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Microsoft doesn’t want you to use Internet Explorer anymore (theverge.com)
80 points by meris 7 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 73 comments





The funny? thing is that IE has become better than Chrome for a lot of stuff because Chrome keeps dropping support for things that it used to support. The frequency of updates means that your stuff could just stop working one day when it worked perfectly fine the previous day. It requires constant attention to make sure things won't break. The most recent one to get us was the File.lastModifiedDate

To be fair, File.lastModifiedDate was never a standard. In my experience, as long as you stick to the stuff that's actually an accepted standard your code will last a long time.

FWIW, removed on Firefox too:

https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1458883

and lastModified works in both (and IE):

https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/API/File/lastMo...


I agree but if the latest document is a draft? That is how lastModifiedDate ended up in those browsers in the first place. Obviously, going back would have noticed that it was removed from the spec and updated accordingly. The point is that IE has maintained backwards compatibility and Chrome has not.

That's why you don't implement anything that's a draft. Obviously easier said than done, but if you want your code to be around for a long time it's the only sensible path.

I agree in principal, but the standards can move very slow. Look at WebRTC. It is only a 'candidate recommendation'.

That's the tradeoff you have to accept if you want stable code.

You gave a single example and it is also deprecated and removed from Mozilla and never supported in Safari etiher, apparently it is not part of the spec now.

I guess that could be true for some things, but as a web dev (albeit n00b).... IE is still the odd man out support wise or wonky behavior wise the vast majority of times in my experience.

> The funny? thing is that IE has become better than Chrome for a lot of stuff because Chrome keeps dropping support for things that it used to support.

This is something that I often wrote in the past also on HN: businesses desire stability and administerability for the software that they use. In the past, Microsoft was best at satisfying this desire.


That's Google in a nutshell: Develop something great and then just... let it... die.

The truth is, if they let it die It's highly likely it was not useful. G+, wave, RSS feeds, etc, legacy services that needed to be replaced for security sake.

It's unfortunate end users have to be dragged along kicking and screaming, but thankfully google is willing to do it for the end users own good.


Not useful to whom? I used to greatly enjoy their RSS reader. I'm still enjoying Inbox, for as long as I can keep it, and I dread going back to regular Gmail. When Google kills a product, it's more likely than not for their own good, not mine.

Most of the useful inbox featues have been moved into the new Gmail though.

I mean, i get it, I liked inbox too, but gmail is basically inbox 2.0 now.


I did give Gmail another try, but it absolutely did not feel like Inbox to me--at least not the parts that made me switch in the first place.

Doesn't mean it isn't crap? It's so much slower than the old Gmail. Things don't immediately commit, and I get asked to I want to leave when I close the webmail now. Everyone just needs inconsistent systems now. What ever happened to consistent systems and changes being committed as soon as possible.

If that's the case, then they should probably start by offering something better for all currently supported OSes and versions.

Windows 7 is still supported and only runs IE11, no Edge

Windows 10 LTSB is still supported and only runs IE11, no Edge

If you need to support any of those OSes, there's no way around supporting IE11.


Windows 7 currently has less than a year of support (January 14th, 2020 is D-Day), and given the free upgrade having been available, and the improved security and performance, there is no legitimate reason to be on Windows 7 today.

LTSB is not intended for computers which browse the web. It's very specifically only intended for things like embedded platforms like computers operating medical devices. Aka, things that require the Windows kernel to run, and insane platform stability, and literally like nothing else. Business users who need a desktop should be running Enterprise, which does allow you to disable all the things most Windows installs don't, but is far more capable than LTSB.


In one of my companies, of the windows machines, half are Win7, half are Win10...

Often we wish we could buy Win7 to delete the Win10 on the Win10 machines.

Win10 somehow, is less reliable, often doing weird things, updating without permission, sending strange data out, have security update that kill half of our online bank apps, our another update that make the keyboard stop working, or nag about Cortana at same time Cortana is not available in our country, show ads, etc...

The only reason the Win10 machines are still Win10 is because Win10 was part of the deal when buying said machines...


If Windows is updating without permission in one of your companies, there's an issue with whoever manages IT for that company. Even without an Enterprise license, it's trivial for a domain environment to control update behavior. Group policy handles the majority of these concerns easily.

Even if you could install Windows 7, you would be very mistaken in doing so, as it would put your company at significantly greater risk. Even while security updates are still available, the differences in the platform already lead to scenarios where large malware infections tend to be almost entirely on machines which weren't running Windows 10.


I agree. I always read these horror stories about windows, specifically win10, and I have just had a completely different experience. On personal machines, work machines, servers, large deployments, domain controlled and not ... I’ve just never had these problems.

To be clear: I've encountered plenty of issues on Windows 10. But most have been addressed, the rest can be managed if you know what you're doing, and running out of date operating systems is not a safe or viable way to operate, especially as a business.

If someone really just doesn't like Windows 10, my advice is to switch to Linux. Continuing to run obsolete operating systems just isn't okay. :)


Windows 7 lives longer if you’re willing to pay Microsoft a hefty sum: https://www.techspot.com/news/78629-microsoft-reveals-how-mu...

I'm no win10 hater but doesn't ltsb do everything that win7 can?

There will be soon: https://www.theverge.com/2018/12/6/18128648/microsoft-edge-c...

The bigger problem is that Edge does not, and never will, support ActiveX.


That’s a feature not a bug. Evan Microsoft wants users off ActiveX, if only to promote Azure.

How does ActiveX absence promote azure? You mean newer version of exchange?

Maybe their new Chromium based Edge browser will, since Chrome presumably still supports all of those.

I have a feeling the reason Edge isn't available on Windows 7 is not because it doesn't run but because they intended for Edge to be one more reason to upgrade to Windows 10.

If that's the case, there's zero reason to assume that they will let their Chromium based Edge run on Windows 7 either.


FTA

Microsoft is now building a Chromium-powered version of its Edge browser that will be available for testing in the coming weeks. It’s being decoupled from Windows 10, and businesses will be able to install Edge on Windows 7 or Windows 8.


MSFT: Please allow us to install former Trident-based edge as a separate browser.

Windows is not nearly as important to them as it once was, and this is starting to show. They are killing support for all of their browsers, and they don't really care if your app needs 11 or your user can't use edge.

Probably offer something better=new skin of chrome or go fuck yourself - microsoft


My first job doing intranet web development in 2000 was in a company with mandatory use of IE for all employees and all developed apps. We all grew to despise it very quickly especially as the alternatives increased in number and quality. Microsoft is only 19 years behind on this conclusion :)

Now all get to worry only about Chrome instead.

It's astounding how people like to paint MS as the bad guy and not monopolies. Every monopoly behaves like this. I'm not favoring MS- I'm asking people to stop letting monopolies become. No .. But google gives me free stuff

I can understand accepting a monopoly as a necessary evil but then often what I see in reality is that people are cheering for the monopoly and they even want the competitors to go out of business.

Exactly- everyone just wants to be seen as siding with the winner. I specially see it on "hacker" news actually.

Finally. The only sad thing they didn't support Firefox. Having a fair competition to Chrome/Chromium would be the most obvious choice (and push Rustification project forward to a new heights).

It would have been interesting to hear what / if any discussion there was about picking Chromium.

Embedding Chromium is easy, embedding Gecko is....not. I'm guessing that's about where it started and ended, TBH.

It's sad; I remember that one of the things that was supposed to come out of Servo was a stable embedding interface. Of course, that's cancelled now…

I can't help but wonder from time to time what would be using Gecko now if they were reasonable to embed.


If that's the case then Microsoft needs to lean hard on all small and midsize business using a version of Sharepoint or Solomon or Great Plains to upgrade their internal apps to no longer require IE. Where I work our timesheets app on Solomon requires Internet Explorer -- which is a bucket of fun for all of our MacBook Pro using sales team.

Microsoft may want us to move on from IE but they've created the apps that REQUIRE us to keep using IE.


Hell that's true of enterprise applications as well. What amazes me is large SASS companies like ADP whose eTime timesheet app required the JRE to function until they upgraded it a couple years ago to use Flash instead.

They still only officially support Internet Exploder, and when we switched to Chrome as our office standard they forced an addon that opens certain incompatible sites like ADP.com in IE if you try to visit them in Chrome.


A worse offender might be government apps. The radar loop on the National Weather Service STILL requires Adobe Flash. Example: https://radar.weather.gov/radar.php?product=NCR&rid=EAX&loop...

Jokes on us. I have a building management system that uses IE thoroughly. These things are on 10-15 year lifecycles. And the only way to get major updates is to buy a new system. These things are in the $millions and we aren't anywhere near the next purchase cycle. The only thing I can do is harden it by lobbing it onto it's own VLAN.

We're about to spend a number of dumptrucks full of money for a modern WCMS combined with a totally new design effort, and I guarantee you at some point someone will see a customer coming in from W7/IE11 and demand we design for 5 years ago.

So if you're that one guy, _can you not_, thanks!


Internet Explorer is the only option for Windows Server.

The only browser on a server should be curl. Or wget.

Running a 'webbrowser' other than lynx/links/w3m implies a GUI, which makes no sense as you wouldn't have a GUI on a server.


Absolutist thinking is not good for you and I think that it often clashes with reality.

The only browser on your server should be the one you need to run there. How about a server to automate some Windows GUI thing or to run mobile OS emulators like BrowserStack does? You're gonna need a GUI there because going "headless" is not always an option depending on how interesting your work is.

I've also used server editions of Linux and Windows as my workstation throughout my career because they have features that I needed or just the convenience of having the same exact setup as production.


And Remote Desktop Services.

Windows Server gives you the option to install a GUI, many people do.

I don't understand what you mean, I'm running Chrome and Firefox quite happily on Windows servers?

Why would you browse the web on a server, though?

It might be terminal server.

windows servers usually have gui's

Migrating enterprise off IE will have a cascading effect on their cloud effort.

Most cloud revenue is from Windows only shops who use active directory, SharePoint...

When Microsoft harassed users off internet explorer, people didn't jump to Edge as they hoped. They ran to Chrome.

I predict the same happening for enterprise. If companies have to dev new software when leaving IE, it might cost less to just jump to Linux.


Someone tell Microsoft "Mission accomplished!!!".

I knew they would ocme to their senses eventually so I stopped using IE about 10-12 years ago!!


This will only accelerate Chrome's rise to being a browser monopoly though. Google has been doing a ton of anti-competitive stuff to put the hurt on Firefox and IE. It's really a very bad thing for the internet.

You reap what you sow Microsoft...

That makes two of us.

"compatibility solution, not a browser"

It's more of a browser than any shell around chromium will ever be.


Is chromium not a browser? Surely a shell around it, which includes it, is also a browser.

> Surely a shell around it, which includes it, is also a browser.

An eggshell isn't an egg.

There's a browser there, but it's copied wholesale. And it's the worst thing to copy if you care about the future of web standards.


This doesn't really answer how IE is "more of a browser" than anything derived from Chrome.

You are right that a Chromium monoculture is bad for the future of web standards.

Google does try to make sites look like applications, and on Chrome OS, it doesn't distinguish them too well, but they are still HTML/JS and do not reach into the OS like ActiveX did.

But ActiveX as it was implemented and presented with IE was horrendous. Binaries with access to the full system (and a "kill bit" hack needed to protect users from bad ones), doing things like local applications but not manageable like local applications, and security responsibilities handwaved by cryptic dialogs and warnings end users typically don't read or understand and everyone blames the IT department for.

It's a shame Edge didn't take off. That was practically IE without ActiveX and it was quick if you wanted a basic browser experience, kinda like how Chrome used to be when it was first around.


It's not "derived from" chromium. It uses exactly chromium. They are only wrapping code around it. That code is not a browser.

Why not? Chromium is open source and uses webkit which has wide adoption. An eggshell wrapped around a yolk certainly is very egg-like.

An egg is made out of shell and white and yolk.

That does not make the shell itself an egg.

Microsoft is promising to make a shell, and to not make anything else.


The problem I have with this description is you could describe any software that has a renderer thats separate from the UI like this. Perhaps in Java if we had an egg, we could,

import egg.yolk; import egg.whites; import egg.shell;

Egg fakeEgg = new Egg(brown);


Which ones do you develop?

The whole thing is a browser. But Microsoft isn't developing a browser. The rendering engine, javascript engine, network handling, almost all the important input handling, all the things that make it a web browser, they're coming from someone else. And that source has a default shell too.

Remember that the baseline is questioning whether IE counts as a legitimate browser. If you're even slightly unsure about IE, then "shell around chromium" has to be far far on the no side of the line.


But an eggshell, when surrounding the rest of the egg, is part of the whole.

Ha, I'm waiting this whole windows thing out.

I've never used windows ever, from ver 1 through the horrible 95 and NT, till v8 and onwards with it's spyware built in.

Glad to hear IE is also going away.

Enjoy your backslashes guys!


You're not the only one.

I was a Classic Mac guy. In 1999 I started using Linux (SuSE 5.1) When OS X came along it broke compatibility with all existing expensive Mac hardware, so I just continued on with Linux. Linux got better. And better. And better. Etc.

I've never owned a Windows PC.

I use Windows at work where I am not responsible for maintaining it. I use Windows Data Center, Hyper-V, etc. But I have never personally owned a Microsoft product. No need.


I actually have to hand it to you if that's true. You waited it out for like 25+ years, that's some impressive dedication. The "I told you so" attitude doesn't come off as pleasant though.

Well I can't even say "I told you so" yet.

This is just Microsoft discouraging the use of IE, Windows will still be around for a long time.

In many ways I've been lucky that I've been able to keep it to UNIX and Mac OS.




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