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Microsoft makes its IE7 browser available to a wider audience

In a surprise move, Microsoft has issued a new build of Internet Explorer 7 (IE7) to customers that can be installed on any machine running Windows XP or Windows Server 2003 -- IE7 is already included in Windows Vista operating systems.

IE7 was previously reserved for customers using genuine copies of Windows-based operating systems and was protected by Microsoft's Windows Genuine Advantage (WGA) validation software.

"Because Microsoft takes its commitment to help protect the entire Windows ecosystem seriously, we’re updating the IE7 installation experience to make it available as broadly as possible to all Windows users," remarked IE7 program manager Steve Reynolds on the IE Blog. "With today’s 'Installation and Availability Update,' Internet Explorer 7 installation will no longer require Windows Genuine Advantage validation and will be available to all Windows XP users."

Microsoft is likely using this move to makes IE7 available to the broadest range of customers worldwide. Mozilla's Firefox browser has gained a lot of traction recently, and this move would give Microsoft some additional ammunition.

In addition to the removal of WGA, the latest version of IE7 brings updates to the menu bar, online tour and a new MSI installer for IT administrators.

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My reason for going Firefox
By wordsworm on 10/5/2007 10:07:14 PM , Rating: 2
About 4-5 years ago, I was picking up viruses all the time. Then, I got Firefox, and I haven't had a virus since. That's why I went for Firefox, and I only use IE when it's a site I trust and they won't let me use Firefox. Also, sometimes badly written webpages come out better in IE than in Firefox. Again, though, I only use IE when I feel a great deal of trust for the owners of the site, like

I must say, though, 64 bit IE7 is pretty slick. But I still don't think it's as nice as Firefox.

RE: My reason for going Firefox
By drebo on 10/6/2007 2:09:46 PM , Rating: 2
Funny you should call them the "badly" written sites, when IE7 is the more standards compliant browser at this point in time.

Also, if you're picking up viruses just by browsing the internet, you've got much more serious issues than just which browser you're using.

RE: My reason for going Firefox
By yaneurabeya on 10/6/2007 3:06:19 PM , Rating: 2
Funny you should call them the "badly" written sites, when IE7 is the more standards compliant browser at this point in time.

Well, MSIE has caught up to Mozilla a bit in the CSS/HTML realm, but still lacks a lot of footing with Javascript.

Just wait until the Mozilla group releases Tamarin framework with its Mozilla browser products, and Adobe starts fully supporting an ActiveScript based Flash solution. Then the doors will be fully open to more platforms, and more groups will be able to develop solutions for Mozilla (and other supported browsers), using a generalized scripting framework. Then MS will definitely have something to worry about...

RE: My reason for going Firefox
By tfk11 on 10/7/2007 12:33:55 AM , Rating: 2
Funny you should call them the "badly" written sites, when IE7 is the more standards compliant browser at this point in time.

As a web developer I have to point out that you are dead wrong. Not only does ie (including ie7) intentionally fail to adhere to standards but it's behavior is often quite unpredictable.

Although I agree that sites which fail to render properly in "other browsers" may not be written "badly" at all. More likely they have just been written to work specifically with ie.

RE: My reason for going Firefox
By Screwballl on 10/7/2007 2:26:50 AM , Rating: 2
as an ISP employee, I agree...
Mozilla and Opera adhere to the standards, IE has always attempted to change the display method by introducing unnecessary code which makes coding some website styles a major pain.
Now some sites code specifically for IE and then create extra code to work with alternative browsers. If they would all adhrere to the same standards then it would save so much time and money for web designers.
there been some pages that just would not display properly in IE so I made links right at the top that state "if you are having difficulties seeing this page, download and use Firefox."

By Christopher1 on 10/7/2007 2:12:28 PM , Rating: 2
That's right. The only times I have picked up viruses is when I go to some porn site and it downloads a virus (stupid, I know, but I like porn!).
That's my own fault, and lately it seems that Firefox and IE7 both don't get any of them and NIS2007 blocks almost all the viruses on my machine.

RE: My reason for going Firefox
By yaneurabeya on 10/6/2007 3:08:36 PM , Rating: 2
Hate to say, but just because a site works well with IE and doesn't work well with Mozilla browsers, you shouldn't blame it on the browser. It's most likely a culmination of the HTML developer, combined with whatever tools were used to make the website with that are causing a slow web experience.

Of course portions of MSIE are running all the time in the background as well, so don't assume that MSIE doesn't have a bit more of an upper hand in the entire user experience ;).

"My sex life is pretty good" -- Steve Jobs' random musings during the 2010 D8 conference
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