Microsoft pushing out IE9 via Windows Update; business web apps may be affected

Internet Explorer 9 (IE9) is being pushed out in June 2011

Internet Explorer 9 (IE9) will be pushed out through Windows Update in June 2011

As Microsoft plans on broadly rolling out Internet Explorer 9 (IE9) to users at the end of June 2011 by using Windows Update, according to official blogs, IT leaders will need to understand how this impacts their web-based applications.

Microsoft said the roll out of the browser, which has hundreds of millions of users planet-wide, is being paced to ensure it is introduced “in a timeline that allows web site developers to have the chance to ensure their site is 100% ready.” More details on how it will be delivered will be made known in the coming months, it’s being reported.

Compatibility issues; IE9 seems more streamlined, faster

As with any major browser upgrade, this could cause issues for IT departments around application compatibility for web-delivered business apps, and existing IE add-ons they depend on to run parts of their business. But IE 9 is boasting an improved add-on manager and performance advisor to help ensure browser reliability.

The IE 9 Download Manager is also improved, allowing users to queue, pause and efficiently restart downloads. Many companies are just beginning to deploy IE 8 now, while others are still spending time converting & supporting their home-grown applications ported from IE 6 and IE 7.

Softchoice is seeing organizations start to evaluate IE 9, and possibly leverage its new compatibility features to help close out those application compatibility issues.  Also, IE 9 takes advantage of hardware-acceleration for faster web application performance.  Overall, IE 9 does seem faster, cleaner and more streamlined with Windows 7, with the promise of being more secure.

Not the first time

This isn’t the first time Microsoft has released a new version of Internet Explorer using Windows Update. In IE 8’s case, on Windows XP and Server 2003, the update as marked as high-priority. On Windows Vista and Server 2008 it was designated as “Important.” Users were prompted as to whether they wanted to be asked about installing IE 8 later, to install it immediately or to not install it.

Every browser has a mechanism for updating their users from a previous version of a browser to the latest and greatest. For IE9, it is done through Windows Update.

As with IE 8, there is an IE 9 blocking tool, which administrators can apply if they haven’t yet adequately tested IE 9 and/or if they don’t want their users to have access to it.

No matter what, organizations will need to build a strategy to address IE 9’s June 2011 release.


About Brian McClelland

Brian is a Microsoft Solutions Architect as Softchoice.