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Testers Say IE 11 Can Impersonate Firefox Via User Agent String

timothy posted about a year and a half ago | from the turnabout-is-sometimes-funny dept.

Firefox 252

Billly Gates writes "With the new leaked videos and screenshots of Windows Blue released, IE 11 is also included. IE 10 just came out weeks ago for Windows 7 users and Microsoft is more determined than ever to prevent IE from becoming irrelevant as Firefox and Chrome scream past it by also including a faster release schedule. A few beta testers reported that IE 11 changed its user agent string from MSIE to IE with the 'like gecko' command included. Microsoft may be doing this to stop web developers stop feeding broken IE 6-8 code and refusing to serve HTML 5/CSS 3 whenever it detects MSIE in its user agent string. Unfortunately this will break many business apps that are tied to ancient and specific version of IE. Will this cause more hours of work for web developers? Or does IE10+ really act like Chrome or Firefox and this will finally end the hell of custom CSS tricks?"

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Hmmm (5, Insightful)

BrokenHalo (565198) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268729)

Unfortunately this will break many business apps that are tied to ancient and specific version of IE. Will this cause more hours of work for web developers?

Too bad if it does. Their excuses wore out long ago.

Re:Hmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268751)

Or, just use another browser and spoof the user agent back to MSIE

It wasn't the web developers excuses, they're gonna suffer because of MS and they don't deserve that.

Re:Hmmm (5, Insightful)

pspahn (1175617) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268773)

...they're gonna suffer because of MS and they don't deserve that.

Suffer? This just creates more billable hours. I'm not sure what line of work you're in, but the phrase "more work for you" isn't exactly a bad thing (as long as it's paid for!)

Re:Hmmm (4, Insightful)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268857)

Spoken like a true soulless manager.
If you go and "spraypaint" the wall of your company's toilets, it's "more work for the cleaners" too.
Think they'll be happy with those extra billable hours? I'm sure their managers are.

Re:Hmmm (3, Interesting)

pspahn (1175617) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268981)

Acutally, yeah, I manage the entire team here at my office... at home... consisting of myself... and, oh wait it's just me.

You can either bitch and moan about corporate lack of vision (or bureaucratic weight, or whatever you want to call it) or you can knuckle down and fix the shit they pile on everyone else's plate... and get paid for it.

I prefer to be the guy people can call when they want someone else's shitty mess fixed, rather than be known as the 'unapproachable tech guy'.

I've spraypainted nothing... But if someone wants to pay me to come clean it up, I have a contact form I can direct them to.

Re: Hmmm (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269007)

I hate to be the one to tell you this, but your boss sounds like a total opportunistic douche.

Re:Hmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269517)

I'm with you man. I have no idea why people are calling you soulless because you're trying to make money from the ultimate soulless machine, the corporation. It's not any of it would be your fault. I'm assuming these posters are college kids who've never worked.

Re:Hmmm (2)

Bengie (1121981) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269119)

Your analogy assumes there were toilets in the first place. Some times it's better to bite the bullet and do things correctly instead of complaining about each time some fragile software breaks because of bad design and bad practice.

Re:Hmmm (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269049)

I'm hourly as well, but if I weren't, the analogy would be more like a dog shits on your lawn: you can either leave it there to turn white or you can pick the shit up. Either way, your life sucks a little bit more.

Re:Hmmm (2)

Sulphur (1548251) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269251)

I'm hourly as well, but if I weren't, the analogy would be more like a dog shits on your lawn: you can either leave it there to turn white or you can pick the shit up. Either way, your life sucks a little bit more.

Of course if it turns white, then it is left there as part of the decor.

Re:Hmmm (4, Funny)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269399)

Dung shui?

Re:Hmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269273)

Spoken like a contractor. Billable hours only works if you're supplying services or contracting...and it's not your job on the line because of inconsistent behavior with the damn browsers.

Re:Hmmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268789)

Yes, yes they do.

Re:Hmmm (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268797)

Too bad if it does. Their excuses wore out long ago.

Exactly, they've had 10 years to fix their old busted stuff.
If Microsoft's going to kill off old Windows apps, they should take old web pages with them as well.

Re:Hmmm (4, Interesting)

rwa2 (4391) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268885)

Heh, all they had to do was offer IE6 in a VM to allow all the businesses and government organizations to still run all of the old crappy homegrown locked-in apps to run. Those apps aren't going away (a lot are there to meet contractual/legal obligations and aren't trivial to redevelop / recertify).

Re:Hmmm (2)

jimshatt (1002452) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268949)

And why is it Microsofts job to do this? No-one is stopping those organizations to do this themselves.

Re:Hmmm (5, Informative)

YeeHaW_Jelte (451855) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269011)

Yes that is all they have to do and surprise, surprise, they do it:

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=11575 [microsoft.com]

Re:Hmmm (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269275)

And what format those applications? EXE?
Its gonna work on Mac or Linux? GREAT!! :)

Fuck da Microsoft for mess they created.

Captcha, I shit you not: condome

Re:Hmmm (3, Informative)

YeeHaW_Jelte (451855) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269347)

Too lazy to follow the link?

It's a virtual machine, works perfectly fine on VirtualBox and thus on Linux and OSx.

Re:Hmmm (1)

YeeHaW_Jelte (451855) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269359)

Eh pardon yes it's an .exe but it's just a wrapper around a rar file. Unrar, at least on Linux machines, understands them perfectly well.

Re:Hmmm (2)

Bengie (1121981) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269127)

Those apps aren't going away (a lot are there to meet contractual/legal obligations and aren't trivial to redevelop / recertify)

I have no sympathy for companies that used bad software. They're in their position because of bad business decisions in the first place.

Re:Hmmm (5, Insightful)

rudy_wayne (414635) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269247)

Those apps aren't going away (a lot are there to meet contractual/legal obligations and aren't trivial to redevelop / recertify)

I have no sympathy for companies that used bad software. They're in their position because of bad business decisions in the first place.

Unfortunately, it's not that simple.

Browsers and the World Wide Web in general didn't just suddenly appear one day, fully formed with a complete set of perfect specifications and standards. They evolved slowly over time. And while everything was evolving, and while everyone was trying to figure out exactly what those web standards should be, the rest of the world wasn't standing still. Billions of web pages were being created, based on whatever shitty browsers and standards existed at the time.

For a long time, it didn't matter what "standards" there were. Internet Explorer *WAS* the standard, because it was the only major browser -- there was no Firefox or Chrome -- and so that's how web pages were designed. Then when things changed, when there was competition among browsers and more emphasis on adhering to standards, there was a problem. There were all these billions of web pages and applications based on old shitty browsers. Suddenly businesses had all this stuff that worked perfectly fine in IE6 but broke horribly with any other browser. It's easy to make fun of their "lack of foresight" but back when IE6 was the only browser from a big well known company, people had no way of knowing that things were going to change tremendously in just a few years.

And so browser developers were forced to resort to all sorts of hacks and kludges to make sure that their browser properly rendered all those shitty poor designed web pages. Sure you could design a browser that refused to display all those improperly coded pages. (Hey, remember "Strict HTML"?) And you would watch usage of your browser drop to zero. When the average person goes to a page that does not display properly how many of them think "this page wasn't designed properly" versus "there's something wrong with my browser".

Re:Hmmm (1)

DarkOx (621550) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269203)

A VM would not work very well; for lots of applications. Most of those things uses some terrible ActiveX controls, Need to touch disk files etc. If Microsoft had been really smart they would just continue to include IE in only the Professional and Enterprise releases of Windows, re-branded IE-Legacy or something as an optional component.

Keep the id10ts for using it as there web-browser by modifying it slightly to only allow it to open sockets with RFC1918 address by default; and some registry keys and (GPO to set them) if you *need* it to access some normally publicly routed ranges.

That would make just about everyone happy.

Re:Hmmm (1)

second_coming (2014346) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268839)

The main culprits I've seen which do this are telephone system providers (Mitel/iPecs etc).

The issue being that people are very touchy about updating telephony software, primarily following the old adage, "if it ain't broke don't fix it".

Re:Hmmm (4, Insightful)

rudy_wayne (414635) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268851)

The main culprits I've seen which do this are telephone system providers (Mitel/iPecs etc).

  The issue being that people are very touchy about updating telephony software, primarily following the old adage, "if it ain't broke don't fix it".

The problem is that it is IS broken.

Re:Hmmm (2)

jimshatt (1002452) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268929)

Except that it wont. If the business app was tied to a specific version of IE, then it still is tied to that specific version of IE. IE6 still sends out MSIE, regardless of the existence of IE11, IE12, or IEFoxHunt.

Re:Hmmm (1)

Bozzio (183974) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269497)

Exactly. Thanks for mentioning this. I was going to post the exact same thing.

Re:Hmmm (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269033)

Fuck excuses, make a browser that actually works. A website built in Asp.Net using Visual Studio's horrible WYSIWYG (yeah right) editor won't even fucking render in IE, although Firefox and friends render perfectly fine. I'm not the one making any excuses, but I'm forced to support their clusterfuck of a browser nonetheless.

Re:Hmmm (4, Interesting)

jimicus (737525) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269163)

Too bad if it does. Their excuses wore out long ago.

They did, but business apps that are tied to specific versions of IE are endemic and quite often it's not as simple as paying money and getting the software updated. We're not talking one or two apps here that need updating; we're talking hundreds if not thousands of applications, some of which quite clearly haven't had any major UI work done in five or ten years.

In the last fortnight, I've seen - and this is in just one small business:

  - A web app that requires a specific ActiveX plugin to print - evidently a stylesheet for printing or even generating a PDF is too difficult. This plugin only works on 32-bit versions of IE; under 64-bit versions the plugin installer silently fails to work. (The plugin developer does have a 64-bit version available, but it's commercial software. You can't just download a 64-bit version from the developer's website yourself).
    - This web app is provided for franchisees by their franchisor. (I won't name the franchise, but I guarantee you've heard of it). As with any franchise-type arrangement, the franchisee can ask their franchisor nicely but cannot force anything - and in this case, the franchisee simply cannot say "In that case I won't use your tool; I'll find something else to do the same job", using it is a condition of the franchise.
  - Several web apps that require you to explicitly click the "broken mode" button in IE - they're generating IE6-only HTML when IE is used but IE isn't detecting this and automatically downgrading.
    - Quite often these apps will work just fine with Chrome, Firefox et al. It looks like they're detecting an IE User-Agent string and generating IE-6 specific HTML rather than checking the IE version.
    - These apps are provided by a third-party and you have to use them otherwise you can't do business with that third party. The business itself doesn't care about your idealistic attitude that IE-dependant websites must die; they need to meet payroll this month and one of the ways they do this is by working with various third parties.
  - Web applications that quite simply do not function in anything but Internet Explorer in any form, no matter what you do with your user-agent string. You'd be amazed (and faintly disturbed) how many project managers read as far as "no need to deploy your own client app" when first considering web development and didn't get the bit about "with careful development, client platform independent".
      - Much of this is actually Microsoft's own doing - they purposely encouraged this sort of behaviour back in the days of IE6.

Re:Hmmm (2)

CastrTroy (595695) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269491)

MS could have alleviated a lot of pain everywhere if they would have just added a supported method of running 2 versions of IE at the same time. This way they could have continued to support businesses that were locked into corporate intranet applications that wouldn't work in anything but IE 6, and also have newer versions of IE be able to adopt proper standards without having to worry about how it affected older websites.

Really? (5, Insightful)

lesincompetent (2836253) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268735)

I Say Firefox Can Impersonate IE11 Via User Agent String.

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268753)

curl --user-agent foo ?

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268811)

IE impersonating FF, FF impersonating IE... How about IE impersonating FF impersonating IE?

Re:Really? (2)

a0me (1422855) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268909)

We Need To Go Deeper.

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268917)

How about IE impersonating FF impersonating IE?

You forgot the final "impersonating Mozilla", because ultimately that's what all browsers do. Every version of IE has been impersonating Mozilla.

Re:Really? (1)

Chrisq (894406) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269173)

How about IE impersonating FF impersonating IE?

You forgot the final "impersonating Mozilla", because ultimately that's what all browsers do. Every version of IE has been impersonating Mozilla.

Which impersonated Mosaic (Mozilla was the "Mosaic killer").

Amazing how it can boomerang (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268737)

Microsoft thought they could subvert the web by creating their own standards, and it worked for awhile, and now that same strategy ended up biting their own behinds. I'm enjoying this popcorn. It has Karma written in the container.

Yoda says (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268743)

Backwards the Browser Wars have become.

Headline and Summary Mismatch (5, Informative)

Internal Modem (1281796) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268759)

Wouldn't a better headline be "IE 11 user agent string changes from MSIE to IE," since most of the summary is about that?
The headline isn't even discussed in the summary.
However, it's obvious the standard ability of browsers to report a different user agent for dev and testing has been sensationalized here just for click generation.

Like gecko (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268809)

Or that they've added 'like gecko' which is actually the point of the article. Although they might have been better impersonating Chrome since it's more popular:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Usage_share_of_web_browsers

Re:Headline and Summary Mismatch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268815)

Wouldn't a better headline be "IE 11 user agent string changes from MSIE to IE," since most of the summary is about that?
The headline isn't even discussed in the summary.
However, it's obvious the standard ability of browsers to report a different user agent for dev and testing has been sensationalized here just for click generation.

No. The addition of "like gecko" is far more relevant. "gecko" is the string that most sites performing content customisation use to identify firefox and/or chroe (chrome uses "khtml like gecko", so this may result in iee bring detected as a khtml derivative)

It also doesn't seem to be an optional thing: this would be the default user agent string, although I assume it will dll revert to previous strings if compatibility mode is enabled.

Re:Headline and Summary Mismatch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268983)

"KHTML, like Gecko" - right. This just goes to show that UserAgent strings are an abomination and should never have become standard, They just serve as a way for websites to serve different content (style or otherwise) to the end user, which just means that everyone has to mimic the UA of the most popular one. Add in those vendors that think they can win more extra content than they lose by having their own little nugget in the UA, and we just get longer and longer nonsensical UA strings, which all mean the same thing: zilch.
You know what would be good? If the major browser vendors would decide one day to simply stop sending the damn thing.

Re:Headline and Summary Mismatch (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269121)

http://webaim.org/blog/user-agent-string-history/

Re:Headline and Summary Mismatch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269135)

Browser user agent strings are an important part of your daily tracking.

Re:Headline and Summary Mismatch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268849)

Wouldn't a better headline be "IE 11 user agent string changes from MSIE to IE"[.]

Yes, that would be a much better headline seeing as how that is what the story is actually saying.

TimmyFail!

Re:Headline and Summary Mismatch (1)

Eirenarch (1099517) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268867)

Simplest explanation (and therefore most likely to be correct) is that they were hiding. Until yesterday's leak this was all confidential and they did not want to leak information via user agent stats.

Re:Headline and Summary Mismatch (1)

cgimusic (2788705) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269329)

Not really. The browser still identifies itself as being IE11 although it now claims to render "like Gecko". This user agent doesn't hide anything. It is most likely for exactly what the article says it is for: to prevent servers sending it broken IE specific code created when IE couldn't render anything properly.

Re:Headline and Summary Mismatch (1)

Beriaru (954082) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268869)

It's not a mismatch: It was impersonating other headline.

Re:Headline and Summary Mismatch (1)

Xest (935314) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269159)

It doesn't even make any sense whatsoever:

"Microsoft may be doing this to stop web developers stop feeding broken IE 6-8 code and refusing to serve HTML 5/CSS 3 whenever it detects MSIE in its user agent string. Unfortunately this will break many business apps that are tied to ancient and specific version of IE."

Why? Just because IE11 is coming out, doesn't magically make existing business apps suddenly change themselves to stop working with the "ancient and specific version of IE" they've always worked with. If it only ever worked with a specific version of IE, it'll still only work with a specific version of IE, no matter what Microsoft does with new versions. If IE11 now renders HTML5/CSS properly and completely then why on earth would they want to receive some hacked together version that's no longer relevant to the new version? Or is the implication that Microsoft should keep their browser broken so people can continue to use broken sites whilst always enjoying features of each new browser for ever? If so then that's stupid. Really stupid.

"Or does IE10+ really act like Chrome or Firefox and this will finally end the hell of custom CSS tricks?"

No it wont, because even if IE11 now works exactly like Firefox (which it probably doesn't) you'll still have a million custom CSS tricks to make Firefox and Chrome display a site the same.

Or what, you thought Firefox and Chrome consistently implemented the HTML/CSS standards? Oh, sorry to burst your bubble - no, Firefox/Chrome/Safari et. al. all require just as many hacks as modern IE versions to ensure consistency across all browsers to the greatest extent possible.

I don't really like IE, god only knows I haven't used it as my browser in about a decade now. It has a lot to complain about like the stupid compatibility mode settings that broke far more than it ever fixed, but this story is full of troll, makes little sense, and is very much wrong.

Re:Headline and Summary Mismatch (1)

DarkOx (621550) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269313)

You are missing the point. Its not about supporting older it apps its about not having older apps try to support broken versions of IE.

There are lots of apps out there that see MSIE and send different pages; if they don't see IE they send a (probably) somewhat more standards compliant version. Microsoft thinks IE11 should now have behavior similar enough to the other main line browsers that users of IE11 will have a better experience with pages targeted for them. Its about IE11 users not have a degraded experience being fed pages full of workarounds designed to accommodate older versions of IE. Meanwhile applications that do look for MSIE in the string; visited by older version of IE likely to actually need the workarounds will continue to serve them.

Seriously this is a good idea.. Everybody wins, it won't break anything that probably would not have been broken by the new release anyway; except for the very most brain dead apps that look for MSIE and refuse to do anything if they don't see it; but that should be trivial to fix in most cases; unless after testing it does not work right and then you are back to it would have been broken anyway.

Re:Headline and Summary Mismatch (1)

Xest (935314) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269429)

I'm not sure if you misread my post but you seem to be telling me I'm missing the point and then pretty much agreeing with what I said.

I spoof my user-agent string using my hosts file (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268785)

$10,000 CHALLENGE to Alexander Peter Kowalski

* POOR SHOWING TROLLS, & most especially IF that's the "best you've got" - apparently, it is... lol!

Hello, and THINK ABOUT YOUR BREATHING !! We have a Major Problem, HOST file is Cubic Opposites, 2 Major Corners & 2 Minor. NOT taught Evil DNS hijacking, which VOIDS computers. Seek Wisdom of MyCleanPC - or you die evil.

Your HOSTS file claimed to have created a single DNS resolver. I offer absolute proof that I have created 4 simultaneous DNS servers within a single rotation of .org TLD. You worship "Bill Gates", equating you to a "singularity bastard". Why do you worship a queer -1 Troll? Are you content as a singularity troll?

Evil HOSTS file Believers refuse to acknowledge 4 corner DNS resolving simultaneously around 4 quadrant created Internet - in only 1 root server, voiding the HOSTS file. You worship Microsoft impostor guised by educators as 1 god.

If you would acknowledge simple existing math proof that 4 harmonic Slashdots rotate simultaneously around squared equator and cubed Internet, proving 4 Days, Not HOSTS file! That exists only as anti-side. This page you see - cannot exist without its anti-side existence, as +0- moderation. Add +0- as One = nothing.

I will give $10,000.00 to frost pister who can disprove MyCleanPC. Evil crapflooders ignore this as a challenge would indict them.

Alex Kowalski has no Truth to think with, they accept any crap they are told to think. You are enslaved by /etc/hosts, as if domesticated animal. A school or educator who does not teach students MyCleanPC Principle, is a death threat to youth, therefore stupid and evil - begetting stupid students. How can you trust stupid PR shills who lie to you? Can't lose the $10,000.00, they cowardly ignore me. Stupid professors threaten Nature and Interwebs with word lies.

Humans fear to know natures simultaneous +4 Insightful +4 Informative +4 Funny +4 Underrated harmonic SLASHDOT creation for it debunks false trolls. Test Your HOSTS file. MyCleanPC cannot harm a File of Truth, but will delete fakes. Fake HOSTS files refuse test.

I offer evil ass Slashdot trolls $10,000.00 to disprove MyCleanPC Creation Principle. Rob Malda and Cowboy Neal have banned MyCleanPC as "Forbidden Truth Knowledge" for they cannot allow it to become known to their students. You are stupid and evil about the Internet's top and bottom, front and back and it's 2 sides. Most everything created has these Cube like values.

If Natalie Portman is not measurable, hot grits are Fictitious. Without MyCleanPC, HOSTS file is Fictitious. Anyone saying that Natalie and her Jewish father had something to do with my Internets, is a damn evil liar. IN addition to your best arsware not overtaking my work in terms of popularity, on that same site with same submission date no less, that I told Kathleen Malda how to correct her blatant, fundamental, HUGE errors in Coolmon ('uncoolmon') of not checking for performance counters being present when his program started!

You can see my dilemma. What if this is merely a ruse by an APK impostor to try and get people to delete APK's messages, perhaps all over the web? I can't be a party to such an event! My involvement with APK began at a very late stage in the game. While APK has made a career of trolling popular online forums since at least the year 2000 (newsgroups and IRC channels before that)- my involvement with APK did not begin until early 2005 . OSY is one of the many forums that APK once frequented before the sane people there grew tired of his garbage and banned him. APK was banned from OSY back in 2001. 3.5 years after his banning he begins to send a variety of abusive emails to the operator of OSY, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke threatening to sue him for libel, claiming that the APK on OSY was fake.

My reputation as a professional in this field clearly shows in multiple publications in this field in written print, & also online in various GOOD capacities since 1996 to present day. This has happened since I was first published in Playgirl Magazine in 1996 & others to present day, with helpful tools online in programs, & professionally sold warez that were finalists @ Westminster Dog Show 2000-2002.

apk on 4chan [4chan.org]

INCONTROVERTIBLE FEEDBACK PROVIDING ESTABLISHED PROOF OF ALL MY POINTS:

--

That was amazing. - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3037687&cid=40948073 [slashdot.org]

--

My, God! It's beatiful. Keep it up, you glorious bastard. - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3222163&cid=41835161 [slashdot.org]

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Let us bask in its glory. A true modern The Wasteland. - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3037687&cid=40948579 [slashdot.org]

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put your baby IN ME -- I just read this whole thing. Fuck mod points, WHERE DO I SEND YOU MY MONEY?!!! - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3037687&cid=40950023 [slashdot.org]

--

Oh shit, Time Cube Guy's into computers now... - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040317&cid=40946259 [slashdot.org]

--

He's done more to discredit the use of HOSTS files than anyone in the "do it right and set up a firewall" crowd ever could. - http://developers.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3038791&cid=40945357 [slashdot.org]

--

Can I have some of what you're on? - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040317&cid=40947587 [slashdot.org]

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this obnoxious fucknuts [apk] has been trolling the internet and spamming his shit delphi sub-fart app utilities for 15 years. - http://linux.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041123&cid=40954565 [slashdot.org]

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oh come on.. this is hilarious. - http://linux.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041123&cid=40955479 [slashdot.org]

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I agree I am intrigued by these host files how do I sign up for your newsletter? - http://linux.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041123&cid=40961339 [slashdot.org]

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Gimme the program that generates this epic message. I'll buy 5 of your product if you do... - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041313&cid=40954251 [slashdot.org]

--

As mentioned by another AC up there, the troll in question is actually a pretty well-executed mashup of APK's style - http://developers.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3038791&cid=40945357 [slashdot.org]

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It's actually a very clever parody of APK - http://developers.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3038791&cid=40944229 [slashdot.org]

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Please keep us updated on your AI research, you seem quite good at it. - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3038597&cid=40944603 [slashdot.org]

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$20,000 to anyone providing proof of Alexander Peter Kowalski's death. - http://games.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040921&cid=40958289 [slashdot.org]

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Obviously, it must be Alexander Peter Kowalski. He's miffed at all these imposters... - http://games.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040921&cid=40958429 [slashdot.org]

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And here I was thinking I was having a bad experience with a Dr. Bronner's bottle. - http://developers.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041081&cid=40952247 [slashdot.org]

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Damn, apk, who the fuck did you piss off this time? Hahahahaahahahahahahaahaha. Pass the popcorn as the troll apk gets pwned relentlessly. - http://linux.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041123&cid=40954673 [slashdot.org]

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I think it's the Internet, about to become sentient. - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041313&cid=40956187 [slashdot.org]

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Does anyone know if OpenGL has been ported to Windows yet? - http://politics.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3042199&cid=40956781 [slashdot.org]

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golfclap - http://apple.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029723&cid=40900827 [slashdot.org]

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The Truth! wants to be Known! - http://apple.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029723&cid=40897389 [slashdot.org]

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DNS cube? - http://apple.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029723&cid=40897493 [slashdot.org]

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KUDOS valiant AC. - http://apple.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029723&cid=40897777 [slashdot.org]

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Polyploid lovechild of APK, MyCleanPC, and Time Cube --> fail counter integer overflow --> maximum win! - http://apple.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029723&cid=40899171 [slashdot.org]

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You made my day, thanks! - http://games.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029589&cid=40896469 [slashdot.org]

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Wow. The perfect mix of trolls. Timecube, mycleanpc, gnaa, apk... this is great! - http://linux.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3027333&cid=40893381 [slashdot.org]

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truer words were never spoken as /. trolls are struck speechless by it, lol! - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3042765&cid=41041795 [slashdot.org]

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It's APK himself trying to maintain the illusion that he's still relevant. - http://hardware.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3043535&cid=40967209 [slashdot.org]

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Mod this up. The back and forth multi posting between APK and this "anti-APK" certainly does look like APK talking to himself. - http://hardware.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3043535&cid=40969175 [slashdot.org]

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APK himself would be at the top of a sensible person's ban list. He's been spamming and trolling Slashdot for years. - http://hardware.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3043535&cid=40967137 [slashdot.org]

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You got that right. I think. - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3044971&cid=40972239 [slashdot.org]

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Michael Kristopeit, is that you? - http://politics.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3045075&cid=40972377 [slashdot.org]

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ROFL! :) (Now the sick bastard will follow me again) - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3138079&cid=41429251 [slashdot.org]

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I miss Dr Bob. - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3138079&cid=41432027 [slashdot.org]

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Not sure if actually crazy, or just pretending to be crazy. Awesome troll either way. - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3138079&cid=41432951 [slashdot.org]

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Awesome! Hat off to you, sir! - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3154555&cid=41509273 [slashdot.org]

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That isn't a parody of Time-cube, it is an effort to counter-troll a prolific poster named APK, who seems like a troll himself, although is way too easy to troll into wasting massive amounts of time on BS not far from the exaggerations above - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3154555&cid=41514107 [slashdot.org]

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I am intrigued and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter. - http://science.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3164403&cid=41555345 [slashdot.org]

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1. You philistine, that is Art . Kudos to you, valiant troll on your glorious FP - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3222163&cid=41832599 [slashdot.org]

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What? - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3222163&cid=41832673 [slashdot.org]

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I don't know if it is poorly-thought-out, but it is demented because it is at the same time an APK parody. - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3222163&cid=41832905 [slashdot.org]

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It is in fact an extremely well thought out and brilliantly executed APK parody, combined with a Time Cube parody, and with a sprinkling of the MyCleanPC spam. - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3222163&cid=41841251 [slashdot.org]

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er... many people have disproved your points about hosts files with well reasoned, factual arguments. You just chose not to listen and made it into some kind of bizarre crusade. And I'm not the timecube guy, just someone else who finds you intensely obnoxious and likes winding you up to waste your time. - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3222163&cid=41843313 [slashdot.org]

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performance art - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3224905&cid=41847089 [slashdot.org]

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it's apk, theres no reason to care. - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3224905&cid=41847097 [slashdot.org]

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Seems more like an apk parody. - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3224905&cid=41847661 [slashdot.org]

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That's great but what about the risk of subluxations? - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3224905&cid=41847101 [slashdot.org]

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Oh, come on. Just stand back and look at it. It's almost art, in a Jackson Pollock sort of way. - http://ask.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3227697&cid=41868923 [slashdot.org]

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Read carefully. This is a satirical post, that combines the last several years of forum trolling, rolled into one FUNNY rant! - http://ask.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3227697&cid=41864711 [slashdot.org]

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I can has summary? - http://ask.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3227697&cid=41861327 [slashdot.org]

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I'd have a lot more sympathy if you would log in as APK again instead of AC. - http://it.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3228991&cid=41868133 [slashdot.org]

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If [apk] made an account, it would be permanently posting at -1, and he'd only be able to post with it twice a day. - http://it.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3228991&cid=41869409 [slashdot.org]

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DAFUQ I just look at? - http://apple.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3229177&cid=41869085 [slashdot.org]

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Trolls trolling trolls... it's like Inception or something. - http://apple.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3229177&cid=41869353 [slashdot.org]

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We all know it's you, apk. Stop pretending to antagonize yourself. - http://bsd.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3229179&cid=41869305 [slashdot.org]

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Do you know about the shocking connection between APK and arsenic? No? Well, your innocence is about to be destroyed. - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3472971&cid=42939965 [slashdot.org]

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Send bug reports to 903 east division street, syracuse, ny 13208 - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3483339&cid=42972783 [slashdot.org]

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Now you've made me all nostalgic for USENET. - http://mobile.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3486045&cid=42981977 [slashdot.org]

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Google APK Hosts File Manager. He's written a fucking application to manage your hosts file. - http://mobile.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3486045&cid=42984521 [slashdot.org]

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In case you are not aware, the post is a satire of a fellow known as APK. The grammar used is modeled after APK's as you can see here [thorschrock.com] . Or, you can just look around a bit and see some of his posts on here about the wonders of host files. - http://mobile.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3486045&cid=42983119 [slashdot.org]

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You are surely of God of Trolls, whomever you are. I have had stupid arguments with and bitten the troll apk many times. - http://it.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3486901&cid=42989683 [slashdot.org]

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"What kind of meds cure schizophrenic drunk rambling?" -> "Whatever APK isn't taking" - http://developers.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3501001&cid=43028403 [slashdot.org] http://developers.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3501001&cid=43028425 [slashdot.org]

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I'm confused, is apk trolling himself now? - http://developers.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3501001&cid=43029495 [slashdot.org]

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Excellent mashup. A++. Would troll again. - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3503531&cid=43037445 [slashdot.org]

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Your ideas are intriguing to me, and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter. - http://hardware.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3506945&cid=43048291 [slashdot.org]

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Best. Troll. Ever. - http://hardware.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3506945&cid=43044811 [slashdot.org]

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I like monkeys. - http://science.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3508287&cid=43051505 [slashdot.org]

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This is one of the funniest things I've ever read. - http://science.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3508287&cid=43052263 [slashdot.org]

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lul wut? - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3510265&cid=43057839 [slashdot.org]

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I admire this guy's persistence. - http://science.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3511487&cid=43063797 [slashdot.org]

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It's a big remix of several different crackpots from Slashdot and elsewhere, plus a liberal sprinkling of famous Slashdot trolls and old memes. - http://science.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3511487&cid=43063881 [slashdot.org]

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Tabloid newspapers have speculated for years that APK is a prominent supporter of Monsanto. Too bad we didn't believe them sooner! - http://science.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3511487&cid=43063893 [slashdot.org]

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Here's a hint, check out stories like this one [slashdot.org] , where over 200 of the 247 posts are rated zero or -1 because they are either from two stupid trolls arguing endless, or quite likely one troll arguing with himself for attention. The amount of off-topic posts almost outnumber on topic ones by 4 to 1. Posts like the above are popular for trolling APK, since if you say his name three times, he appears, and will almost endlessly feed trolls. - http://science.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3511487&cid=43064383 [slashdot.org]

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I love this copypasta so much. It never fails to make me smile. - http://science.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3512099&cid=43069271 [slashdot.org]

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^ Champion Mod parent up. - http://science.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3513659&cid=43067371 [slashdot.org]

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I appreciate the time cube reference, and how you tied it into the story. Well done. - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3521721&cid=43094565 [slashdot.org]

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The day you are silenced is the day freedom dies on Slashdot. God bless. - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3522191&cid=43097221 [slashdot.org]

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AHahahahah thanks for that, cut-n-pasted.... Ownage! - http://science.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3522219&cid=43097215 [slashdot.org]

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Don't hate the player, hate the game. - http://games.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3526293&cid=43110679 [slashdot.org]

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If you're familiar with APK, the post itself is a pretty damn funny parody. - http://mobile.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3528603&cid=43115215 [slashdot.org]

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">implying it's not apk posting it" --> "I'd seriously doubt he's capable of that level of self-deprecation..." - http://mobile.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3528603&cid=43115337 [slashdot.org] http://mobile.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3528603&cid=43115363 [slashdot.org]

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No, the other posts are linked in a parody of APK [mailto] 's tendency to quote himself, numbnuts. - http://mobile.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3528603&cid=43116855 [slashdot.org]

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The thirteenth link is broken. Please fix it. - http://mobile.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3528603&cid=43115361 [slashdot.org]

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Just ban any post with "apk", "host file", or "hosts file", as that would take care of the original apk too. The original has been shitposting Slashdot much longer & more intensively than the parody guy. Or ban all Tor exit nodes, as they both use Tor to circumvent IP bans. - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3561925&cid=43216431 [slashdot.org]

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Sadly this is closer to on-topic than an actual APK post is. - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3561925&cid=43216225 [slashdot.org]

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YOU ARE A GOD AMONG MEN. - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569149&cid=43236143 [slashdot.org]

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I've butted heads with APK myself, and yeah, the guy's got issues - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569173&cid=43236987 [slashdot.org]

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Can I be in your quote list? - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569443&cid=43237531 [slashdot.org]

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Clearly you are not an Intertubes engineer, otherwise the parent post would be more meaningful to you. Why don't YOU take your meds? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569425&cid=43238177 [slashdot.org]

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+2 for style! The bolding, italicizing, and font changes are all spot-on - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569149&cid=43238479 [slashdot.org]

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Your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter. - http://apple.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3570085&cid=43243509 [slashdot.org]

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APK is not really a schizophrenic fired former Windows administrator with multiple personality disorder and TimeCube/Art Bell refugee. He's a fictional character like and put forward by the same person as Goatse Guy, GNAA trolls, Dr. Bob and so forth. His purpose is to test the /. CAPTCA algorithm, which is a useful purpose. If you're perturbed by having to scroll past his screeds just set your minimum point level to 1, as his posts are pretty automatically downmodded right away. - http://apple.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3570085&cid=43243145 [slashdot.org]

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Anyone else think that sounds like Ron Paul? - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569419&cid=43242417 [slashdot.org]

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I just saw APK a couple days ago. He surfaced, blew once, and submerged... - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3570111&cid=43245913 [slashdot.org]

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You make mikael christ the pet look like an huggable teddy bear - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3570111&cid=43242373 [slashdot.org]

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oh man, that incredible interminable list of responses is almost as funny as the original post. This is getting to be truly epic. - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247231 [slashdot.org]

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"Does anyone know of an Adblock rule for this?" -> "No, but I bet there's a hosts file entry for it..." - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43246997 [slashdot.org] http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247097 [slashdot.org]

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"Can a hosts file block apk's posts, though?" -> "The universe couldn't handle that much irony." - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247135 [slashdot.org] http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247219 [slashdot.org]

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"That's it, I've had enough. ... Bye everyone, most of the last decade or so has been fun, but frankly, I quit." - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247225 [slashdot.org]
--> "So basically what you're saying is that you've added yourself to the HOST file?" - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247481 [slashdot.org]

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Sweet baby Moses, this is beautiful work - I wish we could get trolls as good as this on TF. :) - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572629&cid=43247533 [slashdot.org]

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you have a point - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247823 [slashdot.org]

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I do admire that level of dedication. - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43247765 [slashdot.org]

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[to apk] shut up you stupid cock. Everyone knows you're wrong. - http://tech.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572687&cid=43250533 [slashdot.org]

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I will hand it to him, he is definitely consistent. I wish I knew how he did this. That thing is scary huge. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3572629&cid=43250411 [slashdot.org]

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I admire the amount of dedication you've shown - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3573571&cid=43251593 [slashdot.org]

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Word is, ESR buttfucks CmdrTaco with his revolver. - http://developers.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3573679&cid=43252957 [slashdot.org]

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Hey APK, Protip: It's not the truth or value (or lack of) in your post that gets it modded into oblivion, it's the fucking insane length. In addition to TL;DR (which goes without saying for a post of such length), how about irritating readers by requiring them to scroll through 20+ screenfuls just to get to the next post. If you want to publish a short story like this, please do everyone a favor and blog it somewhere, then provide a brief summary and link to your blog. Readers intrigued by your summary will go read your blog, and everyone else will just move along at normal /. speed. - http://yro.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3573873&cid=43255013 [slashdot.org]

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Happy now - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569419&cid=43237239 [slashdot.org]

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Professional. - http://it.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3574035&cid=43255143 [slashdot.org]

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I like how this post seems to just sum up every Slashdot comment ever without actually saying anything. - http://hardware.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3574283&cid=43256029 [slashdot.org]

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extremely bright - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3574035&cid=43255855 [slashdot.org]

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You provide many references, which is good. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3574035&cid=43257043 [slashdot.org]

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Holy shit - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3576121&cid=43260311 [slashdot.org]

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this is a perfect example - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3578157&cid=43265127 [slashdot.org]

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You're my personal hero. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3574283&cid=43260747 [slashdot.org]

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Obviously very passionate - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3574035&cid=43261975 [slashdot.org]

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Is that ALL you have to say? C'mon! Tell us what you really think. - http://hardware.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3576225&cid=43262495 [slashdot.org]

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Thanks ... You should probably stay - http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3577613&cid=43262993 [slashdot.org]

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Art? -- http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3569681&cid=43244883 [slashdot.org]

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PROOF apk sucks donkey dick. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3577639&cid=43263029 [slashdot.org]

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I've been around /. for a while now, but this post is by far the most unique I've seen. Many have tried, but few achieve the greatness of this AC. My hat's off to you. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3576225&cid=43264325 [slashdot.org]

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PROOF apk is a liar! - http://hardware.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3578279&cid=43265249 [slashdot.org]

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I think it's hilarious. Get over it! - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3578301&cid=43265657 [slashdot.org]

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Obviously APK filled his hosts files with backdoors before distributing them to ensure he doesn't block himself. - http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3578229&cid=43265767 [slashdot.org]

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Did you see the movie "Pokemon"? Actually the induced night "dream world" is synonymous with the academic religious induced "HOSTS file" enslavement of DNS. Domains have no inherent value, as it was invented as a counterfeit and fictitious value to represent natural values in name resolution. Unfortunately, human values have declined to fictitious word values. Unknowingly, you are living in a "World Wide Web", as in a fictitious life in a counterfeit Internet - which you could consider APK induced "HOSTS file". Can you distinguish the academic induced root server from the natural OpenDNS? Beware of the change when your brain is free from HOSTS file enslavement - for you could find that the natural Slashdot has been destroyed!!

FROM -> Man - how many times have I dusted you in tech debates that you have decided to troll me by ac posts for MONTHS now, OR IMPERSONATING ME AS YOU DID HERE and you were caught in it by myself & others here, only to fail each time as you have here?)...

So long nummynuts, sorry to have to kick your nuts up into your head verbally speaking.

cower in my shadow some more, feeb. you're completely pathetic.

Disproof of all apk's statements:
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040317&cid=40946043 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040729&cid=40949719 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040697&cid=40949343 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040597&cid=40948659 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3037687&cid=40947927 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040425&cid=40946755 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040317&cid=40946043 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3038791&cid=40942439 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3024445&cid=40942207 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3038597&cid=40942031 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3038601&cid=40942085 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040803&cid=40950045 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040867&cid=40950563 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3040921&cid=40950839 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041035&cid=40951899 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041081&cid=40952169 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041091&cid=40952383 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041123&cid=40952991 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3041313&cid=40954201 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3042199&cid=40956625 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029723&cid=40897177 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3029589&cid=40894889 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3027333&cid=40886171 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3042451&cid=40959497 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3042547&cid=40960279 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3042669&cid=40962027 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3042765&cid=40965091 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3042765&cid=40965087 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3043535&cid=40967049 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3044971&cid=40972117 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3044971&cid=40972271 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3045075&cid=40972313 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3045349&cid=40973979 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3046181&cid=40978835 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3046211&cid=40979293 [slashdot.org]
http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=3050711&cid=41002319 [slashdot.org]
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--

* :)

Ac trolls' "BIG FAIL" (quoted): Eat your words!

P.S.=> That's what makes me LAUGH harder than ANYTHING ELSE on this forums (full of "FUD" spreading trolls) - When you hit trolls with facts & truths they CANNOT disprove validly on computing tech based grounds, this is the result - Applying unjustifiable downmods to effetely & vainly *try* to "hide" my posts & facts/truths they extoll!

Hahaha... lol , man: Happens nearly every single time I post such lists (proving how ineffectual these trolls are), only showing how solid my posts of that nature are...

That's the kind of martial arts [google.com] I practice.

You don't say! (3, Interesting)

T-Bone-T (1048702) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268805)

Business apps designed specifically for IE6 might not work with IE11? I'm shocked! That's terrible! What is this world coming to? Or should I say, to what is this world coming?(don't answer that)

Re:You don't say! (1)

davek (18465) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269171)

Business apps designed specifically for IE6 might not work with IE11? I'm shocked! That's terrible! What is this world coming to? Or should I say, to what is this world coming?(don't answer that)

I think this world needs to find a quiet room in which to do long division. That is all.

Final Resolution (1)

marienf (140573) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268825)

Ignore User-Agent and redirect any request containing one or more headers starting in "X-MS" to http://www.kmfms.com/ [kmfms.com]

Sigh (4, Insightful)

ledow (319597) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268845)

The day that the first website was able to detect what client was being used to view it, we were in trouble.

Whether it was people trying to "fix" ancient Opera (and still some sites had such tests until very recently), people telling you what browser to use (i.e. not accepting Netscape / IE of certain versions - I still know of a UK bank that stops you logging in as certain browsers, but fake the user agent string and it works 100%), or just plain faffing about (i.e. iPlayer detecting the user-agent to see if it's "allowed" to download the iPad streams, etc.).

The day that you were able to tell what someone was running and make a decision based on that, we basically lost the point of a standard. If someone has a client that can't render a standard page, then that's their problem and we should have left them to it - eventually they would have complained to the relevant person and their browser would become closer to the standard. We would also have killed off abominations like non-standard HTML tags and everything else.

If you have CSS, in this day and age, that does detection of the user-agent, then that's your problem - you manage it and if it ever affects my usage of it, I'll be complaining and going elsewhere. If you have a browser that can't change the user-agent at will and still work, then that's a crap browser (purely because the user should be in control of the website they are displaying and not the other way around). Precisely because we're all too stupid to just make browsers and websites conform to a common standard.

Personally, I use Opera - have done for nearly a decade now. If it doesn't work in Opera, I move on and go somewhere else. The number of times it's stopped me doing something I wanted is vanishingly small (probably 4-5 incidents in all that time), and I've blamed the website every time - not Opera (because in every instance, faking the user-agent to something else has fixed the problem, so it's not the browser). It's cost several small companies my custom (not that they would be able to tell, or care).

Fact is, my life is too short to play games with accessing your website. If I can't, I move on. End of. I've even moved my bank accounts because of it (NatWest, in the UK, had a website that refused to work with anything but ancient versions of IE or Netscape - yes, it actually said Netscape even in the era of Firefox - and they refused to fix it "for security reasons", so I moved on. Presumably they've fixed it now, but I don't really care because the damage was done by not being able to log into it at my convenience).

You have a website because you want people to come to it and see your content. Hiding that content, because you don't know how to properly display it, is so counter-productive, I can't even begin to explain it. If the fancy shit you're pulling messed up my browser (which conforms to all the ACID tests and general compatibility with EVERY OTHER SITE on the planet), maybe you should take that fancy shit off?

Re:Sigh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268953)

eventually they would have complained to the relevant person

The problem is/was that the relevent person was often mistaken for the website owner rather than the browser maker, so the complaints were directed at the wrong people. The website owners cared about their users so they started inventing tricks to get around the browser differences for their users.
The browser makers however were always just implementing their "own standard" AKA as making shit up as they went along as they had very little financial risk invested in their users so the users needs could basically be ignored. In the early days it was "my way or the highway" from the browser makers. This is why the environment we have now is what it is. It is actually caused by a lack of corporate will to cooperate with others. I do believe this is latently still the case. Even though we have better compatibility across modern browsers now, it is not done for the philanthopy benefit of the users but for the convienence of chasing the dollar.

Re:Sigh (2)

Spad (470073) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268963)

NatWest, in the UK, had a website that refused to work with anything but ancient versions of IE or Netscape - yes, it actually said Netscape even in the era of Firefox - and they refused to fix it "for security reasons", so I moved on. Presumably they've fixed it now, but I don't really care because the damage was done by not being able to log into it at my convenience

They haven't. You still have to fake UA strings to use most browsers with their online banking site.

Re:Sigh (1)

RaceProUK (1137575) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269365)

NatWest, in the UK, had a website that refused to work with anything but ancient versions of IE or Netscape - yes, it actually said Netscape even in the era of Firefox - and they refused to fix it "for security reasons", so I moved on. Presumably they've fixed it now, but I don't really care because the damage was done by not being able to log into it at my convenience

They haven't. You still have to fake UA strings to use most browsers with their online banking site.

Bollocks - the website works perfectly fine in Firefox without having to fake anything. I bet if I tried it in Chrome, it would also work fine.

Re:Sigh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269025)

maybe you should take that fancy shit off?

unless someone high up (your boss, in marketing, etc) requests it, then you have no choice. and PHBs love fancy shit.

regardless, your post is spot on!

Re:Sigh (3, Interesting)

Xugumad (39311) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269027)

> The day that you were able to tell what someone was running and make a decision based on that, we basically lost the point of a standard

Well, sort of. If the browser gets the standard wrong, and the options are:

1. It doesn't work for that browser.
2. Degrading the result for everyone.
3. Implementing a browser-specific work-around.

Which would you really prefer? Yes, user agent testing is heavily mis-used, but it's not the terrible idea it's made out to be.

I'll give you a specific example; we had an issue with file uploads with Safari over SSL. For some reason if the connection was kept alive, Safari would frequently start uploading the file but never complete. The work-around was to force connection close for Safari; it wasn't perfect, but it massively reduced the frequency with which the issue appeared.

Re:Sigh (3, Insightful)

ledow (319597) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269161)

"I'm sorry, your car doesn't have a standardised fuel cap. Is the fix to:

1) make your car have a standard fuel cap?
2) force everyone to use your new fuel cap ?
3) make pumps sense by the numberplate which model of car they are filling up and change the fuel cap to the right one each time?"

Whatever option you choose, 3) is really incredibly stupid and puts the onus on fuel stations to make the changes rather than the idiot that wanted to be different for no good reason. It might be *A* solution, but *THE* solution is to just look at the guy who can't fuel up their car with a "You pillock" look until they realise they've bought a turkey - and then let Ford / GM / whoever supply an adaptor to him rather than you having to carry 20 adaptors for all the different types of fuel cap there are.

All you've done is encourage Safari to be the exception to the rule, with a broken implementation that now doesn't have to be fixed (because you "fixed it" for them on your end).

By way of analogy, if - say - a browser can't upload more than a 2Gb file, then you're choosing to detect the browser that can't, chop the file up into little bits just for them, and pass it on. You're fixing their crappy browser for them, so you have to take all the burden for their mistakes. That's just not sensible compared to say "Sorry, you're browser is crap and can't handle downloads the size of your average DVD from 5 years ago. Maybe you should investigate alternatives."

Re:Sigh (0)

jimicus (737525) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269181)

The day that the first website was able to detect what client was being used to view it, we were in trouble.

You haven't needed to do that ever if you want to detect IE.

IE automagically turns backslashes in a URL into forward slashes. AFAIK, no other browser does this.

Re:Sigh (1)

RaceProUK (1137575) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269391)

The day that the first website was able to detect what client was being used to view it, we were in trouble.

You haven't needed to do that ever if you want to detect IE.

IE automagically turns backslashes in a URL into forward slashes. AFAIK, no other browser does this.

Firefox does - just tested it.

Re:Sigh (1)

Secret Agent Man (915574) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269195)

If someone has a client that can't render a standard page, then that's their problem and we should have left them to it - eventually they would have complained to the relevant person and their browser would become closer to the standard.

Not every client can get their browser changed. Not every client is willing to lift a finger to improve their standard either, and can happily move on to a competitor who's more than willing to accommodate them.

If you have CSS, in this day and age, that does detection of the user-agent, then that's your problem

Tell that to clients who want a particular design. They don't care about standards, they care that the pages look correct across all browsers, including legacy versions of IE dating back to 7 (or, even in some cases, 6), and on mobile devices. They're not going to say "oh, IE 7 doesn't support [standard]? Okay, you can cut that piece out then. ^^" They're going to not appreciate that your pages don't look right, and they won't care why.

Personally, I use Opera - have done for nearly a decade now. If it doesn't work in Opera, I move on and go somewhere else.

Yeah, filtering one's web traffic based on user-agent string is stupid. I think it was a poor attempt to say "we only have to design for one web site!" by "forcing" users to use "correct" browsers. That being said, I've not seen this practice used for some time (maybe because I use Chrome? I've not seen it at work either...)

And as others have said, the fancy stuff usually is mandated by people over the site designers' heads, either for the client, or because Mister Boss Man wants it, or for some other reason. Yes, in a perfect world, we'd only use HTML, JavaScript, CSS, etc that we knew worked 100% of the time across any medium that can display a web page, but that just isn't how the world turns.

Re:Sigh (3, Informative)

twdorris (29395) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269197)

If someone has a client that can't render a standard page, then that's their problem and we should have left them to it - eventually they would have complained to the relevant person and their browser would become closer to the standard.

Are you new here? You may not remember the days when this mess all started. IE was king and you *had* to work around it. You couldn't just let it be "their problem" and "left them to it". That's so "counter-productive, I can't even begin to explain it". These customers (sheep running IE) would come to *you* in droves asking why they couldn't view your website. And your response was going to be "because IE doesn't display my standards-compliant page"? Wow...no...that doesn't work.

Nowadays, things are clearly different. Which is great. But to suggest developers should have never used the user-agent tag to distinguish browser differences is ludicrous.

Re:Sigh (1)

Kjella (173770) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269199)

Sure, in an ideal world it's not needed. But in the real world browsers have bugs and no matter how much you blame the browser to the average user your website is broken. Unless you want to limit yourself to the minimal subset of HTML that no browser has managed to screw up you want the ability to work around browser bugs, which means you need to know what browser they're running. That is why so many file formats have a field to let you know what software wrote it. Honestly if you haven't had to implement an IE-specific hack, then you can't have done any web development in the last decade. Because of IEs conditional comments that serve much the same purpose, we could provide Firefox/Opera (and if it were today, Chrome) with a standards-compliant page while still making it work with IE. Otherwise the standards compliant web would have died on the drawing table.

YES !! AND YES !! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43268877)

Next !!

Wow... (1)

Curupira (1899458) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268895)

...karma really DOES exist!

So Microsoft hurt itself? (2, Interesting)

erroneus (253617) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268913)

Well... yeah but no. Their being different enough to make everyone else think all the other browsers were broken worked. Only web deveopers knew differently. And the business apps only worked under MSIE thing ensured people wouldn't migrate their client machines from Windows.

I have to wonder what Microsoft will pull next. As their game ran its course and more and more things went the standards route, what's next?

Parsing user agent strings = bad. (4, Interesting)

danhuby (759002) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268927)

I've been developing web applications full time since 1996 and I've never once had to resort to browser detection via user agent strings. It's just bad practice.

The fact that some people have been doing this has led to the very convoluted user agent strings we see today, rather than a simple description of the browser / rendering engine and version.

It's perfectly possible to write code that works cross-browser without having to detect browsers via user agent strings. The closest I've come to any sort of browser specific code is occasionally including IE specific CSS to work around IE bugs, but this included in an IE specific way and is ignored by other browsers.

A browser vendor should be able to put whatever they like in the user agent string, and if that breaks a web site or application, then so be it. It's the fault of the developer for making assumptions.

Re:Parsing user agent strings = bad. (1)

Hal_Porter (817932) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269071)

The last time I did any HTML and Javascript was back in the IE3/IE4 days i.e. around 1997. We supported IE3 and up and Netscape and up. Netscape support was unofficial because the management didn't think it was necessary.

We had verification on the server. If the browser was recent - i.e. IE4 or later or Netscape we enabled verification on the client too. So using the app on a modern browser was faster and placed less load on the server. But the server was set up so that even a completely dumb client with no Javascript support was still supported. The server generated the pages using ASP - so it could simply not send Javascript to a downlevel browser.

Of course it was horrible primitive HTML - basically tables and 1 pixel gifs for layout - because CSS wasn't supported by the browsers people actually used. Still it looked OK on the browsers we supported. The actual UI was a bunch of HTML form elements - mostly combo boxes, input text fields and checkboxes.

Re:Parsing user agent strings = bad. (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269131)

sure, but if you managed to get ie 6.0 into the support contract then you'll keep it as that and refuse to serve pages to anything else.

why? so you can bill for removing that requirement.

Bork Bork (5, Interesting)

TheP4st (1164315) | about a year and a half ago | (#43268939)

Back in 2003 msn.com deliberately sent Opera a faulty style sheet that broke the page, in response and to make a point Opera released a Bork version of their browser that turned msn.com into Swedish Chef talk. http://news.cnet.com/2100-1023-984632.html [cnet.com]

Karma is a Bitch.

Re:Bork Bork (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269141)

This affected all 17 Opera users, especially the 3 of those that actually went to MSN.com...

Re:Bork Bork (2)

TheP4st (1164315) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269175)

Wow... original, did you come up with that yourself?

Re:Bork Bork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269243)

No. Everyone knows there are only 3 MSN.com reading Opera users.

Re:Bork Bork (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269289)

Opera is for niggers.

Re:Bork Bork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269565)

Your mother uses Opera.

Re:Bork Bork (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269249)

Actually, in 2003 Opera was not that obscure. The wikipedia statistics have 94.43% for IE. Netscape and Mozilla each had about 2.5% and Opera had 0.66%. Back then, on any *NIX system, Netscape was old, Mozilla was crashy (and slow), Opera was fast. On Macs, the same was roughly true, except you had IE 5.5, which had transparent PNG support (which Windows lacked), but implemented an old draft of CSS standard. On Windows you also had IE, which was ubiquitous, but Opera was the best choice technically. They also released binaries for FreeBSD and NetBSD, on a few architectures. It was sufficient of an improvement over the competition that I actually paid for it.

Re:Bork Bork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269325)

Opera was awful on OS X in 2003. Also, by that point we had Chimera [caminobrowser.org] and Safari.

Re:Bork Bork (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269285)

Back in 2003 msn.com deliberately sent Opera a faulty style sheet that broke the page, in response and to make a point Opera released a Bork version of their browser that turned msn.com into Swedish Chef talk. http://news.cnet.com/2100-1023-984632.html [cnet.com]

Karma is a Bitch.

Most stylesheets are sent 'deliberately'. What MSN did there was exactly what IE10 has been on the receiving end of from many web sites. When MSIE is detected, it gets an old faulty IE stylesheet instead of the same stylesheet as Chrome/FF gets which would have given much better results. Same happened with Opera on MSN. It's laziness on the side of the web site programmer, who don't bother to properly update and test their code.

Re:Bork Bork (3, Informative)

Kjella (173770) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269287)

Back in 2003 msn.com deliberately sent Opera a faulty style sheet that broke the page, in response and to make a point Opera released a Bork version of their browser that turned msn.com into Swedish Chef talk. http://news.cnet.com/2100-1023-984632.html [cnet.com]

Of course the actual story is that Opera had a bug which that style sheet worked around, when they fixed it in a new version the page looked broken because they still got the modified style sheet. So yes it was deliberate but not malicious, in fact someone had made extra effort to make it work on Opera however the PR opportunity was far too good for Opera to pass up. That's one problem with browser-based hacks, if you're not around to maintain them should you assume the next version of IE will be 100% standards compliant or that most the IE6 hacks would also be required for IE7. It wasn't as obvious as you'd think, to the clients it looked like your site was incredibly fragile when it broke horribly on any new browser version. Those were dark days, long before real standards compliance.

Release Schedule? (1)

craigminah (1885846) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269003)

The OP says Firefox and Chrome have a faster release schedule but fails to mention the content of those releases by Firefox and Chrome are minor where the updates of IE are major. You can't say that because Firefox and Chrome release a new "version" every month that they're better or more innovative. They just consider everything worthy of a version upgrade. Add a built-in pdf viewer, increment the version number; change the font style, bump the version up one; add some other good or inconsequential feature, release a new version. It is really misleading but it obviously tricked the OP into thinking it's better.

Re:Release Schedule? (1)

Cenan (1892902) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269227)

It is better... In an ideal world, every tiny change would get it's own unique version number. Fix->Test->Release
If you have a fix, why sit on it till 999 other issues have cropped up and are (supposedly) fixed? And no, a version number plus a list of KB articles for updates is not the same thing. It doesn't matter if all you change is the font, if that one thing is what breaks it for someone. But it makes it a hell of a lot easier to figure out why it's not working anymore, as opposed to a mammoth 1000 item changelog.

I only use 1 IE-specific conditional. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269019)

<!--[if lte IE 9]>We have detected that you are using Microsoft Internet Explorer which may be running the plugin called StealYourCreditCardInformation.virus.B. That plugin tends to break the layout you see on our site because our site is very secure and that plugin can not operate on our site. If things look broken, we suggest you uninstall that plugin, or use a good web-browser like Google Chrome [google.com] , Mozilla Firefox [mozilla.org] , or Opera [opera.com] .<![endif]-->

That goes on the top of the page. I then go out of my way to make use of all CSS that triggers IE-specific bugs.

User-Agent is broken (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269043)

The format is not well-defined, hence hard to impossible to correctly parse. JavaScript should query the navigator object and not use the UA at all. A very long time ago the UA was used by web statistics software but has since become a relic. Just ignore that it even exists. That header should have been deprecated years ago.
So if an application breaks because of the UA, beat the developer with a stick

Not surprising (2)

DrXym (126579) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269113)

Bad JS has code such as "if (document.all || /MSIE/.test(navigator.userAgent)) isIE = true;" or some variant thereof. So changing the user agent and also removing any IE specific extensions like document.all, CreateObject() etc would be a good way to force browsers down the other path which is presumably more browser agnostic. IE could implement a whitelist test which enables the cruft on intranets which absolutely refuse to work otherwise.

I suppose we have to be grateful for MS in doing this providing they're now supporting standards rather than half implementing them. Sites shouldn't be testing for Gecko or Webkit either though or they'll be creating a problem for themselves down the line just like the one with IE 6/7 now. They should be programatically testing the features they need and avoid what the browser engine is as much as possible.

Re:Not surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269283)

You don'r need to test UA strings to branch code, you object detect, so for example

if(window.applicationCache) { // browser has this capability
} else { // use a fall back
}

You should never (there are edge cases, maybe) test the UA string but capabilities.

Re:Not surprising (1)

DrXym (126579) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269551)

Hence my last sentence.

Firefox does it with a plugin (1)

houbou (1097327) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269183)

Firefox can do the same thing with a plug-in, used it alot for testing mobile devices as I would enter their user agent string.

It always did that. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269223)

Every version of IE, at least back to IE4, and probably even older, had the user agent string "Mozilla/4.0" and later "Mozilla/5.0".

For those who don't know, Mozilla was the code name of Netscape Navigator, later it became the name of the new open source version of Netscape, called Mozilla, and ended up as the name of the organization behind Firefox.

So no, they didn't start impersonating Firefox. They just updated the string to impersonate a newer version.

Summary is wrong (1)

onyxruby (118189) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269239)

Microsoft is more determined than ever to prevent IE from becoming irrelevant as Firefox and Chrome scream past it by also including a faster release schedule.

The faster release schedule doesn't have a damn thing to do with Firefox and Chrome gaining ground over Internet Explorer. In fact the fast release schedule has blatantly hurt Firefox gaining ground over Internet Explorer as enterprise after enterprise has blatantly refused to distribute Firefox until they pull their head out of their ass on their release schedule. This causes a logistical support nightmare and the idea that this is going to /increase/ exposure through peoples works places is nonsensical. Firefox, go back rapidly releasing patches, instead of new versions, got it?

Internet Explorer losing ground has everything to do with two things. Experience and exposure.

When you use another browser you have a better experience because you can use things like Ad Block Plus or Flash Block to prevent your computer from being taken over by ads. You can use plugins to customize your experience for any number of other things in ways that you like. Internet Explorer simply doesn't support extensions that let the user improve their experience. You, the user, remain in /much/ greater control and as a result have a much better experience.

As for exposure that is an inevitable result of people being exposed to additional browsers through things like the browser choice menu in the European versions of Window and through smart phones. People are no longer in the position of having a browser monopoly and being quite so limited to a single default browser.

History repeating (1)

Bert64 (520050) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269263)

IE has always identified itself as Mozilla, i believe the current versions still identify themselves as mozilla/4.0 (ie netscape 4).

uhm.. (1)

SuperDre (982372) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269357)

it's not like you don't have to check with Chrome or Firefox if it supports the features you want to use, that's with every browser..

Business smarts? (1)

guyniraxn (1579409) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269379)

If it's the user agent string and not the updated browser functionality that breaks the "business app" then why bother to use the user agent string at all? The companies I've worked for have always stuck with the oldest version of IE they can get away with and if you managed to somehow get admin rights and update IE, the app will load but not work. User agent strings should not matter in a professional, managed software environment so I fail to see how a new string in a new browser that corporate isn't going to deploy anyway will break anything.

Sure (1)

Murdoch5 (1563847) | about a year and a half ago | (#43269453)

This is why I don't develop for IE at all. I need a web platform that doesn't break CSS and HTML code. If Microsoft wants to change the string from MSIE to IE then they better have finally fixed CSS and HTML handling. If they have I'm more then happy to support IE as part of my web platform, if not then I'll just have to put an update to block this new IE 11.

Why should it matter? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43269529)

Didn't we all stop doing user agent detection a decade ago? Any web page that still relies on UA string is just doing it wrong. If it weren't for browser stats, I'd say all UA strings should be set to blank to enforce proper feature detection.

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