IE9 Includes Hardware Accelerated Canvas

Comments (55)
  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi, I am waiting IE 9, wonderful! My comments in web site.

  2. Ray says:


    The videos don't work in Opera 10.60 or in Minefield. Can you also provide WebM versions?



  3. Infinte says:

    ohoh, looks good

    but some demos (using raster data) are still slow like this:

    it is great for you to support "shader-like" function to acclerate raster processing.

  4. Rob says:

    Next year? Or two years away? Every other browser has had canvas for quite some time so that will put you guys 3 years behind by then?

  5. FreakyT says:

    Nice!  So, when do we get to see the text-shadow, box-shadow, and opacity properties?

  6. Snowknight26 says:

    The link to the Wikipedia article regarding immediate mode is incorrect.

  7. NotConstructive says:


    Every other IE enthusiast has been asking about canvas in IE for quite some time so that puts you 3 years behind?

  8. Wheret says:


    You can install Silverlight and watch the videos in Opera 10.60.

  9. Ray says:

    @Wheret: I'd prefer not to. I shouldn't have to install additional software just to view a webpage. It should just work in my web browser – same markup, same content, all browsers. And it can. It's easy and I warmly encourage the IE team to do so.

  10. Amtiskaw says:


    Have you actually tried the latest developer version? box-shadow and opacity are already supported.

  11. meni says:

    kudos to the team. i'd like to confess that i didn't believe the ie team would implement the canvas tag as it competes directly with silverlight. i was wrong and i now see that microsoft is serious about standards. WHAT A CHANGE!

    two things though:

    1) i hope to see fewer silverlhigt videos from MS especially at IE related blogs and sites.

    2) I now believe IE would not get webGL. since microsoft pushes direcx, and will not deal with anything opengl. PROVE I'M WROG!

    3) i hear a lot of dissing about competing browsers. why? compete on your own merit

  12. @meni

    While Microsoft dissing other browsers isn't great, they some what have to. How often do you hear people saying "don't use IE, use Firefox/Chrome/Safari/Opera because it stinks at XYZ"? The best way to combat that is to show, "Hey we can do XYZ better then them". Childish, yes. But who started it?

  13. IE Team:

    meni brings up a good point, how are you positioning Silverlight in IE9? Is to be only for .NET programers?

  14. Hans says:

    Is the Wikipedia link some internal link to a local WP server because of too heavy bandwidth consumption to this site? 😉

    @meni: Woha, MS has just announced SVG and Canvas support and you are already asking for WebGL?! Give it some time…

    @Bill Gates II: Silverlight is what it is, an alternative to Flash on .Net basis created by a different team from programmers at a different time. Once it becomes redundant, its development will stop.

  15. badger says:

    @ray complain to Opera about their browser not being interoperable with H.264 video. Chrome, Safari, and IE9 will support it. At least Microsoft was nice enough to provide a fallback to Silverlight since Opera doesn't want to support the leading video format.

  16. ieblog says:

    @Hans @Snowknight26 – Thanks.  We updated the wikipedia link.

  17. Markus says:

    i don't see the videos either with Chrome

  18. Ashish says:


    Very good news, almost a double whammy- IE9 supports canvas, and fast!

    Kudos to the advent of modern browsers like Chrome and FireFox – which actually enable the most and rest of world who are not on IE9 to "see" the content (IE8 just shows images in that place)

    Yeah, it may be like IE playing catchup- but then choice is always good for consumer, and IE team deserves all the praise they deserve to be a worthy hopeful of top slot again.

    One query- does this mean VML is officially deprecated, or will there be a separate announcement for it? Asking because some people I know are not migrating to non-IE browsers coz of lack of VML (and they might be fine to switch to IE9 if business lasts till the point it becomes generally available) 😉

  19. Bertil Wennergren says:

    So, if this page uses the "canvas" element, how come it's coded in XHTML 1.0 Transitional? Last time I checked there was no "canvas" element in XHTML 1.0. The page should use HTML5, shouldn't it?

  20. AndyC says:

    @Bertil, I believe IE uses standards compliance mode whenever it encounters a doctype it doesn't recognize, which includes XHTML since IE doesn't know XHTML.

    As to the news, this is great. I think we'll start to see a lot more exciting web apps as a result of this and I have to say I am very impressed by the overall performance of IE9 so far.

  21. XP IE 6 is not going away says:

    Google offers Chrome Frame.

    Can you guys please do something similar

    or better?

  22. hAl says:


    IE9 preview does recognize XHTML

  23. Wurst says:

    @AndyC: They could have used the HTML5 doctype which triggers standards mode for any modern browser and IE (including version 6): "<!DOCTYPE html>"

  24. James says:

    Sorry for the off topic, I just want to point out a bug (or is it a feature?) in IE8 on Windows 7 (it doesn't happen on Windows XP, and I don't have a Vista machine to try). It takes about 30 seconds for all IE processes to actually close after exiting all browser windows. You can see rundll32.exe cleaning up the processes in the task manager after about 30 seconds.

    This is really annoying and keeps me from using IE as my main browser. I have IE delete cookies on exit to enhance privacy, so it is important that all processes terminate when I close the browser, so that I can have a fresh session when I open it again. Also, if I close IE and then shutdown Windows, when I turn on my pc again and open IE, it says "Your last browser session closed unexpectedly", confirming my theory.

    And it seems like I am not the only one who noticed this, for example:…/2ce9a251-aa1a-46c8-af71-df74f12190e7

    Please, solve this (or change this behaviour if it is a feature) in IE9.

    Thank you.

  25. EricLaw [MSFT] says:

    @James: Disable or update your buggy browser add-on and this problem will go away ( The message indicating that "Your last browser session closed unexpectedly" indicated that IE didn't exit cleanly, and that occurred because one of your browser add-ons failed to properly unload.

  26. Luke Venediger says:

    Wow! Thanks for listening to your users (finally)!

  27. James says:

    @EricLaw [MSFT]: I'm sorry, but this happens even when running IE in safe mode with no addon loaded. By the way, I hate toolbars, bloatware and stuff, so I normally just have Flash and Silverlight as addons (both of them always updated to the latest versions).

    Also, I think that the "your last browser session closed unexpectedly" message shows up because Windows shuts down while some IE processes are still running and so they are killed, not because of a IE crash; in fact I do not get this message if I close IE and wait for all IE processes to terminate after 30 seconds, before shutting down the machine.

    Moreover, I am 100% sure that my machine is not infected by any malware, in fact I also tried this on a clean install and on 3 different PCs.

    I also tried to disable the crash recovery functionality, but IE processes are still generally terminated after about 30 seconds.

    This never happens on Windows XP (with exactly the same settings, addons and applications installed as on Windows 7).

  28. EricLaw [MSFT] says:

    I don't know what you mean by "safe mode."

    What Antivirus / Antispyware products do you have installed? Many of these hook IE in unsupported ways.

  29. James says:

    @EricLaw [MSFT]: Sorry, I used Firefox terminology, I meant "Start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools -> Internet Explorer (No Add-ons)".

    As for the antivirus/antispyware products, I use Microsoft Security Essentials (updated to the latest version available and with Defender automatically disabled by MSE). The issue occurs even with no antivirus installed (just Defender enabled); I remember this because I tried soon after a clean install, after installing all the updates through Windows Update and before installing any antivirus.

    Thank you for your time and attention.

  30. Joel Martin says:

    It's great to see canvas finally coming to IE. If the IE 9 team is listening, I would like to add a vote for WebSockets support. Chrome and Safari have it already with firefox support coming soon. If you want IE to be able to do fast networked games, you'll really need the low overhead of WebSockets.

    noVNC is an VNC client I built using canvas and WebSockets. I have a Flash fallback for browsers without native WebSockets, but the bridging between Javascript and Flash has a major performance impact. In Chrome, with native WebSockets, noVNC is very fast and responsive.

  31. boen_robot says:

    @James: And you had no registry cleaner of any kind? A clean, original (unmodified) Windows 7 install with no software other than device drivers and Windows updates? Every time I encounter an IE problem that is not add-on or AntiVirus related, it's because a registry cleaner like CCleaner or similar was used. Those sometimes affect registry setting(s) on which IE (or Flash or Silverlight or a driver) depends upon, and so when they are missing, IE behaves in a variety of odd ways.

  32. James says:

    @boen_robot: Nope. I haven't used that kind of apps since a serious mess up on Win98. On a clean install this issue also occurs before installing Flash and Silverlight.

  33. wai says:


    I have 2 PCs, both without Flash or Java plugin in them. Both of them iexplore still executing after all IE closed for around 1 minute.

    There are Office and WLM installed, one with NOD32 antivirus, another one with avast 5. Any log I can grep for your team?

  34. Dooley says:

    Really?  Standards based browsing in a Microsoft product?  Be still my beating heart!

    Maybe this means we can lose the Silverlight crapware?  Aren't there enough plug-ins out there already!?

  35. fr says:

    @EricLaw I have also seen the problem James describes many times.  It is more likely to happen after using IE with a fairly large number of tabs open for a few days.  Generally IE8 doesn't seem to handle using a lot of tabs very well, eventually strange things start happening like the refresh button stops working, and you have to close and reopen to fix it.

  36. Jace says:


    Silverlight is the best RIA platform out there. While it does overlap with HTML5, there's a massive piece of that iceberg you may not have noticed. It's a managed-code development framework that's head and shoulders above Flash and HTML5.

    HTML5 doesn't even offer all the features of Flash. See below a list of features that HTML5 doesn't provide, according to Youtube:

    HTML5 "does not yet meet all of our needs"…/8809

    •Standard Video Format – Not all browsers support H.264 because of licensing concerns, holding back HTML5.

    •Robust video streaming – There’s more to video that just pointing to a file. People want control to be able to stream live video or go to a particular spot in a video.

    •Content Protection – DRM! No matter how you feel about it, some content providers love it.

    •Encapsulation + Embedding – There’s a lot more to a YouTube videos than the video. There’s stuff such as captions, annotations, and advertising.

    •Fullscreen Video – Still a pain for HTML5 to handle fullscreen video.

    •Camera and Microphone access – Some folks record their YouTube videos using YouTube, something that’s not possible with HTML5.

    So with HTML5 < Flash < Silverlight, tell me again why you're so anxious to ditch the best RIA framework currently in existence?

  37. meni says:

    (Disclosure: I am an open-source, especially open-standards, unashamed fanboy)


    Me thinks that you have a lot riding on Silverlight (learning/teaching investment maybe), which clouds your judgment IMHO. Sure, Silverlight might be "the best RIA framework currently in existance", but I believe it's not that important. This sort of debate has been unfold so many times. IPX is better the TCP/IP, CDMA is way better then GSM, VML is better then SVG etc… Being better is not important! What _is_ important is openness, being patent-free, vendor-neutral, and cross platform. Sure, HTML5 might have some draw-backs, but for me ,and i suspect for many other developers:

    HTML5 is more important then Silverlight

    (Unless Silverlight becomes open-source, i see no other choice for Microsoft)

    BTW, i have nothing against Silverlight, have fun creating Silverlight apps 🙂

  38. Jace says:


    Funny, I don't do anything with Silverlight. Just calling it like it is.

  39. woo says:

    Any plans for IE9 to support aPNG? (animated PNG)

  40. badger says:


    The IE folks have said nothing about ditching Silverlight. Silverlight is very much alive as a Microsoft product (especially as Windows Phone 7 has heavy support for it). Overlapping technologies are a plus for the web. Each type of technology (HTML5, Flash, Silverlight, etc) excels in different niche areas. They feed off each others innovations. Even within standards-based approaches have competing and overlapping methods for implementing certain RIAs (Canvas vs. SVG; SMIL/CSS3-Animations; etc.).

    This type of overlap is healthy for the Internet. I'm glad to see Microsoft investing in multiple RIA technologies. This yield greater innovation and provides developers with the choice to choose which technology will yield the best results for their purpose.

    Finally, keep in mind that the Internet Explorer team is not responsible for Silverlight (or Flash, for that matter) development. So it's not like they are wasting man-hours implementing support for HTML5. HTML5 is very much a work in progress and may very well solve some of its problems you outlined by the time it's complete.

    While Silverlight (and Flash) may provide better, more powerful end-user experiences in many cases, one thing is for sure: HTML5 is going to be the sure-fire way (in the near future) for interoperable (cross-browser) web development. So I'm happy, as a web developer, to see that I have a choice in how I develop.

  41. Eric says:

    badger: Well put, and I agree with *almost* everything you have to say. The one exception is "HTML5 is going to be the sure-fire way (in the near future) for interoperable (cross-browser) web development". That's simply not true– it will be YEARS before most users are using the latest browsers and all of the interoperability quirks are worked out. On the other hand, with either Silverlight or Flash, almost all users are on the latest version (>95%) and they have implementations for all common desktop operating systems.

    Now, in the long term, and particularly when you consider mobile platforms, I agree, HTML5 will be the way to go.

  42. Victor says:

    Good job! Though, there's one major concern for developers: updates. Will you have a better update system? Will IE team release versions more frequently (IE 9.1, for instance). I'm really interested in your solutions for these issues. It would be great to see the whole IE users browsing with the latest version as soon as possible. Thank you for push the web.

  43. Jace says:


    So help me out here… Are you sure you meant to reply to me?

    You might want to re-read my post, which was a reply to one 'Dooley', and tell me where I said anything about the IE team in relation to Silverlight.

    As stated above, it is my humble opinion that Silverlight is simply the best RIA platform out there in terms of development ease, security, stability and scalability (and overall coolness of the finished product ;-D)

    I personally don't code in Silverlight because I have quite a leaning to imperative languages. The declarative aspects of Silverlight are a bit of a barrier to entry for me…

    I think the advent of HTML5 is very interesting and somewhat exciting, especially the hardware acceleration that Microsoft is baking into IE9. It could be that HTML5 will become a solid, baseline platform for some great next-generation web applications. I think that Silverlight will extend that functionality to help cross certain boundaries – like cloud to local computer.

    I think that with the power of Silverlight atop the .Net Framework, enterprise software will become very interesting in the near future, replacing a large portion of ASP.Net apps…

  44. meni says:


    First, like yourself with regard to Silverlight, i have not yet started any real work with HTML5. So you can say that we're both on equal footing, that is: we have no idea what we're talking about 🙂 You are a Silverlight fanboy, and i'm HTML5's.

    But, let me understand, say you were in charge of developing a large email client app. You tell me you'd start it as a Silverlight app? Why? to get nice animations? I think gmail, which is done with CURRENT technologies (well maybe with one plug-in, Google Gears, allowing offline storage. HTML5 will take care of that) is simply awesome. I don't think you can improve it much with a fancy UI.

    Yes it's harder to develop open web-based apps, but I think it'll change. Tools will get better. Google in known for trail blazing this area, and maybe even Visual Studio will allow you to create HTML5 apps in the future, if not even doing so today.

    If i was in charge of deciding which technology to teach today (in tech-school or high school), i would choose open tools and technologies, even if it IS easier to go the Microsoft route, i'm not debating that. Yes it's easier to teach dotnet, Visual Studio etc., but you just get more and more entangled with one vendor. What would you do if Windows Azure is crappy, and Google App Engine is way better? You'd have no choice if you chose Microsoft!

    Sorry for posting this in IE blog! The IE team is currently the best, most open, group at Microsoft. (change numbers to letters)

  45. Rob says:

    Silverlight and .Net are the futures of the web. Open source fanboys may hate this, but this is the truth. There's nothing in the world that comes close to .Net.

  46. meni says:

    == Sorry if this is a double post, blog system has issues

    Rob, i'm not saying taht Silverlight and dotnet aren't great. I really think that what Microsoft did with dotnet, Sun didn't do in twice the time with Java. It looks very slick. Java might be harder to learn and deal with.

    But that is not the issue. IPX, Novell's LAN protocol, was great also. So was Microsoft's LAN protocol. They all fell to TCP/IP. Say TCP/IP is 60% as efficient as the other protocols. Who the heck cares. There many more examples like that. Java might be less slick then DOTNET, but it's mine. And yours. It's a city mouse country mouse thing. And HTML5 is even better. Support and buzz is coming from all directions. What do you feel about the fact that Microsoft, or at least the IE team, is pumping HTML5 this way? Open will win.

    BTW, and this isn't my main point, from what i read in blogs, dotnet isn't all great. I have read a lot of complaits about Azure, being ridiculously expensive for small sites, years behind App Engine. Also i read that Windows Phone 7 will not support Silverlight IN THE BROWSER. Which kind of relates to your idea of using Silverlight in web sites. Also Windows Phone 7 will not support other dynamic languages like python. Also, from friends working on dotnet i hear a common complaint that there are many more Java's libraries and they have better quality. I acknowledge the fact thar these problems might be fixed in the future. Azure will be more app-engine like, Windows Phone 8 will hve better browser with silverlight support and python support, and many Java libraries will be (re)written for dotnet. But still, my point is don't take every Microsoft marketing at face value.

    I think teaching dotnet in high schools is a crime! because of vendonr lock-in.



    meni – open-source and standards fanboy

  47. kLIMAX says:

    Meny, I saw "lock-in" used so many times in varioius discussions yet it all the time seemed horribly abused. (with few exceptions…)

    What is vendor lock-in in this case?

  48. meni says:

    == This blog systems is really wierd. it forces me to copy each post before clicking "Post" so i can recovre if it loses my post. Is this a dot net issue or just this impl?

    kLIMAX, are you arguing there are alternative implementation, like mono, to dot net?

    Until Microsoft publicly state they have no intentions to sue anyone re dotnet, the entire dotnet stack, mono is irrelevant IMO. Defensive patent suites are ok to ME, but i am talking not suing anyone else including competitors. Also Microsoft must show that their "openess" is real. I think that would be hard for their managment, after years of acting differently.

    On a slightly different note, this reminds me the IE for the Mac debacle (yes, ancient history but relevant). Who is to guaranty this would not repeat with Silverlight for the Mac? Then the vendor lock-in might be more visible.

  49. FUD says:

    meni: Nice FUD. MS has contributed to Moonlight and works with Miguel on Mono. Stallman's got his panties in a bunch, but you need not repeat his insane ramblings.

  50. meni says:

    FUD, i'll ignore the dotnet mono open or not flame war as i feel it doesn't belong here, but let me ask a question which i feel does belong here on the IEBlog: How do you feel that Microsoft, or a group at Microsoft, is promoting HTML5, a free, patentless, and open technology? What is YOUR vision of the future?

  51. ruben_nes says:

    @EricLaw [MSFT] :  I see the same "IE8 wasn't closed in the right way, want to restore session?"-message if I open IE too soon after booting up my laptop.

  52. DanielHendrycks says:


  53. Stifu says:

    @meni: why bother bringing up Mono at all if you don't think it should be discussed here? That was pointless. :

  54. Steve says:

    Honestly MS, just give up. You're always a step behind the other browers, your renderer is slow, you ignore standards and compatability. Just leave writing web browsers to the companies that do it better, like the Mozilla Foundation, Opera, Apple, <insert virtually anyone else here> and stick to the things you're good at, like… ummm… well, I'm sure something will spring to mind, eventually.

  55. meni says:

    Stifu, mono was brought up because i said: "Silverlight < Html5", and also a minor point: "vendor lock-in means teaching dotnet in schools is a crime".  Then, someone said its BS, because of mono, i think. Thats how it came up.

    While mentioning mono and dotnet might have been a mistake, I still think that my views belong here on this blog. I'll repeat them: HTML5 is the most open technology, much more so then Silvelight and DOTNET. That makes them irrelevant to me. Let's work together on more standards, and quicker. Other then that, IETeam: Excellent job, even unbeleiveable coming from MS, regarding open standards.

    To all DOTNET fans, have fun making client apps.

    Steve, have the decency to read about IE9. Then come back.

    – A firefox user.

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