 4:22:16 PM , Rating: 2
If a person isn't savvy enough to know how to install their own browser of choice, then what enables them to believe they'll know the difference in the browsers they are choosing from? What good is a selection screen to people that can't install their own browsers? I feel bad for my European technical friends that will be doing side work for their families/friends and have to halt reinstalling Windows 7 to ask, "Hey which browser would you like to use?"

I think FIT nailed it here folks... "nothing but anti-Microsoft crap."

Not a Monopoly, and Ridiculous
By VelociRapture on 7/26/2009 5:50:42 PM , Rating: 4
A monopoly is defined as:

1. exclusive control of a commodity or service in a particular market, or a control that makes possible the manipulation of prices. Compare duopoly, oligopoly.
2. an exclusive privilege to carry on a business, traffic, or service, granted by a government.
3. the exclusive possession or control of something.
4. something that is the subject of such control, as a commodity or service.
5. a company or group that has such control.
6. the market condition that exists when there is only one seller.
7. (initial capital letter) a board game in which a player attempts to gain a monopoly of real estate by advancing around the board and purchasing property, acquiring capital by collecting rent from other players whose pieces land on that property.

Since Microsoft is NOT a board game, I believe that about the only way it categorizes as a Monopoly is under #3.
Of course if the exclusive control or posession of something makes a company a monopoly (a rather idiotic definition) then I believe most all companies are monopolies. Certainly Apple is, since it has exclusive control over OS X, for example.

Microsoft has never been a monopoly, unlike my lack of choice for an electric company, or local phone service, no one ever has to run Microsoft Windows and apps if they do not want to.
Impractical for some, perhaps, but far from a monopoly.

If this was your company, built up over the years, grown and thriving and you were paying the salaries of thousands of people, paying all the fees, licenses, taxes, etc. associated with running a business, (and still watched half the world pirate your efforts), do you really think you would be perfectly ok with including your rivals' products with yours? I mean last time I checked, Windows is not open source and people aren't freely contributing source code to it. I don't see Opera and Mozilla and Apple funding the development of Windows 7. This all costs lots and lots of money, and I can assure you, like any other business, the last thing in the planet that my product is going to include is anything which competes with it in any way. This is known as business. Unless these companies somehow want to spend $$$ to have their products included, I don't see any reaon whatsoever to include them, or even an internet shortcut to them.
If this was your company, you'd want to run it the way YOU want to run it, thats why you work hard for it. No one will die and no business will collapse if they do not use Microsoft, this is also supply and demand basics.
Tired of still reading this stuff after being in this business in multiple Fortune 500 companies, believe me, no one HAS to use Microsoft if they don't want to. Never has been and never will be a monopoly. That concept does not apply when one has a choice, and we have plenty of choices today, including FREE OS's like Linux. Not as pretty or convenient to use as Windows? Too bad, this is why you pay.


RE: Not a Monopoly, and Ridiculous
By martinrichards23 on 7/27/09, Rating: 0
By captainpierce on 7/27/2009 9:13:49 AM , Rating: 2
Monopoly can be defined in many ways.

And such loose definitions of a word enable gov't to cast a wide net and punish/tax/regulate any company they want.

RE: Not a Monopoly, and Ridiculous
By menace on 7/27/2009 10:25:21 AM , Rating: 3
How can you possibly dominate a market with 26% market share? Only if the other 74% of the companies are totally incompetent boobs.

Even the liberal EU laws are more conservative than that:

Under EU law, very large market shares raises a presumption that a firm is dominant, which may be rebuttable. If a firm has a dominant position, then there is "a special responsibility not to allow its conduct to impair competition on the common market". The lowest yet market share of a firm considered "dominant" in the EU was 39.7%
<wikipedia - Monopoly|Law>

RE: Not a Monopoly, and Ridiculous
By menace on 7/27/2009 10:28:49 AM , Rating: 2
Premptive: my post was addressing the parent post comment about >25% being a monopoly, not meant to imply MS has a 26% share

By ZachDontScare on 7/27/2009 2:12:11 PM , Rating: 2
In economics it is usually described as when a company has greater than 25% of a market.

On what planet is that?
A monompoly means one thing - a company has total control of a particular market. Not 25%, not 99%... but 100%. "mono-" equals "one". As in "one entrant in the market". Any other definition you might have heard is a redefining of the term. Usually for some political reason.

A lot of people toss these terms around without knowing what they mean. What these companies are usually investigated for is not being a 'monopoly' (which is NOT, contrary to popular notion, illegal in and of itself), but of anti-Trust violations.

Better for some
By Sabresiberian on 7/25/2009 3:14:04 PM , Rating: 2
Won't allow more browsers to be used of course, will just have the choice be more 'up front'. I do like the idea of not having to install IE just so I can download another browser, if that's the way it will work. Some people won't like having to make any kind of decision in an install though.


RE: Better for some
By RjBass on 7/25/2009 7:29:10 PM , Rating: 2
IE will still be installed, it just won't be the default browser. Love it or hate it, IE is still the industry standard and as a result, many websites will not work properly with other browsers, especially government sites.

RE: Better for some
By justjc on 7/26/2009 9:54:30 AM , Rating: 1
The thing is that IE don't have to be installed, unless you really need it.

RE: Better for some
By Flunk on 7/26/2009 4:19:06 PM , Rating: 4
Yes, actually IE does have to be installed. The core files for IE are used to render HTML elsewhere in Windows. A copy of Windows "without IE" is only missing the launcher app that runs the code as a full application with a UI. You're not really saving any space by leaving out IE.

So what happens when most choose IE8?
By Fenixgoon on 7/25/2009 4:22:30 PM , Rating: 2
Because that's what people know for the most part. It wouldn't surprise me a bit to find that after release, the majority of users still use IE and the browser distribution remains roughly the same.

By Camikazi on 7/25/2009 4:38:55 PM , Rating: 2
Most non-techies I know will just go for the Blue E, and ignore the rest :/ it won't help them since they are too scared to break the computer.

Check Boxes Would be Better
By BMFPitt on 7/25/2009 7:51:05 PM , Rating: 4
I have Firefox, IE8 and Chrome on my Windows 7 box. It'd be nice to be able to select all 3.

"Browser wars"
By nihim on 7/25/2009 9:26:25 PM , Rating: 2
Not specifically related to this article but how do free web browsers make money? Is it purely sponsor/advertisement based? Just something that I've been wondering about for a while now.
I know it's kind of dumb to think this, but I always chuckle at the foolishness of free software products getting so up in arms over fair market use and such.

RE: "Browser wars"
By justjc on 7/26/2009 10:04:46 AM , Rating: 2
The usual way the free browsers make money is that companies, like Google, pay them a small fee when the browsers built in search option is used. Enough small fees and you get a lot of money.

In the case of Opera the money also comes from licensing their technology to other companies, like Nintendo and Phone makers.

Who's responsible for tech support
By ira176 on 7/27/2009 12:32:58 AM , Rating: 2
when the inevitable problem arises with one of the 3rd party optional browsers?

By Smilin on 7/28/2009 1:50:52 PM , Rating: 2
I think you might mean "who will get the blame." and that answer is clearly Microsoft.

In the interests of fairness...
By dav115 on 7/27/2009 7:38:15 AM , Rating: 3
I'm just waiting for the EU to sue Apple for providing free earphones with the ipod, and thus hampering the earphone sales of companies such as Sennheiser et al.

By TemjinGold on 7/25/2009 9:25:22 PM , Rating: 2
...with the fact that IE is listed FIRST on the ballot! OMG unfair advantage!

Intel fine helped
By ToughHoBo on 7/26/2009 6:01:40 AM , Rating: 2
Can't help but say if Intel didn't get sued for over a billion Microsoft would have continue stalling other their case since 1999. Deterrence worked alright.

f**k them
By swizeus on 7/26/2009 7:18:07 AM , Rating: 2
Microsoft had a hard time designing windows to be the leader of OS and it has become one in PC realm, now each one just want to relax, sit back and microsoft will have each of their copy included in windows' install DVD ? just one word : F**K them... it's like microsoft licking their shoes so it doesn't get any anti-competitive fine. that really sucks, really hate the situation

By SilthDraeth on 7/26/2009 10:33:50 PM , Rating: 2
Remove that POS from their system, unless Apple is offering IE on OSX...

strange times...
By magneticfield on 7/27/2009 4:32:36 AM , Rating: 2
I can't believe this is happening...
MS providing support for installing competitor browsers... it's a little bit too much.

The only viable complaint against them would have been the integration of IE with the OS and not IE being bundled.
My trouble with IE was just that I could not uninstall it. Heck, I never use it, but I don't want anyone else who gets access to my computer to fire up the damn thing either. So I wanted to remove it completely from my machine, which is only possible in Win7 (sorta).

But prompting users with an option to download 3'rd party browsers? If they can't do it themselves after windows is up&running, they are too dumb anyway to tell any difference.

Kudos to Microsoft for this step!

Europoeans need coddling.
By Schrag4 on 7/27/2009 12:26:33 PM , Rating: 2
Mr. Lie states:
This is good news, we think, that Microsoft put this proposal forward. This will give users access to more browsers...

I guess if users need to be coddled by being presented a list of browsers during installation, then this gives them access to more. I would argue, however, that if in fact a users knows the difference between browsers in the first place, then they know how to go to the browser's website and download it for themselves.

Mr. Mick starts a sentence off with:
While the freedom of choice may place a dent in Microsoft's desktop dominance...

Users of Windows are not limited to using software that's pre-installed. Here in the US we have the "freedom of choice" to install whatever browser we want. I guess in the EU they don't have the freedom to choose something unless it's on a multiple-choice style ballot. I mean, is it really freedom if you have to make an informed decision on your own by going out and doing the research yourself? That sounds like a lot of responsibility , from which I want to be free in order to make a choice! </sarcasm>

And for those that like the balloting system, what happens if a browser slips above or below the .5% market share required to be on the list? Does MS have an obligation to go remove all copies of Win7 from shelves in EU shops and put a new version out there with the new list? Will the EU sue them if MS doesn't coddle them some more?

The LOGOS look the same!
By Belard on 7/27/2009 3:01:48 PM , Rating: 2
Anyone else notice that the browser logos are all the same shape?

A circle! All of them the same shape!

By enlil242 on 7/27/2009 3:25:06 PM , Rating: 2
I guess I fail to see any logic in this. I think at a time in recent history, there may have been a case for such control. But nowadays, why does anyone need to be spoon fed the choice? Most astute people know how to choose a browser. Those who do not use AOL (i.e. my parents). I fail to see who will benefit?

Also, I can only see this evolving to become a direct threat to mobile platforms. (READ: Apple iPhone). Won't this open the door to them having to allow competing browsers on it's dominant platform?

Lastly, aside from features, what does 'browser marketshare' mean? I thought 'search' was the big money generator in terms of advertising. What difference does a browser generate?

By deeyo on 7/27/2009 4:14:09 PM , Rating: 2
Is the issue here just over web standards and the fact that everyone uses a browser all the time?

Windows is bundled with lots of programs that aid functionality but aren't "necessary" for the OS. Should you get a ballot option for your media player, messenging client, sound recorder, movie maker, firewall, wifi client, etc.? You typically just get a different one if you don't like what MS made or want more features. Why should it be a law on Microsoft to do the advertising for these other programs?

Or am I missing the point?

By callmeroy on 7/28/2009 8:04:40 AM , Rating: 2
When it comes to the browser situation in regards to MS Windows the EU really just needs to get a life and find something else (and more worth while) to focus on.

It was bad enough when the non-sense was here in the states over the browser this day I still think MS got a raw deal on that - regardless of what anyone else says on the planet --- including all the tech "know it all" types.

How the hell is it wrong for me to include my own browser in my own OS (regardless if its the default or not).

I always wanted to ask the EU, the courts and the attorney's in these cases --- "So what's up next....gonna demand that McDonald's gives me the option to get Burger King's fries?"......

wtf are they doing
By oneTimeDeal on 7/25/2009 5:24:27 PM , Rating: 1
I am from EU , I do get the Intel thing , what Intel did is not allowed in the USA either I think? Was very anti-competive business anyway. Keeping a eye on microsoft is not wrong but this.

A OS without a browser , wtf are they thinking , I mean in the age of internet a OS without a browser should be punished and not the other way around , even in offline mode a lot of applications count on html.

And why all the difficulty about the browser selection when you install windows. Whats wrong with like the search engine approach which currently works well.
Something like
"Hello you have started your IE8 the first time , if you which to use a other browser you can download them ....."

This is just ridicouls in so many ways what about ,

-apple safari?
-browser on mobile phones?
I think you can easly find so many cases that resembles this browser case , ....

And the only IT rule I liked coming from my local legislation that said it was not allowed to bundle prodcuts like apple Iphone with a 2 year contracts of a carrier (because Big companies can crush small companies with buying them out of new technologies, apple responded to legislation with 1000dollar price tag, not kidding) was rejected by EU siiigh and illegal. On top of that you get more and more complaints of customers and smaller companies about these practices even in USA(me slaps my self and crys).

Feel like taking the train and stand outside the EU-office and counts how many are walking with there head up there ass.

RE: wtf are they doing
By BZDTemp on 7/26/09, Rating: 0
RE: wtf are they doing
By enlil242 on 7/27/09, Rating: 0
They should do this in the USA
By Belard on 7/26/2009 8:35:45 AM , Rating: 1
Why not?

Opera is easily a nicer browser to use than IE.

And MS has gain such market-share all these years because of it being "built-into" the OS.

A lot of people who do actually venture out and try another browser usually find them to be better than IE (which is not a bad product).

And its STUPID people who say "I can't figure out how to use another browser"? WTF?! IE 8 looks nothing like IE6.

And what is there to a browser... type in url, navigation buttons... thats pretty much it.

By geekgod on 7/25/09, Rating: -1
RE: Outragous
By pesos on 7/25/2009 2:36:00 PM , Rating: 5
Not nearly as outrageous as your spelling.

The carry option is stupid - that puts code in the package that is almost immediately out of date. A linking system is better, so at least users opting in would get an up-to-date version of the browser.

RE: Outragous
By JasonMick on 7/25/2009 2:47:30 PM , Rating: 4
Having spoken with him at length, I believe Opera's Lie was suggesting was implementing both strategies -- have internet-connected machines grab the latest version, but also adding bundled "carried" installers so that non-internet connected machines still have the option to install third party browsers, which would break under the current system.

Should be interesting to see what route Microsoft chooses to go in the final market version.

Ultimately, though, this is great news for Firefox, Opera, and Chrome/webkit as they should see a nice jump in their Windows 7 marketshare, albeit only in Europe.

RE: Outragous
By Hakuryu on 7/25/2009 2:54:14 PM , Rating: 5
have internet-connected machines grab the latest version, but also adding bundled "carried" installers so that non-internet connected machines still have the option to install third party browsers

Maybe I'm missing something, but why would machines not connected to the internet need a browser?

RE: Outragous
By DEredita on 7/25/2009 3:06:34 PM , Rating: 2
That's exactly what I was thinking.

RE: Outragous
By Lifted on 7/25/2009 3:29:11 PM , Rating: 5
I need to contact the EU and ask them to force Microsoft to have my superior NotPad, complete with Ads, integrated into Windows 7. It's very hard to break into the text editor market with Microsoft including theirs for free.

RE: Outragous
By CollegeTechGuy on 7/25/2009 3:46:30 PM , Rating: 3
Ya I agree, I can't get my AsciiPad on the market because of Microsoft's Notepad already in Windows. We should get the EU to sue them and take billions of dollars that we will never see because our product can't compete...

RE: Outragous
By dark matter on 7/26/09, Rating: -1
RE: Outragous
By themaster08 on 7/26/2009 5:19:52 AM , Rating: 2
Yes there's a difference, but they both share similarities:-

They're both pieces of software.

They both come bundled with Windows.

They both have competitors.

They are both free.

They are both nothing to get up in arms about.

Perhaps I'm a little biased towards all of this due to my loathing of the E.U, but I suppose choice is better for everyone.

I have always preferred to use Internet Explorer, because it's always served it's purpose. I don't see much point in altering something that works just fine. Though hopefully this could be a kick up the a$$ for Microsoft to improve I.E.

RE: Outragous
By Aloonatic on 7/29/2009 2:37:48 AM , Rating: 2
Your post, and a lot of other people's here reminded me of something:

The condition explains why abused people often do not seek assistance from others, fight their abuser, or leave the abusive situation. Sufferers have low self-esteem, and often believe that the abuse is their fault. Such persons usually refuse to press criminal charges against their abuser, and refuse all offers of help, often becoming aggressive or abusive to others who attempt to offer assistance. Often sufferers will even seek out their very abuser for comfort shortly after an incident of abuse.

RE: Outragous
By Starcub on 7/26/2009 2:53:10 PM , Rating: 2
Hey! Stop screwing around with my free market!! In my free market, the best free product prevails!!!

RE: Outragous
By JasonMick on 7/25/2009 3:06:53 PM , Rating: 3
I think the idea is that users on dialup connections or temporarily without service (say you buy your new Windows 7 laptop and your internet is out for a few days and Comcast isn't coming till Friday) can still install a browser and be ready to go whenever they have access/or whatever speed they have access at.

I agree that for the majority of users the link option should work great (I believe 70 percent of America is broadband-connected -- granted this is about Europe). However, there are some with slower connections that would benefit from having a carry-on option.

Ultimately it boils down to a question of whether the user benefits outweigh the potential costs for Microsoft and/or whether the EU wants to force Microsoft to implement such an option. In theory it could be quite cheap for Microsoft, though, as I'm sure browser makers would be more than happy to supply Microsoft with their latest versions to integrate into the Windows install disk and would likely even be willing to provide testing support.

RE: Outragous
By oab on 7/25/2009 3:06:32 PM , Rating: 2
Database servers are often configured via a web browser ... and internal company db systems may not be connected to the internet ...

then of course if you were running a corporate database server on a consumer copy of windows seven, you need your head examined.

RE: Outragous
By CollegeTechGuy2 on 7/25/09, Rating: 0
RE: Outragous
By dark matter on 7/26/2009 4:37:52 AM , Rating: 1
Is the car industry only dominated by one manufacturer? Are 90% of the cars on the road made by Ford?

No. Hence its an awful analogy.

RE: Outragous
By diego10arg on 7/25/2009 3:40:20 PM , Rating: 2
I wonder how many computers with W7 in the EU would be not connected to a network with a decent internet connection.

It not 3rd world countries where they are trying to apply this.

RE: Outragous
By xNIBx on 7/25/2009 4:47:34 PM , Rating: 3
Some things are in html format.

RE: Outragous
By rburnham on 7/25/2009 6:30:49 PM , Rating: 1
Yeah, sometimes the Reply button is faster than the brain.

RE: Outragous
By Saosin on 7/26/2009 2:57:03 AM , Rating: 2
There may not be a driver yet for your shiny new WLAN card on the W7 disc and so you won't have an internet connection until you've installed the drivers manually after installation completes. Thus the option to install another browser won't work...

RE: Outragous
By PitViper007 on 7/28/2009 4:19:59 PM , Rating: 2
In cases such as my company, we set up new machines off network, then set up networking, proxy, etc after the OS has been set up. We've found that this just causes so many fewer problems done this way, particularly because internet access requires username and password access, something not easily done through initial OS setup.

RE: Outragous
By magneticfield on 7/27/2009 4:35:47 AM , Rating: 2
It seems to me they are asking way to much from Microsoft. They should contribute something back for this.

RE: Outragous
By PrinceGaz on 7/25/2009 4:07:17 PM , Rating: 2
The carry option is stupid - that puts code in the package that is almost immediately out of date. A linking system is better, so at least users opting in would get an up-to-date version of the browser.

Its worked well enough for Internet Explorer which has been included with Windows for years. Why shouldn't it work for the other browsers? Once you're connected to the net, they do check for updates (Opera does anyway, unless you tell it not to).

RE: Outragous
By noirsoft on 7/25/2009 11:14:44 PM , Rating: 4
But the carry version is only 12.5, and we're up to 13.0 now! Microsoft is harming us by not carrying our latest version! They must recall and destroy every Windows install DVD and issue new ones with our new version! And next week we'll have another new version that's even better, so they better be prepared to do another recall next week too! And then, week after that, and the week after that...

I used Opera back in the day, but now I refuse on moral grounds.

RE: Outragous
By dark matter on 7/26/2009 4:46:38 AM , Rating: 3
On moral grounds? Don't make laugh.

We are talking about a multi-national organisation that made $14 billion in profit last year not some little old hard done to lady down the road.

We are talking about a company that laid off 3,000 workers just because they made $.5 billion less profit.

Don't talk about morals and big industry, big industry couldn't give a rats arse about you. You love for them will not be recipricated... Ouch.

RE: Outragous
By PrinceGaz on 7/26/2009 1:31:56 PM , Rating: 2
Hehe, yeah I know you're joking but even if that were the case, Opera only receives occassional updates to fix security flaws. The current version is v9.64 which dates from 3 March 2009 (over four months ago) so it is not like there is a new version every other week.

Opera v9.00 was released in June 2006 so could have been included on the Vista DVD and it would still work as well today as whatever version of IE was on the disc. The first time it is launched, it will send you to the Opera website where you will be suggested to click a link to update to the current version. Similarly, Opera v9.64 could be included with Windows 7 (unfortunately Opera 10 is still in beta).

RE: Outragous
By theapparition on 7/25/2009 2:55:25 PM , Rating: 4
I agree.

I just don't understand peoples fanatical devotion to a "browser". And these products are all free. What money does any of these companies make by offering thier browser?

C'mon people, It's not a lifestyle choice, it's just a tool. Use the best tool for the job. I use both IE and Firefox. On mobile devices I use Opera. Safari blows and there's no reason for it. I've used Chrome and it's OK, but nothing special and was quite buggy (I'm sure that's changed).

Forcing another company to include thier competitors products is just plain stupid. I don't care about MS's dominance. Without any intervention, we've seen IE's market share go down. All because the other companies made better products at one time.

MS has not now, nor has ever prevented the use of any other browser. Period. End of story.

RE: Outragous
By Lord 666 on 7/25/2009 3:14:35 PM , Rating: 2
But for tools, it is a lifestyle choice.

RE: Outragous
By Shadow Conception on 7/25/2009 3:52:40 PM , Rating: 4
For too many, internet IS a lifestyle.

RE: Outragous
By dark matter on 7/26/2009 4:49:37 AM , Rating: 1

But he who controls the browser controls the first page you see when you first connect to the Internet. He who controls the browser controls the home page.

This, ultimately, is what the argument is about.

Did it never occur to you that until this event the very first page you ever see on the Internet on a windows machine will be a Microsoft page.....

RE: Outragous
By andrinoaa on 7/26/09, Rating: 0
RE: Outragous
By theapparition on 7/26/2009 1:00:01 PM , Rating: 2
Did it ever occur to you how easy it is to switch the homepage?

Let's not even get into the issue that companies like Dell have agreements with Google, so that IE homepage is Googles. Or that HP sets thier own website as the homepage.

No, that would certainly be too much for you to comprehend.

How about other bundled apps?
By mmkhajah on 7/26/09, Rating: -1
RE: How about other bundled apps?
By Bladen on 7/26/09, Rating: -1
RE: How about other bundled apps?
By justjc on 7/26/2009 10:17:30 AM , Rating: 2
Actually I don't believe Media Player will come bundled with Windows in Europe, an earlier ruling made Microsoft make a version without, however it's available as a free download(just as the competition).

I can't really see the problem in Microsoft being forced to inform that there are alternatives to their bundled software. I would love for them to make their bundled software available in a manner similar to Googles Google Pack as it would make setting up a PC, just right for the user, much easier.

Besides if you aren't from Europe this will most likely not touch you. I seriously doubt Microsoft will stop their abusive behavior in countries that don't force them to stop. In the mean time I will enjoy my retail version at upgrade pricing. Thank you EU courts!

RE: How about other bundled apps?
By Xerstead on 7/26/2009 3:37:24 PM , Rating: 2
Next the EU will make all copies of Windows 7 come with OSX.

Maybe not the operating system, but will all these Macs being sold have to have a similar ballot screen offering IE?

Also, will these other browser companies be paying MS anything for the additional coding needed to include this or towards distribution of their product?
The choice for most home users may be decided by the manufacturer. In which case this will affect very few users as those of us who do install our own OS will probibly already have a web browser in mind.
If the decision is left to the end user, (when setting up their user-account on the PC,) it could be considered a huge advertising boost for the others. How much would they have to pay for that kind of publicity otherwise?

I'm guessing there will have to be a 'warning/disclaimer' box saying the others browsers are not supported by MS should any customers have a problem.

RE: How about other bundled apps?
By Flunk on 7/26/2009 4:21:07 PM , Rating: 4
Microsoft doesn't develop IE for Mac any more, not enough users for them to bother with it.

RE: How about other bundled apps?
By Shmak on 7/27/2009 4:36:30 PM , Rating: 1
Actually they stopped supporting it in June 2003 when it became obvious that nobody wanted to go through the extra trouble of downloading IE for their mac when safari came with the OS. Not to mention the fact that it was quite possibly the worst browser to be had on OSX at the time, and the worst to develop for.

If microsoft had the superior product, it might have been able to compete on apple's OS, but they didn't, so it ended up being a big waste of money. Hence, the current status.

RE: How about other bundled apps?
By rippleyaliens on 7/27/2009 9:01:20 PM , Rating: 2
Next the noobs will be complaining that ya cant do windows update via firefox, or whatever.. When will this stop? EU, can provide a OS comparable to Windows, and just have it government sponsored..
After this, i predict.
1. Media Player
2. Microsoft Backup..
3. Microsoft defrag..
4. MS Paint
5. Notepad and Wordpad
6. Calculator
7. Solitare- ROFL
8. screen savers..

All those are just xp examples of simple every apps, that come installed on XP/Vista/Win7, yet there are alternate vendors that make/design/market simular products.. When will this stop?? For the EU i would have stripped the default browser, make win-updates work (the auto).. Called it a day. Leave it up to the user to install a browser.. Let EU play the AOL game, get the disk.. Have Every manufacturing company, provide alternate disk with browsers..

Complaining about a company providing something is one thing, but having a fit when said company decides to not include anything, is just a sissy fit..

RE: How about other bundled apps?
By Aloonatic on 7/28/2009 2:04:40 AM , Rating: 2
Why shouldn't you be able to do win updates via any browsers? Not that you need one now though.

I'm really not sure why so many people here are having such a hard time understanding this. In essence, MS sell an Operating system. There are certain programs and utilities that are required to make an OS run smoothly, which are not unreasonable to include. Some of those are in the list you posted, such as backup, defrag, disk clean up.

The other programs that you list, well do we really need those to be in the OS that you pay for? Media Player? Many people use that I guess, but that's just like the browser issue, mostly because it's always come with windows and they know no better. MS Paint? I don't know anyone who uses that virtually useless utility. Note pad/Word pad? I use it, I'll freely admit, but I'd wager that a good 90%+ of home users don't. Calculator? Ditto. Solitaire? Suddenly not so much fun when you don't have homework or work to do, and there are many more interesting flash games out there that people play a hell of a lot more.

Most people never look in the "applications" folder. If they do it's to get to the system tools. What's wrong with MS being asked to just concentrate on making an OS and a few utilities that are actually needed to make the OS run smoothly.? Leaving all those other areas for other companies, or at the very least being man enough (I assume that's the opposite to sissy?) to compete on a level playing field? Oh, and for the love of god, can they please stop bundling MS Works with home PCs. I've lost count of the amount of time I've wasted un-installing that unmitigated piece of ****.

What do you find so hard and offensive about MS being asked to sell an Operating System, just an operating system? Without all their other "free" products and general legacy junk included?

As for the browser issue, it seems that it's too late for many here to even bother to think about the issues that have lead to the EU ruling. It's just a foreign power, attacking a poor innocent American company and sound of the wagons circling drowns out anything else, so I'm not going to bother. Just use IE6 for the rest of your lives, enjoy.

Frankly, I'd love to be able to buy a copy of Windows that was just....... Windows :-o

RE: How about other bundled apps?
By Shmak on 7/28/2009 8:51:03 AM , Rating: 2

"We basically took a look at this situation and said, this is bullshit." -- Newegg Chief Legal Officer Lee Cheng's take on patent troll Soverain

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