Lukewarm reaction to first IE8 beta

Yesterday at the MIX '08 session, Microsoft employees Ray Ozzie, Dean Hachamovitch and a host of Microsoft partners touted the new Silverlight and IE8 betas to what could be seen (from my perspective) as a lukewarm reception from the attending crowd, despite the non apparent excitement from the IT staff at Aston Martin showing off how they now are able to sell cars to potential buyers, and the Hard Rock Cafe before them, showing off their immense collection of celebrity memorabilia using the Silverlight technology; even if the latter preferred to use the Firefox browser in doing so!

Neowin members were among the first that were able to download Internet Explorer 8 Beta 1, because we had already posted the page where the download links were, but up until noon yesterday, remained inactive until the first MIX '08 keynote was drawing to a close.

One Neowin member said "I can't even edit my own posts on this. I have to create a new post." while another noted "Is not bad, I like what I see by now... Live Hotmail doesn't work for me with IE8 but I can get it work with Emulate IE7 button". It does seem strange that Hotmail doesn't work in "IE8 mode", another Neowin member, Brandon Live, reminded beta users: "Remember, this release is targetted [sic] at web developers. There are a few other nice new user-facing features (crash recovery, and not having to open new windows for Protected Mode IE to be on/off for different tabs, etc), but this is far from the complete IE 8 experience". View the whole discussion thread here.

What is your experience with IE8, did you go back to IE7 or another browser? We'd be interested to hear your comments.

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77 Comments

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"What is your experience with IE8, did you go back to IE7 or another browser? We'd be interested to hear your comments. "

All you lawn coils that are complaining that someone said they had a problem should read the whole news article. The poster specifically asked how it was and if you switched back.


As for me: It looked ok, but IE8 mode wouldn't render many pages properly, and since I'm not currently developing any web stuff that will use it, I put it in the recycle bin for safekeeping.

Anybody still using IE7, can you see if clicking with middle button on a folder in your favourites, opens up all the links inside on separate tabs. Never tried this in IE7 myself but pretty useful when doing my morning browse.

Like IE8 so far, some rough edges but nothing too troubling.

In case people don't realize, all you need to do to make all pages work properly, is change you IE user string to IE7, so sites figure you're still actually using IE7.

Instead of using IE7 emulation mode? If so I'd have to give that a try, I guess I can change the user string through IE7Pro.

Well the user string tells the site what browser you're using, so cetain pages may not work at all, if they don't understand there is an IE8, but depending on how the site renders itself in IE8 mode, that's a different thing, so you may or may not have to be in IE7 mode for the pages to show up properly.
Like I've been to some sites in IE8 mode and IE7 mode that still would not show up, till I changed the user string.

That's interesting, I'll have to change the string to IE7 and go back to IE8 mode to see how the sites I visit work then.

For a beta 1 it's fine, although I have to use IE7 mode for most sites to render properly, good effort however, pretty snappy as well. The future for IE8 looks very promissing.

BTW all you MS haters get a life, it's just a frikkn beta!!!!

Live Hotmail only works in Emulated IE mode (accessing inbox, login works fine).

Have a word with yourself microsoft....

I'm going to keep it installed. Unlike the switch from version 6 to 7 I can actually turn my beta testing on and off by clicking one button.

Netflix doesn't work - click - Netflix works.

Well I think IE8 is awsome. I don't see any need to go back to IE7 anyways. Even if I gotta keep it in IE7 mode, IE8 is still a better browser period.
I just need to figure out how to remove that button from the toolbar, then it'd be perfect.

Ok have fun and make sure you have the latest update for FF, meanwhile I'll be using IE7 with Protected mode sandboxing that contains (i.e. stops) all exploits.

(J_R_G said @ #30.1)
Ok have fun and make sure you have the latest update for FF, meanwhile I'll be using IE7 with Protected mode sandboxing that contains (i.e. stops) all exploits.

Oh, you mean your *ahem* Placebo effect and false sense of security? :P

I've been using Firefox and have never had a problem with exploits, viruses, adware, worms or spyware in the past three years.

Before you accuse me of trolling, I use IE7 sometimes for certain things although it isn't my main browser.

(Xtreme2damax said @ #30.2)

Oh, you mean your *ahem* Placebo effect and false sense of security? :P

I've been using Firefox and have never had a problem with exploits, viruses, adware, worms or spyware in the past three years.

Before you accuse me of trolling, I use IE7 sometimes for certain things although it isn't my main browser.


Just read what Mozilla developers say. There were many times they refused to fix security holes.

(RealFduch said @ #30.3)

Just read what Mozilla developers say. There were many times they refused to fix security holes.

Sources?

As far as I know whenever a security hole is found in Firefox they are quick to patch it up as compared to nearly a month it takes Microsoft to roll out a patch or fix.

Unless Microsoft is rolling out patches more often now than before.

What holes have exactly went unpatched in Firefox?

Also the default interface for IE7 and 8 are ugly as sin even more so than the Firefox default theme, it looks like Microsoft hasn't listened and kept the same ugly interface theme. But I still use it every now and then for certain things that don't work properly in other browsers.

I hope there is a way to change the IE7/IE7 theme/interface as that is a major put off from me using it most of the time not to mention it lacks the same functionality and customization Firefox offers.

But it's great they are finally starting to adhere to web standards to ensure pages render properly.

I use IE8 Beta 1 for a day. Every time I used it, It wouldn't close when I wanted it to close (had to open up task manager). It look ok I want to see the next beta as well. Also, every time I used it when I did get it close my desktop icons would freeze when I click on them and won't highlight.

also I installed silverlight but it never works for me.

(Scutley said @ #29)
I use IE8 Beta 1 for a day.

I didn't bother. I don't even have IE7 installed. Haven't had any need for it whatsoever. Firefox 3 is going to be very fast.

(toadeater said @ #29.1)


I didn't bother. I don't even have IE7 installed. Haven't had any need for it whatsoever. Firefox 3 is going to be very fast.


Then why even bother to repond if you haven't used it.

You also don't know that from Firefox either. To me a browser is a browser they all do the same thing. People just choose Firefox because they hate Microsoft when they have no reason to even if they like Internet Explorer.

Used IE8 for an hour, but uninstalled mainly because it really corrupted the sidebar in Vista, making gadgets that were docked so large, you could barely make out what they were.

Having said that, and aside from that niggle, the browser itseelf worked ok for me.

Lets see what the next beta release has in store, before i pass any kind of comment on it's useability

Quit trolling. As much as I dislike the rendering of my pages in previous versions of IE, I must challenge that there is no need for an irrational hatred for IE.

They are catching up, and this is the first beta of an MS product. As for you, my good friend, you are blind to not notice those two things as factors when stating your opinion. Lighten up. They're at least trying now.

I like it I know its a beta and has some problems but I switched to ie7 mode and it has been good. I cant wait for an rc2 update.

Yeah will have to wait for the other Betas from MS, first of all, IE8 is starting just like IE7 started, after installing IE8 and initially running it, I have two process in Task Manager that run, one 16,404KB and another which is right now about 80,840KB and that's from only browsing three sites and 4 tabs (the IE8 start tab, this article, neowin home page and neowin forum page)..

...Will switch back to IE7 for now, will wait for another IE8 Beta, also this will Break your Microsoft Update/Windows Update, the page will not load instead you get:

http://www.update.microsoft.com/windowsupd...mp;thankspage=5

"Thank you for your interest in obtaining updates from our site.

To use this site, you must be running Microsoft Internet Explorer 5 or later.

To upgrade to the latest version of the browser, go to the Internet Explorer Downloads website.

If you prefer to use a different web browser, you can obtain updates from the Microsoft Download Center or you can stay up to date with the latest critical and security updates by using Automatic Updates. To turn on Automatic Updates:


Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
Depending on which Control Panel view you use, Classic or Category, do one of the following:
Click System, and then click the Automatic Updates tab.
Click Performance and Maintenance, click System, and then click the Automatic Updates tab.
Click the option that you want. Make sure Automatic Updates is not turned off.
"

That is, apparently, only the case with Windows XP. I'm about to install a Windows Update that released *since* I installed IE 8.

memory allocation/management issues galore! Although most of the sites I use work in native IE8 mode, all work as expected in Emulate IE7 mode. HOWEVER, its memory management is off the hook!

With only Neowin running, it is consuming over 89MB of RAM; and I have been having iexplore.exe ghosts all over the place. The worst is, after killing an iexplore.exe process from Task Manager (of which there were a dozen last night), the next IE8 loading prompts me to restore my previous session -- and the one it did restore was random!

IE8b1... sorry, but FF3b3 has fixed its memory issues; hopefully you fix your own sooner than b3.

(Nas said @ #23)
memory allocation/management issues galore! IE8b1... sorry, but FF3b3 has fixed its memory issues; hopefully you fix your own sooner than b3.

WTF? Its on its first BETA! Where have the minds gone...

-d

I think the memory usage being so high has a lot to do with this being a developer build and thus having more stuff than what the final version will have. Like the developer tool for one thing, I'm pretty sure that uses a good chunk of memory.

But just to compare, I have it running right now with 8 tabs open and it's using 106MB, plus another 14MB for the 2nd process. I haven't seen more than 2 processes running for it since I started using it so I don't know what type of error/bug/problem you've been having.

This is on XP SP2 btw.

I am afraid I uninstalled it after a few hours of use. While the crash protection works well, it became quite annoying when 'youtube' kept crashing. It worked in the emulate IE7 mode though. I think I will wait for a few more builds before reinstalling it again.

Word to the wise, I've found if you still have IE7Pro installed from your IE7 installation, it reduces the performance of IE8 dramatically for things like scrolling and highlighting. Disable it in your add-ons manager and you'll find it runs a lot smoother.

However the fact it can't render Microsoft's live.com properly doesn't bode so well.

The first two web sites I load up this morning...Hotmail stops at "working on your request", and theweathernetwork.ca's layout is completely messed up.

Back to IE7 mode. I'll keep it on that test machine, but I certainly don't see the new "features" as a reason to ignore the problems and start using it on other boxes.

I will have to give it another try then. I could not get the final page to appear after clicking play. I checked to make sure it was not blocked and still could not get the page to show up. Are you actually able to play? I can get the site to load up but can't get the game to play.

as lots of dudes already stated here, we have the first BETA of IE8 and some sites are badly rendered with the IE8 engine ( including neowin.net ... uploading pics doesn't work ) . But we have what we asked for and things will get better as the builds comes .

My website looks even worse than IE6 in IE8.

very strange, it passed both XHTML and CSS validation and was fine in FF2 and IE7... wtf

But still, after all, it's a "Developer beta"...

I had it installed for about 10 minutes and went back to IE7. I like to play Boxerjam games and strike a match would not play on IE8 even with using the emulate option. I know this is an early beta and things will get better. Good work so far MS and I like the fact that they let the general public have access to the beta. I will give it a few weeks and hope that alot web sites will update for the new IE8.

The OP obviously missed all the wildly enthusiastic developers comments on the IEblog. This is after all just a developer beta.

Leave it to a neowin post to find some negative article about a beta 1 release intended to collect feedback from the user base.

-d

As an IE7 lover, I really like IE8, I always wanted a web search for selected text type feature and now I got that and much more with IE8 Activities. One web site crashed in my hours of use, which I can forgive seeing how it's a first public beta, and IE8 gracefully closed the tab then reopened it and notified me of what happened, leaving my other tab alone, absolutely thrilling. And of course it has protected mode like IE7 (running Vista obviously), so I'm safe against ANY threat on the web without having to get the weekly update like FF users have to. And it's much faster than IE7. Couldn't be nicer for a 1st beta.

Ya seriously, its beta 1...... how perfect do you expect it to be when its being "tested" on at most a couple thousand pcs? now that its "open" beta, they can track error reports from thousands more. I like it.... don't like the whole "mangled webpages" thing, but hey, its the webmaster's fault for the ****ty coding. if it was coded right, it would display right.

My website, for example, displays perfectly

I'm using it in IE7 emulation mode because the one use I have IE for is Microsoft Update. After the updates are complete, I switch it back into native mode, though I have no idea why I do. :P

The way I see it, I'm glad MS released this to the public. It is a good thing that they are turning to the development/design community and asking, "How is this? Does it work like it does with us?" and stuff. :)

I'm happy this has been released, no matter how bad it is (has anybody tried going to any of the pages on Adobe's site for Flash or Shockwave or Authorware players in it? :P). I praise the IE team for opening up and for doing their best to support the current specifications (standards isn't the right word). I can't say I'll praise them for the amount of standards support just yet because it is too early for test cases to have been completed. I will say that the amount of work they have put into IE since IE6 is something that I find to be wonderful, and I commend them for that.

I do appreciate Microsoft moving towards the W3C standards, but I don't see an reason to keep this beta installed.

Edit: A little disappointed by the quality levels considering Microsoft should be able to afford a vast amount of QA.

(David3k said @ #8.1)
Does "Beta" mean anything?
Funny, because Mozilla pouts all their beats through QA before they're announced.

That said I don't see anything majorly wrong with IE8.

Well, installing it did change my windows XP sound scheme back to including "the clicking" for whatever reason. Other than that, no major issues. It is a beta after all.

(David3k said @ #8.1)
Does "Beta" mean anything?

It's useful feedback to people not having installed this yet and wondering if they should.

Seriously, stop posting this kind of crap. Of course we know it's beta, but it's useful feedback for many of us here.

We can't just shut up and give the impression everything is fine and dandy in candy land if it's not. Now THAT would be useless for a discussion thread.

oh good greif... its a freaking beta... and ontop of that a first beta! first beta's from MS are NEVER finished and NEVER optimized and almost always slow! wait till the beta 2 release or RC release then talk......


The only reason I installed it was to check the websites I developed for work... they only have very minor errors in IE8... 2 or 3 margins are off but that is about it, was kinda suprised..

(Neobond said @ #7.1)
Oh wow! :P

Well you and I both know people going to complain that the quality of this "sucks" among other things like its supose to be release quality or something... seems to happen with every single MS beta...

I think I had IE8 installed for perhaps a total of 5 minutes before I removed it and went back to 7. Looked nice though.

Amusingly Microsoft's Office Update site incorrectly reports that i'm not using a recent version of Internet Explorer and advises me to download IE5 or later!

Otherwise I like it so far

I have been using it in IE7 mode. Many rebsites weren't rendering correctly. Everything looks good though, this is just pretty bad for a Beta.

(creamhackered said @ #3)
I am using it but in IE7 mode because IE8 mode is a bit too early for most websites I use

Same here, loved the new feature in the adressline

Well just think about it, IE 8 is in beta, it wasn't expected to be perfect.

Not to mention it has nothing to do with "True Standards" mode, it is the CSS behind the website that is causing the issue.

I personally like it, works fine. I like the favorites toolbar and the highlight domsin nsme feature.

A spell checker and it'll be complete for you kidding.

I agree with you, and for me IE8 in its standard mode is working great.

Isn't the problem with IE8 mode on some sites that the sites think it's still IE7 and try to use IE7 mode which breaks things? Now that this beta is out the sites should see how IE8 works and the problems should be fixed quick.

I think by beta 2 runing in IE8 mode will be no problem.

A few things I'd like to see though.

First is a change to the way it downloads files or a download manager, I know it's a early developer beta and not for end users but I hope they have this in mind. I'd like to be able to at least resume a broken download in IE.

Also why did they get rid of the "Open these next time" option for tabs when you close IE8 with tabs open? Now it just asks me if I wan't to close the tab i'm on or all of tem if I go to close IE8. I really loved that option in IE7 and used it alot! It's not often that I close IE but when I have to it's with 7 or 8 tabs open. And I want those to pop back up when I restart again like before.

And the last bit is that as of now it's using a good chunk of memory unlike IE7, but this again could be due to it being a early developer beta so maybe it's packed with debug parts etc. Still I like it, it starts better for me, and loads pages a faster even in Emulated IE7 mode.

Sevan: That is precisely the issue. The way it (IE 8, that is) displays in *standards mode* is the same way it displays in Firefox/Opera/Safari. That implies it's how CSS displays in each browser being the issue (left-justified in standard-compliant-browsers is *centered* in IE 7 and lower). The Favorites bar is actually *overdue* (it should have been in 7).

GP007: A download manager as part of the browser? No, no, and *heck no*! The fact that it HAS a download manager is one of my peeves with Firefox, because I don't store all my downloads in the same place, as they aren't always the same type (documents (including Acrobat files) are kept in my Documents folder; I have a separate folder for ISOs; etc.).

(PGHammer said @ #2.3)
Sevan: That is precisely the issue. The way it (8) displays in *standards mode* is the same way it displays in Firefox/Opera/Safari. That implies it's how CSS displays in each browser being the issue (left-justified in standard-compliant-browsers is *centered* in IE 7 and lower). The Favorites bar is actually *overdue* (it should have been in 7).

GP007: A download manager as part of the browser? No, no, and *heck no*! The fact that it HAS a download manager is one of my peeves with Firefox, because I don't store all my downloads in the same place, as they aren't always the same type (documents (including Acrobat files) are kept in my Documents folder; I have a separate folder for ISOs; etc.).


Yeah.. I noticed that it is similar to how it displays content in other browsers.

(PGHammer said @ #2.3)
Sevan: That is precisely the issue. The way it (IE 8, that is) displays in *standards mode* is the same way it displays in Firefox/Opera/Safari. That implies it's how CSS displays in each browser being the issue (left-justified in standard-compliant-browsers is *centered* in IE 7 and lower). The Favorites bar is actually *overdue* (it should have been in 7).

GP007: A download manager as part of the browser? No, no, and *heck no*! The fact that it HAS a download manager is one of my peeves with Firefox, because I don't store all my downloads in the same place, as they aren't always the same type (documents (including Acrobat files) are kept in my Documents folder; I have a separate folder for ISOs; etc.).

I understand why you wouldn't want one, but a good download manager would let you set where specific files are saved depending on they're type/extension. I download different things over IRC and mIRC lets you set where you want specific files like .iso or .zip etc go. I don't see why the same can't be the case for a browser download manager.

But that's just part of it for me. Say they don't give you a download manager, I still really really hate the fact I can't resume a broken download in IE. Give me the option to resume it and then I'll be more than happy.