Head of China SAIC declares target, investigation expected to expand
Mirroring similar complaints in the EU and United States from a decade ago, the current antitrust investigation in China has been confirmed to be over the bundling of Internet Explorer and Microsoft's Windows operating system. The investigation, and target of China's antitrust State Administration for Industry and Commerce, was confirmed at a press briefing by the head of the agency Zhang Mao earlier today.
Most recent version of Internet Explorer required for updates, support for IE8 dropped
Microsoft announced last week that it would be changing its support policy in regard to Internet Explorer. Outlined in the change is migration guidance for versions of Windows past XP, which excludes any further support for Internet Explorer 8. The software giant is urging users to enable Windows Updates to keep up with the most recent updates to Internet Explorer.
Developer version looks at features in testing, runs separate from existing browser
Developers and enthusiasts can now download a developer version of Internet Explorer to see what Microsoft's team is working on according to the official IE Blog. Microsoft has launched the Internet Explorer Developer Channel, allowing access to fully-functional developer versions of the browser that can run "alongside and independently" of Internet Explorer 11. The program is aimed at providing an open dialogue between the Internet Explorer teams and web developers.
Exploit targets Internet Explorer 9 to 11, flaw dates back to Internet Explorer 6
A recently-discovered security flaw in Internet Explorer has the potential to affect a wide number of Internet users, according to a security firm. Confirmed by Microsoft, the "zero-day" exploit found by FireEye targets Internet Explorer 9 through to version 11, though the vulnerability itself has been found to exist in all versions of the browser going back to Internet Explorer 6.
IE 11 now approaching Safari's install numbers
Microsoft's Internet Explorer 11 web browser more than doubled its share of the worldwide browser market in the month of November. This according to new figures from research firm Net Applications, which showed Internet Explorer 11 at 3.27 percent of the worldwide web browser market. The November surge saw IE11 leaving Opera far behind, and the Microsoft-made browser is now approaching Apple's Safari browser in terms of market share.
Recent 'universal flaw' patched in today's 'patch Tuesday' updates
Microsoft said earlier today that it is paying its maximum award -- $100,000 -- to a security researcher who found a critical hole in its Internet Explorer web browser. James Forshaw of the Context Information Society was rewarded by Microsoft for pointing out the flaw which Microsoft patched today.
Near universal flaw affects Internet Explorer 6 through current revision
Microsoft has issued a security patch for Internet Explorer as an emergency measure to prevent customers from being affected by an "extremely limited, targeted attack." Users are advised to either immediately install the Microsoft-issued "Fix-it" patch or stop using Internet Explorer completely, until Microsoft can issue a full update for the browser.
Attack targeted nuclear weapons workers accessing health information
A US Department of Labor website tailored for nuclear weapons researchers has been compromised, redirecting visitors to a series of alternative websites. If the accessor was using Windows XP and Internet Explorer 8, the culmination of the attack inserted the "Poison Ivy" malware onto the computer, giving access to the user's data by "DeepPanda", a group of hackers believed to be located in China.
Effort meant to bolster Internet Explorer 10 support
(Updated with sell-out status) Microsoft is offering Mac developers a special QuickStart kit that includes copies of Windows 8 Pro and Parallels Desktop 8, according to an official blog post by Sandeep Singhal, the company's group program manager for Internet Explorer. The kit comes on a USB stick, and is heavily discounted, requiring only a $25 donation to a charity of the developer's choice. Singhal says that a "limited supply" of the kit is available.
Bounties paid for Internet Explorer, Firefox, Java vulnerabilities
Google's Chrome OS managed to evade all intrusion attempts during the most recent Pwnium hacking competition. While Chrome OS survived intact, Chrome the web browser joined Firefox and Internet Explorer in being shown vulnerable to attack from hackers, during the Pwn2Own contest held at the CanSecWest security conference at the same time.
IE 6, 7, 8 affected by exploit. IE 9, 10 unaffected
Microsoft has issued a security warning for users of Internet Explorer versions 6 through 8. The vulnerability opens the possibility for remote code execution, and it is based on the way Internet Explorer accesses an object in memory that has been deleted or has not been properly allocated. This can lead to memory corruption, allowing malicious parties to run arbitrary code under the current user's profile. Microsoft is currently investigating the vulnerability and, as of December 31, has issued a patch -- MSHTML Shim Workaround -- that prevents the exploitation of the issue.
API calls, Windows 8 integration features will not work
Microsoft has explained the difference between the mobile and desktop versions of Internet Explorer 10. While the Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 do share the same core programming, there are some browser-based functions that the mobile version cannot do as of yet, something that web developers will need to look out for.
Probe to determine if 2009 commitments were followed
[Update: official statement from Microsoft, estimated fines] European Union antitrust regulators have reportedly opened an investigation focused on Microsoft's Internet Explorer browser. The probe is said to be a follow-up action that will attempt to determine if the company has followed guidelines that it agreed to in 2009 as part of earlier antitrust proceedings.
Attackers said to be exploiting IE vulnerability
Microsoft has issued a formal warning and a temporary fix for an Internet Explorer security flaw that has enabled attackers to gain access to Gmail accounts. Beginning last week, a number of Gmail users have logged into their e-mail accounts to find an alert from Google stating that "We believe state-sponsored attackers may be attempting to compromise your account or computer."
Mozilla says lack of browser choice takes users back to dark ages
The Mozilla Foundation, maker of the Firefox web browser, is calling out Microsoft for anticompetitive practices with regard to browser capabilities on the upcoming Windows RT. In a blog post, Mozilla's General Counsel Harvey Anderson takes Microsoft to task for programming decisions that will limit the power and feature set of non-Internet Explorer browsers in the next version of Windows.
Microsoft software roadmap from December leaked
Microsoft has begun sending out a roadmap that shows some details about its future software products such as Office 15, Internet Explorer 10, and Windows Phone to some of its partners. One of them, CEO of Meetroo Maarten Visser, shared part of it over Twitter, revealing said details. Dated December 22, 2011, the images weren't password-protected. Considering the date, the Windows roadmap doesn't mention anything past the Developer Preview and certainly not the Consumer Preview that launched on February 29.
Firefox nightlies to support WebRTC for video chat
Mozilla is gearing up to allow a plugin-free approach to video chat in upcoming versions of Firefox. A demo at the IETF 83 conference caught by TechCrunch showed off the implementation of WebRTC, an HTML5 component that will allow two-way voice, video, and file swaps. As shown, it would sign in with Mozilla's Social API.
NetApplications shows second big increase for IE
New NetApplications data has shown that Internet Explorer might be on a sustained, if slight, recovery in web share. Microsoft's browser gained almost exactly one point to hit 53.83 percent of browser use online. The gain roughly mirrored one from January and saw IE at its highest position since October.
Spike sees Chrome get one-day browser lead
A brief if historic milestone in web browsers occurred this weekend as Google Chrome temporarily overtook Microsoft's Internet Explorer in usage, StatCounter found Wednesday. For one day, March 18, Chrome had 32.71 percent of traffic to IE's 32.5 percent. A rise in share from Brazil, India, and Russia was credited for the sudden position swap.
Mozilla loses Blizzard to California start-up
Chris Blizzard served his last day as Mozilla's director of Web platform this past Friday, March 16, he revealed on his blog. He will move on to a "very small startup" based in Palo Alto, though didn't go on to name it. Blizzard would only say the work involves the intersection of systems, compilers, and web-scale problems.
Browsing engine performance improved
Microsoft has detailed the upcoming Internet Explorer 10 browsing experience that will be brought to Windows 8 devices. The company suggests the browser has been completely reworked, bringing improvements to the underlying browsing engine while adding a number of interface tweaks to match Windows 8's Metro-style layout.
Chrome now used by government, IE 8 coming soon
In a fairly recent question and answer period during a Town Hall meeting, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton revealed the government offices will move to Google Chrome. Rather out of place, the question was addressed after a snicker from Clinton and more widespread laughter from the crowd, revealing Chrome was already being installed on government computers as of February 14. Clinton did say Chrome won't work perfectly with some of the government's software, so Internet Explorer will still be accessible.
NetApplications sees Apple grow widely in February
Apple saw an unusually widescale, comprehensive growth in its share of the web in February, NetApplications showed on Thursday. On the desktop, it bounced back to near an all-time high at 6.9 percent, a level seen in October. Its mobile share followed suit, going up almost exactly seven points to 60.6 percent.
OnLive Desktop Plus tries subscription
OnLive on Wednesday boosted its Desktop for iPad with a new subscription tier. Desktop Plus gives access to a version of Internet Explorer with both Flash and PDF support. To help justify the software additions, OnLive gives high-priority access to its streaming virtualization service.
Google now sued over blocking Safari cookies
Google is facing a new lawsuit for violating privacy rights on Apple's Safari web browser, Bloomberg reported. An Illinois man, Matthew Soble, claimed in the suit that Google sidesteps the computer settings that are designed to block monitoring of a user's whereabouts on the web. The lawyers representing Soble alleged that Google did so willfully and knowingly.
Google defends against Microsoft cookie claims
Google's Senior Communications VP Rachel Whetstone claimed Microsoft was being dishonest in making claims of suspicious browser cookie circumventions in Internet Explorer 9 and elsewhere. The executive argued that Microsoft had effectively ignored the issue since 2002, when it had implemented the P3P approach of requiring a cookie state its intent. Microsoft not only knew about the "loophole" of using an undefined intent for years, letting Amazon and its recent investment target Facebook use the trick, but knew that P3P would break the modern Internet regardless
Microsoft tries to press Google on privacy tricks
Microsoft's Corporate VP for Internet Explorer, Dean Hachamovitch, made allegations Monday that Google was bypassing Internet Explorer's privacy settings, not just Safari's measures. After checks, he claimed that Google's cookie text files, meant to allow +1 actions for those who were signed into Google, were skirting the P3P Privacy Protection standard as it was implemented in Internet Explorer 9. The technique supposedly made IE9 take third-party cookies that it would block by default while keeping the action a secret.
Devs call for action
Mozilla and several other browser developers have voiced concern over the dominance of WebKit-based browsers, notably Safari and Chrome. World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) co-chairman Daniel Glazman suggests programmers have begun to disregard alternative browsers, such as Firefox and Internet Explorer, when optimizing website compatibility.
Windows 8 desktop may get special-case scenarios
New leaks have hinted that Windows 8 could make important gestures to catch certain users. Although it's still thought by The Verge that the regular Windows 8 desktop won't be on ARM, it will purportedly kick in for Internet Explorer and Office 15. The restriction would in part be to keep traditional Windows apps from draining the battery, since they can't suspend themselves like Windows 8's new Metro apps.
Microsoft full-page ad tackles Google policy swap
Microsoft has started running a slew of full-page newspaper ads in an attempt to scare users over Google's simpler privacy policies. It claims that Google's attempts to simplify and clarify its policies are disingenuous and that the real goal is to "connect the dots" between Google's services and track users. It goes on to insist that the policy makes it difficult to back out.
NetApplications shows gap in mobile share
Android tablets are gaining share of Internet use, but they still present no competition to the iPad online, NetApplications uncovered with its January wrap-up. The combined Samsung Galaxy Tab line had just 0.42 percent of mobile Internet share, while the Kindle Fire's possibly brisk sales still saw just 0.34 percent. Although down from December, the iPad at almost 24 percent was still in no danger from Android tablets, where even Android 3.2 was at 0.77 percent.
Microsoft cheers end to IE6 use
Microsoft's hopes that Internet Explorer 6 would die were partly validated after the company's Roger Capriotti noted that the decade-old browser had been reduced to irrelevance in the US. Working from data at NetApplications, he declared IE6 over as it made up just 0.9 percent of all American web traffic. The US was late, having been preceded by parts of Europe and Scandinavia, but was coming at the same time as the Czech Republic, Mexico, the Philippines, and others were also dropping below one percent.
Windows Phone web speed claims already outdated
NetApplications shows Android loss in December
In spite of its device share, Android is losing ground in terms of actual use online, NetApplications found on New Year's Day. Android slipped to 16.3 percent of mobile web share in December, or the same share it had in September. Unusually, most of the loss came to otherwise shrinking platforms: Java ME bounced back to get just under 21.3 percent, Symbian returned to 5.8 percent, and even the BlackBerry recovered slightly to 3.5 percent.
IE9 continues to gain pace at IE8's expense
Microsoft hopes that Internet Explorer 9 will have reached a 25 percent share of the desktop browsing market on its own Windows 7 platform once figures for December are in. According to projections from Net Applications, IE9 will soon become the leading browser among Windows 7 users, overtaking IE8. As it stands, IE9 has now also overtaken Chrome and Firefox in browser user on Windows 7.
Google to pay $300m per year in Mozilla deal
When Google and Mozilla renewed their search royalty deal earlier this week, they didn't reveal that Google will pay $300 million per year, AllThingsD learned. For this amount of money, Google will be the default search engine in Mozilla's Firefox browser. The numbers are a sharp increase from the previous arrangement because of the new competition from Yahoo and Microsoft.
Internet Explorer to auto-upgrade soon
Microsoft GM Ryan Gavin told Windows users that the company would start auto-updating Internet Explorer. Beginning with Australia and Brazil in January, anyone using Windows XP or later with automatic updates turned on will go to the most recent version of the browser available for the OS without prompting. More countries would come in line over time.
IE9 site features pinning and JumpLists
Microsoft has partnered with Internet music service Last.fm to create a website optimized for Internet Explorer 9. The Discover site leverages the browser's inbuilt functionality to provide pinning and JumpList features. Also, by building upon an HTML5 foundation, the companies claim the web-based service will have the look and feel of a native Windows app.
NetApplications shows rare Windows reversal
Windows saw a rare increase in its share of the web in November, NetApplications found on Thursday. Microsoft bounced back slightly from a low in October to just over 92.2 percent. The increase pushed the Mac down half a point from its all-time high, although still giving its second-best result to date at 6.46 percent.
Barnes and Noble relies on prior art to deflate MS
Barnes & Noble in its defense against Microsoft has countered with a 43-page list of prior art that it believes invalidate Microsoft's supposedly Android-related patents. The examples often go back over 16 years and include software as far back as NCSA's Mosaic browser, the precursor to Netscape and Microsoft's own Internet Explorer. The strategy would only need a handful of prior art claims to negate Microsoft's case.
Foursquare tackles iPad with location-aware page
Foursquare picked Tuesday to show a heavily redesigned version of its main website. The page depends on HTML5 and uses it for a fully location-aware map; users can browse nearby areas without having to search for them or use their phones. The interface is also suited to the iPad, although users can't yet check in.
Offers tighter integration between apps
Google has updated Google+ to more tightly integrate the app with two other web and desktop apps, YouTube and Chrome. For YouTube, the company has added a "slider" to make it easier for an individual to share personal videos with members of their circles. Google has also added a +1 button and notification button to Chrome to help users stay in touch with their circles as well.
Safari wins mobile browser battle, IE top in PCs
The latest data on mobile and desktop browser use is in and its shows that Apple has extended its lead as the dominant mobile web browsing platform. Safari usage rates increased from 55.6 percent of all mobile web traffic in September to a new high of 62.2 percent in October. Google’s mobile browser leap frogged Opera Mini by taking 18.7 percent of web traffic, while Opera Mini dipped from 18.9 percent to 13.1 percent.
HTC HD7S to finally get update to Mango
An internal staff memo slipped out to WinRumors Monday has pointed to the HTC HD7S getting its hoped for Windows Phone 7.5 update soon. As of Tuesday, AT&T and Microsoft will start rolling out the OS upgrade on a gradual basis. The revamp is showing up in "controlled batch" amounts to make sure there aren't any problems.
Initial release snubs IE compatibility
Google is previewing Dart, a new programming language for building web apps. The language has been designed to be flexible, meeting the needs of a one-person project, without much structure, and scaling up to a large-scale project needing formal types in the code. Initially the code will support at least Chrome, Safari 5, and Firefox 4 browsers, but not Internet Explorer.
NetApplications Sept 2011 shows school effect
The Mac hit a pair of record highs in web share during September thanks to the back-to-school effect, NetApplications found in its monthly roundup. The Mac saw one of its sharpest gains in the past year and was up nearly half a point in desktop share to 6.45 percent. Helped by the new leap, Apple's stake in computers has grown by nearly a quarter in the past year, the close look found.
Windows 8 to allow syncing across Windows Live
Microsoft just revealed that Windows 8 will bring with it the ability to sign into a PC with a Windows Live ID for quickly accessing quick settings wherever they are. Doing so is available for all compatible devices, apps and services. Logging in will have the Metro-style apps in their last-used settings and state, for example.
Windows Phones to get Mango patch in week or two
Microsoft's Eric Hautala told Windows Phone owners that the Mango update was finally near rolling out to existing devices. The 7.5 upgrade should arrive in the "next week or two" on the first wave. As with the NoDo update early in the year, Microsoft will have a status page showing how far into testing each release is and how soon it will arrive.
Sites that rely on plugins will get work-around
Dean Hachamovithch, Microsoft's Internet Explorer team leader stated in a blog post that the Metro-style version of Internet Explorer 10 will not support Flash or other plugins and will rely on HTML5. Hachamovithch said running Metro style IE plugin free would have advantages for consumers, including improved battery life, enhanced security and privacy, and greater stability. Steve Jobs, chairman of Apple, listed many of the of these same reasons for his decision early on to not support Flash in iOS.
Microsoft addresses fake DigiNotar certificates
Microsoft has responded to the recently unveiled hack that saw DigiNotar issue fake security certificates for some high-profiles websites by issuing a patch on Tuesday. The patch only applies to affected versions of Windows Vista and is delivered through Internet Explorer. After the vulnerability was discovered on August 28, Microsoft released a security advisory on August 29 and removed the DigitNotar root certificate from the Microsoft Certificate Trust List.