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The Internet Explorer 6 Countdown (ie6countdown.com)
189 points by ck2 on Apr 8, 2013 | hide | past | web | favorite | 143 comments

BTW I just realized that site is actually owned and operated by Microsoft.

Have there been other products where companies practically beg people to stop using it and fund initiatives to that end?

They're not exactly begging people to stop using IE, they're begging people to upgrade their IE. MS wants you to keep using their products, just new(er) versions of them.

Well...I'd gladly upgrade my IE. But hey look, I need to upgrade my OS as well? Oh, and my computer too? Nice try, MS.

You can upgrade up to IE 8 on XP. What are you using?

IIRC, the current version of IE is two major versions higher (i.e., 10) as of April 2013, and it's slightly different from IE8. (The box in question is a sandboxed VM anyway, but it bothers me that I must pay the MS tax again, just to have their current browser for development.)

If you're just testing against IE for web development, Microsoft actually makes available tons of VM images with various IE versions available for free: http://www.modern.ie/en-us/virtualization-tools

Interesting. (Ironically, the site is broken - clicking the links doesn't seem to do anything. Perhaps it is "Optimized for IE"? ;))

Gillette is actively trying to push people off of Mach 3 (and most of their advertisements specifically show people who stop using it and switch to the newest "Fusion" model)

Why are they trying to get people to stop using Mach 3? Is it just to get more sales on the new razor or is there some kind of issue with the Mach 3?

Fusion is more expensive and, I'd imagine, has higher margins than Mach 3. They still make both.

(I'd like to see priceonomics write a blog post about the razor blade model)

So many people love Mach3... its almost like they made too good of a razor for their own good ;)

I still can't take any of these discussions seriously after an Onion article correctly predicted the Fusion:


Would you call it 5 or 6 blades (given that there's a single blade in the back and 5 in the front)?

The very first Saturday Night Live episode had a similar parody. http://snltranscripts.jt.org/75/75atriple.phtml

You'd think that, but it's not like they make money on the razors, it's all in the blades. Not sure why they're pushing people to move.

There's no issue with the Mach3, or whatever came before it. They just want to push their consumers to the newest version.

To that point, you can even still buy the 2 bladed sensor excell blades.

Yes, to be fair, Gillette still manufactures and sells older versions. They even make & sell double edged razor blades.

But they definitely push for whatever is the newest (and usually more expensive) option.

They can pry my Sensor Excel from my cold dead hands.

Ever try a safety razor, with actual shaving cream instead of pressurized-cream-in-a-can?

well , Microsoft want people to upgrade their software ( and pay for it ) so it makes sense. MS wants you to buy W8. The problem is businesses have legacy software full of stuffs that would not work in modern browsers , so they have to stick with IE6 or redevelop the legacy software ( at least the front-end ). Or they could allow their employees to use a second browser...

I can't understand why Microsoft doesn't just ship a recompiled version of IE6 (for all OSes) that:

1. can't be set to be the default browser;

2. has no address bar, bookmarks menu, or any other "user navigation" feature besides interacting with the pages themselves;

3. and, most importantly, requires a GPO for each set of Intranet domains you want to grant it access to, with a hard-coded start page. All navigation to domains outside the allowed list would trigger the default (modern) browser to open the link instead.

This effectively would make IE6 not a web browser, but just another runtime for ordinary installable software, which just happens to run mostly by loading external code from the web. (Sort of like node-webkit, actually.) Microsoft could re-brand it, with their usual flare, as the "Legacy Intranet Services Application Framework", and tout it as a "transition tool" for any enterprise "lagging behind."

All the people needing IE6 for something could safely upgrade to a new OS, knowing their old web-apps would continue working for as long as LISAF is supported; and all the people developing for the web would be released from the burden of seeing IE6 outside an Intranet ever again.

Because they want it to die.

Presumably they want MS-DOS and Win16 to die, too, but they still ship versions of those with every copy of Windows, and will continue to indefinitely. They're just very, very sandboxed :)

Windows 7, at least the 64bit version, will not run Win16 programs. Ran into that limitation trying to install some old software from the Win98 days that was still using essentially a Win3.1 installer.

Did you try doing it via XP mode?

That's not really Win16 support. It's like saying it supports DOS because it can run DOSBox.

64-bit x86 processors running in "long mode" can't be put into "virtual 8086 mode".

But MS-DOS and Win16 isn't software anyone still have to deal with when making new content because the software isn't used by anyone to deal with any content, only legacy software that won't hurt anyone. It's isolated.

But a browser doesn't get stuck in time like a OS does when it dies, they don't surf on the same Web as when they were popular while an old outdated OS still runs its old outdated software just fine. MS-DOS and Win16 also weren't garbage, IE6 is.

IE6 wasn't garbage when it came out. It generally got good reviews. Mostly, people adopted it because it was better than Netscape.

Only the 32-bit versions. And those appear to be dying out (even cheap low-end laptops nowadays come with 4 GiB of RAM and a 64-bit version preinstalled).

Well, there's IE6 Compatibility Mode.

Is there? How to enable it? The farthest down I can go with stock IE is IE7 (which arguably isn't really much better than IE6, but still)

Browser Mode goes down to IE7, but Document Mode goes down to IE5.

"IE5" document mode is basically IE7 Quirks mode.

No, they just want you to download a newer browser. Yes, MSFT wants you to buy their products, but that isn't the intention of this site. The only thing this site does is a) promote site owners to warn users of old browsers b) promote users to tell others to upgrade and c) promote recent versions of IE to visitors

But you're very right about the legacy applications. We seem to have been able to at least upgrade to IE8...still not that good though.

Agree with all your points. Additionally, MS is probably seeking to get back a bit of the developers love, who are influential in the browser popularity game.

Front-ends that work in IE6 but not in modern browsers? Are you sure? That doesn't really make sense to me. I can see how maybe some outdated code or a bunch of hacks could make a site designed for IE6 look just a little funny here and there but I don't see how it would be a lot of work at all to make a site made for IE6 work in a modern browser. As far as I know, the only reason large companies don't upgrade is because they have a bunch of infrastructure that's totally unrelated to websites that stop them from upgrading. Basically, the IT department sets up the entire company's computer systems a certain way and then resist upgrading anything so they don't have to do a lot of testing, more patching, and generally adapt to the new tech after they've tuned their infrastructure just so.

Large IT departments are really conservative for good reason. Hypothetically, consider that a company maintained a web app that accountants used to track revenue. Now, consider that the accountants needed to input interest earned from investments. Let's say there was a Regex bug in parsing the interest rate, and all values were interpreted to be NaN or 0 on non-IE6 browsers due to an implementation quirk. This would have disastrous consequences for a large company: they might face shareholder suits, government investigations, etc. And of course, the people maintaining the system would likely lose their jobs.

There are so many downsides, but what's the upside? So that FB loads a little faster? The incentives are stacked against adopting new technology. Any new browser has to be thoroughly tested against every one of the company's apps to make sure that nothing breaks. As anyone who's done QA before will tell you, that's a tall order.

I agree that the probability of such an incident is small. However, given the disastrous consequences that would happen for a large organization should such a bug occur, it's hard to make the case that an upgrade is a good idea for the sake of "better technology."

The upside? Javascript will run 100 times faster and your developers can build even more functional software, moving software that once had to run on the desktop to software that now runs in a browser.

That doesn't change that IE is still needed for those old applications. So the best case scenario is running whatever new browser like Firefox, Chrome, etc, and running IE6 alongside. Ditch IE6 only after the old apps have been replaced completely.

I'm a little confused. Why is there IE6 lockin? Apps weren't built so they could at least be easily upgraded to IE8? Some testing is required and no one wants to do the work?

My memory isn't that hazy. What happened was that people said the software only had to run in IE6 and Netscape wasn't important. Writing "good" web software wasn't important. Simply support Microsoft's IE6 and you're done. If you're still stuck on IE6/IE7 it really is your own fault.

michael_miller explained it adequately above:

1) IT departments are massively conservative (and this is not an intrinsically bad thing)

2) A lot of apps were built specifically for IE6. They still work with IE6. Many times they only work with IE6.

3) It hasn't been made worthwhile to upgrade.

> If you're still stuck on IE6/IE7 it really is your own fault.

A lot of us web developers have decided to just say, "Fuck it," and stop supporting IE6. If it works, cool; if it doesn't, we don't care. This is a luxury available to those of us who have clients who aren't supported by the aforementioned IT departments. Some of us are still required to support IE6 because we have clients who we can't drop and refuse to move off, and we don't have the leverage to persuade them otherwise.

For some companies it doesn't make sense to drop support for IE6. I work for a company who's product is sold completely online. If we dropped support for IE6 we would loose hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of dollars a year. Sure it's a tiny fraction of our business, but it's a considerable amount of money and pretty much covers the wages of our entire web development team.

The problem is JavaScript not (only) the CSS. For instance, "document.getElementById" in IE6 targets the name attribute, so those web sites can function without setting an id attribute. The IRS web application of my country does that.

We threw out a firewall appliance that had the admin page only able to run in IE6 (I think it did an explicit check for browser verion) Didn't replace it till we got tired of the P4/XP/IE6 box in the corner. We are tiny (<10ppl) and I can imagine tons of others in similar situations. The 90's was not a good time for browser code bases.

Here's an example of something that I do not believe would work in modern browsers:


If your entire application was created like that then you are talking about a significant overhaul.

Then you've never seen it happen. I've seen it happen lots. It's horrible. Absolutely horrible. :) I won't pretend I knew why those apps broke in IE6.


Microsoft has all the power in the world to stop this. They won't do it because they want money.

To stop their own advertising? What?

They can distribute upgrades to IE 7,8,9, and even 10. They are using it as leverage to get them to buy a new operating system.

They have done upgrades past IE6, even for XP. These are installed automatically if you have automatic updates turned on. The problem is people who turn off automatic updates, or enterprise organizations who use Group Policy to block browser updates.

Yes, but pirated versions are the problem. If they cared more about security than piracy, they would have disabled WGA and let the new updates install (without WGA approval, only serious vulnerability patches are installed, not whole new software).

WGA is really easy to bypass, that isn't an issue. And you can bet that 90% pirates won't use IE6, they're somewhat tech savvy.

you're thinking of the wrong sort of pirates. The pirated copies of XP that are running IE6 are computers that are sold on the street in china. the people operating them have no idea that their OS isn't legit (nor do they care) and whoever sold them the computer turned off automatic updates so the end user wouldn't get the message that they were running a non-genuine copy of windows.

Those end users aren't people who matter to many Western businesses though.

When persuading a client to drop explicit IE6 support they said "but x00000 hits are using IE6", we looked into the stats and the vast majority of the IE6 traffic was coming from China and not buying anything.

The discrepancy compared to other countries is because the piracy of XP in China is staggering.

Sources: http://bradweikel.com/software-piracy-china-why-ie6-will-not...


As a Chinese, I saw all people I know does not upgrade their OS unless their computer hardware is broken inreversibly. And even in 2012, there are still some people install priate XP on new computer they bought or assembled.

And computers in netcafe or school are UNABLE TO UPDATE ANY SOFTWARE because all disk modifications are reverted after the computer restarts. People install a hardware called "recovery card" and it reverts all modifications on the hard disk. It sounds unbelievable but it is true. Almost all "computer rooms" (called "机房" here but i cannot come up with a good translation) in universities, even in famous universities, is still installed recovery card. The maintainers of those "computer rooms" just fix their computers while they are broken (very rare), and, install XP and old softwares.

Besides, compnies here install their own browsers, which is only a "shell" of IE, without user agreement? They put an "install XXX browser" checkbox on the install wizard of other software and make them checked by default. People here think that their browser is "upgraded" but the kernel is still IE6. (Interestingly some of the shell browsers started using webkit recently.)

Sigh. In this case I actually hope the Chinese government forces everyone to use Ubuntu over the next decade, now that they plan to standardize everything around it.

I doubt they'll pick stock Ubuntu if they did. They'll probably hack together their own build (or one based on Mint) with added state-monitoring goodness and force their people to use that instead. But I don't think they'll go to that extreme. New China, while retaining some of the old traits, is somewhat more sensitive to social media than Old China. They know people are not as willing to shut up and accept what's given to them these days.

Incidentally, I wonder if someone has put together an upgrade message that we could all use on our sites in the interim to visitors from China (preferably in simplified Chinese). It certainly wouldn't hurt for them to know there are other choices available besides IE or Maxthon.

They're actually working with Canonical to get modifications and application ports.



Well, this is new to me. Thanks for sharing this! :)

I hope Canonical will stick to just getting language compatibility, streamlining and just plain consistency when they finally release rather than helping with government monitoring and censorship. If the government does take the end product and introduce these, there's nothing much that can be done, except making sure the sources are widely available for study.

At least, that would make the officials reluctant to stick blatant examples of monitoring.

Sigh. I wish no government forces their citizens into a single OS. We should be able to choose what we want to run. Just because something is open-source doesn't mean it won't carry the dreadful effects of a monopoly.

I think you're reading too much into it. If China does standardize on a Ubuntu derived distro with their own specs and it gets released for public use (and by that, offices both private and government sector will also begin using it with government taking precedence due to the ruling party influence), that by default causes it to be pushed as the standard in homes as well. You wouldn't want to keep disparate OSes around; it's just too much of a hassle for most folks.

"Force" in that context means proliferation by standardization at work, trickling down to home, not in terms of "use this or else..."

Now I don't know to what degree console adoption fares in China, but if it's high enough, PC gaming won't deter enough users to prevent it actually becoming a viable alternative on par with Windows at some point.

It would be interesting turn if they just open sourced XP and let the hackers have at it. Deploying a moderned-up Chinese focused XP isn't going to move the needle in either direction regarding the piracy culture there, but might help carry them forward. Retail software just has to be free in some parts of the world, made apparent by the preference for a hacked obselete, decade-old OS.

Some of the architecture is still part of modern Windows so I don't think they would even consider it. Plus that's millions upon millions of lines of code that must be vetted to prevent trade secrets from leaking out. And I imagine there are other vulnerabilities in newer versions of Windows that would be readily found by examining the older cousin's source.

Another reason why they use it is because XP came out before WGA (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_Genuine_Advantage). This made pirating newer versions a bit more inconvenient (but certainly not enough to stop piracy all the way to Win8, I'm sure). So that leaves the more easily pirated pre-WGA XP

The risk for Microsoft is that they lose control of the ecosystem, potentially jeopardising billions in future revenue. Piracy is relatively tolerable for Microsoft, because a pirate can still get locked into your platform; Eventually, you'll probably figure out some way to monetise that, probably by leveraging the size of the install base to secure very big contracts. If the Chinese aren't using Microsoft Windows™ but a specifically Chinese fork, Microsoft might lose the market forever, or be forced to target a platform that they don't control.

I don't think hackers would do that... Even if Windows was open-sourced, many consider it an inferior operating system not worth their time and effort.

> This website is dedicated to watching Internet Explorer 6 usage drop to less than 1% worldwide, so more websites can choose to drop support for Internet Explorer 6, saving hours of work for web developers.

Hours of work? I think if you combine all of the work put into getting sites to work on IE6, it'll be measured in decades, if not centuries.

I think they mean save hours of work for every developer.

Per day? :)

This was posted over 2 years ago... https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2288550

Edit: Domain was actually registered over 3.5 years ago

I believe the original title for the link was something along the lines of "IE6 usage is under X% worldwide" but one of the HN mods changed it.

Well that would have actually given this submission a purpose, rather than just being a repost.

Any idea why it was changed. Now it is just misleading (as demonstrated by the grandparent).

I appreciate there's some HN submission guideline about keeping the same title as the pages you are linking to, but surely a slight bending of the rules is the much better choice in this case? The link isn't really to the page, but a specific data point on that page.

IE6 is still the standard browser in my place of employment. vomit

The company I work (an insurance corp) for also mandates IE use not only for itself, but for agents and providers.

Thus, the outward-facing website has:

73% IE

21% Chrome

5% Firefox

1% the rest

while the intranet is 100% IE obviously (and it's VBScript-based).

I've pitched the last 3 IT bosses, but they don't want to hear and don't care about the Web (not even as a sales channel). I wish I could disrupt the industry, but it's basically a monopoly (you need government leverage and a lot of money to get in). I'll leave my job as soon as I can (I don't want to move sideways into a similar job, as the local laws harshly penalize switching jobs - you lose all unemployment benefits, pension, holidays, etc.)

Do you mind if I ask where you live? Loosing your pension and unemployment when you leave your job sounds very harsh.

I live in Uruguay. I don't lose what I paid so far in pension, but I "switch" pension funds when I switch industries, so unless I get work at another bank, some special rules apply.

When you switch jobs voluntarily, the unemployment benefits and holidays "counters" reset, so if you get fired within the first 3 months you get nothing, during the 1st year afterwards you get 1 month unemployment, etc.. This does not happen if you get fired (I'm currently almost unfireable since the company has to pay me the maximum amount of pay by law if I get fired without a serious offense, 12 months of my salary in addition to accrued wages).

This of course makes switching jobs once you have job security very hard.

Ditto, but I don't get it. Isn't it a massive security risk?

They probably have a humungous firewall and several dozen antiviruses on computers that are reduced to a crawl.. what can an attacker do in that scenario?

In my office, most users can only access 2 or 3 webpages anyway. When I did development for a financial company, I had a separate computer for internet access, on a separate network (shared by several devs).

Bet there's some older "sacred cow" app or web portal that they connect to that REQUIRES IE6.

Saw that in a former job, and when inquired about updating, "it would cost too much" was the typical response.

but it would be more of a hassle to upgrade all the computers to IE7, and make sure all their software is still compatible. And then what? You'll just need to upgrade to IE8 in a few years anyway.

Clearly there are some who still weigh "hassle" and cost over the potential risk that falling behind current tech brings to their business.

The "why upgrade when I'll have to just upgrade again later" logic is clearly not a healthy long term strategy for any business (even outside of IT). Skipping a generation to saves costs may work but how many do you skip before your risk and cost to catch up becomes too much?

What's the potential risk for a business when you're a monopoly? Or a government - see Korea's stuff with banking and ActiveX, they managed to force it for decades:


Given hardware produced in the last five years, I'm surprised anything requiring IE isn't just done in a VM pinned to a clean snapshot of XP+IE6, rather than expecting the host OS to be able to deal with it.

We don't expect to be able to run real-mode DOS programs "on the metal" any more; instead, they're virtualized. Why is running IE6 on the metal any less ridiculous?

Microsoft tried, really. They made it super-easy to set up in Windows 7. It just didn't really help. http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows7/products/feature...

Actually at my enterprise, the team that manages the Windows installs specifically disabled XP mode and application compatibility settings. I've never gotten a response from them as to why, but they mandate anyone who needs to use an IE6-only application has to stay on XP with IE6. Although the good news is, Chrome is the company-wide default, with IE6 limited to intranet use only.

Still sucks.

Just upgrade to Chrome or Firefox. Unlike Microsoft, they don't intend to leave one browser behind every other Windows release, so they can sell their new version of Windows.

And why not jump directly to 8? Every OS that runs IE6 can also run IE8, it should just be one Windows Update away.

Aren’t we on IE 10 now? Why would you upgrade to IE7?

XP might have some trouble running IE10.

Private business or some kind of government run office?

The latter. I managed a software dev team of which this particular branch of Gov was a client. Each time we got a requirement that 'software x must be compatible with IE6+, Chrome, Safari and perform neat client-side tricks,' everyone cringed. Now I'm on the other side of the table and frequently run into "sorry, your browser is not supported." Love it. Just love it.

Really? How? Do sites of any complexity even work anymore in IE6?

Thankfully, IE7 is already more dead than IE6: http://theie7countdown.com/

Now we just need to wait for IE8's disappearance (http://theie8countdown.com/). And then IE9's (http://theie9countdown.com/), because it doesn't support text-shadow, transitions, filters, the File API, FormData, gradients, columns, classList, flex-box or WebGL...


"Hopefully there will be no Internet Explorer 10…"


"We won't need a countdown to extinction of IE10 if you don't use the piece of shit to begin with."

Hadn't seen those. Not funny :(

Well, a little scepticism isn’t uncalled for. Nowadays, I don’t even think the problem is the quality of IE, but the fear of users not upgrading. Microsoft needs to be at least as agressive as its competitors in automatically upgrading users’ browsers, even if its corporate customer base doesn’t care for it. If not, corporate clients will continue to write for specific versions, a practice that needs to die. That’s why we’re stuck supporting XP and IE6 in the first place, 12 years after it was released.

When I visited South Korea 2 years ago, 95% of their computers that were in the hotel rooms were IE 6. I know that was two years ago, and those were only in hotel rooms, but I was surprised to see so much IE 6. Good thing I had firefox portable on my usb drive with me

I don't have the article now (maybe it was Techdirt?) but I read that the government mandated a specific form of encryption for all banking and shopping which was only implemented as an IE6 ActiveX plugin.

Ahh, here we go: https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120507/12295718818/south...

Just commented that Korea had almost-mandatory IE, because of their ActiveX-based encription technology:


It makes sense to support IE 6 when you sell a product to an enterprise, the UI is task oriented and doesn't have to be pixel perfect to entice users.

The trick is to make supporting IE 6 cost effective. You can still use semantic markup and CSS layout, it would just be a simplified version of what you serve modern browsers. It's called graceful degradation, and with a well defined templating system, it's feasible without laborious adjustments and hacks.

Some enterprises really can't upgrade, and if you are willing to support that one troublesome browser, you can still sell the product behind it, which can be innovative and useful.

IE6, IE7, IE8, IE9, IE10. AFAIK IE is the only remaining browser making a big deal out of a new version. The only reason I can think of is that for them it's all about sucking less instead of silently becoming more awesome.

http://gs.statcounter.com/#browser_version-ww-daily-20130407... Yesterdays' stats from the spreadsheet download:

  China			4.59
  Cuba			2.75
  Iran			1.2
  Solomon Islands	1.18
  Swaziland 		1.05
No other country is rounding above 0.00%

So finally it's time for ie7countdown.com.

Might aswell make it ie8countdown.com

That does exist: http://theie8countdown.com/

Not backed by Microsoft though.

I wonder how exactly they are gathering these statistics? For example the UK shows that 0.6% still use IE6, however from my experience (in both education and corporate, as well as a quick glance over laptops at a coffee shop) I would say this figure is much much higher.

When glancing over laptops at the coffee shop is this what you see: http://images.pcworld.com/news/graphics/160230-libretto_orig...

The libretto was a fine machine! I'd certainly be interested in a modern-hardware version of it with the same sturdy, rugged design. (Here's a size comparison from wikipedia: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/3f/EEEPC901_... and here is one more: http://rubenerd.com/uploads/photo.libretto.jpg)

Akamai has a nice public stats collection based on their CDN traffic, which is both enormous and significantly more global than some of the other metrics you see. They show IE6 consistently around the ~1% level:


Akamai uses a different way to count the usage compare to Net Applications. Hence the difference. Also, Akamai's presence in China is somewhat of a question.

Akamai has quite a few endpoints in China. We've had a few problems with the great firewall but those appear to be transient

That said, I'd love to know what the usage stats look like from the perspective of ChinaCache.

I sincerely hope it doesn't stop there and counts down to the complete cleansing of the world from the filth that is IE.

Now it is time for Android 2.x :-)

yup, android 2.x browser is the new IE6. so incredibly terrible.

the good news though is that people who still have android 2.x phones don't seem too interested in using them as mobile internet devices. Actual browser usage share for android 2.x is pretty minimal on my sites, despite its supposed market share.

Opera Mobile was one of the first things I installed on my Gingerbread phone, but more for the UI than the rendering.


Two years later it's on the HN front page. Come on kids...

Why is this even news? It's over two years old. Where's the IE8 count down?

Even if it is bad in terms of security, wrt system resources it is good. IE6 uses around 15 MB and Firefox uses 100 MB for browsing same sites. Or does IE6 uses virtual memory to show low memory usage?

Now they just need a similar website to countdown to the death of .doc/xls/ppt so we can have (mostly) sane, modern file formats to work with in non-MS Office apps.

< 1% in the USA? Big deal. Our biggest client is still stuck on IE6. Luckily, for everything else we've convinced the boss that we're only doing IE8 and above.

Can we organise 1 day where nobody tests any web application in IE6... just to see if there's actually anybody left using it IRL? :-)

IMHO, unless you target China, I think you shouldn't be caring for IE6 anymore at all. Personally I don't test with IE6 and I'm fine with it.

fully agree, we really shouldn't be testing/supporting IE6 anymore unless targeting a high proportionate of ie6 users (which these days is unlikely)

Not being able to boast ie6 support will be a huge blow to the egos of anal-retentive front-end engineers everywhere.

At this point blocking the browser from your website with an explanation would probably do more good than harm.

So you victimise people who mostly don't have any choice which browser they use, and lose their business. Good going...

If your site doesn't work, i'd rather block them then give them a bad experience. Lots of site do it but its more common with features like having javascript disabled.

China strangely at 26% but why is Japan (and India) at 2% still?

Depends on who's stats you believe. According to this, IE6 in China has dropped quite a bit in the past year:


It's under 5%.

On another note, IE7 is probably under 1% in most of the world. IE8 is the new minimum browser for developers?

It's a simplification but Netapplications count users and Statcounter counts usage.

People using IE6 are unlikely to be heavy web surfers so they are more heavily weighted on the Net application numbers (which ironically Microsoft generally prefers, as it makes IE look more important.)

Which is why Net Apps' stats are so useless and misleading, and I don't know why sites keep using it as the standard. I don't want to be counted as a "user" of IE if I happen to use it once a month or every 3 months, while using Chrome 12 hour a day.

I can live with IE8, it's not pretty but it can at least be worked with and then there is Chromeframe which makes it render exactly like Chrome.

Since XP has a year left to live and then probably another year or two of stubborn folks after that, IE8 will be with us well through 2015.

I was wondering if this has to do with the Great Firewall of China and Packet Shaping in some way.

The other explanation is that China just pirates really old versions of windows for everything.

> China strangely at 26%...

Not that strange given the rampant using of pirated Windows XP and the lack of skill and/or will to upgrade.

Oh... Norway 0.0% Do they have a law against IE 6 or what ? :)

I have no evidence for the claim, but I suspect it has something to do with a campaign that I think was started by the dominating classified ads site finn.no to get rid of IE6 (http://labs.finn.no/finn-anbefaler-ie6-brukere-a-oppgradere-...).

They made a snippet that displays a red box on the page with a warning if you are using IE6 and this got picked up by a lot of other sites. As you can see from the post above, this was in February of 2009.

Great News!

I wonder, does the site work in IE6 ? :)

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