IE8 Blocker Toolkit Available Today!


We believe IE8 helps make browsing the web faster, easier, safer and more reliable. To help our users be more secure and up-to-date, we will distribute IE8 via Automatic Update (AU) and the Windows Update (WU) and Microsoft Update (MU) sites much like we did for IE7. We know that in a corporate environment, the IT organization will often want to delay the introduction of a new browser until they have tested compatibility with internal applications and sites.  We’ve done a lot of work in IE8 to maintain compatibility with sites designed for Internet Explorer 7, for example compatibility view and the compatibility meta tag.  However we know many IT organizations will still want to test the browser before it is deployed.  To help prevent users from installing IE8 through Automatic Update before compatibility testing has been completed, we are providing the IE8 Blocker Toolkit. This toolkit has no expiration date and can be configured either by running the registry file on the client machines or via Group Policy in domain joined environments. The Blocker Toolkit is available today from the Microsoft Download Center.

IE8 will be available for users on the following platforms:

  • Windows Vista 32bit and 64bit,
  • Windows XP SP2 and above,
  • Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2003 SP2 and above

The IE8 update will be released as the highest priority update for each operating system. For Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008, it will be listed as Important. For Windows XP and Windows Server 2003, the update will be listed as High Priority. Delivery of IE8 via AU will begin after we make IE8 available from the Microsoft Download Center. Of course, users can always decline to install IE8 through AU when it is offered. More information for IT Professionals about IE8 delivery via AU is available here.

If you previously used the IE7 Blocker toolkit to block IE7 from being offered as a high-priority update, you will need to run the IE8 version of the Blocker Toolkit to block IE8 from being offered via AU. There are different registry keys used to block or unblock automatic delivery of IE7 and IE8. If you configure the IE8 Blocker Toolkit setting to prevent users from installing IE8 via WU/AU, IE8 will not appear in the list of available high priority or important updates.  We believe this approach strikes a good balance by helping customers become more secure and letting organizations control when they are ready to deploy IE8 to their users.  Note: The IE8 Blocker toolkit will not block the final version of IE8 being offered to users who already have pre-released versions of IE8 installed on their machine.  Also, the IE8 Blocker toolkit will not prevent users from manually installing IE8 from the Microsoft Download Center.

Organizations that use an update management solution such as Windows Server Update Services or Systems Management Server 2003 do not need to deploy the Blocker Toolkit.  Windows Server Update Services and Systems Management Server 2003 allow organizations to fully manage deployment of updates released through WU and MU, including IE8.  For more information about the IE8 Blocker Toolkit, check out this link.

For those who are interested, here is what the AU experience will look like for IE8.

How the AU delivery will work

For Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 users
  • AU will notify you when IE8 is ready to install. You will also be able to visit Windows Update or Microsoft Update sites and manually install IE8 update by performing an “Express” scan for high-priority updates.

IE8 Update ballon tip.

Windows XP Automatic Updates dialog

  • When Windows Update starts installing IE8, you will see the IE8 welcome screen as such:

IE8 Welcome screen on Windows XP

To proceed with the installation, decide on whether or not you’d like to participate in our Customer Improvement Program and click Install. If you choose Ask me later, WU will re-offer IE8 to you during the next update scan. If you choose Don’t Install, WU will not offer IE8 to you again, and IE8 will appear as an optional item on Windows Update.

For Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 Users
  • AU will notify you when IE8 is ready to install. You can click on the bubble to launch IE8 installation. You can also install IE8 from Windows Update manually by typing Windows Update in the command prompt and checking for updates.

Windows Vista update available notification

IE8 Welcome screen on Windows XP

  • When Windows Update starts installing IE8, you will see the IE8 welcome screen:

IE8 Welcome screen on Windows XP

To proceed with the installation, click Install. If you choose Ask me later, WU will re-offer IE8 to you during the next update scan. If you choose Don’t Install, WU will not offer IE8 to you again, and IE8 will appear as an optional item on Windows Update.

Note: The IE8 Welcome screens are still in draft form and are subject to change by the time IE8 is distributed via WU/AU.

If you configure the IE8 Blocker Toolkit setting to prevent users from installing IE8 via WU/AU, IE8 will not appear in the list of available high priority or important updates. We believe this approach strikes a good balance by helping customers become more secure and letting organizations control when they are ready to deploy IE8 to their users.

Thanks,
Jane Maliouta
Program Manager

Comments (78)

  1. Rigmarole says:

    "JScript errors may occur when you upgrade from Internet Explorer 6 on Windows XP or on Windows Server 2003

    Do not upgrade from Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 to Internet Explorer 8 Beta 2 on a system that is running Windows XP or Windows Server 2003. A rare installation issue may occur in which Internet Explorer may exhibit false JScript errors and an inability to add Favorites or Web Slices.

    To work around this issue, uninstall Window Internet Explorer 8 Beta 2, install Internet Explorer 7, and then upgrade to Window Internet Explorer 8 Beta 2."

    Will this be fixed in public RC release and the final release or we still have to go through the rigmarole of installing IE7 and then installing IE8 on XP SP3?

  2. Mantas says:

    The wording of the article is not very clear.

    The title talks about IE8 Blocker Toolkit. Then the rest of the article discusses "IE8 update", which, I believe, refers to IE8 final version, once it’s released.

    Do I understand it correctly?

  3. Guest says:

    Just curious what the currently planned release date is?

  4. SiSL says:

    oh snap…

    So millions of idiots will continue to use IE6…

  5. Guest says:

    Why not learn to capture screeshots with ALT-PrntScrn? The borders are ugly!

  6. Windows Guy says:

    Really bad as many of them won’t switch to the latest version.In other words,MS is allowing users to have older IE versions.

  7. Tom says:

    Again quite useless "news". Who cares about IE8? IE8 is slow, with ugly UI and in fact it breaks the web. MS has lost the browser war already. FF and Chrome are choices for the intelligent user. Sure, the dumb ones still think that the blue "e" is synonymous on the internet, but this crowd is hopeless anyway.

    I wonder why on earth MS management hasn’t fired Dean Hachamovitch and Chris Wilson. They both lost a contact with users and the reality long ago. According to Mozilla people Mr. Hachamovitch has downlpayed the importance of javascript speed. With that attitude you cannot win.

  8. hAl says:

    [quote]So millions of idiots will continue to use IE6…[/quote]

    It is not idiotic if your some of your companies most important applicaties only work in IE6 and an upgrade would kill those applications.

  9. Stifu says:

    hAl: then first upgrade these applications, then upgrade the browsers. It’s more troublesome when some of these applications are not controlled by the company, though.

    I think most companies just think it’s more cost-effective to keep their 10-year old apps rather than spending time and money to update the whole thing…

  10. Aaargh! says:

    > "It is not idiotic if your some of your companies most important applicaties only work in IE6 and an upgrade would kill those applications."

    Those applications shouldn’t have been IE only anyway. Just force the upgrade on all users and let all those apps break. It’s not like people don’t know they shouldn’t make an app depend on IE6-only behaviour. Time for them to suffer the consequences of their stupidity.

  11. FremyCompany says:

    > Those applications shouldn’t have been IE only anyway. Just force the upgrade on all users and let all those apps break. It’s not like people don’t know they shouldn’t make an app depend on IE6-only behaviour. Time for them to suffer the consequences of their stupidity.

    And if there was no other possibilities ? You’re discrediting yourself by saying something like that. IE is not the best browser, but it still have many advantages for the developpers. Nowadays, the usage of the web is quite changing, but the old projects must still continue to work, and IE also need to be read for the next version of webapp, and the IETeam has started working on it (but it’s clear that IE8 will not be sufficient for that)

  12. Standards says:

    Even Microsoft will not support IE6 forever, XP SP2 support will end at the end of this year and only XP SP3 will be supported until 2014, then no more updates for IE6.

    What are those brain dead, stupid enterprise/corp companies that locked themselves into IE6 gonna do then? Procrastinate until 2014 and then scream in horror as they finally realise that they’re screwed now?

    You just know there will be more of the zero-day  vulnerabilities that will affect IE popping up in the future, the fact that IE8 needs to be patched eventhough it’s suppose to be more "secure" than IE6/7 just illustrates the point of how badly broken and ineffective IE’s codebase and security is.

  13. I’d really appreciate if you mention what about us, the Beta users? I guess we shall uninstall the Beta and then install the RTW in the normal way, or there will be supported upgrade path by the standard installer?

  14. We believe IE8 helps make browsing the web faster, easier, safer and more reliable. To help our users

  15. Impedire l’installazione di Internet Explorer 8

  16. Wieder ist ein Jahr vergangen und ein neues hat gerade begonnen. Es ist also wieder Zeit für eine kleine Bilanz und den Ausblick darauf, was das neue Jahr voraussichtlich bringen wird. Als Erstes ein erneutes, großes und fettes Danke für das Vertrauen

  17. Bruce Lee says:

    What happens if a PC (XP or Vista) is setup for "automatic updates?" Will IE 8 magically show up one day?

  18. Internet Explorer 8 sarà rilasciato attraverso il servizio Windows Update e sarà segnalato come importante

  19. jacob says:

    All this talk about applications that don’t work on anything but IE6 has got me thinking.

    Is there a list anywhere of applications that ONLY work on IE6?

    e.g. if this is just a standard whine (won’t someone think of the poor IE6-only application users) then I don’t want to give it any credit, but if this is a serious issue and there really are lots of applications that don’t work on IE7 even then I’d like to know.

    I’m currently building 2 web applications and have explicitly implemented an IE6 (or god forbid below) sniffer that redirects to an unsupported page. (if anyone wants to have an L.C.D. chat about supporting everyone’s browser (fine I’ll do that in another thread) but I’m not wasting another second trying to make sites work in IE6)

    So seriously, what sites out there only work in IE6? or is it only a set of internal "Intranet" applications that have just gathered mothballs cause they haven’t been updated in over 5 years.

  20. @Tom says:

    What on earth do you think this blog is going to be about?  Don’t go to a site about chewing gum news if you don’t want to hear about chewing gum.

  21. HB says:

    Honestly, some of you have must not have worked in a corporate environment before (not as an insult).

    Not every company has dedicated developers to create internal applications, if they even have any. When they need an application they go out and buy from a vendor…

    I can’t cite any statistics, but in my experience, many of the vendors we use don’t care about "web standards" or "CSS validation", etc… They test with IE6 (which we all know is much more forgiving than other browsers), and they consider their testing complete.

    We could _potentially_ be an isolated case, except for the fact that our company uses several different vendors all touting that they have "hundreds of thousands of subscriptions" (their words, not ours). And their application is absolute garbage…

    Anyways, all this to say, that cost aside, companies aren’t guaranteed that they are getting the latest and greatest in "web standards compliant" applications when they upgrade.

    I’ve suggested it before, too bad it won’t be considered – Make IE6 a standalone application (you could even market it as the IE for Corporate Applications) and start developing a browser from scratch…

  22. Guest says:

    Actually they have been doing this for a while.  They realize that most times the new browser breaks applications in business environments.

    I’m not planning on letting this rampant on my network without testing!

    >>>"Really bad as many of them won’t switch to the latest version.In other words,MS is allowing users to have older IE versions."

  23. Jane [MSFT] says:

    @ Doncho:

    The IE8 update will be available on WU for Beta users, so you don’t have to manually uninstall Beta builds and install the latest IE8 from Microsoft Download Center.

    @ Bruce Lee:

    If you are opted into Automatic updates, IE8 will not get automatically installed, as the installer requires user interaction. The Welcome screen will appear and the installation won’t proceed until the user agrees to install IE8.

  24. buzzup.com says:

    We believe IE8 helps make browsing the web faster, easier, safer and more reliable. To help our users be more secure and up-to-date

  25. Gabriella says:

    IE6-8 is not Mac’s friend… but, even if it were I wouldn’t want to use it with all the issues and screaming I have heard from PC users using IE6.

    I say stop flexing and keep your nose to the grindstone and come up with the Ultimate X-IE…  one that works!

  26. The top 20 IT mistakes to avoid

    11. Developing Web apps for IE only

    November 19, 2004

    http://www.infoworld.com/article/04/11/19/47FEtop20_3.html

    Gérard

  27. Wagner Reis says:

    Please kill IE6 too, put IE8 for automatic update!

  28. i386 says:

    WHEN is IE8 supposed to hit WU?

  29. anonymous says:

    Dumb move: more will get stuck on the poor excuse for a browser IE6 forever.

    We do not need IE8 if it doesn’t wipe out IE6 and IE7 from active use.

  30. steve says:

    I’ve re-opened this bug closed on connect.

    https://connect.microsoft.com/IE/feedback/ViewFeedback.aspx?FeedbackID=333981

    To wait 9 MONTHS to be told that this BUG is BY DESIGN IS ABSOLUTELY MIND-BOGGLING.

    I’ve updated it with a full test case (plus inline so users can download/view it) and I have a screenshot here:

    http://www.freeimagehosting.net/uploads/e89990c806.png

    For those with access to Connect, please add a verification and vote for this bug.

    Thanks.

  31. Roman says:

    I wonder why the Vista welcome screen is different (no improvement program offer).

  32. jesusbl@hotmail.com says:

    I have a problem with wanting to install Internet Explorer 7 or 8 will not let me it seems the error lies in the Ime (KB932823) that is not compatible with Service Pack 3 for Windows XP

  33. EricLaw [MSFT] says:

    Roman: For Windows Vista and later, the "Customer Experience Improvement Program" is an operating-system wide setting.

    In the control panel, you’ll find the "Customer Experience Improvement Settings" option on the "Problem Reports and Solutions" screen.

  34. NickAL says:

    IE8 is great, when it randomly (and constantly with more than a few tabs) crashes a tab page it recovers it for you!

    IE7 doesn’t seem to do this, then again I’ve ever had a tab page crash on it before.

  35. JohnC says:

    A *date* would have been nice and made a point to all this.  Is this months away?  Weeks away? Days away?

  36. anonymous says:

    Steve, how many drop-downs does your site have on it? That seems like a very minor issue. That said, what are you trying to do?

    And btw, I am incredibly thankful for you guys fixing the button artwork stretch bug. The fix is even present in IE 7 standards mode ^_^. And how you’ve done this beta is awesome (the IE 7 mode). If something doesn’t work (like Outlook Web Access) it can be made to work.

  37. MartinD says:

    What does "Highest Priority Update" mean? Will it be a critical update, a security update or just a regular update? That would be an important information for WSUS, because the Default Automatic Approval Rule approves all critical and security updates by default.

  38. vikram says:

    nice blog.thnak you for giving all the details about ie8.i would like to discuss if i intsaled ie8 in windows98 is it properly working or not? or is it support to windows98 or not?

    vikram,

    http://blogs.msdn.com/ie/archive/2009/01/06/ie8-blocker-toolkit-available-today.aspx

  39. Tar says:

    reg ADD "HKLMSOFTWAREMicrosoftInternet ExplorerSetup7.0" /v DoNotAllowIE70 /d 1 /t REG_DWORD /f

    reg ADD "HKLMSOFTWAREMicrosoftInternet ExplorerSetup8.0" /v DoNotAllowIE80 /d 1 /t REG_DWORD /f

  40. "Not every company has dedicated developers to create internal applications, if they even have any. When they need an application they go out and buy from a vendor…"

    @HB and anyone else who has unsupported software.  Yes,  unsupported software is what you have if it does not support IE7 amd FF3.  What idiot buys from such vendors? You guys need to change app software and ditch these vendors.

    Even the Luddite software works on IE7 and FF3 and will support IE8 when it comes out.

  41. Jan says:

    I would like one comment about IE’s restore session. Sometimes when I start IE I get a prompt with the options "Restore previous session" and "Goto homepage".

    Fine, but I also get this prompt if my previous session was only 1 tab with my homepage. If ‘Restore previous session’ and ‘goto homepage’ give the same result, IE does not have to prompt the user!

  42. steve says:

    @anonymous: I have lots of select lists, and inputs, and textareas, and other combination elements… all of them have a backbround color/image and border set.

    They all look great in all web browsers except IE8.  In IE8 it looks like there was some sort of coding error by the site’s developer when it is IE that is not rendering correctly.

    PS Can someone with Windows Vista verify if this bug occurs there too?

  43. hAl says:

    What is the buildnumber of the IE8 version shipped in the Windows 7 beta 1 ?

    Will it be equal to the RC1 version ?

  44. steve says:

    Just a few example sites where IE8 takes the rendered view back 13 years to the Windows95 era:

    Hilton Hotel Reservations:

    www1.hilton.com/en_US/hi/index.do

    Budget Rent A Car:

    http://www.budget.com/budgetWeb/home/home.ex

    Discount Rent A Car:

    http://www.discountcar.com/English/

    Priceline.com

    http://www.priceline.com/

    Areoplan:

    http://www.aeroplan.com/use_your_miles/travel/car_rentals.do

    Key Bank, eBay, etc.

  45. joeplumber says:

    Ok I downloaded IE8, installed it, restarted my computer. NO IE8 to be seen. wtf?

  46. Marcolen says:

    Any date when are available a final version?

  47. EricLaw [MSFT] says:

    @vikram: IE8 is supported only on Windows XPSP2 or later.

    @MartinD: Highest priority means that for Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008, the update will be listed as Important. For Windows XP and Windows Server 2003, the update will be listed as High Priority.

    @JohnC, @Marcolen: We will release a Release Candidate build later this quarter. We’ll take feedback from the Release Candidate before releasing IE8.

  48. Jandler says:

    Hi, it’s clear that there are lots of effort made into IE8. Performance, rendering, standards, etc etc are being worked on. The question I have is are there any plans to ‘port’ these improvements to outlook, word and other microsoft app that render html? Right now, things look one way in IE, but look another way in outlook or word. It makes things very complicated and inconsistent.

  49. Deed says:

    I agree. Alt+PrntScr. Or are you developing on a Mac? Haha.

  50. Jandler says:

    Alt+PrntScr merely takes a screenshot of the currently open window. I don’t see any relationship or valuable contribution with that.

  51. kudraw says:

    A question: Why IE8 crash on Windows 7 Beta?

  52. Trebor Shadow says:

    Thank you … I will be blocking IE8 after all the trouble I had when IE7 was launched … I have a great disliking to IE altogether and will continue to use FF3 (http://en-us.www.mozilla.com/en-US/firefox/) …  

  53. gabe says:

    @ Trebor Shadow

    id still upgrade to latest version of ie even though i don’t use ie

    (ie is to intergrated and used in some form or another by other programs not to update)

    as far as going back to ie for my main browser would never happen microsoft could not pay me to use ie

  54. Stifu says:

    I just realized I’m getting all those god damn "airwater hellas" spam mails because of this blog. Aren’t e-mail addresses supposed to be hidden here? Has a flaw in the blog been exploited to retrieve them? Gah.

  55. John says:

    IE8 is crap just like IE7!!

    IE6 is the best of the series :)

  56. This is really abusing the Update Service: IE8 is _not_ a "high priority" update! You will break thousands of clients and servers just because your marketing department wants to shove this release down customer’s throats instead of letting them choose for themselves.

  57. Dan says:

    Anders, you need to do more research.  The user is OFFERED IE8– it’s not installed automatically.  This is exactly like IE7.

    Using the latest browser IS a high priority, because it includes security improvements, and as you should know, web browsers are the riskiest part of the system when it comes to security.

    IE8 isn’t going to "break thousands of clients and servers" and as written above, you can easily prevent it from being offered if you want.

  58. Scambler says:

    Background Windows Internet Explorer 8 will be distributed to end-users via Automatic Updates and the

  59. PB says:

    All you people slating IE6 and saying companies should upgrade miss the best feature of IE6… RUN AS, in IE6 you can RUN AS an administrator and perform any task required, to perform the same things with IE7 installed what do I have todo??? Log off and back on.

  60. HB says:

    @The Luddite Developer

    I doubt you’ll see this, but I happened to come back by here and noticed what you said.

    It is really that simple? Is there a "web standards version" of every single application in the world? I highly doubt it.

    People forget that businesses are more interested in finding solutions to their needs than finding a vendor that validates with the W3C before they publish their software. I’d like to see you go to the CEO of Humongous Corp. LLC and tell him that he shouldn’t purchase an application because it doesn’t "use web standards" (like he’ll even know or care what that means) – and then in turn tell him there aren’t any other solutions out there for him to use.

    It’s real easy to assume that _all_ the companies in the world are "idiots" that have vendors that build IE6 applications, but I’d be willing to bet that they aren’t. The real problem is that developers still test/target IE6 because of it’s ease of development… if you want to label a group as "idiots", I’d start with them…

  61. Steve says:

    As for the argument about using different browsers, other than IE in corporate environments, one word: SharePoint. Try FF or Chrome with SharePoint and see how far you get. Also, keep in mind that most corporations must use IE for external apps, such as banking and  government services. Many corporate operations are heavily dependent on other corporate and government applications which have only been developed for use with IE. Would it be nice if all developers would or could take the time to develop in every browser on earth? Sure, but it will never happen and most organizations are simply forced to use IE. I have noticed however, that most applications that only work in IE6 do indeed, eventually, get updated to work with IE7. And many apps will work from IE6 to 7 without any updating.  

  62. 随着IE8正式版本发布的临近,我们推出了了IE8自动升级阻止工具供IT专业人士用于安排企业的升级节奏。请 跳转到IEBlog 查看详细下载和部署步骤。

  63. Aaargh! says:

    > I can’t cite any statistics, but in my experience, many of the vendors we use don’t care about "web standards" or "CSS validation", etc… They test with IE6 (which we all know is much more forgiving than other browsers), and they consider their testing complete.

    So ? It’s time for them to get with the program or go out of business.

    How long do they intend to stay IE6 only ? Will their app be IE6-only in the year 2100 when there are possibly no computers left that can even run IE6 ? No ? So they will have to upgrade eventually, now is as good a time as any.

  64. HB says:

    @Aaargh!

    Again, I have to ask – is it really that simple?

    Explain how and why a business would give up what appears to be perfectly good, working software in the name of "web standards" (which translates to them as just making your job easier, not theirs)

    Unfortunately, poor CSS support and a broken box model matter very little to the businesses that will continue invest money into vendors that ignore "web standards" in favor of poor markup/faster development.

    In an ideal world this wouldn’t be a discussion, but this is a reality that, I for one, don’t see an easy solution. Any person with a "Teach Yourself HTML in 24 Hours" book and a copy of FrontPage can get hired on as a web developer. Until there is a higher standard for developers, I don’t see this changing…

  65. Geld Lenen says:

    IE 6 still rocks IMHO, if only MS would stop updating software that is already working fine!

  66. Kurzbeschreibung: Finalversion des Windows Internet Explorer 8 (kurz: IE8) für Windows XP. Der IE8 ist die Internet Explorer-Version von Microsoft, welche bislang Web-Standards in der Voreinstellung am besten unterstützt. Dessen Installation ist somit

  67. It’s soooo excited that IE8 RTW is finally released and is available in 25 languages! Let’s see how it

  68. At the MIX 09 conference, Microsoft released the final build of Internet Explorer 8 (IE8) in 25 languages.

  69. Microsoft released uninstaller for Internet Explorer 8, if you are having problem using it. To uninstall

  70. Oracle Apps says:

    Steven Chan, Oracle’s Senior Director of Oracle Applications Technology, says that Oracle has not yet certified IE8 for the E-Business Suite. Steven says there are issues with launching forms, and further states that "it is imperative that your Apps user

  71. IEBlog says:

    In January we blogged about our plan to distribute IE8 via Automatic Update/Windows Update (for simplicity,

  72. Bink.nu says:

    In January we blogged about our plan to distribute IE8 via Automatic Update/Windows Update (for simplicity

  73. TechBlog says:

    If you’re on a Windows PC and using Internet Explorer 6 or 7, you’ve got a decision to make soon. Microsoft, which finished and released Internet Explorer 8 last month, is about to start pushing the latest version of the…

  74. Actualités says:

    In January we blogged about our plan to distribute IE8 via Automatic Update/Windows Update (for simplicity

  75. News says:

    n January we blogged about our plan to distribute IE8 via Automatic Update/Windows Update (for simplicity

  76. Подготовка к распространению IE8 через службу Automatic Updates В январе мы сообщали о планах по распространению

  77. IEBlog says:

    This post walks through the IE setup experience and the choices it offers users. There have been a bunch