2006/10/07

IE7 and Front Page: Change is Good? / NNi

A couple Microsoft changes were in the news recently which may impact people you know who use Internet Explorer or have a website designed with Front Page.

They say change is good. Ultimately these two Microsoft changes will unquestionably lead to good things. Unfortunately there will be short term problems caused by the changes.

It has been a lonnnnngggg time since major improvements were made in Internet Explorer. Because about 80% of people on the internet use IE, it was a popular program for malware writers to attack. Many people's adware or spyware woes are due to using IE. The release and subsequent popularity of the Firefox browser with some obvious improvements over IE has also put pressure on MS to issue an improved version of the world's most-used web browser.

IE7 problems will occur primarily because the improved browser is going to automatically installed on most people's WinXP SP2 computers. The change may cause confusion for some and will result in conflicts on a few systems. Because it's an auto-push, some people may see some changes and not know what caused the changes because they don't know they've switched from IE6 to IE7.

One potentially huge problem is retail online shopping websites that don't work properly with IE7. There is no way to tell for sure how many sites won't work well with IE7, but during the peak holiday sales period is not the best time to find out. In addition to potential sales problems for customers, there is the likelihood help desks everywhere will have phones ringing off the hook because of issues with the new browser version.

The other change is that MS is discontinuing support for its Front Page webpage design program. One impact of this change is some ISPs are discontinuing support of websites designed with Front Page. One reason for discontinuing support is MS will no longer develop and issue patches for security problems caused by Front Page. The ISPs have an obligation to not expose their systems to potential security problems which hosting websites built with Front Page could cause. For many ISPs that means no more hosting websites designed using Front Page.

Six months from now everyone will be glad that Front Page is gone and the world is surfing the web with IE7, but there will be a few pains and groans between now and then. Review your situtation and the situations of your customers and friends to minimize the pain they experience because of these two changes.

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Below is the initial list of issues for the Monday, 09 October 2006, NEW NET (Northeast Wisconsin Network for Economy and Technology) 6:50 pm weekly gathering at Mister Churro, 207 N. Richmond St., Appleton, Wisconsin, USA. The final list will be posted on this blog by 1500 hours (3 pm) Central U.S.A. time on 09 October 2006.

  1. Best Buy, SanDisk, RealNetworks Unveil Player, Digital Music Store http://www.informationweek.com/industries/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=193104971
  2. More Than Half of the Nation's 117 Million Active Gamers Play Online, and 64% are Women http://biz.yahoo.com/prnews/061005/nyth091.html?.v=66
  3. IE7 Is Coming This Month...Are you Ready? http://blogs.msdn.com/ie/archive/2006/10/06/IE7-Is-Coming-This-Month_2E002E002E00_Are-you-Ready_3F00_.aspx
  4. AT&T DSL: no more contracts http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20061004-7907.html
  5. A List of Amazon S3 Backup Tools http://jeremy.zawodny.com/blog/archives/007641.html
  6. 20 Smart Companies to Start Now http://money.cnn.com/magazines/business2/business2_archive/2006/09/01/8384349/
  7. Sun to hold press conference in Second Life http://www.tgdaily.com/2006/10/06/sun_second_life/
  8. Bush defies Congress on DHS privacy reports http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20061006-7928.html
  9. REVIEW: Writely mostly hits the mark http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20061005/ap_on_hi_te/tech_test_writely
  10. Totally wireless on campus http://news.yahoo.com/s/usatoday/20061003/tc_usatoday/totallywirelessoncampus
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