Google shares Mozilla's stance on Windows RT browser restriction

Google has released a statement agreeing with Mozilla's frustration regarding browsers on Windows RT. The company, which develops the Chrome browser, believes that Microsoft is harming browser innovation by not allowing users to choose their own browser.

We share the concerns Mozilla has raised regarding the Windows 8 environment restricting user choice and innovation. We've always welcomed innovation in the browser space across all platforms and strongly believe that having great competitors makes us all work harder. In the end, consumers and developers benefit the most from robust competition.

The company provided the statement to CNET and has given no further comments on the issue.

Yesterday, Firefox developer Mozilla revealed in a blog post that Microsoft will not allow third-party companies to provide browsers to consumers for the desktop via the Windows Store in Windows RT. Because x86 applications are not compatible with Windows RT, the ARM-powered version of Windows 8, users will also not be able to download other browsers through Internet Explorer in Windows RT. 

Developers will still be able to release Metro-based browsers for the new interface in Windows RT, but these browsers won't have access to the same advanced APIs that Microsoft uses for Internet Explorer in the operating system, according to Mozilla. The company still plans on releasing a Metro browser on Windows 8, as the next x86 version of Windows does not share the limitations of its ARM-powered counterpart.

Besides Microsoft Office and Internet Explorer (and any Windows-required application, such as Windows Explorer), no applications, besides Java and .NET applications, will be available on the desktop in Windows RT until they are recompiled for the ARM-processor.

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I absolutely agree with what chrome said. How could Microsoft do such a thing, it's really stupid. I don't like IE, if a system cannot use any browser except IE ,I won't install it..

elfsun said,
I absolutely agree with what chrome said. How could Microsoft do such a thing, it's really stupid. I don't like IE, if a system cannot use any browser except IE ,I won't install it..

But you absolutely didn't read the article because there will be a Metro version of firefox running on Windows 8.

FloatingFatMan said,
No browser choice in Windows 8 Metro? EU lawsuit in 3...2...1...

Read headline->click comment->waste bandwidth.
Your work-flow is broken, please try again

FloatingFatMan said,
No browser choice in Windows 8 Metro? EU lawsuit in 3...2...1...

I cannot really fathom why anyone would want to use a different browser in the first place.

_Heracles said,

I cannot really fathom why anyone would want to use a different browser in the first place.

Yeh...y goto Windows 8 when we already have 7.

Dot Matrix said,

Wow. Didn't even bother to read the article?

Apparently I understood the article far better than you managed to.

MS are intending to prevent 3rd parties from writing desktop mode browsers in Windows RT (ARM version). The EU will almost certainly take a large crap on that and slap them silly, again.

FloatingFatMan said,

Apparently I understood the article far better than you managed to.

MS are intending to prevent 3rd parties from writing desktop mode browsers in Windows RT (ARM version). The EU will almost certainly take a large crap on that and slap them silly, again.

The desktop has no functionality in WinRT other than to act as a layer to run Office and Explorer yet. Everything else is meant to be running in Metro.

Radster said,

Yeh...y goto Windows 8 when we already have 7.


I think you misunderstand - what is the point of another browser on a tablet?

Dot Matrix said,

The desktop has no functionality in WinRT other than to act as a layer to run Office and Explorer yet. Everything else is meant to be running in Metro.

Incorrect. WinRT can run .NET apps just fine in desktop mode.

FloatingFatMan said,

Apparently I understood the article far better than you managed to.

MS are intending to prevent 3rd parties from writing desktop mode browsers in Windows RT (ARM version). The EU will almost certainly take a large crap on that and slap them silly, again.

No...

Several things being confused...

Default browser, browser replacing IE10, ARM restrictions, Win32 security is increased on ARM, Metro and WinRT using IE10 for HTML rendering of Apps, and on and on....

This is getting to the point of crazy conflation.

Just wait and see and go look up what information is available now. Mozilla is NOT a good source for Microsoft Windows news, seriously... (It wasn't that long ago Mozilla was proclaiming IE9 was cheating on benchmarks because the IE9 engine was compiling the site code and not running meaningless loops because of how its 'compiler' technology saw the outcome would never change.)

_Heracles said,
Guys, aren't they suing each other?

Mozilla and Microsoft, or Google and Microsoft? Motorola is in a lawsuit with Microsoft, and it's owned by Google. But I can't think of any current Google/Microsoft lawsuits (there may be one, but I can't remember it).

TRC said,
Hopefully Windows tablets and Metro fail hard so all of this will be moot.

Yeah, because as an end user what I want is less choice and less competition lol

dangel said,

Yeah, because as an end user what I want is less choice and less competition lol

Just above this, there is a comment complaining about anti-trust. So we have people complaining that they want more competition, and people complaining that they want less competition (as long as Microsoft is not the one competing). It has nothing to do with the law, making sure there is competition, etc. it is all about them wanting to pick who competes and making sure their favorite is the winner.

thealexweb said,
As soon as the anti-trust shackles come off MS it shows it's true colours

I think you're missing the point. Aside from Office and Explorer, NOTHING is going to be running on the Classic Desktop. Nothing. And there's no need for it to on Windows RT. You should be using Metro anyway.

thealexweb said,
As soon as the anti-trust shackles come off MS it shows it's true colours

Oh do wake up and actually read more than the headline! ARM tablets running 8 are supposed to be locked down - and even then they're far more 'open' than iOS which utterly dominates the tablet market (and is therefore the incumbent not MS).

Google, Mozilla and (if it were possible) your beloved Nutscrape can deploy a browser just fine - they just have to do it within the sphere of the Metro desktop.

Edited by dangel, May 10 2012, 4:38pm :

Dot Matrix said,

I think you're missing the point. Aside from Office and Explorer, NOTHING is going to be running on the Classic Desktop. Nothing. And there's no need for it to on Windows RT. You should be using Metro anyway.

This article isn't just about not allowing desktop browsers.

"Developers will still be able to release Metro-based browsers for the new interface in Windows RT, but these browsers won't have access to the same advanced APIs that Microsoft uses for Internet Explorer in the operating system, according to Mozilla."

This is serios stuff, which indeed harness inovation. Typical MS style.

Google/Mozilla, please sue the **** out of MS. Hopefully, they'll get fined by EU and teached another ethics lesson.

Here come the flames...

g0dlike said,
This is serios stuff, which indeed harness inovation. Typical MS style.

Google/Mozilla, please sue the **** out of MS. Hopefully, they'll get fined by EU and teached another ethics lesson.

Here come the flames...

I think you're missing the point. Aside from Office and Explorer, NOTHING is going to be running on the Classic Desktop. Nothing. And there's no need for it to on Windows RT. You should be using Metro anyway.

g0dlike said,
This is serios stuff, which indeed harness inovation. Typical MS style.

Google/Mozilla, please sue the **** out of MS. Hopefully, they'll get fined by EU and teached another ethics lesson.

Here come the flames...


lmao. You are too funny. Google and ethics in adjacent sentences....

g0dlike said,
This is serios stuff, which indeed harness inovation. Typical MS style.

Google/Mozilla, please sue the **** out of MS. Hopefully, they'll get fined by EU and teached another ethics lesson.

Here come the flames...

You don't get it, like a lot of people on this...

Do you expect Google to sue Microsoft so they can replace the NT kernel in Windows with their Linux kernel build too?

It is this type of concept, and is this insane.

There are fundamentals of the Metro and WinRT platform and HTML rendering technologies from IE10 that make Metro and WinRT work, so it is not just a 'browser' but part of the actual API platform of Metro and HTML App support.

Additionally, there is confusion about ARM/x86 and WinRT and WindowsRT (ARM version).

Mozilla doesn't know what they are talking about, and there will be non-Metro and non-WinRT Apps on WindowsRT ARM.

It is confusing, but not stuff consumers need to know or worry about. This is engineer and developer and OEM issues.

(Think of the old saying about sausage, people like it, but do not want to see how its made.)

Don't let this crap confuse you or anyone else you run into that sees this as an issue or finds another inflated hyperbole to get all POed about.


There's quite a lot of people that don't get why there's a desktop mode in Windows RT, here's my random guess: RemoteApp.

Just like how Microsoft announced XP Mode for Windows 7 when Windows 7 was near RTM, Microsoft might be giving all versions of Windows 8 the ability to host RemoteApp apps when Windows 8 is near RTM, so users can use their Windows 8 desktop apps when using a low-power ARM-based Windows RT tablet.

Phil_123 said,
There's quite a lot of people that don't get why there's a desktop mode in Windows RT, here's my random guess: RemoteApp.

Just like how Microsoft announced XP Mode for Windows 7 when Windows 7 was near RTM, Microsoft might be giving all versions of Windows 8 the ability to host RemoteApp apps when Windows 8 is near RTM, so users can use their Windows 8 desktop apps when using a low-power ARM-based Windows RT tablet.

Um, you are close to something real; however, RemoteApp (RDP) is already written for Metro in WinRT. So users can already do RDP and 'RemoteApp' Metro Apps as well in Metro., in addition to full desktop RDP from Metro.

However, the reason the desktop is on the Tablets is important for other things, as there 'are' things advanced users will want and need it that hasn't been fully laid out by Microsoft yet.

so people are starting to scream stuff like anti-trust and such about MS making a more closed part of winodws..... yet Apple does the same thing and no one gives a crap.... yet apple has a very large market on cell phones, tablets, and pda's (the iPod touch)... much larger then MS.... and there is no anti-trust rumbleings

neufuse said,
so people are starting to scream stuff like anti-trust and such about MS making a more closed part of winodws..... yet Apple does the same thing and no one gives a crap.... yet apple has a very large market on cell phones, tablets, and pda's (the iPod touch)... much larger then MS.... and there is no anti-trust rumbleings

Exactly. It's kinda unfair to MS side.

Sue Apple for locking browsers iPhone and iPad!

neufuse said,
so people are starting to scream stuff like anti-trust and such about MS making a more closed part of winodws..... yet Apple does the same thing and no one gives a crap.... yet apple has a very large market on cell phones, tablets, and pda's (the iPod touch)... much larger then MS.... and there is no anti-trust rumbleings

(!) neufuse alerted the Apple horde

[incoming attack!]

butilikethecookie said,
So I have to Jailbreak my computer to run a web browser ?!? WTF man.

Windows RT is only for ARM tablet... there's a lot of tablets out there.

butilikethecookie said,
So I have to Jailbreak my computer to run a web browser ?!? WTF man.

No, you don't. Mozilla can deploy a browser for Metro, so can Google, so can anybody. This is about the 'desktop' that's hidden away on Windows RT - as in the one you're not supposed to need or use on a tablet. MS have made a mistake in making it visible at all because it provokes this kind of nonsense (and misunderstanding).

butilikethecookie said,
So I have to Jailbreak my computer to run a web browser ?!? WTF man.

And that's JUST the ARM one, not the x86 one. They're just complaining to complain. As someone else said up top, Google can't say crap. They specifically block certain APIs from WP7. Screw em.

Browsers aren't the only applications Microsoft isn't allowing on the desktop in Windows RT: besides Microsoft Office and Internet Explorer (and any Windows-required application, such as Windows Explorer), no applications of any nature will be available on the desktop in Windows RT.

I must have missed something. Where was this confirmed? I remember they said that native (non .NET) desktop applications would need to be recompiled against ARM but that's basically all.

georgevella said,

I must have missed something. Where was this confirmed? I remember they said that native (non .NET) desktop applications would need to be recompiled against ARM but that's basically all.

Sorry, I phrased that poorly and it didn't come out as I meant. I'll edit it.

I don't see what the problem is. Microsoft want to make a clean tablet experience.

It's not anti competitive either. They have 0% market share.

oceanmotion said,
I don't see what the problem is. Microsoft want to make a clean tablet experience.

It's not anti competitive either. They have 0% market share.


That's no surprise when you're product hasn't launched yet.

Waaa waaa waaa. Again, users shouldn't be on the desktop at all in RT. Hell I'm not even sure why it's there. The OS can easily virtualize the environment for Office and Explorer, and users would never know it was there.

Dot Matrix said,
Waaa waaa waaa. Again, users shouldn't be on the desktop at all in RT. Hell I'm not even sure why it's there. The OS can easily virtualize the environment for Office and Explorer, and users would never know it was there.

I agree with you, except Mozilla also states Microsoft isn't giving them access to APIs necessary to make a good Metro browser for the new UI.

Dot Matrix said,
Waaa waaa waaa. Again, users shouldn't be on the desktop at all in RT. Hell I'm not even sure why it's there. The OS can easily virtualize the environment for Office and Explorer, and users would never know it was there.

Exactly. I've been trying to explain this on G+, but people just don't get it. Windows RT is NOT classic Windows (x86 & x64). I think it was a pretty stupid decision to keep desktop in RT.

Anthony Tosie said,

I agree with you, except Mozilla also states Microsoft isn't giving them access to APIs necessary to make a good Metro browser for the new UI.

And? Its their CLOSED DOWN OS to be bundled with specific hardware... other companies do this?
Didnt hear anyone when TomTom ruled the market of navigation systems, running their own OS and navigation software, i wasnt able to install a seperate OS, browser or navigation system ontop of it they didnt defend it then... why now? owait its not defending openness, its only about their own markets...

I must say, im flabbergasted that Google battles this, they dont make IE available on Android or ChromeOS either

thats just silly.

Exactly, I think this is mostly just people misunderstanding the situation. The Metro side will be unaffected anyone can make a browser for the metro interface and it will work on x86 and ARM. Just third parties won't be able to access the desktop part of Windows RT it's only for Windows components, IE and Office. The only reason it's there is because Microsoft haven't been able to make the whole Windows interface work in Metro yet. Maybe in another version or two they will have. Then the desktop will disappear from RT completely.

Drossel said,

Exactly. I've been trying to explain this on G+, but people just don't get it. Windows RT is NOT classic Windows (x86 & x64). I think it was a pretty stupid decision to keep desktop in RT.


It's lazyness really. To get rid of desktop entirely in WinRT would require that Microsoft work to convert every singles control panel applet over to the Metro format, along with all the built-in Windows apps... not to mention Microsoft Office.

Shadowzz said,

And? Its their CLOSED DOWN OS to be bundled with specific hardware... other companies do this?
Didnt hear anyone when TomTom ruled the market of navigation systems, running their own OS and navigation software, i wasnt able to install a seperate OS, browser or navigation system ontop of it they didnt defend it then... why now? owait its not defending openness, its only about their own markets...

I must say, im flabbergasted that Google battles this, they dont make IE available on Android or ChromeOS either

thats just silly.

Microsoft don't develop a version of IE for Android or ChromeOS (or any platform other than Windows and Windows Phone - way back there used to be versions for Mac OS and UNIX). Google doesn't bar them from doing so if they wanted to and they would be free to put it on Android market like any other developer.

singularity87 said,

Microsoft don't develop a version of IE for Android or ChromeOS (or any platform other than Windows and Windows Phone - way back there used to be versions for Mac OS and UNIX). Google doesn't bar them from doing so if they wanted to and they would be free to put it on Android market like any other developer.

I'd like Google to give me an option to replace that +You link in top left on google.com (majority 90+% search marketshare) with a link to facebook.com.
Or Mozilla give users option to use alternate search engine instead of default google.

Do it google/mozilla and then we will talk.

singularity87 said,

Microsoft don't develop a version of IE for Android or ChromeOS (or any platform other than Windows and Windows Phone - way back there used to be versions for Mac OS and UNIX). Google doesn't bar them from doing so if they wanted to and they would be free to put it on Android market like any other developer.


MS keeps IE for Windows only, because the API's on other OS's are just lacking allot of functionality. OSX API is not to bad, but still miles behind NT and the android APi is just a joke... No way they'll invest so much into IE recoding it for android besides because of that POS they call an OS will have to be optimized so incredibly much to maintain the speed of the last few IE releases. they'll be better off recoding whole android (and end up with WP7/8 =p)

But the point was, they NEVER help MS to develop their applications for their environments. MS gives at least a billion times more support, help and information to help/guide others in using MS products as good as possible.
But whenever MS keeps a bit for themselfs (they have every reason to) Google and Mozilla are right there on the side line, screaming and crying.

Dot Matrix said,
Waaa waaa waaa. Again, users shouldn't be on the desktop at all in RT. Hell I'm not even sure why it's there. The OS can easily virtualize the environment for Office and Explorer, and users would never know it was there.
I disagree. Leaving the Desktop is a huge advantage over their competitors; it will be a very powerful reason to get Windows on ARM rather than an iPad.

TCLN Ryster said,

It's lazyness really. To get rid of desktop entirely in WinRT would require that Microsoft work to convert every singles control panel applet over to the Metro format, along with all the built-in Windows apps... not to mention Microsoft Office.

which is a reason they shouldn't rush windows 8 but they "have no choice" so as what other have said...

Anthony Tosie said,

I agree with you, except Mozilla also states Microsoft isn't giving them access to APIs necessary to make a good Metro browser for the new UI.

Mozilla is really yanking your chain... Challenge them on their assertions, and follow up with Microsoft on Mozilla's claims, as they would actually know better than a Mozilla developer.

Here is why...
I could claim that I can't write a plug-in for Mozilla because they kill puppies and require all plug-in authors to send them puppy meat to get access to the plug-in APIs.

However, I would hope you would not just take my word and write an article around it. I would also hope you would go to the SOURCE instead of just the person making the claim.

Sadelwo said,
Who's next, Libre/Open Office? Because since MS has Office on the ARM Desktop they should be able top as well?

Dont forget the folks at Notepad++, cant stand that windows comes default with just notepad, while notepad++ should be made available aswell!

Not the option to get GIMP instead of MSPAINT either... the nerves of MS! unbelievable...

Shadowzz said,

Dont forget the folks at Notepad++, cant stand that windows comes default with just notepad, while notepad++ should be made available aswell!

Not the option to get GIMP instead of MSPAINT either... the nerves of MS! unbelievable...

Remember, the issue isn't what the OS comes with, it's what you're allowed to install AFTER you get it. Regular Windows? You can install Notepad++ and GIMP just fine. Windows on ARM? Nope, you can't. That's the issue.

Kushan said,

Remember, the issue isn't what the OS comes with, it's what you're allowed to install AFTER you get it. Regular Windows? You can install Notepad++ and GIMP just fine. Windows on ARM? Nope, you can't. That's the issue.


I can if they deliver notepad++/GIMP as a Metro application
same for FF/Chrome, if they make it full metro (and not use any desktop api), it'll run on WindowsARM aswell.

Its just a whole load of crycry because MS can do something with its OWN (yes their OWN freaking OS) operating system what Google/Mozilla cant do..
Same as they cried when MS released IE9 and complained that 'IE9 runs in background of windows, its why its faster, it has API's we cant access...crycrycry'

Mozilla/Netscape has always been crying rivers about Microsoft all the time, but Google lately is getting on my nerves with their hypocrite and egocentric complaining/crying.

thekim said,
"Google shares Mozilla's stance on Windows RT browser restriction"
I'm shocked!

Just IMO, but I think they have a point in their stance. If Microsoft isn't allowing certain browser-related APIs to be available to developers for Metro applications, then they're not going to be able to make competitive browsers. Mozilla hasn't stated what the APIs are exactly, but I imagine they must be fairly essential if they're not going to make an ARM browser at all for Windows RT.

I don't agree on their desktop stance, though. Microsoft isn't letting any applications on the desktop. I personally don't think they should even have Office as a desktop application for Windows RT.

Anthony Tosie said,

Just IMO, but I think they have a point in their stance. If Microsoft isn't allowing certain browser-related APIs to be available to developers for Metro applications, then they're not going to be able to make competitive browsers. Mozilla hasn't stated what the APIs are exactly, but I imagine they must be fairly essential if they're not going to make an ARM browser at all for Windows RT.

I don't agree on their desktop stance, though. Microsoft isn't letting any applications on the desktop. I personally don't think they should even have Office as a desktop application for Windows RT.


Google's own OS comes with their own browser, yet they cry to MS for delivering their OS with their own browser?

its a locked down system, not some open system where you can install the OS to any machine you want. WindowsRT comes with the hardware, not stand alone.
I do not see Google here saying something against OSX and Safari bundling together.

Shadowzz said,

Google's own OS comes with their own browser, yet they cry to MS for delivering their OS with their own browser?

its a locked down system, not some open system where you can install the OS to any machine you want. WindowsRT comes with the hardware, not stand alone.
I do not see Google here saying something against OSX and Safari bundling together.


You don't understand the argument. It isn't that Microsoft's including its own browser, it's that Microsoft isn't allowing developers access to certain APIs that they consider vital to making a good browser. Apple's done the same thing on iOS for certain applications, and they've been (justly) criticized as well.

This is literally nothing like OSX and Safari coming bundled together. That's not even remotely the type of argument.

Microsoft basically has an effective Desktop OS monopoly which is what makes the difference. Given the impace changes to Windows OS has on the economy and productivity, I see DOJ oversight in this area somewhere in the future. It is inevitable.

Shadowzz said,

Google's own OS comes with their own browser, yet they cry to MS for delivering their OS with their own browser?

its a locked down system, not some open system where you can install the OS to any machine you want. WindowsRT comes with the hardware, not stand alone.
I do not see Google here saying something against OSX and Safari bundling together.

MorganX said,
Microsoft basically has an effective Desktop OS monopoly which is what makes the difference. Given the impace changes to Windows OS has on the economy and productivity, I see DOJ oversight in this area somewhere in the future. It is inevitable.

Except that WindowsRT isn't a Desktop OS. It's for ARM tablet devices. Microsoft does not hold a monopoly there.

Anthony Tosie said,

You don't understand the argument. It isn't that Microsoft's including its own browser, it's that Microsoft isn't allowing developers access to certain APIs that they consider vital to making a good browser. Apple's done the same thing on iOS for certain applications, and they've been (justly) criticized as well.

This is literally nothing like OSX and Safari coming bundled together. That's not even remotely the type of argument.

Is he possibly referring to ChromeOS? Which, to be fair, does come with Chrome and only Chrome. But that's kind of the point of the OS - the browser IS the OS. It's a bit like complaining that Firefox doesn't let you run IE within it.

Good point. As long as things on the x86 side are open to all, Android devices are the only defense MS needs here.

TCLN Ryster said,

Except that WindowsRT isn't a Desktop OS. It's for ARM tablet devices. Microsoft does not hold a monopoly there.

MorganX said,
Good point. As long as things on the x86 side are open to all, Android devices are the only defense MS needs here.

wel the x86 is open too all, MS even gave browser an extra opening from the metro API able to access desktop API's. So they're allowing other browsers the same as have with IE10.
yet a closed down OS that only comes delivered with the hardware it comes on... is not allowed to be closed down? MS does not have a monopoly on the tablet market, not even close. Apple does... Still didnt hear Google or Mozilla attacking Apple for that reason... Anyone does it, its fine... MS does it.. BURN MS BURN...

if those folks at mozilla gonna pull this same cr*p stunt again for the 4th or 5th time, im srsly dropping Firefox and suggest anyone i know to stop using any Mozilla applications EVER.

Anthony Tosie said,

Just IMO, but I think they have a point in their stance. If Microsoft isn't allowing certain browser-related APIs to be available to developers for Metro applications, then they're not going to be able to make competitive browsers.

As far as I'm aware, Metro browsers are actually the only applications explicitly allowed to use Win32 API's - which is the only reason Firefox even exists in it's current Metro development builds. All the API's to make a browser in the Metro environment are there. What's not, is allowing them to push those as desktop apps on Windows on ARM.

~Johnny said,

As far as I'm aware, Metro browsers are actually the only applications explicitly allowed to use Win32 API's - which is the only reason Firefox even exists in it's current Metro development builds. All the API's to make a browser in the Metro environment are there. What's not, is allowing them to push those as desktop apps on Windows on ARM.

It doesn't look like that exception applies to Windows RT.

"Developers will still be able to release Metro-based browsers for the new interface in Windows RT, but these browsers won't have access to the same advanced APIs that Microsoft uses for Internet Explorer in the operating system, according to Mozilla."

Anthony Tosie said,

You don't understand the argument. It isn't that Microsoft's including its own browser, it's that Microsoft isn't allowing developers access to certain APIs that they consider vital to making a good browser. Apple's done the same thing on iOS for certain applications, and they've been (justly) criticized as well.

This is literally nothing like OSX and Safari coming bundled together. That's not even remotely the type of argument.


You don't understand WinRT or you would find your own statements very silly.

It is not about 'blocking' APIs, it is about the 'foundation' and WinRT platform.

HTML5 rendering is an essential portion of the WinRT technology. Thus the 'underlying' platform level code is using IE10's HTML engine and technologies.

There are not 'secret' APIs or 'special' allowances for IE10. Instead, IE10 and the core HTML rendering services are based on IE10 that WinRT runs on. IE10 isn't getting special access below WinRT, it is part of the technology that WinRT is built on.


Essentially in a newer and higher level platform model like WinRT, this becomes harder for people to understand.


If this was reverted to old concepts and for example if Microsoft announced that Google would not be allowed to make their own GDI engine for Windows or they would not be allowed to create their own kernel for Windows NT, it would be a a non-issue as most people would get that allowing another company to replace part of the OS or OS platform would be really silly, would 'break' things, be a security risk, and harm consistency and performance.

The same concept is at play here, but instead of lower level kernel concept or even subsystem level concepts, this is a higher level platform model.

So essentially IE10 isn't given special access or using 'hidden' APIs of WinRT, instead its rendering technology is a part of what makes up WinRT, and is how WinRT works.


The x86 part of this is that the IE10 rendering engine that WinRT is using, is rolled into WinRT sitting on Win32, and is using aspects of more native code because it is a part of the WinRT PLATFORM, just as other aspects of rendering and providing APIs and features of WinRT also using more native code. So IE10 is allowed to use x86, as it is part of the WinRT platform.


I think another part of this misunderstanding is that people never have fully grasped that IE is not a BROWSER, instead it is a set of HTML rendering technologies.

The 'browser' portion of IE is just an Application that uses the HTML rendering engine. It has been like this since version 3 & especially IE 4. IE 4 was an HTML rendering engine that was exposed for use in the OS, and even Win98 used the rendering engine for displaying folders.

The IE 'Browser' was originally just a basic browser using the IE engine, and even Microsoft themselves, assumed that other 'browser' makers and application designers would use the 'Windows HTML rendering engine aka IE' to create other Browsers and Applications, which did happen for a while in the late 90s, with many other 'Browsers' available that used the IE4 engine, including AOL's client software.

Over the years and with the anti-trust crap, this has been lost; however, to this day IE is just an HTML rendering set of technologies available to the OS, Applications.

WinRT takes this a step further by using the IE10 engine as a core component in processing and providing localized Apps in the WinRT framework using HTML RIA concepts.

** IE9 redefined and took the 'engine' concept to a new level, as it became a 'compiling and runtime' technology instead of a 'content/document rendering' technology. (Which is why it is really fast at things Chrome and Firefox still can't do, and is fast enough to be a part of the WinRT platform and power localized Apps.)


If Mozilla and Google want to 'play' a role and provide a WinRT browser, they have to work within what WinRT provides. They have two courses of action:

1) Use the WinRT HTML rendering technologies (aka IE10) as their engine.

2) Create their own browser engine using the WinRT framework, which is very possible using the framework. However, it would require rewriting their engines in a higher level language/development model.

It is strange but you find that developers 'get stuck' on using their existing code base instead of recreating their technology in a new framework model. This has already been a debate on WP7, with some companies saying we can't do WP7, for X,Y, Z reason, when it is really just about recoding in .NET Silverlight/XNA and them not realizing that they can get native code speeds even in a higher level language and platform framework.

With .NET in general on WP7 and Windows 7, often a C# on .NET application will be faster than a C++ native code application. (And this become more noticeable as developers are trying to do 'new' things that doesn't fit C++ and code is filled with redundant initializations and other CPU wasting aspects of sloppy code or not understanding how to work with even Windows Win32 APIs or more advanced APIs properly.

WinRT, like WP7's platform is truly object oriented and not just object based, and this slight difference is beautiful, but also dangerous for developers that do not understand that the 'oriented and based' are not the same when dealing with object language technologies, especially with MVVM software development.

So with that out of the way... This issue is kind of moot, as Firefox could be 'recreated' in WinRT, but just slapping the old x86 code into WinRT is not an option.

(Same is true of WP7, in fact they exist, there are several browser engines being used by Apps that are written using WP7 development tools and don't go outside the .NET Silverlight/XNA framework. )

The same is true of WinRT (in fact it would even easier on WinRT), but again the 'PROBLEM" is that neither Firefox or Google want to port/rewrite Mozilla or Webkit for WinRT.

So here we are, with a conspiracy theory being created out of ignornance.

And once again Firefox and Google don't want to do the work, they just instead will sit back and complain or find a hack. (Like Google did when they couldn't get rendering in Chrome anywhere near IE9 and started using a non-standard WebGL hack to bypass the browser rendering.)

** Prior to IE9 Microsoft might not have done this, but when they saw that IE9 and the paradigm shift from a 'HTML document rendering' technology to an 'HTML compiling technology' that treated HTML 'document' content and behaviors of CSS like 'code', it was a 'big' change in what an HTML engine was doing and was capable of doing.

Microsoft noticed that with IE9 breaking down web content and treating it like 'code' and 'running' it instead of 'displaying' it, the IE9 team was getting performance close to their own MVVM technologies like WPF/.NET and Silverlight.

This opened a door, as Microsoft could be really agnostic and fully embrace newer RIA web standards like HTML5 and CSS3 at the 'application' level on the desktop.

So by having a 'compiler engine technology' that could take HTML content and provide the IE as a 'runtime', they could bring together 'web' and local 'app' development and also fulfill their goals of moving developers to MVVM development using HTML5. (Thus replacing out XAML/WPF/Silverlight and replacing it with full W3C standards instead.)

thenetavenger said,

...
you work at MS dont ya?
I often know parts of your explanations, but you often have indepth knowledge of MS and its technologies always a good read, keep it up

Shadowzz said,
you work at MS dont ya?
I often know parts of your explanations, but you often have indepth knowledge of MS and its technologies always a good read, keep it up

His explanations can often go slightly off track, but he's certainly very passionate about them

simplezz said,

Blocking?

Google allows iOS and Android access to some special APIs for Youtube that WP7 does not have access to.

This makes the Youtube app on WP7 suck.

They also decided that WP7 users don't need to be able to access a touch version of gmail. We're stuck with the old WPA version of gmail that feature phones use, or the basic HTML version.