Windows & Interoperability: eWEEK Labs' Tests of Microsoft IE 8 Show Web Browser Is a Must-Upgrade
eWEEK Labs' Tests of Microsoft IE 8 Show Web Browser Is a Must-Upgrade
One of the better new features in IE 8 is its ability to color-code tabs launched from a Website to help users visually manage the many tabs they may have open.
Better Add-on Management
Much-improved management for add-ons, including plug-ins and the new Accelerators, is a feature of IE 8.
IE 8 now uses an inline "find in page" feature and highlights the terms being searched throughout the Web page.
The new Web Slices feature in IE 8 makes it possible to pull content from Websites that have built Web Slices and view it from the browser's Favorites bar.
Tool Bar Integration
Websites can integrate with the tool bar and other areas of IE 8 by taking advantage of the new Web Slice feature and having visitors install the Web Slice on their browser.
Suggested Site Buttons
When visiting any Website, users can click IE 8's Suggested Sites button to get a list of sites similar to the one they are viewing.
IE 8's compatibility mode lets users run the browser using the IE 7 engine mode for those sites that don't run well in IE 8.
In IE 8, accelerators can be accessed by highlighting text in a Web page and clicking on the icon that IE displays.
Accelerators in IE 8 provide nice inline functionality within the browser, such as the ability to quickly translate highlighted sections of text.
During setup of IE 8, users can choose which accelerators they want to run within their browser.
Suggested Search Terms
Like most newer browsers, IE 8 suggests search terms when a search is entered in the integrated browser search field.
When launching a new blank tab in IE 8, users are given multiple options for launching content from Accelerators or previously visited Websites.
Typing in the address bar in IE 8 brings up suggestions for content pulled from sites visited in the browser history.
After initial setup of IE 8, users can define which search providers will be used by the browser and can also define internal search engines for use.
Delete Browsing History
When users of IE 8 use the Delete Browsing History feature of the browser, they can choose what data they want to delete or save.
The new InPrivate Browsing feature in IE 8 lets users surf the Web without having any information about the browsing session saved.
From the InPrivate Filtering settings, users can control how the private browsing feature in IE 8 works.
Bold Domain Names
IE 8 bolds the core domain name of Websites in the address bar to help users detect fraudulent Websites with similar names.
Users can choose to have the SmartScreen Filter on in order to detect potentially dangerous sites or can have the filter turned off by default.
When users run across potentially malicious Websites, they can choose to have the IE 8 SmartScreen Filter check the site on demand.
With the SmartFilter in IE 8 enabled, the browser will warn users before they surf to known phishing or malware Websites.
The Acid Test
While IE 8 has better standards support than IE 7, it still scores lower on the Acid3 standards test than any other newly released Web browser.
Improved developer tools for analyzing and viewing Website code are available within IE 8.
When a Website fails to load, in Vista IE 8 displays a Diagnose Connection Problems button, which launches the Vista Windows Network Diagnostics tool.