Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 4th May 2009 16:58 UTC, submitted by zegenie
Internet Explorer The internet has been abuzz the entire weekend about Microsoft supposedly forcing Internet Explorer 8 to be the default browser once you upgraded to it. Users reported that upon installing IE8, Microsoft's latest browser was automatically made the default one, without a notification. However, as it turns out, it's all been a bit overhyped.
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they'll bash microsoft for anything
by cchance on Mon 4th May 2009 17:31 UTC
cchance
Member since:
2006-02-24

i mean come the f*ck on they don't even auto select the express setting, and im sorry if your installing IE8 the express option is for it to take care of everything and register itself as the default browser... last time i checked that was the default action most browsers took...

and umm... the apple slipping safari via a hidden update was NOT the same, this is a downloaded update to IE8 done purposefully for software already installed or downloaded directly... it's not a pc with no internet explorer magically having one downloaded in the background and installed and popping onto our desktops

Reply Score: 6

Ford Prefect Member since:
2006-01-16

Why do I have to "customize" settings of a product I don't plan to use just to *not* use it?

This is a usability problem. Anybody who was forced to install IE8 (e.g. caused by software dependency or general Windows update) will just think "No I don't want to customize, I use Firefox" without reading through.

Everybody knows that users don't read [1]. It is perfectly acceptable for them to skip the custom settings based on the (wrong) assumption that they will only affect IE itself.


I won't cry on MS for this, but OSNews normally is very fond of usability and stuff, so I hope you give it a thought.

[1] http://www.joelonsoftware.com/uibook/chapters/fog0000000062.html

Reply Score: 4

Dirty
by bolomkxxviii on Mon 4th May 2009 17:31 UTC
bolomkxxviii
Member since:
2006-05-19

So I guess if you are a newbie and scared stiff at the thought of using the custom install you have to use IE8 as your default browser.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Dirty
by PlatformAgnostic on Mon 4th May 2009 17:37 UTC in reply to "Dirty"
PlatformAgnostic Member since:
2006-01-02

Yes... and then you click on your normal firefox browser which your tech-savvy nephew installed on your desktop, set it as default when it asks and you're back on your merry non-IE way.

Reply Score: 8

RE: Dirty
by Chris Nillissen on Mon 4th May 2009 23:02 UTC in reply to "Dirty"
Chris Nillissen Member since:
2009-05-04

The options are Express or Custom, not Basic and Advanced. Why would users be scared?

If you want Internet Explorer to set its self up for you they you choose the Express which you would expect would take care everything. Besides how many people installing IE don't actually want it as a default, I doubt many.

Reply Score: 2

Express vs. Custom
by TaterSalad on Mon 4th May 2009 18:08 UTC
TaterSalad
Member since:
2005-07-06

When given the choice of if I want to do an express vs. custom install I always do the custom install on any software. Yahoo is notoriously bad for this, in that it will make everything about your browser become a Yahoo browser by installing the toolbar, setting the home page to yahoo, setting the default email to yahoo. But back to browsers, Firefox does something similar on install, they have a small box checked to make it the default. Besides, almost all browsers now check to see if they are the default.

Reply Score: 3

What should happen
by SlackerJack on Mon 4th May 2009 18:10 UTC
SlackerJack
Member since:
2005-11-12

Is that IE should just install and when 'you' start it up then IE should ask to be set as default broswer.

What do you expect? It must be a unwritten policy of Microsoft and Apple to do such things. These business got where they are by bulldozing their software onto people and you'll have to put up with it on these proprietary OS's.

Reply Score: 0

RE: What should happen
by BluenoseJake on Mon 4th May 2009 20:12 UTC in reply to "What should happen"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

IE setup is asking what you want to do, and being very explicit in what it is going to do when choosing an "Express" install. I don't know what else you would expect, but I think the installer behaves very well.

Reply Score: 3

idiots
by poundsmack on Mon 4th May 2009 18:13 UTC
poundsmack
Member since:
2005-07-13

...OMG, MS's browsers "express" option (you know, the option for people who don't know or care about how it's installed or it's usage anyways) is making it the defautl!!!1?...
...
...So what? This is what is needed for these kinds of people and there is nothing wrong with it.

Now if you want to talk about things that are messed up...anyone remembered when Safari was bundled with the windows version of iTunes? ya, that was wrong.

also, how many main stream broswers can you list that DON'T make themselves the defautlt in the "Next next next" install version?

Give Microsoft a break for heaven sake. Making it the default means that people who have 7 (or even *cringe* 6) as the default go to a way more secure broswer, AND THATS A GOOD THING!

any other broswer on the computer has "check to see if it's the default browser" turned on by default anyways. So for the 8 users who used the Express option, but wanted it not to be the default broswer, all they have to do is relaunch their other broswers they like more.

If you want to find a target to rip into for being morons go target Apple (ya I said it). here, i wille even get you started. http://www.macrumors.com/2009/05/04/nins-trent-reznor-speaks-out-on...

Microsoft is being open ( http://blogs.msdn.com/e7/ ) and up front with virtually everytrhing going on these days (i know its a shock, but its true). Nearly ever division at MS has a blog and are keeping people posted about what they are doing. This is not the Microsoft of yesteryear (though they still have a little ways to go), SO STOP TREATING EVER LITTLE THING THEY DO LIKE ITS THE END OF THE WORLD WHEN OTHER COMPIES ARE DOING WORSE!

I mean, if MS had to allow other browsers to be part of their OS, or not have IE installed by befault at all; then the least they could do is be allowed to make "Their" broswers the default on "their" OS....

/end rant

Reply Score: 6

RE: idiots
by kurgan2001 on Mon 4th May 2009 18:25 UTC in reply to "idiots"
kurgan2001 Member since:
2008-12-31

Seems to me that people just don't want to read and let everything happen for them (The Jetson system)

Reply Score: 1

Default Search
by drstorm on Mon 4th May 2009 18:27 UTC
drstorm
Member since:
2009-04-24

It caught my eye that the default search in the Express settings is Google. Isn't that a bit strange? Sure, I welcome it, but I'm surprised.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Default Search
by poundsmack on Mon 4th May 2009 18:31 UTC in reply to "Default Search"
poundsmack Member since:
2005-07-13

...?

i think its google if your previous install was google or you had google products as express install coppies over your settings. I (one who is not one of Google's biggest fans) have no google software on my computers and none of my IE8 installs have google as the default search.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Default Search
by drstorm on Tue 5th May 2009 03:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Default Search"
drstorm Member since:
2009-04-24

...?

i think its google if your previous install was google or you had google products as express install coppies over your settings. I (one who is not one of Google's biggest fans) have no google software on my computers and none of my IE8 installs have google as the default search.

I suspected that might be the case. I just saw the posted screenshot, not the actial IE8. (I use Firefox.) Thanks for the clarification. ;)

Reply Score: 1

IE8 UI
by invent00r on Mon 4th May 2009 18:37 UTC
invent00r
Member since:
2009-04-27

IE8 with the most horrible browser UI?

Isn't Safari latest testing browser with that weird implementation of tabs even worse?

I mean, the IE difference from 7 to 8 in terms of UI is not that big. But the browser obviously lacks all needed browsing features - can't ever compare it to Opera for example, but from the end-user it's quite simple to use - no advanced features usually means less confusion and thus more easy to understand. Now imagine the switch Safari users will have to make to handle the new UI.

Reply Score: 1

RE: IE8 UI
by Thom_Holwerda on Mon 4th May 2009 18:53 UTC in reply to "IE8 UI"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

IE8 with the most horrible browser UI?

Isn't Safari latest testing browser with that weird implementation of tabs even worse?


Heck no. IE7/8 is MUCH worse in my book. It's just all so... Disorganised, chaotic, and far, far too busy, filled to the brim with useless buttons. And yet, you can't even close a tab without first switching to it!

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: IE8 UI
by panickedthumb on Mon 4th May 2009 20:13 UTC in reply to "RE: IE8 UI"
panickedthumb Member since:
2007-01-04

You can close tabs without selecting them. Middle click! That doesn't make the browser any better, mind you, I still don't like it or anything, just thought you might want to know that you can do that.

Reply Score: 2

It's MS Bashin' Time
by blinkdt on Mon 4th May 2009 18:37 UTC
blinkdt
Member since:
2009-05-04

Gotta agree with you, poundsmack. It's almost impossible to find an article related to anything MS that doesn't slam the giant in some way, shape, or form regardless of the issue at hand. Even this article . . . just couldn't let it go without slamming the browser with the entirely subjective "horrible interface" backhanded slap on the way out the door.

I like IE8, I use IE8, I recommend IE8. Nothing "horrible" about it, nothing at all.

Reply Score: 1

Meh
by Beta on Mon 4th May 2009 19:32 UTC
Beta
Member since:
2005-07-06

but to claim that Microsoft is using its monopoly position to manipulate the browser market (as Opera is stating) in this case seems a bit over the top.

Opera, Mozilla, Apple, and Google all compete to get market share. and yet Microsoft only has to make something good enough to not have market share leave IE, and with that, they’ve stopped competition without breaking a sweat.
Do any other browser makers have the chance to get into Windows Update as a ‘critical update’? No? That’s one of Opera’s arguments.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Meh
by poundsmack on Mon 4th May 2009 20:02 UTC in reply to "Meh"
poundsmack Member since:
2005-07-13

"Opera, Mozilla, Apple, and Google all compete to get market share. and yet Microsoft only has to make something good enough to not have market share leave IE, and with that, they’ve stopped competition without breaking a sweat."

your absolutly right! whats why IE is gaining market share every year and firefox's numbers are constantly shrinking.... oh wait...

It's all about advertising. Chrome is getting tons of downloads because every google site has a Chrome plug on it somewhere, even if the facts are false (example) "your youtube video's will look better in Chrome, download now" (not an exact quote as that slogan was removed after it's obvious falicy).

Firefox was also downloaded like crazy because of its web advertising, hell even yahoo recommended FireFox as their default browser to best view teh new yahoo mail (this i believe has since been replaced with IE8 adds. but it was firefox for 2 years).

Now it's Opera's turn (I am going ot be cruel, but keep in mind I am a loyal Opera user and this is being posted from Opera). ADVERTISE YOU MORONS! When Chrome came out it took all your best features and ran with it. your responce was "imitation is the highest form of flattery." I agree with you, but your market share (in the desktop world) isn't growing (the mobile world is kicking ass). Why is it not growing you ask? When was the last time you saw a "download Opera" banner on a website? Opera has $$$ a decent amount actually due to its mobile endevors. Spend it to get the word out, you have an amazing browser. "If you build it they will come" does not apply. I would gladly take the place of your director of marketing in the desktop sector given the chance to let people see what a great and cutting edge product you have (a lot of stuff shows up first in Opera, then gets adopted by other browsers).

In conclusion, MS isn't bullying anyone in the browser world. here is an example of bullying:

:User A: "yay I just completed my instalation of Firefox!
:Windows: (pop up) "we noticed you have chosen not to use IE as your default browser, why?
:User A: "I just wanted to try something new"
:the pop up: "I see, well go ahead and try something new. In fact, I will try something new too. Until you switch back to IE I will use this cool Blue Screen every time your in the middle of something important. Let me know how that works out for you."
:User A: (cut to a scene of User A curled up in a corner rocking in fear with only the dim light frmo his CRT)

There that is bullying. I haven't seen that since the netscape days, and it was netscape doing the bullying.

Edited 2009-05-04 20:05 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Ability to remove browser
by cyclops on Mon 4th May 2009 22:38 UTC
cyclops
Member since:
2006-03-12

The inability to remove the browser is a larger issue.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Ability to remove browser
by Thom_Holwerda on Mon 4th May 2009 22:42 UTC in reply to "Ability to remove browser"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

The inability to remove the browser is a larger issue.


Definitely agreed. That's a major point for me as well.

Reply Score: 1

Jon Dough
Member since:
2005-11-30

I downloaded & installed the recent Vista updates, which included Microsoft Internet Explorer 8. I was never even presented with a dialog box to choose settings, etc., and my Firefox 3.0.10 browser keeps opening as my default browser just like always. I will say that I only use IE when I absolutely have to, which is mostly when dealing directly with Microsoft.

Reply Score: 2

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

I downloaded & installed the recent Vista updates, which included Microsoft Internet Explorer 8. I was never even presented with a dialog box to choose settings, etc., and my Firefox 3.0.10 browser keeps opening as my default browser just like always. I will say that I only use IE when I absolutely have to, which is mostly when dealing directly with Microsoft.


That would be acceptable given the circumstances.

If someone has Windows, then some Windows software will use the installed IE browser functionality regardless of what one has selected for the default browser.

As poor as IE8 standards compliance is, at something like only 21% score on acid 3 tests for current web standards, it is nevertheless still vastly better than IE6 or IE7.

Therefore, I would encourage people on Windows to install and use a more compliant and performant browser, such as Chrome, Safari, Opera or Firefox, and set that to be the default, but nevertheless to update to IE8 as well, as that would also without doubt be an improvement over keeping IE6 or IE7 installed on their system.

If, during the update process, IE8 sets itself as the default browser, then simply start the non-IE browser of choice and re-set that to be the default.

Edited 2009-05-04 23:24 UTC

Reply Score: 2

My 2 Cents
by Chris Nillissen on Mon 4th May 2009 23:15 UTC
Chris Nillissen
Member since:
2009-05-04

This argument seems a little redundant.

Here people are saying that users just pressing Next/Express with out reading wont notice that they have just set the browser as default. So what can Microsoft do? Put a seperate panel or message box in, to specifically state this on its own, and just have the users not read this as well?!!!

This story is better served as a wake up call for the people not paying attention. I think its our responsibility to spread awareness of such travesties ;) Not blame Microsoft or any other company for peoples laziness.

I think Microsoft have done a lot move away from the normal forced install. I like the fact that the Express option is not selected by default, meaning the user has to stop and think. Also that a clear explanation of what express does is list underneath it, not a button that says "What does express do?". It's plan and clear in front of the user.

Reply Score: 0

I can't believe this is a story
by cefarix on Tue 5th May 2009 01:29 UTC
cefarix
Member since:
2006-03-18

I read the choices, and I selected custom. Then I chose whatever options I wanted. I can't even believe that this is a story...

Reply Score: 2

vohaul Member since:
2009-05-04

Agreed. The only thing in the whole article I can agree with is the reference to it being a storm in a teacup. I installed IE8 and while it's not going to be my main browser anytime soon (I'm an Opera 10 alpha user) I *am* glad that it is both a UI and standards upgrade for IE. It's not good, but it IS slightly less horrible.

Reply Score: 1

Horrible User Interface?
by grfgguvf on Tue 5th May 2009 14:52 UTC
grfgguvf
Member since:
2006-09-25

I have never been a fan of Internet Explorer and has been using Opera mostly since Opera 4.0; but IE has caught up and I think today IE 8 has the best browser UI by default between the major browsers (those in which most sites work).

Reply Score: 1

Invincible Cow
Member since:
2006-06-24

This is really a beginner error, and it's worse than setting the browser as default in my opinion. Microsoft ships more and more software which does not adhere to their own GUI guidelines.

Reply Score: 1