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IE 9 Beta Strips Down For Speed

CmdrTaco posted more than 3 years ago | from the couldn't-get-worse dept.

The Internet 288

CWmike writes "Those who have written off IE as being slow and old-looking are in for a surprise. The just-released Internet Explorer 9 beta is dramatically faster than its predecessor, sports an elegant, stripped-down interface and adds some useful new features, writes Preston Gralla. Even more surprising than the stripped-down interface is IE9 beta's speed. Internet Explorer has long been the slowest browser by a wide margin. IE9 has turned that around in dramatic fashion, using hardware acceleration and a new JavaScript engine it calls Chakra, which compiles scripts in the background and uses multiple processor cores. In this beta, my tests show it overtaking Firefox for speed, and putting up a respectable showing against Safari, Opera and Chrome. It's even integrated into Windows 7. One big problem: It will not work on Windows XP. So, forget the performance and security boost, many enterprises and netbook users."

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I know other whores... (5, Funny)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588616)

...who strip down for speed, dope, blow, and whatnot.

I don't go near any of them, either.

Re:I know other whores... (4, Informative)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588688)

They give you viruses as well if you're not careful.

Re:I know other whores... (1)

ErroneousBee (611028) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588788)

Yeah, but are they continuously compiling themselves in the background in an attempt to make themselves look better at the expense of every other thing the user might want to be doing?

I haven't really got the hang of this whole whore metaphor thing have I?

Re:I know other whores... (2)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589476)

I dunno, I think you nailed it.

(And the answer is "yes"...)

Re:I know other whores... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33589818)

Yeah, but are they continuously compiling themselves in the background in an attempt to make themselves look better at the expense of every other thing the user might want to be doing?

I haven't really got the hang of this whole whore metaphor thing have I?

To borrow a maxim from the working world: If you don't appearing to be working, you're wasting company time.

Next thing you know, someone will be working on cloud-rendered javascript.

Heyyy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33588634)

This story title just made me think of an awesome new mascot for IE9 that would make me want to use it...

Re:Heyyy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33588710)

PEDOBEAR Approves!

No cross platform support either (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33588678)

Sorry Microsoft, but it isn't 1997 any more. These days many companies use Macs and a good number even use Linux. No basic cross platform support for the myriad of platforms means that IE9 will be behind Firefox and Chrome right out of the gate.

Re:No cross platform support either (0, Flamebait)

mark72005 (1233572) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588834)

Not supporting Macs or Linux shuts out, what - about 2% of IE's potential market...?

Re:No cross platform support either (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33588980)

I don't think any sane person would expect an IE on Linux or Mac (not since 5.01 anyway); but the XP omission sucks.

Re:No cross platform support either (3, Insightful)

pthisis (27352) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589070)

Closer to 10%.

Most estimates put Linux at around 1.5% of the web browser market (about 1.2% traditional and 0.3% Android usage), traditional Macs at around 6%, and iPhone/iPad/iTouch around 1%.

Windows (aggregated) is about 89% of the web browser market, with the difference being mostly other handheld/phone devices (Symbian and Blackberry being the next largest blocks after those mentioned).

That's just the straight usage numbers--it establishes an upper bound on your market. If you don't run on Linux/MacOs, you can't get that 8.5% of the market at all. Real-world factors push the exclusion higher (e.g. corporations that mostly run Windows, but only want to support one browser across all desktops and hence are limited to thinking about Firefox, Chrome, Opera, or some other non-IE browser).

Re:No cross platform support either (3, Interesting)

mark72005 (1233572) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589136)

Most corporations only want one OS across all desktops, so it's more likely that these corporations will just put off making any browser change until they do their next Windows upgrade.

The one I work for is still on XP/IE6 - simply because the expense/work around an upgrade of either isn't worth it.

Re:No cross platform support either (1)

doti (966971) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589374)

I work for a *huge* corporation.
R&D runs mostly Linux, along with some SunOS; while the rest runs mostly Windows.

The "official" supported browser is Firefox, and the office suit is OpenOffice.

Re:No cross platform support either (1)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589102)

I recently read an article, which I can't seem to find, which purports Linux accounts for roughly 10% of desktops. I find this to be far more likely than the often quoted 2%. People forget that desktop doesn't always translate into web browser. And given the frequent niches Linux fills, its far more likely for a Linux desktop to exist which is never accounted for by web statistics.

Realistically, due to Linux's nature, we have absolutely no idea how many Linux desktops there really are. And likely, anyone who says they have a precise number is selling statistics. The only thing I am sure of, the desktop counts for Linux are extremely likely to be far larger than the often quoted 2%.

Re:No cross platform support either (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33589170)

What do Linux desktops that aren't using a web browser have anything to do with Internet Explorer's potential market?

Re:No cross platform support either (2, Interesting)

mark72005 (1233572) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589188)

I guess I find it hard to believe that 1 person in 10 who carries a laptop out of Big Box Retailer is going to install Linux and leave it on.

On slashdot a comment like this gets modded down, because of humans' tendency to assume everyone is similar to them instead of seeing themselves as an outlier.

But I think 2% is accurate, maybe even a little high, in terms of consumer desktop OSes

Re:No cross platform support either (1)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589372)

Oddly enough, someone in this same thread made reference to that same 10%. Even 10% still qualifies it as a fringe so this isn't exactly an ego driven position.

All I know is, everywhere I go I constantly see desktop adoption rates much higher than 2%. Sure that's anecdotal but anecdotally, its seems to consistently correspond with that 10%. Think about it. At 2%, you would almost never see Linux on desktops and yet I commonly see it. Realistically, the 2% number is a complete guess and yet everyone throws it around as if its fact. Its hardly a reach to presume someone's guess is a bit on the low side. To say the accurate number is somewhere between 2% and 10% is extremely likely where the truth exists.

Now if we're talking Linux desktops which game companies might care about, it probably is closer to 2%, or less.

Re:No cross platform support either (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589804)

Oddly enough, someone in this same thread made reference to that same 10%.

So what? Just because someone else says wrong things doesn't somehow start to make it true.

Re:No cross platform support either (4, Funny)

natehoy (1608657) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589460)

I'm not disputing your 2% number, because I don't have any other numbers to dispute it with. But not all computers are new computers.

Anecdotal evidence is anecdotal, but I personally know of a handful computers that are running Linux. They probably did come out of Big Box Retailer, but almost a decade ago. They won't run Windows any more (at least not a flavor that will work in today's world), but they are all perfectly happy with a lightweight window manager running under Linux, and can run the latest Firefox quite happily. Their owners, who can't afford a new computer, were grateful to get the results of my dumpster-diving, reformatting, and refurbishing. It costs me (and them) nothing.

"New Computers Sold" obviously would show a massively overwhelming preponderance toward Windows, obviously. But Linux is incredibly useful for slightly older hardware for people on a tight budget. There's a good bit of hardware that would have once had a one-way trip to dumpsterville that is now making a long stop at Linux Station along the way and getting a few more useful years of life.

I agree that 10% seems rather, well, "overly optimistic". My gut tells me it's higher than 2%, though.

To be fair, my gut tells me the two cheeseburgers I had for lunch were just what I needed, so it lies to me sometimes.

Re:No cross platform support either (2)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589216)

I recently read an article, which I can't seem to find, which purports Linux accounts for roughly 10% of desktops. I find this to be far more likely than the often quoted 2%.

Why do you find it far more likely? Because it fits in with your biases?

And given the frequent niches Linux fills, its far more likely for a Linux desktop to exist which is never accounted for by web statistics.

And yet the same people who whine about those web statistics when it comes to OS marketshare have no problem using them (even from the same source as the OS market share figures they rail against) to show how IE is dying and how Firefox and Chrome are stealing its marketshare.

Re:No cross platform support either (0)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589522)

Read my follow up reply above.

The answer is no, because it fits with my observed, anecdotal results.

Why do you doubt it, because it fits with your biases?

No need to answer. Here's a hint. Its a dumb question.

Re:No cross platform support either (2)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589762)

The answer is no, because it fits with my observed, anecdotal results.

So based off of nothing of any value that can be extrapolated to the population at large.

Why do you doubt it, because it fits with your biases?

No. I doubt it because you have no evidence for your claims other than anecdotes and what you want to be true. The problem is that the same people who put out these 10% figures claiming that web statistics are wrong will on the other hand write an article about IE losing marketshare and use web statistics (from usually the same source as the OS figures they will throw out) to make this claim. It's pure hypocrisy.

Re:No cross platform support either (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33589660)

Sorry, but if Microsoft really wants IE9 to get good uptake, they are going to have to support other platforms. The idea that Mac+Linux is only 2% of the market is largely a myth. Outside of the USA there is HUGE uptake in these platforms (particularly Linux) and in enterprise and corporate environments Linux support in particular is even more critical.

Re:No cross platform support either (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33588916)

But... but cross-platform coding reduces performance and increases bugs! Microsoft said it, so it must be true!

Re:No cross platform support either (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589228)

Performance wise it really depends, between OSes on the same architecture, not likely, between different architectures, almost certainly.

To be fair, the last time they did anything like that it was between X86, Alpha and PowerPC.

Re:No cross platform support either (1, Insightful)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588964)

That is because IE is a vehicle to get people INTO the latest Windows, not a tool for Windows users to use. There will be XP lusers who will see this as the reason to upgrade to W7, and there will be Macunts/Ubuntards who will now perceive IE as "safe" enough to go back to Windows.

Re:No cross platform support either (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33589200)

This is incredibly annoying. I'm actually going to have to pirate windows 7, and run it in a VM for the sole purpose of testing websites out.

Re:No cross platform support either (1, Insightful)

dsavi (1540343) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589318)

Uhh, that about Mac and Ubuntu users moving back to Windows because of IE...

Could you be more wrong?

Re:No cross platform support either (0, Troll)

dsavi (1540343) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589410)

Wait- I stand corrected- You could be.

Mac and Ubuntu users moving back to Windows because of an updated Blue Screen of Death.

Re:No cross platform support either (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33589134)

Do you really think a Linux (or Mac) user would touch this with a 10 foot pole even if it was available?

Here's to hoping (1)

Pojut (1027544) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588698)

I'm really hoping that IE9 brings Internet Explorer up to speed and injects some more competition into the browser wars. Still, due to the stigma put on IE, gaining back market share will be tough...

Re:Here's to hoping (3, Interesting)

causality (777677) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588760)

I'm really hoping that IE9 brings Internet Explorer up to speed and injects some more competition into the browser wars. Still, due to the stigma put on IE, gaining back market share will be tough...

One thing amused me. In a way the story or at least the summary is doublespeak. If so, it won't be helping that stigma:

Internet Explorer has long been the slowest browser by a wide margin. IE9 has turned that around in dramatic fashion, using hardware acceleration and a new JavaScript engine it calls Chakra, which compiles scripts in the background and uses multiple processor cores.

In other words, they are throwing more hardware at the problem (graphics cards AND multiple processor cores) instead of actually producing a faster or more resource efficient browser. Anyone else read that the same way?

Re:Here's to hoping (4, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588860)

In other words, they are throwing more hardware at the problem (graphics cards AND multiple processor cores) instead of actually producing a faster or more resource efficient browser. Anyone else read that the same way?

The resources present in a PC that can run Windows 6.x Aero include multiple cores and an integrated stream processor (also called a GPU). So yes, IE is being more efficient by using the resources that are there instead of ignoring them.

Re:Here's to hoping (1)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589086)

IE is being more efficient by using the resources that are there instead of ignoring them.

Well, enjoy the screaming from your fans (spinny, not swoony) every time you load MSN.com. "Efficiency" is a big place - where do you live?

Re:Here's to hoping (0)

causality (777677) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589094)

In other words, they are throwing more hardware at the problem (graphics cards AND multiple processor cores) instead of actually producing a faster or more resource efficient browser. Anyone else read that the same way?

The resources present in a PC that can run Windows 6.x Aero include multiple cores and an integrated stream processor (also called a GPU). So yes, IE is being more efficient by using the resources that are there instead of ignoring them.

This word "efficiency" ... it does not mean what you think it means. Hint: they increased the speed but the way they did so gives no reason to believe that they have improved the efficiency. It's abundantly possible that they have worsened it, in fact.

IE may still be the slowest browser in terms of the quality of its code and its failure to avoid bloat. It's just that now it can place more of a burden on the hardware to make up for this. I mean, the GPU *and* multiple cores? That damned well better be faster than a single-threaded/single-process browser with no GPU acceleration. That still doesn't say anything about efficiency or code quality.

Bottom line: if other browsers started using the same resources, would IE still be the slowest? Because you can expect it's only a matter of time before most browsers start doing this or at least offer the option, and many of them will do so in a cross-platform way. Where's the reason to believe that IE is inherently better or more well-designed, that any speed advantage it enjoys now isn't merely a transient and meaningless effect of implementing this idea first?

Re:Here's to hoping (1)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589794)

Bottom line: if other browsers started using the same resources, would IE still be the slowest?

You could equally say: if IE's JavaScript engine were as fast as Firefox's, would it still be the slowest?

Browser speed, like many things in the software world, is a constant arms' race. (At least, since the rise of Firefox some years ago made it an actual race again instead of the sad 'IE wins by default' show.) I'm sure that, if what IE9 is doing is effective/smart, other browsers will do something similar in their next iteration -- but meanwhile, IE would be doing something else in its next iteration, be it more efficiency, even better use of the extra resources, whatever.

In other words, I think it's disingenuous to assume that software you like will quickly absorb the smartest features of software you don't like, and that the reverse won't also happen to some degree.

Re:Here's to hoping (2, Interesting)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589490)

Does it mean websites can now exploit bugs in the Ring-0 graphics driver as well as all those other things?

Re:Here's to hoping (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33588924)

No, I don't read it the same way as you. From what I understand, they improved their Javascript performance by using a totally new enigne, added multi-core support and a the same time started a new trend, now followed by FF and other browsers, to use GPU to accelerate graphical tasks such as rendering text and bitmaps. To me it sounds that they have spent an incredible amount of time/rersouces and practically rewrote the whole thing from scratch; something everybody just hoped they would someday do.

Re:Here's to hoping (0, Troll)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589012)

And it doesn't help that the mozilla team recently identified IE as detecting various benchmarks to make IE look up to twenty times faster than it really is. [mozilla.com]

Until Microsoft stops purposely misleading people with their completely bogus benchmark results, their stigma of poor quality and low performance is nothing but well deserved.

Re:Here's to hoping (0, Flamebait)

KarmaMB84 (743001) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589402)

That's not even remotely what that blog post actually says.

Re:Here's to hoping (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589650)

The blog post calls it 'overspecialization for a specific test'. The results certainly do look... shall we say, concerning? Adding in a single 'true' statement sent the execution time from 1ms to 22.6ms with nearly identical results by adding in an extra return statement. It does start to look like someone hard coded the engine to spit out the correct answer when it encountered the benchmark. I'd be interested to see the results of the other JS engines and if they have similar anomalies with minor changes to the benchmarking code.

Re:Here's to hoping (1)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589666)

"And it doesn't help that the mozilla team recently identified IE as detecting various benchmarks to make IE look up to twenty times faster than it really is.

"That's not even remotely what that blog post actually says."

FTA that Goober Too linked to:

One last issue that can crop up has to do with over-specialization for a specific test. While I was running the SunSpider tests above, I noticed that IE9 got a score that was at least 10x faster than every other browser on SunSpider's math-cordic test. That would be an impressive result, but it doesn't seem to hold up in the presence of minor variations. I made a few variations on the test: one with an extra "true;" statement (diff), and one with a "return;" statement (diff). You can run those two tests along with the original math-cordic.js file here.

While you are correct that it doesn't explicitly state it, it is pretty hard to draw any other conclusion if you have a modicum of a clue.

Re:Here's to hoping (1)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589702)

How is it confirming what I said, "not even remotely what the glob post actually says." It clearly documents IE returning a completely bogus result clocking in at over 20x what it can actually run. There is even a graphic.

I suggest you re-read the link because your post does "not even remotely [reflect] what the glob post actually says."

Re:Here's to hoping (3, Insightful)

cybrthng (22291) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589060)

Nope.

I've had a multi-core CPU and dedicated GPU for nearly 10+ years now. Its about time the web browser takes advantage of such.

In fact, I would suggest the opposite of what you say. The work required to scale up the application using all available resources makes a more robust framework to build upon which is better for the long run.

Re:Here's to hoping (1)

Lunix Nutcase (1092239) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589280)

In other words, they are throwing more hardware at the problem (graphics cards AND multiple processor cores) instead of actually producing a faster or more resource efficient browser. Anyone else read that the same way?

So why is this somehow a negative for IE to do it yet you see no issue when Google and Mozilla do the exact same thing to boost performance in their browsers? Hypocritical much?

Re:Here's to hoping (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33589540)

nope. They are actually using the existing hardware efficiently. Its pretty much what everyone predicted 5 years ago. Release multicore CPUs and allow GPGPU's and it won't matter until programmers start writing code and making tools to actually use the hardware.

Re:Here's to hoping (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33589760)

While I certainly appreciate your point, isn't taking advantage of available hardware actually creating efficiency on some level? After all, if *nothing* used hardware acceleration, what, in fact, would be the point of owning all those fancy graphics cards and multiple cores? Multithreaded and parallel processing takes a lot of re-thinking, and isn't always possible. Even SmartPhones are moving to dual-core next year. Personally, I give them kudos for taking this step. If they can make smaller, more efficient code, too -- all the better.

What they need is some in-house old-school Unix developers, who are used to writing beautifully elegant, simplistic code geared toward minimal size and maximum efficiency, prioritized over features. Browsers serve a very basic purpose, and largely adding more features should rank a MUCH lower priority than supporting all the standards, compliance to specifications, and cranking out the most memory and processor efficient code possible. In these days, when people often have 20-30 browsing sessions open while doing research, while simultaneously running a ton of other apps, it's more important than ever to be efficient, especially with the memory footprint. Regardless, it sounds like a step in the right direction, taking a nod from the direction of Snow Leopard. In the age of increasingly embedded computing, code efficiency is seriously under-rated, but at least it seems (perhaps superficially?) that it's on the radar of some of the larger companies...

Re:Here's to hoping (1)

Nemesisghost (1720424) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588884)

Unfortunately I really doubt that MS will get back any of its market share, or at least not enough to make a noticeable difference. This is still great news. If what the reports say are true, and that IE9 is more standards compliant and supports HTML5, then it will make web developers more willing to use said standards & HTML5. I know a lot of companies won't use new tech unless there is a sizable market share that has access to it. Since IE is the default browser for the largest share of computers and MS will no doubt push IE9 out with an update, this will provide companies with the incentive to start using the newer tech that IE9 supports.

This of course doesn't solve the problem with people who won't or can't upgrade past WinXP & IE6.

Re:Here's to hoping (3, Interesting)

tepples (727027) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588986)

I know a lot of companies won't use new tech unless there is a sizable market share that has access to it.

Google offers a "Chrome Frame" plug-in for IE that renders pages with WebKit instead of MSHTML if they opt in using <meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="chrome=1">. I know of at least one online store that supports IE 8 but recommends Chrome Frame for users of ancient IE.

Re:Here's to hoping (0)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588900)

IE9: Now injecting malware faster than ever.

No kidding (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588936)

I've been a long time Firefox user, and use it currently, but I wouldn't say I'm happy with it. There are a lot of problems with FF, the biggest being the many bugs they won't deal with. FF is not good, it is just the best of a bunch of bad choices IMO.

If IE9 starts rocking not only could I switch to it, but maybe it would provide the poke in the ass Firefox needs to get better.

Oh mod me a troll BUT (4, Insightful)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589214)

Somehow I am not impressed when someone goes from absolute last to second last. It STILL is beaten by Opera, Chrome and Safari... so it beat Firefox which is the browser best known for its extensibility rather then speed by stripping itself down... So it becomes Chrome rather then Firefox, but then looses to Chrome.

oh, and it only work with hardware acceleration, only on windows and then only on recent versions of windows. ALL its competitors run on Windows XP with no trouble AND do it faster. So MS can't get a fast browser on its own OS THAT IT STILL SELLS!

My god, is our opinion of IE really THAT low that we find this impressive?

Oh and cue all the MS fanboys who will explain that IE9 can't run on XP because it needs X and yet all its competitors can do it. And run on Linux and OSX to boot...

IE is that special kid in class, who wins a price not for coming in first, but because everyone is special in their own way. Even if they eat the chalk.

MS, if you want to change the perceptions of your crappy software, do a FORCED upgrade on ALL your still used OS'es to IE9. Stop hiding behind excuses and repair the damage you did to paying customers with IE6. You got plenty of money to do it, so there are no excuses. Rid the world of IE6 and I might even buy an xbox... Nah

I won't, so there! (1)

jd (1658) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589714)

You made some good points, so I won't mod you troll. Nyah!

Seriously, FireFox should be faster than anyone else precisely because it is extensible. It only needs to load the code being used, so it doesn't need to have a footprint larger than necessary. It doesn't need to do behind-the-scenes housekeeping for routines that aren't in use. And so on. A totally modular browser should be faster than anyone else, in the same way that RISC is always faster than CISC, and stacking on top of a well-written underlying stack should give the same performance boost any hybrid RISC/CISC architecture would have.

IE's speedup is probably more to do with ripping out unnecessary code that churned cycles and hogged heap than to do with multi-core, so that it is faster by being lighter is no big deal. That it is faster than FireFox is actually disturbing, as it should not be possible to convert a monolithic design into a hybrid that is superior to a hybrid design that was that way from the start. The former will have inefficiencies due to constraints caused by assumptions in the original architecture, the latter should have no such limitations.

FireFox could easily be built with Silk++ (G++ with a few parallel keywords added) or with OpenMP extensions (although I'll be fair and say that's harder). That would cover all the multi-core aspects and would allow builds on single core machines on unextended compilers with zero overhead. FireFox could also be linked to libraries like liboil or other accelerator libraries as needed. This would give you hardware acceleration where the acceleration existed, or standard performance on unaccelerated systems.

Mind you, so could IE9. There is absolutely nothing to stop transparent acceleration. The libraries exist, the compilers exist, everything all these developers need exists. The only thing missing is the use of them. This would let you use IE9 on XP, you'd merely not get those performance enhancements that are in Windows 7. So why didn't Microsoft do this? (Obviously, to pressure XP users into downgrading.)

To me, the greatest stupidity of all is the refusal to use the tools that exist because... well, there isn't really a because. Silk++ added, what, three keywords? Oh the agony of learning! The pain! The pain! Soooo difficult! Since it's G++ with extensions, #define those keywords as nothing for basic compilers and the code will compile just as well but without the parallelization. No special code blocks for the different cases. I have a VERY hard time taking seriously any argument that says that parallelization would be hard work. Nor do I accept that finding these sorts of things is "difficult" - I find and list these kinds of projects on Freshmeat precisely so that you don't have to do the legwork. That part has already been done for you. If you're too godawful lazy to look at a single website, I don't see why I should be interested in what's produced.

(I'm no longer using FireFox, except for web testing via Selenium, because I do not - and will not - trust my computer to the incompetent. On Windows boxes, I refuse to use IE for the same reason. I'm seriously considering writing my own browser because at least I know it'll work and I know where I can find the toolkits I'd need.)

Just released where? (1)

cybrthng (22291) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588740)

As far as I can tell joe public can't get it until after the official announcement @ 10:30 PDT. Anyone have a beta download link? Still not on connect as of now

Re:Just released where? (1)

MagicM (85041) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588928)

http://www.beautyoftheweb.com/ [beautyoftheweb.com] (seriously)

Re:Just released where? (1)

cybrthng (22291) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588976)

All i see there is 9/15/10 :)

Another hour i guess we'll see the downloads

request to the peanut gallery: (1)

buddyglass (925859) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588810)

Someone with Windows 7, a decent 3d graphics card, and a dual or quad-core CPU please benchmark this new IE9 beta vs. the currently released versions for FF, Chrome, Safari and Opera, using:

And, if you could, break out the scores on the individual Peacekeeper tests. I intentionally omitted V8 in the list of benchmarks since its so inconsistent between runs.

I'd do it myself but I don't have a Win7 installation to use.

Re:request to the peanut gallery: (1)

cybrthng (22291) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588856)

Once the beta is out, i'll give this a shot and post my results.

AMD Phenom 955 Quad Core with ATI 4850 SLI & Windows 7

Re:request to the peanut gallery: (0, Flamebait)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589244)

Absolutely do not include Sunspider in the results as Mozilla has caught Microsoft (IE) cheating. They are actively detecting these benchmarks are falsely providing results up to twenty times faster than they are able to actually execute the code. [mozilla.com] The only reason they got caught was because one benchmark was so much faster than what everyone else was doing and the nature of the benchmark seemed unlikely anyone would have such a significant advantage.

IE + Sunspider = absolute lies. The results are rigged.

The later two are far more likely to provide meaningful results. And Kraken is specifically designed to reflect exactly that.

Re:request to the peanut gallery: (2, Informative)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589412)

Absolutely do not include Sunspider in the results as Mozilla has caught Microsoft (IE) cheating. They are actively detecting these benchmarks are falsely providing results up to twenty times faster than they are able to actually execute the code. The only reason they got caught was because one benchmark was so much faster than what everyone else was doing and the nature of the benchmark seemed unlikely anyone would have such a significant advantage.

IE + Sunspider = absolute lies. The results are rigged.

The later two are far more likely to provide meaningful results. And Kraken is specifically designed to reflect exactly that.

Did you link to the wrong page or something? The blog entry you linked to says nothing of the sort, and shows IE9 as slower than every browser other than Firefox 4 in Sunspider.

Re:request to the peanut gallery: (1, Flamebait)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589600)

Read the whole thing already. That's two replies from two people who didn't even read the damn link. There is even a graphic. Just read the article rather than pretend you did.

Re:request to the peanut gallery: (0, Flamebait)

buddyglass (925859) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589632)

Yeah, I was aware of the bogus Sunspider behavior on IE9, but was still curious about the results.

integrated into Windows 7 (0, Troll)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588848)

The US DOJ and EU Court will soon be knocking on Microsoft's door. Users are supposed to be able to choose their browser, and never need to use IE.

Re:integrated into Windows 7 (2, Insightful)

spamking (967666) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588926)

The US DOJ and EU Court will soon be knocking on Microsoft's door. Users are supposed to be able to choose their browser, and never need to use IE.

Some parts of SharePoint won't work on anything but IE. Specifically the Project Server 2010 Web App . . . I've tried to use it in Firefox but can't until I switch to IE.

Re:integrated into Windows 7 (3, Informative)

AltairDusk (1757788) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589706)

Which is one of a very long list of things that make me unhappy with Sharepoint, it's everything including the kitchen sink but doesn't seem to do anything very well.

Re:integrated into Windows 7 (1)

MozeeToby (1163751) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588982)

"Integrated into Windows 7" just means that the rendering and java script engines will be used to render things in the OS. Or do you really think that they should be required to let you change what is really very basic OS behavior?

Re:integrated into Windows 7 (1)

DeathFromSomewhere (940915) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589082)

There aren't any new features that other browsers can't implement. No antitrust BS required.

This just in... (4, Funny)

Aggrav8d (683620) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588874)

Javascript engine speeds have nothing to do with quality of code. It's all about how cool a name you come up with for your engine. IE9 is the latest to jump on the bandwagon with their "Chakra" engine, sure to appeal to a wide market of yuppie-wanna-be-hippie 30 somethings. Following this news, Mozilla has announced their next javascript engine will be called "unicorn bacon", and apple have bought the rights to use the name "iMegatron". The future is now!

Re:This just in... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33589054)

...Mozilla has announced their next javascript engine will be called "unicorn bacon"...

MMMMmmmmmm Bacon!

Re:This just in... (1)

Laxori666 (748529) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589276)

I'm not sure unicorn bacon would be a good one... you were on the right track with combining two things that are awesome, but I don't know about killing unicorns to make bacon out of them, regardless how awesome that bacon would be =P.

So? (-1, Troll)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588922)

It's still a fucking cancer on the Internet.

Re:So? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33589078)

knee jerk, close minded, predetermined opinions are a cancer to this site...

Thanks google (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588930)

Chrome has put a lot of pressure on MS for IE.

Re:Thanks google (1)

NewbieProgrammerMan (558327) | more than 3 years ago | (#33588994)

Now if they could just do the same thing for Windows itself...

what's so stripped down about that? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33588990)

They crammed the tabs and address bar on the same line. That'll last 5 minutes before the user moves the tabs back down (if he/she can!) leaving the same interface as before.

Re:what's so stripped down about that? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33589190)

Are you joking? Just look at this abomination, IE8: http://i55.tinypic.com/313lhms.png [tinypic.com] .

That doesn't even show the horror of its three command-bar menus, or right-click menu.

I visibly cringe every time I have to open IE8/below.

Re:what's so stripped down about that? (2, Insightful)

Lord Byron II (671689) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589272)

All of the wasted space at the top where the title bar should be is annoying. Imagine all those pixels gone on a netbook.

Doesn't work with XP... so? (1)

hellfire (86129) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589020)

I'm on XP and using Firefox. I use it for security, stability and extensibility. It's been doing remarkably well on all three fronts.

It's interesting how the browser wars are reverting back to the age old "I'm faster than you are" argument which was all but forgotten in general circles. People used to say which was faster, intel or PCC, Mac or Windows, and now it doesn't matter any more finally because you can't tell the difference when sending an email or working on a word document, and if you can tell, usually it doesn't make a difference. Sure, high end graphics and math work need to know which is faster, but exactly how many of us are doing that?

My perception is that the biggest thing MS is pushing on IE9 is the speed, and not pushing hard enough on security and stability. What good is a Corvette that can go 200+ when it's brakes are so bad they might kill you?

Re:Doesn't work with XP... so? (1)

revlayle (964221) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589144)

Speed is certainly important... a primary bottleneck in many web 2.0 (or any heavy javascript apps) apps I help maintain is IE's pitiful performance. We can't force everyone off IE, esp. people who use our sites in the enterprise, or just do not know anything different than IE. IE 8 is tolerable, but a lot of people still use IE7 and even 6, unfortunately. I just wish IE9 was brought to XP.

Even worse, a major blow to HTML5 (1)

Ilgaz (86384) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589488)

If this thing doesn't run, even without the fancy GPU acceleration on XP, it means the web developers will still develop/test for IE 7/8. So, they won't use any of promised HTML5 features including HTML5/h264 video.

Degrade politely, browser capability detection etc. are meaningless. They don't do it. Basic as that.

If MS really wanted to compete, they would make it compatible with XP. Here comes the never ending saga of IE 7/8 updates/compatibility issues.

Interface (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33589032)

It's about time for a redesign of IE. Its clusterfuck of a UI has long been one of IE's big negative points, apart from insecurity and standards support. I might actually consider using it now, occasionally. First task: disable all IE plugins.

Correction (1)

TexasTroy (1701144) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589058)

"So, forget the performance and security boost, most enterprises and netbook users."

tabs on the same row as address bar (4, Interesting)

spyked (1878060) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589066)

Am I the only guy who doesn't like this idea?

Re:tabs on the same row as address bar (2, Interesting)

space_jake (687452) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589164)

Looks like it could really crowded quickly. Not going to pass too much judgement till I see how it handles multiple tabs.

M$ snubs XP ? (1)

gx5000 (863863) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589138)

No XP support ? Good luck with that......
Well it's no longer supported right ?
Still, not a good move....

Re:M$ snubs XP ? (1)

Abstrackt (609015) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589250)

What part is not a good move? Not supporting XP anymore or not releasing software for an unsupported version of Windows?

"Want the latest and greatest IE? Upgrade Windows!" I'd say it's a good move.

Re:M$ snubs XP ? (4, Interesting)

ledow (319597) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589322)

It's a good way to shift more customers to alternatives. I know that all the schools I've worked in, Firefox is compulsory because even the *thought* of updating IE or trying to move to 7 just to gain some small advantages and lose quite a lot of existing functionality / ease of use puts fears into the bursars.

Support XP and you could EASILY double the userbase of IE9. It shows what Microsoft is really after - not customers, but lock-in to ever-decreasing upgrades. My bursar promised to kill me if I end up needing something that HAS to have Windows 7 installed in the school to run. At least for the next few years. I similarly have a promise to hunt down any of my users who tries to fiddle with their desktop icons in order to restore IE access instead of Firefox.

Re:M$ snubs XP ? (1)

Abstrackt (609015) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589430)

All good points. I was only thinking of end users when I made my original comment.

As for making people use Firefox: set the icon to IE, half your users won't even notice.

Re:M$ snubs XP ? (3, Informative)

schnikies79 (788746) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589260)

XP is supported until 2014. [microsoft.com]

Re:M$ snubs XP ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33589404)

Yes, it's still supported. It's not developed for. When you buy a Windows version, you're not buying a lifetime contract for all /future/ software support. Are you bitches going to be complaining 10 years from now when Office 2020 doesn't support Windows 7? Buy it, pirate it, or stfu.

Re:M$ snubs XP ? (1)

VGPowerlord (621254) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589630)

No XP support ? Good luck with that......
Well it's no longer supported right ?
Still, not a good move....

In the end, it boils down to Return on Investment. MS doesn't think they'll sell enough new copies of XP to justify backporting their hardware accelerated Direct2D/DirectWrite code to the older DirectDraw API.

Re:M$ snubs XP ? (1)

alen (225700) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589738)

firefox 4 beta supports hardware acceleration only on DX10 which means no XP. technically you can run FF4 on windows 2000 when it comes out, but you will need Vista for the really good new features

Stupid submitter. (1)

Spazntwich (208070) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589224)

Three links to the same crappy site, and not a single one to Microsoft or a download link for IE9.

Let's have a little common courtesy here, submitters.

Yay! (1)

MonsterTrimble (1205334) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589360)

One big problem: It will not work on Windows XP. So, forget the performance and security boost, many enterprises and netbook users.

How is this a bad thing for us enterprise users? We'll get Opera/Chrome/Firefox that much faster! (I prefer Opera, but ANY of those three are a step up from Internet Explorer.

Yawn. (1)

thestudio_bob (894258) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589486)

Wake me up when it scores 100% on the acid test.

Yeah, but... (1)

cdoggyd (1118901) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589516)

It's fast blah blah blah. It's elegant blah blah blah. IS IT SECURE YET?!?

IE9 ROCKS! (2, Funny)

PhrozenOne (1001417) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589680)

I have used every freaking browser that has ever been - IEx, FF and all the Gecko based, Chrome Safari and all the webkit based. But IE 9 *BETA* is amazing. Welcome back, Microsoft. I missed you. :)

link tags (1)

VGR (467274) | more than 3 years ago | (#33589834)

Can anyone confirm whether IE 9 supports '<link rel=prev ...>' and '<link rel=next ...>'? It seems like the vast majority of sites (and blog publishing software) don't bother to support these, and I get the feeling it's because the thinking has been, "Why bother with them if IE doesn't use them."
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