Internet Explorer 8 Released

Yesterday, Microsoft released the final version of Internet Explorer 8. I previously described some notable IE 8 features in the beta version and want to urge those currently using older versions of Internet Explorer to take the plunge and upgrade to Internet Explorer 8.

Security and performance improvements in this latest version are vast when compared to older versions and the upgrade is simple as can be. Just download Internet Explorer 8 and run set-up. Your settings, favorites and cookies are easily transferred and the improvements are well worth the time it takes to download and install.

What to expect:

Installation begins by asking if you'd like to participate in the Customer Experience Improvement Program (I chose not to participate).

Internet Explorer 8 installation

Choosing Next will bring to to the user license screen. Once you click Accept, you will be presented with a window asking if you'd like to install updates. The updates will automatically download while installing Internet Explorer 8 (I recommend you leave it check-marked) and click Next.

Internet Explorer downloading updates

Your previous version of Internet Explorer will be removed (don't worry your settings, favorites and cookies are saved).

removing older version

After finalizing installation, you will need to reboot.

IE 8 needs to restart

Once you click re-start now and your PC re-starts, IE will download updates and check for malicious software. Then it will continue with installation and once finished, it will automatically re-boot your system.

The first time you open Internet Explorer after installation, you will be greeted with a welcome screen that will walk you through personalizing your settings.

IE 8 welcome screen

In the following screen you will be asked if you'd like to turn on Suggested Sites (I chose No).

Suggested Sites setting

Next, you will choose if you'd like to use Express Setting or would like to customize your settings (I chose Custom Settings).

IE 8 settings

Note: If you choose Express Settings, the screens that follow will not be presented to you.

Choose if you'd like to continue using your default search provider or if you'd like to choose from a list of search providers (after set-up is complete).

IE 8 search provider

You can also have your search provider updated (your search provider is not changed, only updated to use the latest technology).

IE 8 search updates

You can then choose to use the current Accelerators provided with IE 8, add new ones or turn them off altogether.

IE 8 Accelerators

Additionally, you can activate the Smart Screen Filter (recommended).

IE 8 Enable Smart Screen

I chose not to keep IE 8 as my default browser because I use Firefox as my primary browser. If you want to have IE automatically open when clicking on a link (not another browser), you'll have to choose Yes. If you prefer to use a different browser, choose No.

set default browser

Finally, you'll have to decide whether to allow the automatic updating of Compatibility View websites (I chose No because I prefer to keep my own compatibility view website list).

compatibility updates

After performing the above steps, you'll be ready to surf the Internet using the new and much improved, Internet Explorer 8.

Visit the Internet Explorer Home Page to download or read more about it's latest features and improvements. Don't be afraid to try it. If you install it and later decide not to keep it, it can easily be uninstalled via Windows Add and Remove Programs (your previous version of Internet Explorer will be restored).