By Craig Buckler

Microsoft to Release IE9 Today

By Craig Buckler

It’s here. Two years after IE8 was revealed, Microsoft will release the final version of Internet Explorer 9.0 during the South by Southwest Interactive Festival at 9PM PDT. For most of the world, that means it won’t be available until Tuesday, March 15:

US PDT March 14, 21:00
US MDT March 14, 22:00
US CDT March 14, 23:00
US EDT March 15, 00:00
UTC/GMT March 15, 04:00
UK / Ireland March 15, 04:00
Europe March 15, 05:00
Eastern Europe March 15, 6:00
Moscow March 15, 7:00
India March 15, 09:30
China March 15, 12:00
Japan March 15, 13:00
Australia AWST March 15, 12:00
Australia ACST March 15, 13:30
Australia AEST March 15, 14:00
New Zealand March 15, 17:00

(If you’re excited, it’s worth checking an hour or two before those times.)

The IE9 download will be available from and the Microsoft Internet Explorer page. I’m sure I don’t need to remind you, but:

Most of us have experienced the beta or release candidate versions of IE9 so there are unlikely to be any major surprises. However, this is the first version which most home and business users will install. Whatever your opinion of Internet Explorer, it remains the world’s most-used browser and IE9 will become an important part of your development life.

There are several important questions to ask yourself:

  1. Should you install IE9 now or wait until a significant proportion of clients have migrated?
  2. If you’ve been holding off using HTML5 and CSS3, is it now time to start investigating those technologies?
  3. Which modern technologies can be used in IE9 and — more importantly — what’s missing?

Will you install IE9 today? Keep an eye on SitePoint for IE9 reviews, tips and tutorials coming soon…

  • Ralph

    Beware the Ides of March!

  • karl

    Let it die a quick and painful death.

  • Akram

    Hmmm ;) Good…. But I will surely upgrade to IE9. There is already option to select IE7 browser mode ( Developer Tool builtin ) in IE8.. and it renders as IE7 after select IE7 browser mode. So, I am sure, they will be browser modes in IE9.


    • Actually, there are differences between a real IE7 and IE7 compatibility mode. It’s fine for a quick test but you cannot rely on it.

  • Dan

    IE9 is going to be an interesting release for sure. How much we can now push forward with HTML 5 and CSS 3, I am not sure. We still have users using IE6, so I think it’ll take a while for IE9 to gain a foothold.

    I won’t be installing it today. I’ll wait a few months.

  • Merennulli

    When you said “time to consider an upgrade” I half expected the link to talk about Chrome.

    In all seriousness, this really only changes the level of use, not the environment of support. I’m already implementing -some- HTML5 and CSS3 and letting it degrade gracefully into outdated browsers and those like IE9 that are behind the curve. A few things, such as the lack of CSS column support in IE9 make the display difference significant enough to consider, but the same failing is true of IE6-8, which are still in heavy use. With 12% of the world still using IE6, I suppose we should be thankful we’re not still supporting Netscape and IE 3.x versions as we did for so many years after they became obsolete…

    I will say this, though – with Chrome, Firefox and Safari available free, updating themselves regularly, and supporting HTML5 and CSS3, it’s hard to justify a great deal of effort towards giving the full visual experience of a website backwards compatibility.

    • Thanks Merennulli.

      This article’s audience is primarily web developers who will require IE9 whether they like it or not. That’s a problem if they’re still happy using XP.

      It sounds as though you have a sensible approach to development and backward compatibility.

  • Don

    I’ve had problems with Yahoo Mail not working properly with IE9RC; however, due to recent Windows 7 updates(?), IE8 does not run without “Administrative” privileges on my Windows 7 Home Premium PC (IE 8 encounters “Internet Explorer has stopped working” errors on “Standard” user accounts). If the final version of IE9 still has issues with Yahoo Mail, I’ll probably just have to abandon IE altogether…

    • Enon

      @Don What are you waiting for, exactly?

  • Grant

    I can’t wait… will this finally be a semi-decent browser from the software giant? Will web standards become standard across IE?

    Probs not but what is life without a little optomism?

  • David

    I’m not a big fan of IE, never have been, at least not since I started building stuff for this interwebthingy many moons ago. However it must be said that IE9 is leaps and bounds ahead of it’s god-awful predecessors. In fact, so much so that until Mozilla finally release FF4 it will actually be, dare I say it, better and faster than FF3.

    So yes, IE9 has been installed (although there’s no way it will become by default browser) and it’s three main ancestors are now all on virtual machines.

    So well done Microsoft for finally realising that standards compliance and improving the web is the way to go. And come on Mozilla, give us FF4!

  • Andrew Cooper

    Well this is fantastic news. I’m looking forward to the official release of it because it will make my life easier, not because I can’t wait to download it. Up until two years ago I had always sworn by IE only because I was (and still am) a Microsoft fan boy and had never experienced another Web browser. I was so used to the user interface of IE that I was too lazy to migrate to another default Web browser.
    Then I tested Google Chrome and now I swear by that browser. I will encourage everyone who I know to upgrade to IE9 but also to consider Google Chrome, as that is my highest recommendation. I will install the IE9 browser and play around with it and so on but I doubt it will ever be my default browser again.
    I’ve never been in a relationship before where I’ve cheated on someone, or where someone has cheated on me, however, I feel this way with IE9 in some ways. Me and IE were really -tight- but then Google Chrome came along and I went with that, just because IE9 is coming out and it is miles better than all of its predecessors’ doesn’t mean I’ll go crawling back to it. The relationship will never be the same again, something, I don’t know what it is, is missing. My personal and professional relationship with the IE family will never be as it once was.
    But congratulations to Microsoft and the IE Team on releasing what I’m sure will be a fantastic and flagship product of theirs.
    Andrew Cooper

  • waderer

    i wander if i will install ie9, will it be possible to run ie6,7,8 using tools like ietester or microsofts expression tester (or whatever it’s called)?

  • Faisal Alim

    Well for myself, I am not a big fan of IE too. But we have to realistic, and work with this browser too. either we like it or not – bottom line is customer should NOT have any complaints at all. in my case my boss :)

    But its good to know that if I design a website in FF3 or Chrome… I really don’t have to look over my shoulder all the time to check if there is any difference in design looks and feels in IE9.

    fingers are cross… let see what nightmare does IE9 put on table for us (designer/developer).

    best of luck folks.

  • krystalkones

    Thanks for such an informative post. Am really excited about its new features!

    Krystalkones Technologies

  • Tom Wardrop

    As much as I despise Microsoft, it’s good to know that they can release a new browser that doesn’t coincide with the release of a new operating system, though I’m sure IE9 hasn’t be developed and released so early because Microsoft care about the web community.

  • John Faulds

    I’ve had the RC installed for a few weeks now after having set up VMs for 6-8. Will probably update to the full version some time this week.

  • Wolf_22

    I will relish the day we can test apps without the need of multiple OSs…

    …and browsers…

    • Andy

      Me too. But don’t hold your breath; that day might never come.

  • jenski

    just been testdriving a little and I’m definitely missing the css-gradients..

  • awasson

    Well the more I think about it the more it frustrates me as a developer. Not IE9 as a product but because it is an exclusive product (Win Vista and up) which means that it fragments the pool of IE users and does nothing to aleviate the problems of older versions of IE.

    As a best case scenario, IE9 will mean nothing to me as a developer and that’s what I am hoping. I hope that when I develop html/css that it will look the same in IE9 as it does in FF, Chrome, Safari, Opera. That is a best case scenario. I’ll still have to look at it in IE7/8 and depending on how far we push the boundaries, I’ll have to tweak my CSS for IE7. I’ll also give it a glance in IE6 to see what’s going on. At best as a developer it’s a non-event. If on the other hand it has quirks like its predecesors, I’ll just be be pissed.

  • Bob

    Still using the very stable XP on my desktop and netbook computers. IE9 does not compute. I’ll stick with Firefox, thank you.

  • Cliff

    i installed it on 4 laptops today and played with them a lot and to my surprise all 4 of them have seemed to improve. they seem a little faster loading and no more freezing pages which i was getting with ie8 now and again. i just hope it remains stable what can i say. cheerio.

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