Windows 8 will include Internet Explorer 10 among its apps. However, the web browser will be available in two different versions: one will run on the Metro user interface and will not support any plug-in programs, and the other will be the more familiar browser that will run on the desktop UI.
In the newest entry on Microsoft's official Internet Explorer blog, IE team member Kevin Luu gives some more details about the types of launch options that will be available for IE 10 users in Windows 8. By default, the version of IE 10 that a user will launch will depend on which Windows 8 UI is in use at the time. So if you click on a URL in a Metro application, the Metro port of IE 10 will launch. If you click on a link on the desktop, it will be the regular IE 10 that will be activated.
However, a user can also go into IE 10's settings and change the default to one of two more choices. If a person checks the "Always in Internet Explorer" option, then the Metro version of IE 10 will launch no matter which Windows 8 UI is running. If a person checks the "Always in Internet Explorer on the desktop" option, it will always run the desktop version of IE 10, again no matter which version of Windows 8 is in use.
You can also change which version of IE 10 runs when you click on an Internet Explorer tile on Windows 8's Start Screen. If you leave it unchecked, it will launch the Metro version of IE. If the option is checked, it will open the tiles on the desktop version of IE 10.
Of course, you may choose not to have IE 10 as your default browser. If that is the case, only the desktop version of IE 10 will work. Luu writes:
To change the default browser, type “default” on the Windows 8 Start screen. The Start screen will search apps, settings, and files for this term. The Apps results will include Default Programs. Touch or click it to bring up the Default Programs control panel item. From its list of options, select “Set your default programs” to display a page containing a list of programs on the left.