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Internet Explorer 9 Goes Live

David Gilbert


Internet Explorer 9 Goes Live

The final version of Internet Explorer 9 has finally been launched after some 40 million beta versions have been downloaded but a Which? Computing study has found flaws in the anti-tracking features.

Available in 39 languages, Microsoft will be hoping that this latest version of the browser will arrest some of the decline in its use since the emergence of Firefox and Chrome in recent years. Microsoft is hoping that built-in hardware acceleration, and as a result faster video and graphics, will help bring users back to its platform. Another key feature of IE9, which Microsoft has been trumpeting is the tracking protection which aims to preventing users being tracked as they go from one site to another. However the study by Which? Computing shows that if multiple Tracking Protection Lists (TPLs) are installed an 'allow' in one will override a 'block' in another.

Jonathan Mayer, lead researcher on Stanford University’s ‘Do Not Track’ Project, said the findings could leave IE9 users open to being tracked: "The issue here is that if a user installs TPLs that have ‘allows’ for web content that should be blocked, they leave themselves vulnerable to being tracked."

In response, Dean Hachamovitch, Corporate Vice President, Internet Explorer said: "The primary consumer role here is choosing a list author they trust. Auditing any such list requires privacy expertise as well as technical acumen. Propping up more checkboxes is unlikely to actually help consumers."

IE9 will only work with Windows Vista and Windows 7 which means that all XP users out there won’t be able to take advantage of the next generation browser. Microsoft claim that 2 percent of all Windows 7 users are already using IE9. While getting exact figures for browser usage is tricky, there is little doubt that Internet Explorer has lost it position of unrivaled dominance which it enjoyed years ago. Today browsers such as Firefox, Chrome and Safari all offer customer a viable alternative.

Will the increased speed and beefed-up security be enough to get you to change your browser habits? Let us know in the comments and for those of you yet to do so, you can download IE9 from www.BeautyOfTheWeb.com.

Source: IEBlog and Which? Computing


March 15, 2011, 4:19 pm

Well, colour me impressed - it's really fast. Could this drag me away from FF? Hmmm, not so sure, i'll see how it behaves with a load of plugins running first. Still, good to see IE making an effort.


March 15, 2011, 5:40 pm

I have noticed on two separate broadband connections that IE9 is achieving a significantly slower down speed compared to chrome on speedtest.net. I wonder if anyone else is noticing this problem?!

Martin Daler

March 15, 2011, 6:40 pm

I like how IE9 maximises available screen space, especially vertical screen space. When using 'full-screen' I get full vertical screen space and yet I don't lose the use of tabs AND favourites menu which reappear when I hover the mouse up there. Other browser seem to think I don't want my favourites any more when I am in full screen.
A shame that when not in full-screen that I have to lose a whole bar of vertical screen space devoted to the window sizing controls - what a waste of space. Why can't those three little buttons drop down to the tab bar, like in Firefox?


March 15, 2011, 7:07 pm

I always meant to ask and since IE9 reminds me, why does TR require me to install Quicktime?

Ok I know my mum still looks at Which? Reports when buying kitchen appliances, but they are always limited in what they review, models you cannot find and wildly contrasting in opinion to the reviews you read on Amazon. So I really wonder why anyone bothers with them for anything these days as I've never trusted them, so who cares what they say about IE9. I'm actually amazed they are still in business.

I wish IE9 had the sizeable textboxes Chrome has as the comment box on the TR website is too small, otherwise I find it great to use and plan to move everyone at my work to IE9 asap as it'll be vastly faster for the web apps we use.


March 15, 2011, 8:53 pm

Seems much faster and more responsive than IE8... generally a pleasure to use.

I’m occasionally, though, getting some very lengthy pauses when clicking on links, which I hadn’t seen before upgrading. Anyone else seeing this?

As regards not releasing for XP, this is disappointing. But if MS sees this as an opportunity to sideline XP, they are not the only game in town. I have no inclination to upgrade my fast, stable, lean XP PC to Windows 7; the simpler (and cheaper) response to IE8 failing to keep pace was to switch this machine to Chrome.


March 15, 2011, 9:51 pm

I don't think I will be switching from Opera or Chrome or Firefox anytime soon. What Internet Explorer 9 brings to the table simply is not enough.


March 15, 2011, 11:13 pm

Seems slick, but it still has a flaw (For me at least)... As a Pro Photog I was hoping the colour management would be handled better. Pity it still isn't working properly/fully - The color management support seems half-baked, and frankly useless for anybody with wide-gamut monitors. The only thing IE9 seems to be doing is converting images that are tagged with a non-sRGB profile to sRGB. That means over-saturated colors on wide-gamut displays like my Dell 30". The fact that they've actually got a web-page bragging about IE9's color management support when they haven't implemented it properly is disappointing. Firefox 4 thankfully, renders as it should- Pix look exactly like they do in Lightroom.

Jonathan Hackford

March 15, 2011, 11:17 pm

I find it a lot faster than IE8 however it won't load the java.com page and keeps returning an error. Good job I have java installed already and I was just checking if there was an update.


March 16, 2011, 1:44 am

I've worked out a formula. If you are using Firefox and think IE is "good" then the browser you're looking for is Chrome.

Whilst IE rendering has improved. The interface feels too clunky. delay when clicking buttons. Heavy to drag tabs. Context menus that have way too many options. Essentially no polish and lots of "features" that I don't want from a browser. Accelerators are the most horrible form of browser extension I've ever used.

Dark of Day

March 16, 2011, 2:13 am

Yup, a half decent browser from MS.
Bit of a a joke of a security 'issue' ..guess they didn't find anything juicier to whine about.
Anyway I'll stick with Opera


March 17, 2011, 1:18 pm

To start with it seemed really quick so I imported my bookmarks in to use it for a while. GMail takes forever to start up, another site I use regularly would not start and it doesn't check my spelling.

I'm sure there are some major advances under the hood but I am already back on Chrome.

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