marahmarie: my initials (MM) (tech-no-mite!)

I'm really up to my eyeballs with all the crap spreading around about how XP can't be updated past its End of Service Date (April 8th, for those of you who slept through it). So I'll say it again:


End of Service does not mean updates will never get pushed through for Windows XP and Internet Explorer ever again. Internet Explorer is still being fully updated by Microsoft (if you use XP just make sure you have Windows Update turned on to get all the updates you need; you might also benefit from reading this little post I wrote on the topic).

For XP users, End of Service means you'll lose just one thing: any updates for XP besides the last updates and patches that were pushed out on April 8th (Patch Tuesday for all MS operating systems).

There are no future updates for SP3. End of the line has been reached. You can stop reading this. It's done.

What you won't lose despite XP's End of Service: Service Pack 1-3 Updates, believe it or not; all past, present and future Internet Explorer updates, believe it or not.

So say you've just put a fresh copy of XP Service Pack 2 on your computer (I don't know why you would do this, but I've done it recently, so whatever), then you turn on Windows Update. Of course you'll sit back and expect exactly nothing to happen because the Intertubes have warned you ever-so-extensively that nothing will happen, but that, folks, is a pack of lies. By using Windows Update your copy of XP SP2 will smoothly and seamlessly update to SP3, same as always.

Or say you're using Internet Explorer 6 on that same SP2 install of XP in the above example. You open it up for the first time, despairing that it's IE6 and old. Despair not! For Windows Update will re-program IE to give you a link to the IE8 download page. Once you've downloaded and installed IE8, all updates Microsoft has for IE8 will be applied as needed.

"OK hate M$, right, so why are you writing this?"

I'm writing this because I cannot stand misinformation, nor can I stand someone posing as an expert on a topic in which he or she hasn't done research when they obviously lack any hands-on experience, nor can I stand FUD - and Ashley clearly writes FUD - so I think what I'm after is her job. (At least I'm making my desires known here.) And I'm confident Nick will give me her job if he thinks I'm worth a second look (which I'm not - I won't photograph as well as Ashley, but unlike Ashley, at least I know what the hell I'm talking about before I post it online).

The FUD I'm on about is an article Ashley wrote called New Vulnerability Found in Every Single Version of Internet Explorer. The only thing accurate about it is her pretty stock rewording of the nature of the IE vulnerability. She ends it with this five-alarm warning - something that sounds like it's straight from Gizmodo's more Apple-shaped sponsors:

And since Windows XP users won't be getting the patch for this fairly threatening bug, anyone still running the now-unsupported software is going to have to cough up some big bucks to stay safe.

Which is a complete lie, so let me emphasize: if you run XP you will still get all applicable IE patches, like the one she's talking about, which I downloaded and installed tonight. The patch for the current vulnerability is in Windows Update, the patch is being passed along to all XP users, and you will get the patch if you keep Windows Update turned on - it's as simple as that.

Ashley either means to spread FUD or didn't do her research - which is unbelievable considering what she needs to know is in the very article Microsoft posted about the bug, for Christ's sake, which is really dropping the ball if you ask me...are you telling me she doesn't even attempt to learn what's what before she posts? It took me literally two seconds to find the truth on the first Google search I did.

Even more unbelievable is that out of 500+ comments (yes, I read them all!) I was the only person to bring Ashley's misinformation to light four days later. It's not like I didn't give Gawker Media's writers, editors and commentators ample time to set things right before I jumped in to do so myself (which, by the way, is the first time I've commented on any Gawker Media site in over four years). Hire me, Nick, please. Hire me!

marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)

Terribly close. But no cigar. It completely broke the header on my journal (technically, it just "mis-positioned" it, but hey, who's being technical? - certainly not Microsoft's IE devs):

Internet Explorer 9 (Beta) broke my header

The header breaks pretty much the same way in IE8. It barely sort of works in IE7 and IE8 Compatibility Mode, so why it breaks in IE8 Standards and IE9 Standards and Compatibility Mode is beyond me. And I don't care if it works in IE6 or not.

IE9 (Beta) also can't display the "Back to Top" link in the position I set it at, but I almost don't blame it - the HTML is so screwed up it won't take an absolute position, period. In a reversal from just a few years ago, I'm better at coding CSS than I am at de-coding HTML, so I can't figure out why. It's off in every browser I test it in, and the HTML doesn't validate, either.

Other than that, though, I have to give Internet Explorer 9 (Beta) high marks for decent font-smoothing and for getting every other aspect of my layout right, from what I can see at first glance.

Now I just have to figure out how to hack the header to actually work in it. Or maybe not. I hate IE hacks so much.

marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)

The biggest secret on the Web - if your website is forced to display in Compatibility Mode by IE8 (it attempts to mimic IE 7's rendering and fails some of the time) - is that there are ways to force IE8 to render a website in Standards Mode (see here) and to view a website in Standards Mode without using a meta tag to switch IE's rendering engine. This tutorial will focus on the latter viewing option.

"Why would I want to view my website in IE8 Standards Mode?"

Before you get started it might help to understand why you'd want to do this.

  • Even if your website displays just fine in Compatibility Mode, you might want to know how it would look if it was using IE's Standards Compliant rendering.
  • Your website might look like a huge teeming pile of crap in Compatibility View; if so, switching modes for yourself - not for the public - will let you see if it's the rendering at fault or your code. If it's your code, keep in mind that fixing it might be problematic, since Compatibility View does not render CSS exactly the same way as IE 7 the browser does.
  • You might run a blog, journal, or website from a web host (such as that doesn't allow you to add your own meta tags, so you're unable to use a meta tag to force the site to render in Standards Compliant Mode - but you still want to know how it would look if you could.

Since I use LiveJournal, it's worth noting that on LJ you can use the meta tag to force Standards Compliant mode on any s2 layout. To do so, you'll need a paid account, a custom theme layer, and the meta tag inserted between the triple quotation marks of this print_custom_head() code.

Just 4 Little Steps

  1. To view your website in IE8 Standards Compliant Mode, open your copy of IE8 and either press F12 or else click the Tools button in IE's Menu Bar, then on the drop-down menu that appears scroll down to Developer Tools and select it. The Developer Tools window will open.
  2. On the toolbar along the top of the Developer Tools window there's a button on the far right that should say Document Mode IE7 Standards if your site is displaying in forced Compatibility View. If your site is older and/or oddly designed the button might say Quirks Mode instead. Click the button, then on the drop-down menu that appears scroll down to Internet Explorer 8 Standards and select it.
  3. The Developer Tools window is split into two panes so look at the top left-hand side of the left-hand pane: it should say "Loading..." for a few seconds. You can tell it's done switching rendering engines when you look at the left-hand pane and see the DOC type displayed and the rest of the document is loaded in a compressed tree view beneath it.
  4. Of course, that's not all. The Developer Tools window takes up the entire screen and trying to re-size it will usually send it straight to your desktop's Taskbar, so just leave it there - at least it's out of your way until you need it again. Now you can view as many separate domains and sub-domains as you like in IE8 Standards Mode.

If you have any improvements on this tutorial or if you just want to shower me with praise and LJ v-gifts for writing it, please let me know.

marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)

I couldn’t believe this when I saw it, but it’s true. Internet Explorer 8 is fully removable in Win XP Version 2002 SP3. I believe this fully squashes the case that the EU has against Microsoft?

Oooooh LOOK an Uninstall entry for IE 8. *faints*

As you can see in the above screenshot there is a new entry for Internet Explorer 8, if you uncheck it, IE8 will be removed from the operating system. Want proof? Try it for yourself:

Here are some instructions courtesy of me

  1. Enter the Control Panel and look at “Add & Remove Programs”
  2. Click “Windows Internet Explorer 8 Release Candidate 1”
  3. Click Remove
  4. Wait while it goes to the Big Browser Graveyard in the Sky - where it belongs
  5. Click OK. You will see a prompt notifying you of a reboot.
  6. The machine will reboot once, take a wrecking ball to IE 8, and reboot again.
It's...ALIVE! The browser with nine lives.

As you can see here and above, currently it just deletes IE 8 and rolls XP back to the last version of IE on your OS, which I hope will be revised in future builds, but a few references to IE are removed (although I have no idea which ones), so my bet is that deleting these files would ruin everything - and knowing IE 8 like I do, there's no chance I'm wrong.

So there you have it, the lamest post I've ever made. The proof that we've lowered our expectations as Windows customers is when we sit around and celebrate the fact that IE 8 can be REMOVED, since you're stuck with every other build of IE 8 forever, especially if you installed Service Pack 3 on XP after you installed IE 8 (I did the opposite). Is this a quick solution to the EU’s argument against them? I hope not.

Original version written by Chris123NT.

marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)

Unbelievable. Gone. Just gone. Every single one of them. I have one seriously botched uninstall of IE 8 on my hands - but I didn't botch it - Microsoft did, as usual, with their DLL hell of a so-called browser, so that IE 7 now has all of IE 8's features, including Compatibility View, but the Uninstaller for it is gone. And what's left of the browser (just a weird mixture of IE 7 and IE 8 that fails to display most web pages at all) is not displaying my web pages properly - surprise, surprise? So I was going to reinstall the fucking thing and try to remove it again to see if that fixed the problem. Even Almighty Google's searches come up empty - and IE 8, as anyone who has ever spent more than five minutes on my blog knows, has given me nothing but hell from the start...maybe there's something to that, after all (not just the mistakes I was accused of making). I checked the news and this was all I could find on it...nothing about pulling the Beta off the market...just talk of anyone is going to mind that. Ridiculopathy gets it right...

marahmarie: my initials (MM) (Default)

I'm trying out three browsers right now: Google Chrome, IE Beta 2, and AOL 10.1 Desktop. Browsers are an obsession of mine and I like trying out new ones, but getting around all three of them at once is a bit trying especially since I don't actually use any browser besides Firefox. And I want these reviews to be more thorough than ones I wrote in the past - I want benchmarking software to time page loads and to count working and private memory sets so I can come up with more accurate figures. So that anyone who's saying, "Oh, she's just another blogger blowing smoke at us and doesn't know what she's talking about" will stop saying that. Too many browsers, not enough time...