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Windows 7 Lets You Uninstall IE8

samzenpus posted more than 5 years ago | from the if-thy-browser-offend-thee-pluck-it-out dept.

Windows 474

CWmike writes "A just-leaked build of Windows 7 lets users remove Internet Explorer, the first time that Microsoft has offered the option since it integrated the browser with Windows in 1997, two bloggers reported today. The move might have been prompted by recent charges by the European Union that Microsoft has stifled browser competition by bundling IE with its operating system, the bloggers speculated. One solution under consideration by the EU would require Microsoft to disable IE if the user decided to install a different browser, such as Mozilla's Firefox or Google's Chrome. Microsoft had no comment when asked to confirm whether Windows 7 will let users dump IE8 or whether the option was in reaction to the EU charges."

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474 comments

At last! (5, Funny)

symbolset (646467) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072477)

A compelling feature to drag people away from XP.

Now only if it included a utility to uninstall Windows...

Re:At last! (3, Funny)

C0vardeAn0nim0 (232451) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072713)

it does. it's called "format c:"

Re:At last! (2, Insightful)

msuarezalvarez (667058) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072787)

Does it let you format the drive the current windows instance is running from?

Re:At last! (1)

Ninnle Labs, LLC (1486095) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072907)

deltree /y c:

Re:At last! (3, Informative)

doshell (757915) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073037)

deltree /y c:

I suspect it would fail when attempting to delete the deltree binary itself, or the directory it belongs to. Haven't tried, though.

(No such problem on Linux, of course; rm -rf / will happily wipe your entire fs, including the rm binary and the /bin directory.)

Re:At last! (1)

blinky (415843) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072871)

There are several, they are called the Fedora/SUSE/UBUNTU install cd. I can supply you a copy for $99.99. Think about it no more McAfeeetc. Best deal in town!

Re:At last! (0, Flamebait)

FlyingBishop (1293238) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072893)

You've been modded funny, but this actually does remove one of the main problems I have with running XP.

It's more a general sense of cruft than anything else though. I like knowing that every piece of software on my machine is there by my choice, not by fiat. The core OS should be just that, a core, and any modules I want, I can load.

That's why I'm probably on Ubuntu as primary for good, but this might make Windows 7 tolerable enough for a gaming rig (though not for serious work.)

Re:At last! (-1, Flamebait)

FishWithAHammer (957772) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073001)

You don't want cruft, but you installed Ubuntu? Please.

Re:At last! (1)

FlyingBishop (1293238) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073055)

apt-get remove works excellently.

As do the included drivers.

I tried using a server distro when installing on my mother's old laptop, and it didn't have support for the ethernet pcmcia card. Result? I reinstalled using an Ubuntu desktop cd, which worked flawlessly. apt-get install xdm && apt-get remove gdm && apt-get install fluxbox && apt-get remove metacity and everything was looking much nicer. There's something to be said for everything but the kitchen sink when you're first installing.

Also, the point is, Ubuntu is modular. I can apt-get remove to the point that it's a lean Debian system if I want, but I prefer to have everything working, and then start removing things until things break, rather than having nothing working, and then trying to figure out how to install things until what I need works.

Re:At last! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27073101)

Agreed, Ubuntu is the Vista of Linux Distros

You can already do this ... (1, Insightful)

Helmholtz (2715) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072483)

... for some definitions of "remove". I seriously doubt that Microsoft has decoupled the "internet explorer" feature set from the operating system, and would be surprised if "removal" meant any more than it already does ... hiding an icon.

Re:You can already do this ... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27072583)

Read the article. They state that iexplore.exe is gone.

Sure, some libraries will stick around. They have to, otherwise a lot of applications will break. You can't "decouple" a dependency from applications without breaking them. But IE was never integrated into the kernel; it was integrated into the shell. I know that doesn't jive with your particular interpretation of the definition of an "operating system", but that is the reality of the situation.

Re:You can already do this ... (5, Informative)

broken_chaos (1188549) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072695)

The kernel isn't the operating system. That's the basis of the GNU/Linux vs. Linux debate.

That said, this seems to be functionally comparable to deleting the Safari.app on a Mac - the application is gone and cannot be launched, but the rendering engine sticks around because it's used elsewhere in the operating system for other tasks.

Re:You can already do this ... (5, Interesting)

Ilgaz (86384) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072733)

That was what people were saying for ages. There is almost no way to remove mshtml (the real ie) from an up and running Windows OS.

It was possible, one Aussie teacher made a state of art .inf file and called it Win98 lite. It was even mentioned in court by judge. In fact, it could impress anyone since the speed of OS actually skyrocketed.

MS was unhappy of course and they built this massive IT conspiracy making sure it will never happen again and they would easily say ''Order us to remove? Well, see what happens when it is removed''. With lazy Windows developers and gecko.dll never stabilizing enough like todays Firefox or Apple Webkit, the plot worked fine.

If one installs Windows of any kind today, he should never pass any IE updates since it is there, working and massively linked even by Microsoft's most die-hard rivals.

Re:You can already do this ... (2, Insightful)

jaavaaguru (261551) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072867)

massively linked even by Microsoft's most die-hard rivals.

Got any examples?

Re:You can already do this ... (1)

Ilgaz (86384) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072913)

I am not watching current Windows scene too closely but I remember AOL applications always linking to MSHTML, even their most popular applications of their time. Today, vendors don't even feel the need of writing ''MS IE required'' as they assume it must be already there.

Perhaps pushing MS to truly remove IE is unrealistic, pushing them to make it like Apple Webkit/Safari in terms of both being open and closed with their (MS) own open source terms is the way to go? I am not saying GPL or even Apache. Well, no court can push them that hard so it won't likely happen.

Re:You can already do this ... (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072679)

That would be sad.
Maybe not, they coupled it to avoid lawsuits and it is a bad and expensive architecture to maintain.

I almost don't want to say it, but it looks like MS might becoming around to an actual micro kernel design.

The sheer cost of there current nightmare to maintain the OS could benefit us all.

Re:You can already do this ... (2, Insightful)

fm6 (162816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072721)

Actually, the IE feature set isn't as pervasive as it used to be. For example Explorer (the file browser, not the web browser) used to treat folders as a kind of web page. If you wanted to customize a folder, you editing its style sheets and added VBS scripts. Lots of nice exploits there, which is why it no longer works.

On the other hand, I sometimes get an IE security warning when I right click on network files served by Samba. It appears that IE plays a role in displaying context menus!

Still, if the user can't use IE to surf the web, IE doesn't exist, at least from the user's point of view. The fact that IE components are still employed by the OS is beside the point. The point being that IE no longer has precedence over other web browsers.

Re:You can already do this ... (1)

ozphx (1061292) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073195)

Yeah thats a Zone warning. The originating zones for files (and also the zones policy can be applied to for managed code) mirror the IE zones. (Internet / Local Machine / Intranet / Trusted Sites / etc).

Why remove it alltogether? (3, Insightful)

linumax (910946) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072751)

Why remove the core libraries? We develop several applications which rely on it, and users will blame us if app doesn't work out of the box. FWIW, I don't care what browser comes with Windows as long as it comes with one.

Re:Why remove it alltogether? (4, Insightful)

Animaether (411575) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072869)

Maybe you shouldn't rely on it, then? Detect whether it's available upon installation. If it is, use it - if not, install and use a different layout engine (gecko, webkit, whatever)

Re:Why remove it alltogether? (1)

NineNine (235196) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072967)

IE's Active X/COM integration is invaluable. That's why so many Windows apps use it. If I were to somehow remove IE from the Windows XP box I'm typing on right now, I can think of at least 6 apps that I have that will break, off the top of my head.

Re:Why remove it alltogether? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27073183)

You may as well tell a Linux dev to not rely upon libc. We're not talking just the rendering engine, but all the many high-usage libraries that come with it.

Re:Why remove it alltogether? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27073187)

more like if it isnt, then install it.

No point refactoring your code and maintaining two separate branches of code just because someone is being prissy about a library.

Re:Why remove it alltogether? (1)

ozphx (1061292) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073205)

Whats the COM+ UUID for gecko? Does it expose the same interfaces?

Can I deploy it myself, or will I have to GPL my app?

Riiiiight! (4, Insightful)

linumax (910946) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073221)

Maybe I shouldn't rely on any sort of Library? Bundle my own browser, GUI toolkit, Shell? audio/video codecs? Hell, how about my own HAL?

Do you know a how long it takes to get permission to use or even link users to download a piece of software? So many potential liability issues that a multibillion dollar product has to deal with?

Idealist heaven for you as it might be, it's pure hell for the developers.

Re:Why remove it alltogether? (1, Interesting)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073007)

Why remove the core libraries? We develop several applications which rely on it, and users will blame us if app doesn't work out of the box.

That's why. Firefox, Safari, Chrome, etc. don't have the option of making sure they're installed on every Windows system and their APIs are always available to companies doing development (like you). As a result you use IE instead of the best browser/engine/API available. That undermines the market for Web browsers.

That's not to say the EU will make MS remove them. They could make MS include all browsers and rendering engines, or open up the APIs and remove the libraries, but allow OEMs to drop in a replacement set of libraries of their choice (with some reengineering of Windows required of MS to make it happen). Or they could let MS keep the libraries but require them to conform to Web standards according to preset rules and set someone to make sure MS does that. Or they could do something else entirely.

Re:You can already do this ... (4, Informative)

gcnaddict (841664) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073127)

Well, the parent articles covered this, which leads me to my point:
Why couldn't this slashdot post point to the two people who actually came up with this? CWMike provided no original insight whatsoever.

Original sites referenced by CW's article:
http://www.aeroxp.org/2009/03/ie8-functionally-removable/ [aeroxp.org]
http://chris123nt.com/2009/03/03/win7-build-7048-ie8-is-removable/ [chris123nt.com]

So there goes the whole... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27072485)

...you can't separate Internet Explorer and Windows defense.

Too late to go after them for perjury on it?

Confucius say (5, Funny)

Profane MuthaFucka (574406) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072489)

Man who remove Internet Explorer but not Windows is a little like Lance Armstrong: still one Ballmer remaining.

Re:Confucius say (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27072663)

Posting anonymously for reasons that are soon to be obvious.

No astroturf here, but on my 8 months removed from bleeding edge computer, (no I7 chip), windows 7 is leaps and bounds ahead of vista. Its *almost* on par with windows XP. Perhaps with a bit of learning, I could hollow out a corner in my cold dead heart for windows 7.

Anywho, its not AS bad as people are saying, in fact, it carries on XP's (well, much more linux's than XP's) tradition of only bugging you for admin rights when you need admin rights.

I'm not going to go as far and say that it will replace my XP install for gaming, but it is a good lowest common demoninator operating system that suzie q from accounting won't be miffed at.

Who knows, if w7 comes with firefox by default, the OS might be on track to reducing the amount of drive by infections. (I've received zero pings from worm infections on my antivirus from behind my router, and zero pings from when i was behind a dsl router that had built in NAT by default.)

Now about those pesky email spread viruses...

Re:Confucius say (4, Insightful)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072993)

Posting anonymously for reasons that are soon to be obvious.

Huh? I'm sorry, this isn't obvious at all. Is it because you made a pro-windows post and think you're going to get modded down? From what I've seen in my time here, well-thought-out posts that defend any OS seldom get modded down. Occasionally you'll get one or two downmods from zealots, but those will generally be corrected by later mods.

(I won't get into the silliness of posting anonymously to protect a fictitious karma number in the first place...

what about accessing windowsupdate via browser? (0)

whoever57 (658626) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072507)

If IE8 is removed, will there we a way for the user to get and select/deselect updates? [Where "updates" are frequently new programs/libraries.etc. that I might not want to install]

Re:what about accessing windowsupdate via browser? (5, Informative)

saleenS281 (859657) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072555)

...you don't use the browser for updates anymore. You haven't since XP.

Re:what about accessing windowsupdate via browser? (1)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072615)

    But, Windows Update, along with all those warm fuzzy programs written in Microsoft languages, use Microsoft DLL's to do things. They'll leave behind all the DLL's, or everything will break, so all that's missing may (may) be only the iexplore.exe

    Yippie skippie.

Re:what about accessing windowsupdate via browser? (3, Informative)

saleenS281 (859657) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072701)

Wrong. Server Core has no IE, and it isn't just "iexplorer.exe" that's not there.

At least be informed in your trolling.

Re:what about accessing windowsupdate via browser? (1)

drfreak (303147) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072711)

For a while now, the browser dlls which are needed for rendering are decoupled from the browser itself. For instance, Windows Help and Visual Studio use an embedded browser control which is in essence really IE.

I really doubt that they will give you the option of changing the HTML renderer for Help and other things which use the embedded control. I think the real news here is that other options may exist for not just a default web browser, but to remove the option of IE altogether. It would be more of an IT support boon than a power user boon, because users can't use IE as a crutch if you wanted to make them use only Mozilla or Chrome, etc...

Re:what about accessing windowsupdate via browser? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27072873)

...you don't use the browser for updates anymore. You haven't since XP.

Or in many peoples cases: since they switched to Ubuntu.

Disable IE? (3, Insightful)

saleenS281 (859657) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072549)

Seriously? That's absolute crap. Me installing firefox does NOT mean I want IE disabled. The EU needs to get its head out of its a**. If I want IE disabled, I'll disable it.

Re:Disable IE? (5, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072685)

Me installing firefox does NOT mean I want IE disabled.

Ah, you may like it to be there. Not everyone does. And that's the crux of the matter... Having the freedom to choose. Which of course nobody cares about when they choose to go with the majority. Fortunately, the EU understands that the rights of minorities are more important.

Re:Disable IE? (0, Flamebait)

saleenS281 (859657) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072737)

WHERE did I say I disagree with being able to uninstall IE? I believe you have a reading comprehension problem. I said installing firefox should not automatically disable IE. If I don't want IE, I'll uninstall or disable it myself, thank you very much. The installation of firefox does NOT mean I want IE disabled. I install firefox on all of my machines; I still want and use IE on them on a regular basis. I will be outraged if the default behavior is "disable IE on installation of any other browser".

I don't need a bunch technologically retarded bureaucrats deciding my computers default behavior.

Re:Disable IE? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27073093)

I will be outraged if the default behavior is "disable IE on installation of any other browser".

Nowhere in the article is such an automatic disabling of IE mentioned. You have too much imagination, and apparently get carried over by it too easily.

Re:Disable IE? (3, Insightful)

adamchou (993073) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072741)

I don't see what the big deal is. So what if IE is there? You're not using it, it doesn't use up your system resources. You already have some other browser installed. Hell, you can even delete the internet explorer icon. What is so problematic about having the IE binaries there?

Re:Disable IE? (1)

Samah (729132) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072725)

Indeed. If it were possible to completely remove IE, including the rendering engine, it's incredible just how much it would break. Steam [steampowered.com] and IETab [mozilla.org] come to mind immediately.

Re:Disable IE? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27072855)

Since steam works quite well using gecko on wine they don't really have an excuse..

Re:Disable IE? (1)

TheSpoom (715771) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072895)

Microsoft is hoping this happens so they can warn you upon running Firefox's installer that "ZOMG IE won't work anymore, beware!"

Re:Disable IE? (1)

pejyel (1275304) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073025)

Seriously? That's absolute crap. Me installing firefox does NOT mean I want IE disabled. The EU needs to get its head out of its a**. If I want IE disabled, I'll disable it.

Where did you read that installing Firefox would automatically disable IE? Moreover, how would you disable IE if there is no way to do it?

The new feature just provides you a way to do it, without forcing you in any way to do anything. Maybe you should get your head out of your ass before posting such stupid comments (and how you got modded +5 is just beyond me).

Re:Disable IE? (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073059)

Seriously? That's absolute crap. Me installing firefox does NOT mean I want IE disabled.

What does what you want have to do with anything? I want a new car for $50, but that doesn't mean the cops are going to let me keep one if I buy a stolen one. MS's crime affects end users only indirectly.

The EU needs to get its head out of its a**.

Why? Because you assume MS's engineering choices have something to do with the punishment the EU will render for a crime MS hasn't even been convicted of yet and which the EU has not made any comments about what sort of punishment they intend?

Re:Disable IE? (1)

linebackn (131821) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073085)

Seriously? That's absolute crap. Me installing firefox does NOT mean I want IE disabled. The EU needs to get its head out of its a**. If I want IE disabled, I'll disable it.

WTF? Where did it say it was going to disable IE if you installed Firefox?

Some people like myself want - no, demand - the option to remove IE. (Even if no other browser is present!). The EU is simply doing what it can against Microsoft, who until now have seemed completely unwilling to bend.

Uninstall? Yeah, right... (1, Funny)

epp_b (944299) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072603)

Have you ever actually managed to truly "uninstall" something on Windows?

Don't say yes, you'll be lying.

Re:Uninstall? Yeah, right... (1)

kentrel (526003) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072783)

How do you uninstall a program and all the dependencies it installs in Linux?

Not being an ass - i'm just genuinely curious. I've never found a way easier than windows.

Re:Uninstall? Yeah, right... (2, Informative)

Jamamala (983884) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072841)

How do you uninstall a program and all the dependencies it installs in Linux?

Not being an ass - i'm just genuinely curious. I've never found a way easier than windows.

apt-get purge program
apt-get autoremove

That should work for apt-based distros.

Re:Uninstall? Yeah, right... (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072963)

that's no better than windows, and atleast in windows people don't have to remember commandline options. i think what he is getting at is your at the mercy of packagers uninstall options.

Re:Uninstall? Yeah, right... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27073087)

Synaptic, Gnome's Add/Remove, Adept, etc are are all gui clients for Apt. Nobody needs to remember commandline options.

Re:Uninstall? Yeah, right... (1)

Jorophose (1062218) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073123)

Or you use Synaptic, right click the package, and click the option saying remove the program entirely including configuration files.

Re:Uninstall? Yeah, right... (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072851)

In all fairness, I'm not a Mac fan, but Mac wins here. You uninstall an app by deleting the folder. End of story. It's gone.

Re:Uninstall? Yeah, right... (2, Informative)

Reality Master 201 (578873) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072979)

Not quite; a number of apps put stuff outside of the .app wrapper directory. Anything that loads a kernel extension (vmware, for example), as well as other application that put frameworks in /Library and /System/Library. And then there's prefs and cache files left over in your own Library directory.

Still, it's significantly better than it is on windows.

Re:Uninstall? Yeah, right... (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073033)

In all fairness, I'm not a Mac fan, but Mac wins here. You uninstall an app by deleting the folder. End of story. It's gone.

Not exactly. You'll still have references in /LIBRARY/APPLICATION SUPPORT and in /USERS/username/LIBRARY, so you still have to hunt around and delete stuff if you want it all gone.

Re:Uninstall? Yeah, right... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27072957)

it obviously depends on the distribution, but for us gentoo users:

emerge --unmerge program
emerge -pv --depclean

Re:Uninstall? Yeah, right... (1)

El_Oscuro (1022477) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072843)

I have.... Many times:

  • C:\> rd /s "c:\program files\some application"
  • C:\> reg delete "hklm\software\some application"
  • Run crap cleaner, clean up anything else

Re:Uninstall? Yeah, right... (2, Informative)

Animaether (411575) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072943)

and the application data folder?
what about the localstore?
did it place any files in %windir% or %sysdir%?
did it make any file extension associations?
did it add any environment variables?
etc.

crap cleaner won't clean -all- of that up.

That said, the original poster's comment was bunk; an uninstallation isonly as good as the uninstall routine. If it doesn't delete -all- files / remove -all- registry entries, etc. set upon install, then that's an issue with the uninstaller, not with the host OS.

I'm sure that some of the -package managers- do a great job at tracking this (though they're likely to miss run-time file/store changes just as well), but that says far more about the package manager than it does about the host OS.

Your best bet is going to be to take a snapshot of your system, install, run for a while, do a diff, remove known variables from other use (from earlier diffs, presumably) - i.e. e-mail database, temporary files, etc. - store that and use that to remove files/registry settings/etc. later on.

Re:Uninstall? Yeah, right... (1)

icannotthinkofaname (1480543) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073009)

My best effort was to uninstall an application from "Add/Remove Programs" in Control Panel, and then go into C:\Program Files and manually delete the application's corresponding directory.

What more is needed to truly uninstall something in Windows?

Hopefully this means (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072643)

they have removed the browser integration into core places.

Whether or not you use IE, that is a good thing.

Re:Hopefully this means (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27072747)

This process ONLY removes iexplore.exe

Various components used for the rendering engine remain in place because there are other functions which rely on them to function (Help files for example are all HTML)

Basically its just as tied to the OS as ever, they just let you remove the part that is the "web browser"

darn i just finished my download (1)

matto14 (593826) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072661)

grrrr i just finished my DL of win 7 (7022) to put on my asus 1000he that amazon just dropped off at the door. well 7048 it is.

Windows updates? (1, Interesting)

whtmarker (1060730) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072691)

I wonder if they will spend the money to make windows updates work with 'other than IE' [microsoft.com].

Re:Windows updates? (1)

kyuubi42 (1424889) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072729)

possibly, I just noticed today that technet now has a firefox plugin for WGA, letting you use firefox instead of IE.

Re:Windows updates? (4, Informative)

Curate (783077) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072773)

Uh, they already did that a few years ago, beginning with Vista. Windows Update is completely decoupled from the web browser. It runs as a standalone Control Panel applet.

Re:Windows updates? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27072845)

don't expect the small minded bitches around here to actually know what they're talking about. slapping down misinformed asshats has become like a job around here. of course, it doesn't help that other clueless fags have the mod points to make the ignorant look intelligent in the eyes of the other unknowing gimps that hang out around here. you know, the ones who scream about how great linux is but we know they're running xp.

Re:Windows updates? (1)

doktor-hladnjak (650513) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072805)

In Vista (and presumably Windows 7), I don't think updates are done through the browser like they were in XP. When you navigate to the update site, it'll scan your system then tell you to open "Windows Update" from the control panel.

Re:Windows updates? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27073005)

Windows Update is built into the OS since Vista.

EU (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27072717)

The EU is really starting to bug me.

Give me just an OS (1)

gooman (709147) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072745)

This is a step in the right direction. Windows 7 should come with all of the bells and whistles we've come to expect, but give us the choice of what we want to install.

Without selecting any options, you just get an OS. I would have a lot more respect for the product.

Now eliminate any DRM nasties and I'll be very happy.

I sure hope so (1)

dave562 (969951) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072753)

I will believe it when I see it though. It seems like IE has been so tightly integrated with the system that a number of applications rely on it. For example, a lot of the Office help files look to IE to render their HTML content. Under XP, even having Firefox installed as the default browser causes problems sometimes. I would really like to see IE decoupled from the OS though. It will be interesting to see what the security implications of removing it are. I figure that they will be pretty minimal since the browser itself is fairly well locked down at this point. Most of the exploits seem to be coming through Flash and other plugins.

New Prank (4, Informative)

tehwebguy (860335) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072763)

Looks like the newest prank to play on someone's computer will include uninstalling all of their browsers.

Only removes IEXPLORE.EXE loader stub (1, Interesting)

linebackn (131821) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072791)

Aw, come on, this only removes the IEXPLORE.EXE loader stub.

Still, this is start. And about damn time.

I'd like to see them fully drop all dependencies on IE from the desktop shell next. The help system would be the biggest problem though, but perhaps they can slowly move towards a version of windows that is not entirely dependent on IE again... but perhaps I am just still dreaming.

Happily posted from my Windows 95 machine with SeaMonkey 1.1.14... and NO STILL IE AT ALL!

HyperText but not HTML huh? (1)

DavidRawling (864446) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072961)

So wait, you want indexable, cross-linked help with the ability to jump from one useful piece of information to another, just like HTML? And you want MS to remove the HTML renderer?

So, what do you want everyone writing Windows Help to do? Learn another language so you can remove a file that already (mostly) works? What about the 20 billion old help files?

"Sorry Betty, the help for Office 2007 won't work on Windows 9 because linebackn wanted the HTML libraries to be removed from Windows."

Note that there's really not a lot of benefit for anyone to write a replacement for the MSHTML library set that "drops in" and uses Gecko or WebKit. You have to implement every single function in each of the libraries - anything public at least.

I don't understand what is so complicated (4, Insightful)

spitzak (4019) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072803)

It seems the astroturfers are going crazy trying to confuse the issue. This has nothing to do with end users. The important thing the EU is trying to get is for OEM's to have the ability to replace IE with (or add to IE) Firefox or some other browser.

Let's repeat this carefully:

1. An OEM (like Dell) must be able to load the computer with arbitrary programs, some of which compete with Microsoft's world domination plans, without Microsoft being able to punish them by changing the terms of their OEM contract.

2. This has NOTHING to do with what users do with their machine after they get it home. Astroturfers are trying to say this has something to do with installing alternative browsers, or some kind of installation switch to allow the users to choose, or other bullshit. That is just to make it sound like the EU is forcing the machines to be "hard to use". In fact it is making the machine easier to use because it allows end users to not have to do the "hard" installation step, this difficulty is in fact a major part of Microsoft's lock-in.

3. Yes the IE libraries are not going away. They cannot, as other programs use them and expect them. This is not relevant as the browser that people are using to talk to the outside world is not calling these libraries.

4. It does sound like the truth is that IE is somewhat more "integrated" than just the existence of libraries, and thus Microsoft had to do some work so that everything works if the ie.exe file is missing (such as apparently removing the ability to choose it as the default browser if it is missing). Good for them, they are obeying the rules.

Re:I don't understand what is so complicated (1)

Microlith (54737) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073147)

This is not relevant as the browser that people are using to talk to the outside world is not calling these libraries.

Yes it is. The Iexplore.exe dummy EXE just pops up an explorer window that defaults to browser mode. IE as a standalone app has not existed in years, it's long since been integrated, fully, into the Explorer shell and parted out into the system libraries.

Re:I don't understand what is so complicated (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27073173)

Good for them, they are obeying the rules.

and what do you do when the rules are dumb?

you'll make a good little goosestepper... following every order no matter how asinine it is.

Turning off != uninstalling...or is it? (1)

bogaboga (793279) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072807)

From what I have seen, what Microsoft have implemented is "turning off" Internet Explorer. "Turning off" has never been equal to "uninstalling."

What is to prevent Microsoft from issuing an update possibly via a third party software vendor which update will "turn on" Internet Explorer once again?

I am not convinced...yet.

Re:Turning off != uninstalling...or is it? (1)

Animaether (411575) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072981)

yeah and what's to stop Apple from re-offering to install Safari in their software updates (only using QuickTime) after I uninstall Safari?

*yawn*

The same would apply to Firefox is Firefox was getting peddled somewhere that I knew of.. is Chrome being peddled by Google Earth updates yet?

No IE? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27072863)

What's this?

First EU makes Microsoft make a version of windows without media player... AND NO ONE WANTED IT. Now without a browser? I am sure no one will want this either.

Microsoft should tell the EU to fook off and stop selling their products over there then. If people want windows, they can mail order it then...

Re:No IE? (3, Interesting)

mariushm (1022195) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073043)

If it would have been at least 1$ cheaper and/or actually available in stores, it would have been more successful.

At least in my country Romania, where all stores receive free advertising money, billboards, promotional content and get lower prices if they don't sell computers with Linux pre-installed, every store only advertises Home and Premium versions of operating systems. The N versions are never in stock and if you really want to order them, it takes probably two weeks for the store to receive it from the Microsoft importer in the capital of the country.

Well, anyways unless people buy it for a company computer, people get laptops or computers with FreeDOS preinstalled (as there's law in the country saying all pc's must have OS installed) and then they pirate the OS or use Ubuntu or other flavors of Linux.

It's one thing to impose Microsoft the need of offering that N version, if you don't impose them to advertise it in equal amount with the regular version and to actually manufacture the physical discs.

I would personally buy a Windows 7 version without IE but completely without it, not just having iexplore.exe removed.

I would then laugh when I see Yahoo Messenger no longer works, the help system in Windows no longer works, Visual Studio's help no longer works, all the junk internal websites using proprietary IE stuff at my old work place no longer working and so on and so forth.

Windows 7 for me so far (1, Offtopic)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072911)

I built a new rig and installed Windows 7 and openSUSE 11.1. I don't have XP x64 installed currently, though I may move to it. So far, many of my games just won't work properly. UAC is not magically better now, though you are harassed less.

I was copying files from my old computer. I created a samba share to copy files from. I create a new folder in my Windows 7 machine that I have access to write to. I start copying a couple thousand songs, and it stops partially though saying I have no rights on the folder. I check, and I do. The songs I'm copying aren't read only, and I have rights to read from the samba share. Some files will copy, some won't. Same with my video files and e-books.

I switch over to my old box, and it will copy all the files to my Windows 7 machine just fine, but in Windows 7, I can't copy files.

Explorer not only crashes at least once a day, but it is also fairly slow and locks up for no apparent reason that I can tell. I'm running a Phenom II X4 940 and 8 gigs of ram, and the OS is far from snappy, but every blogger on the planet is telling me how fast Windows 7 is.

I like a few small things, such as the toolbar thumbnail shows all the windows, and I can hover over individual ones, which hide all my active windows, and just show that one. But overall, most of my complaints with Vista (horrid UI, three-step tasks and replaced with seven-step tasks) are still there.

And don't get me started on this Homegroup nonsense. Why add useless clutter around a workgroup and Samba?

The best aspect of 7 that no one talks about (and it may be in Vista, which I've used for only a couple of hours) is C:\Users\Public. Brilliant. If I want to share files across multiple user accounts on the same computer (such as mp3s), I now have a good place to put them. Linux should make note with a /home/public standard as well.

Hardly new. (1)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 5 years ago | (#27072955)

In Windows XP: Control Panel -> Add Remove Programs -> Add/Remove Windows Components -> uncheck Internet Explorer

That's been there as long as I can remember. Obviously it won't remove the underlying components but then - I wouldn't expect it to. I also wouldn't expect Windows 7 to do so, since the underlying components server to form the foundation of the windows HTML rendering that many, many third party applications depend on.

Re:Hardly new. (3, Funny)

Dynedain (141758) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073233)

The problem is that even if you did that, certain programs would still launch IE (Autodesk's feedback utitlity for software crashes for example) instead of the default system browseer.

IE != Gecko. Gecko is used to render help files and other system-wide things that need an HTML rendering engine (same think as WebKit on OSX), but that does not mean that the IE application needs to be present to do so.

I'm sure the EU will go after Apple too. Yeah. (0)

Jackie_Chan_Fan (730745) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073031)

Safari comes with OSX.

I still dont get what the whole fuss is about. Firefox, Opera, Safari, and any other browser, currently RUNS on windows just fine. So where is the problem? Is it more so the problem, that IE comes with the OS? If thats the case, then MS is getting fucked by everyone, and the company will be dead in 5 years due to the unfair bullshit scrutiny placed on Microsoft.

Just why cant MS provide applications with their os, such as a web browser? I dont see anyone bitching about Apple shoving Itunes down its OSX users? How about us windows users, who Apple tries to secretly install Safari on our PC's through an iTunes updater? HOW ABOUT THAT BULLSHIT? Where are you EU?

Fair is fair, but MS is being ass fucked by complainers.

I'm all for making sure MS doesnt run someone out of business... but last I checked, Firefox is MORE desirable than IE, Safari, and Opera.

I dont even USE IE.

Who really cares about this issue? Is IE doing anything that Firefox isnt? Where is the "unfair" advantage?

Does Mozilla want to integrate Firefox into the explorer shell? Not as far as i know.

This is a big stink about nothing.

Get back to fixing the economy and stop bullying the once bully (microsoft) that now has become a handcuffed bitch.

But why would you want to? (2, Insightful)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073103)

I normally use Firefox, but there are still a lot of web sites out there with JavaScript that only works properly under IE, so I keep IE handy to access those sites. I don't uninstall Safari just 'cause I use Firefox on my Mac, why should I uninstall IE just 'cause I use Firefox on my PC?

Open to terrible abuse (0, Redundant)

Glass Goldfish (1492293) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073181)

Most people want a default browser. They just want to surf the Internet and their last computer had IE. They don't want to learn another user interface. IE may have its issues, but it's not that bad and you can easily replace it for free with the world class browser of your choice. Even an inept user will be offered Google Chrome whenever they go to www.google.com. Firefox has an OK share of the market. And there are a lot of people who've downloaded Firefox and decided to keep using IE.

It's likely that PC vendors will be paid money to include a company's browser with the system. As part of the agreement, it may even lockout other browsers. So you could be stuck with a worthless browser because a few dollars were passed the vendor's way.

Imagine a scenario in which Opera wants to charge users for their browser. So the PC vendor offers you two options: $30 for an Opera browser (the only one they offer and it's locked in, so you can't change it) or a free ad supported version of the Opera browser (again you can't change it).

I know I'm supposed to hate Microsoft and I don't like a lot of the things they do. But when I get something for free (included in the price) and I can change it for free, it's hard to bitch. The only people who are hurt by the inclusion of IE are market losers trying to screw consumers out of money and anti-Microsoft ideologues.

At least... (1)

bakedpatato (1254274) | more than 5 years ago | (#27073185)

I can enjoy Flight Simulator X on 7. IE8 messes up the kneeboard, and while you don't need the kneeboard, it's a huge PITA to not be able to use it.
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