More on SVG

The first IE9 Platform Preview unveiled IE9’s initial support of SVG. As explained previously, SVG is a vector image format managed by the W3C. The release of the third and fourth Platform Previews come with feature-complete SVG. Major additions include support for SVG gradients, patterns, clipping, and masking. These features are often used to create images with depth and texture and are typically found in more complex SVG files. Just like the rest of SVG in IE9, the newly added features are fully hardware accelerated. This results in impressive performance especially for computationally complex features such as clipping and masking. We continue to work with the SVG Working Group to resolve ambiguities in the SVG 1.1 2nd edition specification and to ensure that IE9’s SVG implementation is interoperable.

9 Things I <3 About SVG

SVG’s benefits are multifaceted. It’s an incredibly flexible and powerful format that is ideal for a variety of use cases. Here are just a few of the reasons why SVG can play a critical part of the HTML5 web:

1. Scale-ability

An obvious benefit of SVG is scalability, as evidenced by the name Scalable Vector Graphics. This makes it an ideal format for maps, charts, and graphs – graphics where the detail is as important as the overall picture. With SVG, the fidelity of the graphic is maintained at all resolutions. A company logo or website icon can be created once and used many times in different places or sizes. The same image no longer needs to be saved at multiple resolutions, each tailored towards a specific purpose. Maps often need to be viewed as a whole in addition to being able to selectively see sections in detail. Currently, a common format for maps is a PDF file. This format makes it easy to to scale the map to different sizes,print at many resolutions with full fidelity, and provides the user with the ability to search within the document. SVG has all of these positive qualities natively supported; no plugins are required. Preset views of the same document can even be defined to make navigation to different sections simpler.

2. Script-ability

SVG is supported by a rich DOM, making it easy to script and manipulate SVG with Javascript. Because SVG shapes are graphic objects akin to HTML elements, SVG scripting uses common patterns that web developers already understand. SVG elements can take event handlers; they can be modified via the DOM or by the DOM L2 Core setAttribute() and getAttribute() methods. All attributes that describe the SVG element can be modified, from position to color to the shape of the element. The example below demonstrates how event handling and scripting can be used to create interactive SVG.

Your browser or viewer does not support xhtml with svg, view this post in IE9 or another browser to use the examples. Get IE9 Platform Preview.


var colors = ["orange", "black", "yellow", "red", "blue", "fuchsia"]; var curColor = 0; function alternateColor() { var circle = document.getElementById("myCircle"); curColor = (curColor + 1) % colors.length; circle.setAttribute("fill", colors[curColor]); circle.setAttribute("stroke", colors[curColor]); }


<svg xmlns="" height="150" width="150"> <circle onclick="alternateColor();" cx="75" cy="75" r="50" fill="orange" stroke="orange" stroke-opacity=".5" stroke-width="10" id="myCircle"/> </svg>

3. Style-ability

There are several ways to include SVG on a webpage. The <embed>, <object>, <iframe>, <img> tags can reference an SVG file. SVG can be included via CSS as a background-image or a list-style-image. To really integrate SVG with the page, it can be included inline in XHTML or HTML5. Standalone SVG documents and inline SVG have the advantage of being fully incorporated in the webpage. The SVG is treated just like other HTML elements and is styled with the same CSS block that styles the entire page. Websites – complete with icons, logos, navigation UI, and other SVG graphics – are skinnable with stylesheets alone. A print stylesheet can even be applied to your SVG images to allow more control over the appearance of the image on paper. Take a look at the example below. If you’re using a browser that supports SVG, you can switch between stylesheets to see how SVG images can change just by altering a simple stylesheet!

4. Search-ability

SVG is a format based on XML, so it’s composed of elements and attributes that are human-readable. Text in an SVG file shows up as text in markup. The XML format enables users to search the document for text, which is not possible in the more traditionally popular GIF and PNG image formats. For developers, the text-based format means that text in SVG images is surfaced to search engines. With this information, a website can be more comprehensively indexed and found by the right people. For example, a flow chart can be picked up by a search engine without requiring the web author to transcribe every panel of the chart.

5. Accessibility

In addition to the searchable aspect of SVG, another benefit of the text-based format is accessibility. Unlike raster images which can have a single, all-encompassing title text and description, the <title> and <description> elements can be applied to any SVG element. A web author can provide a description for each individual component in addition to the whole document, providing a more detailed description  while making it easier to understand. An SVG document has structure to it, which can enable a clearer understanding of it. Additionally, the “focusable” attribute can be added to make it easy to tab through select portions of the SVG.

6. Decorative Text

SVG is not restricted for use on graphically intense websites. It can be used throughout an HTML5 or XHTML file. It’s a terrific option for decorative text headers. SVG text can be styled in more ways than HTML text. Gradients and patterns can be used in SVG text. SVG text can also be stroked, unlike HTML text. Compared to raster images, SVG text is much more flexible for editing. Used in combination with a CSS block, text across many areas of the document can be given the same appearance, much like HTML headers today. And with IE9’s support for WOFF, you can even apply the same WOFF font used elsewhere on your page! SVG text can be rotated or laid out along a custom path. Overall, SVG text enables more flexibility and creativity in text on a webpage. Try the example below to see how easy it is to create decorative text!

7. Data-Driven/Server-Generated SVG

SVG is an XML specification, making it a good target format for server-generated images. Server-generated XML is fairly common; RSS and Atom feeds are a couple of examples. Maps, charts, and graphs often draw from a store of data. SVG is already a prime candidate for these types of documents. With the ease of XML generation, SVG really shines as a fantastic format for creation of these informational images.

8. Seamless Browsing Experience

One of SVG’s advantages over alternative 3rd party plug-ins (such as Flash or Silverlight) is native browser support which offers several benefits. To experience SVG on the web, users don’t need to install add-ons. Built-in support is convenient for the user and reduces exposure to potential add-on vulnerabilities. SVG is hardware accelerated in IE9, offering a smoother interactive and viewing experience for users. Additionally, SVG offers better integration with page markup, DOM, and script to provide for a consistent programming model and better user experiences.

In IE9, SVG is treated much like an image today and matches user expectations of an image: it can be saved into the PNG and BMP raster image formats; it can be copied and pasted into a Word document or Powerpoint presentation as a rasterized version — much like PNGs, JPEGs, and GIFs found on the web today; it can be set as a desktop background; printing SVG is just like printing an image. The browser also takes advantage of the benefits of SVG: it can be saved in the SVG format; it can be copied and pasted into Inkscape for editing as SVG; SVG text is searchable. Native support for SVG makes it easier for users to have a consistent browsing experience.

9. Familiarity/View Source

Because SVG is an extension of XML, learning SVG is merely an adaptation of XML/HTML knowledge that many developers are already familiar with. Many of us learned HTML using a browser’s View Source feature with Web sites we admired. SVG works the same way: View Source on a SVG file or an HTML5 file with inline SVG, and you can see, learn, and understand how an SVG graphic was made. And SVG elements work with IE9’s  debugging tools. As such, SVG is a web technology that is easy to pick up.

Additionally, several commonly used tools – such as Visio or Adobe Illustrator – are already capable of outputting SVG files. Inkscape is another fantastic tool for creating SVG; it specifically targets SVG as an output format and is free to download.  Using SVG on the web is a natural transition.

Call to Action

If you plan to use SVG on your website, you may also want to provide fallback behavior for browsers that do not support SVG. Depending on the context, it may be appropriate to use text, an image, or a combination of both to supplant the SVG. Remember to use feature detection, not browser detection to determine which format to display. SVG has an assortment of feature strings to describe SVG support for different modules. Using a try-catch statement and the hasFeature() method, you can determine if SVG is supported by the browser. For example:

try { if (document.implementation.hasFeature("", "1.1")) { // display SVG } else { //fallback behavior } } catch(e) { // fallback behavior }

Alternatively, if you embed SVG on your page as separate .SVG files, you can use the take advantage of the <object> tag by placing your fallback behavior within as follows:

<object data="vectorPanda.svg" type="image/svg+xml"><img src="pandaFallbackImage.png"></object>

If you are already serving SVG in HTML5 pages on your website, make sure that your HTML5 pages have the proper doctype so the pages load in the desired Document Mode. With no DocType present, IE9 will render in Quirks Mode and your beautiful SVG content will not display. Including the HTML5 DocType is as simple as inserting <!DOCTYPE html> as the first line of your Web page’s markup.

If you’re serving SVG within XHTML or directly as SVG, ensure that your Web server is serving with the proper MIME types:
                XHTML = application/xhtml+xml
                SVG = image/svg+xml

Please try SVG in the Platform Preview and see how it can enhance your site! Let us know what cool ideas you come up with. We’d love to see them!

Jennifer Yu
Program Manager

Comments (68)

  1. Razz says:

    I'm still waiting for the post about XP support for IE9. What a great waste of new features on IE9 if it has no XP support, Firefox 4 and Chrome 6 are coming to XP by the way

  2. GetWithIt says:

    You'll be waiting a long time, Razz, since no such post will be made. The fact that IE9 will not run on Windows XP (a 10 year old OS which is supported only for security patches) was announced around six months ago.

    The IE team is unlikely to have yet another post inviting all of the luddites to come gripe about how their unsupported ancient OS isn't getting any love.

  3. jabcreations says:

    For  PHP developers the correct way to determine if XHTML's MIME application/xhtml+xml is supported is to use the following…


    $mime_ua = stristr($_SERVER['HTTP_ACCEPT'],'application/xhtml+xml');

    if ($mime_ua) {$mime = 'application/xhtml+xml';}

    else {$mime = 'text/html';}

    header('content-type: '.$header->mime.'; charset=utf-8');


    Many web spiders support this and the only instance I've discovered where a browser can minimally interpret XHTML though not send the correct client header is Konqueror.

  4. Randall says:

    Many browsers that don't yet have HTML5 parsers will let you parse SVG with DOMParser, then import the nodes into an HTML (needn't be XHTML!) document.  Seems like a potentially handy hack for interactive SVG+HTML apps.  The code looks like this:

    var svgDoc = (new DOMParser).parseFromString(mySVG,’text/xml’); // ‘image/svg+xml’ not supported cross-browser

    var svgEl = document.adoptNode(svgDoc.querySelector(’svg’));


    It's worked for me on at least recent versions of Safari, Firefox, Chrome, and Opera.

  5. Randall says:

    Oh, and, still talking compatibility, the SVGWeb project looks incredibly handy to anyone wanting to bring interactive SVG content to older versions of IE.  Bing it.

  6. J. King says:


    While admirable, that's not the way you're supposed to interpret the Accept header-field.  You completely ignore q-values and type order, such that if a user/agent prefers HTML over XHTML (Opera, Firefox and IE9 do), you're not being mindful of what the agent says it works best with, nor of the user's preferences.  I had to remove fr-ca from my list of Accept-Language values because of broken implementations giving me French over English, for instance.

  7. Gyrobo says:

    All of the reasons you've just described in this post could easily be reused to make the case for supporting SVG fonts.

  8. mrchekhov says:

    Why is IE so difficult to upgrade and keep up-to-date.  I have been using FF for years and frequently receiving incremental updates without having my work ever disrupted.  Why can't MS do the same?  Why such long lapses between different IE version releases.

  9. Matt says:

    @JKing: You're correct about the interpretation of the Q value, but both Firefox4 and IE9 PPB4 request HTML and XHTML with the same Q value. (Ordering is not important, but specificity is).

  10. Meni says:

    @GetWithIt, here's something for you, and for others who want to join in:

    How badly i am a Microsoft fanboy, a questionnaire:

    1) What did you think of SVG in 2009 before the IE Team announced SVG support?

    2) What were your thoughts about HTML5 back then?

    3) What do you think about WebGL today?! Please don't fidget, and stop looking at Microsoft 🙂

    4) What do you think of people running Windows XP? Just to be a little on topic 😉

    Love and peace,


    a fanboi of open standards and wikipedia

  11. Pawel says:

    I'm very lucky that IE will support SVG.  But important for realistic Graphics are filter. Firts of all thre should be the blur.

  12. Harry Richter says:

    @ meni

    1) we dont need it now, and we did not need it then

    2) …will come eventually when the specs are clear

    3) it is rubbish, a private thing by someone who thinks calling matters open source makes it automatically good

    4) poor chaps. hope your company moves quickly


  13. Stephen says:

    I can't see any reason why there should be extra development to bring ie9 to XP, this is a dead OS. I would hazard a guess that the majority of XP users you feel you are supporting are still using IE6 today, and so releasing IE9 to them wouldn't be at all useful.

    On topic: IE9 is looking fantastic so far, keep up the amazing work.

  14. Stephen says:

    I can't see any reason why there should be extra development to bring ie9 to XP, this is a dead OS. I would hazard a guess that the majority of XP users you feel you are supporting are still using IE6 today, and so releasing IE9 to them wouldn't be at all useful.

    On topic: IE9 is looking fantastic so far, keep up the amazing work, one thing that would be really useful would be a browser handled update scenario, windows update currently handled browser updates, and windows update is generally seen as an annoyance, I think the update scenario could be made a lot better if minor updates were automatically installed (handled with wu), and major updates were brought to the users attention in IE.

    This would hopefully reduce the transition period between versions, and massively help adoption and maturing of web technologies.

  15. Michael N. says:

    This is a very thorough overview on the merits of SVG and it's nice to see Microsoft join these efforts that the SVG community has been arguing for for almost a decade now.

    You mention various options to serve alternate content to users who don't have SVG support. That may be a good proposition for static, image-like content but is a lot less desirable for interactive graphics. And it is interactive graphics where SVG really shines.

    Now I won't join the "make IE9 available on XP" group. As an avid Mac user I am well aware that modern browsers need modern operating systems. But the reality esp. in corporations or government is an almost glacial update cycle. This is further encouraged by news that Windows XP downgrade rights from Windows7 will be offered until 2015 (ZDnet).

    Therefore I argue in my paper for SVGopen 2010[1], that shim technologies – esp. the aforementioned SVG Web – have to be seriously considered. SVG Web allows to draw SVG markup using the Flash plugin in Internet Explorer Versions 6 to 8 and SVG support is almost on par with IE9 in terms of features. Of course there is a performance hit but at least you can reach a much larger audience and your SVG markup is future proof.


  16. Hart says:

    Why on this page – for chrome iframe with svg, but for IE 9 simple PNG ? 🙂

  17. Chris says:

    The detection is somehow broken for me as well.


    1) SVG without graphics acceleration is rather useless. ( Enjoy your laggy animations )

    2) What did you think about Windows 7 beta? It was great, but nevertheless not finished. Same for HTML5. We don't need two dozens of releases that all have a different degree of support and are incompatible towards each other, because of being based on different working draws. Nowadays, HTML5 is finished in a wide set of features, and also finalized. You can implement them without having to expect a sudden change in the next months, so you can redo all the things again.

    3) WebGL is apparently a standard because the Khronos Group says so. It isn't. It's not even said that WebGL will make it. When it's made a recommendation by the W3C, we can talk again.

    4) If you're happy with it, fine. I don't force anyone to use Windows 7. However, those using XP must not expect support by new software for their OS. Microsoft can deliver a better product by not supporting XP. So why would Microsoft continue to support XP? If you get a new computer, you got no excuse for why you definitely need XP. Even if you'd say 'but I need specific application X to work and it needs XP' ( which I'd doubt, I've tried that old games on Windows 7, and they worked without compatibility options, I really start to wonder what applications I'd need to run in compatibility mode then ), then there is XP mode. Now, sure, you can say but I want to keep my years old computer and continue to use it ( I know this option is so beloved among Linux users, as that is magically rumored to run better on old machines – which I'd doubt as I've got a 6 year old desktop here which runs W7 perfectly fine ), then you must not expect Microsoft to deliver updates for it either. There is no legal binding for Microsoft to support XP actively with new software until doomsday. If they decide to build a better product only supporting Vista and above ( by the way, neither Chrome nor Firefox make use of Media Foundation and related technologies ) then they're free to do so. If you're running XP for some reason and expect latest stuff to work with it, that is your own fault.

  18. Mourinho Web Developer says:

    Just for curiosity… Did you know that, the only html5 browser, that even works on Windows 98 is Opera.


  19. Mourinho Web Developer says:

    IE9 SVG is implemented @ 58%

  20. Mourinho Web Developer says:

    I'm with @Stephen…

    He is totally right

    "I can't see any reason why there should be extra development to bring ie9 to XP, this is a dead OS. I would hazard a guess that the majority of XP users you feel you are supporting are still using IE6 today, and so releasing IE9 to them wouldn't be at all useful.

    On topic: IE9 is looking fantastic so far, keep up the amazing work, one thing that would be really useful would be a browser handled update scenario, windows update currently handled browser updates, and windows update is generally seen as an annoyance, I think the update scenario could be made a lot better if minor updates were automatically installed (handled with wu), and major updates were brought to the users attention in IE.

    This would hopefully reduce the transition period between versions, and massively help adoption and maturing of web technologies."

  21. Michael N. says:

    On printing:

    > In IE9, … printing SVG is just like printing an image.

    What does this mean exactly? Will printing be rasterized? Firefox and Safari print SVG as Vectors when printing to PDF or another PostScript printer, which is an important feature.

  22. jabcreations says:

    @J. King The order of the query does not concern me, if a feature is supported or not is something that does concern me. What a browser prefers is not as important as what it supports and if it supports something is itself not important to a client.

    @Stephen @ Mourinho If playing video games and NOT interacting with the OS is what you prefer to do then you two have at it. Those of us on XP are getting things done in fewer clicks thus saving us time and reducing or eliminating the onset of arthritis otherwise suffered by those who prefer an OS that was dolled up and then had the functionality mangled beyond sanity.

    If Microsoft wants previous customers such as myself to buy a license for a new version of Windows then I say drop the clearly useless "studies" and people like me out to the office to set things straight. It's not about developers, it's about designers and design and technology is not ultimately about aesthetics, it's about reducing the number of steps to achieve a goal. On that note I like to add that I'm using an Aero theme for XP so I have both functionality and aesthetics in my OS; I also have IE8 installed . It would be nice to not blow a GB just to run a copy of Vista to test IE9. Firefox 4, Safari 5, and Opera 10.6 all run just fine on XP. Upgrade? That's a subjective term because if the newer version of software is less useful then an older version I'll gladly use the older version if it does what I need it to.

  23. @Michael N,

    IE9 will of course print SVG as vectors, not as a rasterized bitmap.

  24. Aethec says:

    @jabcreations: You want to use a 9-years-old OS ? Fine. But don't complain if modern software don't support it. Mozilla, Google, Apple and others support XP because they either have no reason for not supporting it, or think it's important. Microsoft, as well as lots of developpers, want users to upgrade to Win7, or at least Vista. Thus, they won't use time and energy to create an XP-compatible version of IE9. You can't change that.

    I can't think of something that requires more time to do in Vista/7 than in XP. Especially with the Start Menu's search bar which allows you to go to any buried-down Control Panel option in seconds.

  25. era says:

    Why did Microsoft wait 5 years to finally implement SVG yet deprive XP of it?

    IE8 will be the new IE6, mark my words.

  26. wetran says:


    1) loved it all the way! I saw it as the future of web graphics right from the start 🙂

    2) loved it all the way! It IS the future of the web, since we can't be stuck with HTML4.1 forever 🙂

    3) I don't exactly love it, but it seems to be the future of web 3D anyway, at least a far better chance at that than Opera's 3D Canvas API proposed in one of its lab build.

    4) they need to upgrade. they need to be concerned about their system's security problems much much more than some performance gains from IE9.They don't even need to upgrade to Win7 (albeit I love Win7), they can upgrade to Linux, Mac OS X, FreeBSD, etc. Just get out of WinXP ASAP!!!

    So what's my result? 🙂

  27. Klimax says:


    At least with IE8 you get libraries which augments it with new things. (PIE and co)

  28. Klimax says:


    At least IE8 can be by js linraries extended. (like PIE and others)

  29. Max says:

    In IE 9 – Your browser now support xhtnl with svg.


  30. Rich says:

    I have a few questions about SVG and HTML email.

    Will inline SVG images be displayed by default in Outlook when IE9 is installed on a computer?  How about in Web mail services like Hotmail, GMail, etc.?

    For that matter, what other HTML5 features will work in HTML email messages?  For example, marketers would love to send around video emails…….



  31. Mike says:

    People stating that windows XP is a ten year old operating system and should be  ignored are missing a crucial point. Windows Vista was released to retail January 30th 2007 (source wikipedia), so any windows PC bought previously would have XP, this means plenty of computers which are only a few year old are running XP.

    There are school computer labs full of such computers, I suppose such schools should listen to some of the comments on this thread and replace all their perfectly good computers at vast cost.

  32. a688 says:


    Some of us understand that upgrading windows does not require purchasing a new computer. They can simply upgrade their existing OS installs to Windows 7 on the same computers they currently own.

  33. Capt. Obvious says:

    >IE8 will be the new IE6, mark my words.

    Of course it will: A great browser that users and corporations are perfectly happy with and continue using far longer than cutting edge web developers would like.

    A few years after that, IE9 will be the new IE6. And then IE10. And so on.

  34. Mike says:


    It costs over $100 to upgrade from Windows XP to windows 7, why should someone have to pay in order to update their browser.  Is it too much to expect a version of IE9 without hardware acceleration for XP users. After all other browser vendors do a good job of bringing HTML5 features without hardware acceleration right now.

  35. Anonymous says:


    @ieteam I disappointed in IE9pp4 performance, see more at…/102932

  36. Olivier says:

    @Mike: don't worry, sooner or later Microsoft will have to release IE9 for XP. 60% of Windows users are under XP, if they don't bring IE9 to XP, many of this users will have to switch to another browser. When you see how IE is losing market share, Microsoft would be quite stupid to definitively kill IE. Nobody will upgrade to Windows 7, just to get IE9.

  37. Todd says:

    "You'll be waiting a long time, Razz, since no such post will be made. The fact that IE9 will not run on Windows XP (a 10 year old OS which is supported only for security patches) was announced around six months ago.

    The IE team is unlikely to have yet another post inviting all of the luddites to come gripe about how their unsupported ancient OS isn't getting any love."

    Forget XP support, I'm just waiting for a cross-platform version of IE. Considering every other major browser has versions for ALL operating systems I fail to see why IE doesn't.

    "We support open standards… but only if you're on Windows! If you're not, then bugger off. We'll make you go through hoops just to test to make sure we hack our code right just so it displays correctly in IE"

    I've just learned not to support IE and, instead, direct Windows users to download an actual cross-platform browser like Firefox, Chrome, Opera, or Safari. Why should I support coding for IE if Microsoft isn't going to support me?

  38. CvP says:


    Since when being cross-platform is a mandatory criteria for web browsers?

    like Razz, you will also be waiting for a long time 😉

  39. Todd says:

    "Since when being cross-platform is a mandatory criteria for web browsers?"

    Ever since a web browser came out that horribly butchered web standards but was used by a fair number of users? Good luck testing to ensure that IE isn't horribly broken without a Windows licence. :/

  40. Olivier says:

    @Todd: Safari is cross-platform? Where's the Linux version? And why websites doesn't crash the same way with the Mac and the Windows version?

  41. Prior Semblance says:


    Nobody is going to switch browsers just to view your website. I have every browser installed and I would just close the tab and forget about the site if I was told to switch. There are also ways to check that at least some parts of your site work in IE without having windows.  You can go to a library or ask friends to check or use websites that show you pics of your site in various browsers.  But from what I've heard it wouldn't be too hard to buy a copy of vista and use it for testing with IE and who knows what else.

  42. Stifu says:

    @Prior Semblance: haha… Genius. Have fun debugging stuff either by asking friends or going to a library.

    "Hey, friend, can you refresh the page and send me a new screenshot? Wait, I just moved something 2px farther, please do it again? And what about now?"

    How effective! Makes me wonder why so many people bother with debuggers and stuff. And so professional, I'd love to do it at work, too.

    That way, I can have countless breaks to go to the library. (Too bad most companies use Windows, but maybe I can use the same excuse for Mac debugging or something.)

    Besides, there are very high chances that any given library only has a single version of IE installed. I guess that means you should spot 3 libraries (for now), one with IE6, 7 and 8. 😀

    You're hired!

  43. AntiLudite says:

    Ha ha XP is dead as a dodo. No matter how much the Luddites whine, IE9 is NOT going to support XP. NEVER. XP has only about 50% market share, and within 12 to 18 months its market share is going to be less than 20%. Ha ha ha. Windows 7 FTW. IE9 FTW.

  44. Rob says:

    If Microsoft loves SVG so much, why did it take them 10 years to support it like every other browser has?

  45. hAl says:


    Microsoft  used VML which actually has similar scalable vector capacities as SVG but which takes up a lot less bandwith.

    With VML IE was probably a much more capable grafical browser then any other for many years.

  46. Neil Dunensach says:

    @  AntiLudite   – stop being a troll and actually provide sources for the figures you claim.  XP will be around for a long time.  I fully expect to see sometime in 2011 a version of IE 9 that will run on XP, minus the graphic acceleration.  Before people like Matt flame me – I'm not ASKING for it, it's my OPINION.

  47. BlindLeadingTheBlind says:


    Windows XP is in extended support and gets only security patches.

    You only "fully expect" XP support because you don't know how software is developed, and you don't understand that Microsoft has coded IE9 to rely upon Windows Vista+ APIs. They did this throughout the entire browser, not just the obvious graphic acceleration.

    Why on earth would you expect them to carry the legacy Windows XP cruft around?

  48. Todd says:

    How do you continue to trot out the nonsense that XP is a legacy browser when it was still be sold on new computers a year ago? It might be ten years old but people were still buying new computers with XP until very recently. People aren't going to drop everything and buy a new computer for Vista when they just did.

    And, really, why is Microsoft coding a web browser to have such a tight reliance on an operating system anyway? That's just bad programming. Isn't that what got them into trouble with the EU in the first place?

  49. John says:

    MS should support XP because you can still buy it:…/end-of-sale.aspx and it's still used (a lot). I think it's ridiculous to not support something you are currently selling. I think Chrome needs to take over.

  50. Literacy says:

    John, if you actually READ the article you point to, you'll notice that XP is for sale for less than two more months, it's very hard to buy (you practically have to beg for it), and IE9 won't be out until long after XP is no longer for sale.

    Todd– XP is a legacy OS, it is not a browser.  And it's pretty clear that you don't know at all how the thing with the socialists in the EU turned out.

  51. AntiLuddite says:

    @Neil, I'm not being a troll. XP's market share is about 48% right now and it's going down at the speed of light. Check out this page:

    Windows 7 is the fastest selling OS in the history of computing. So, within 12 to 18 months XP will be completely obsolete except for Luddites like you.

    And I can bet my house on the fact that Microsoft are NEVER EVER going to release any version of IE9 for the XP Luddites. Windows 7 FTW.

  52. Neil Dunensach says:

    @AntiLuddite – XP won't be obsolete in less than 2 years because businesses cannot, do not and will not change to an OS that's only 1-2 years old.  Absolutely not before the first service pack, minimum.  You can use as many internet memes as you want, that's a fact.  Small – medium sized business, in this current economy, will not see upgrading to Win 7 a good use of capital resources.

    Also, I'm looking forward to moving into your house.

  53. Neil Dunensach says:

    Oh and 2 other things – if XP share is going down "at the speed of light", it would be gone already.

    Also I'm not a luddite – I use Win 7 at work (I'm a system tester and builder) and Linux at home because I don't want to spend all my free time applying security patches, OS updates, anti-virus defs, defragging….

  54. Bored says:

    Neil: You're not a luddite, you're a troll. Everything you mention is 1> Automatically performed, and 2> Necessary in Linux and MacOS as well.

    Anti: W3Schools is NOT a valid source of statistical information– they even say this themselves. Look to other sources for better data, e.g. "Net Applications".

  55. Klimax says:

    I expect XP withing 2 years to be found only as pirated version(China) , never replaced computer or at companies with SW tested only on XP. And funny thing I found myself face completely reversed position, I had to upgrade neccesary PCs to Win7 to get Access-based app working with SQL 2008 running on WIndows Server 2008 R2. (Reason for break on XP never found)

  56. ccarrer says:

    Very nice!

  57. Meni says:

    RE Win XP: I think MS made a mistake in relying exclusively on HW acceleration APIs in IE9, thus making it incompatible with XP. Pray tell, where is Windows Phone 7's next HTML5 browser coming from?? Is it based on IE9? If so, does WP7 uses same graphics API as Win7? If the OS' API is different from Win7, then when adding support for WP7, why not support XP on the way?

    HW acceleration is a nice thing in general i'm not debating that. But right now it's mostly a marketing tool. It also helps the poor IE6-8 fans. After all, they deserve some help it after withstanding  years of derision by friends using alternative browsers. Now they can say: can your browser do 567 FPS in this HTML5 game? Oh yes, I love HTML5. It was worthless before, but now i love it. I'll move all my clients from Silverlight.   😉

    In conclusion, let me finish with my "Carthago must be destroyed" (I heard you Harry Richter :-)) spiel:

    IETeam, can we have a statement on WebGL. I'll be really happy either way. But if the answer is yes, you give people more time to get acquainted with WebGL. What do you gain by delaying this statement? Marketing edge?

    My your future be open and clear of patent trolls (Oh, i forgot Allen didn't sue Microsoft 😉

  58. Duh says:

    >If the OS' API is different from Win7

    Why would you assume that? Given the fact that Silverlight and XNA are the primary development platforms for the phone, it seems entirely obvious that they're using the same gfx APIs as desktop.

    >But if the answer is yes, you give people more time to get acquainted with WebGL.

    >What do you gain by delaying this statement?

    In case you haven't noticed, the IE Team doesn't blog about what they are NOT doing. For instance, did you ever see a blog post about "We're not doing Windows XP"?  Of course not. You saw a blog post about "Here's what we're doing on Windows Vista and Windows 7." You're expected to read between the lines.

    So, you won't see a post from them titled "IE9 will not have WebGL." Instead, you read posts like "Here's why hardware accelerated Canvas and SVG are cool."

  59. Meni says:

    Duh, you misunderstand. Silverlight and XNA are APIs for apps. You cannot conclude anything from that, MS even had a port of them for the iPhone. A browser is a system app, NOT developed with these.

  60. Mourinho Web Developer says:

    For those who loves the web, HTML5, and music … here is a cool link: — by the band Arcade Fire

  61. Duh says:

    The self-described "open source fanboy" is trying to weigh in on Microsoft architecture. Amusing.

    As for the dubious claim that there's an "IPhone version"– well, you haven't cited any sources, so I'll give that all the credit it's due.

    A reasonable person would conclude that WP7s support for XNA and Silverlight, whose designs are based upon the desktop graphics APIs and which are built by the same technology teams, suggests that the WP7 OS will also support the same underlying graphics acceleration APIs.  Yes, they could have reinvented the wheel, but since they didn't have to (e.g. like they would for Mac Silverlight) that seems very unlikely.

    But this is still missing the point, since it's not as if graphics acceleration is the only thing they've added to IE9.

  62. Blah says:

    Mourinho: That site uses the inferior OGG format which isn't supported in IE9, and uses browser detection to complain about non-Chrome browsers. Hilariously, it sometimes complains that Chrome isn't Chrome (they don't do proper cache-vary) and refuse to run even in Chrome.


  63. Meni says:

    Duh, Microsoft had a Silverlight port ready and demoed for the iPhone, until Steve, as if sent from heaven, shot it down :-). you can bing it

    RE XNA, I dont know much if there are other ports. But still it's not a proof that WP7's grahics API is the smae as Win 7. I could look it up, but haven't brushed up on MSDN since 2001.

  64. jabcreations says:

    @Aethec I don't "search" my start menu because I don't allow it to become a nightmare. If Microsoft would rather add a search feature then fix a free-for-all in the start menu then it's their fault for letting it get out of control. Also you ignored the fact that I listed several points of how Vista and 7 are less efficient then XP. Reliable software always trumps broken "new and improved" software. If you haven't found Vista or 7 constraining then you're clearly not utilizing the OS to the point that XP can be utilized.

  65. wetran says:


    "I think it's ridiculous to not support something you are currently selling."

    WinXP is supported, and IE8 is supported, and you can use IE8 on WinXP. Microsoft not making IE9 for WinXP does NOT mean WinXP is not supported by Microsoft. Simple logic.

    @Neil Dunensach,

    "XP won't be obsolete in less than 2 years because businesses cannot, do not and will not change to an OS that's only 1-2 years old."

    And those businesses won't change to IE9. heck, they won't change to IE8 as they will stay with IE6. Really, for those who still uses WinXP, not having IE9 is nothing big. Just stay with IE6. Or, upgrade to IE8 if they really want.


    "And, really, why is Microsoft coding a web browser to have such a tight reliance on an operating system anyway? That's just bad programming. Isn't that what got them into trouble with the EU in the first place?"

    It's not bad programming, it just using better APIs. Like many programs using WinXP specific APIs won't run on Win98. You cannot stay coding with old APIs forever, coding with newer APIs generally means higher productivity and efficiency, if not better features and functionality. MS had to cut the line somewhere, and they decided to do it with IE9.

    Most programs have tight reliance on operating systems anyway, you can't run Mac apps on Windows, you can't run Windows apps on Mac, and you can't run WinXP apps on Win98, and that has nothing to do with the EU problem. the EU problem is bundling IE with Windows, not coding programs with Windows specific APIs, else they'd need to sue 90% of the programmers out there for coding with OS-specific APIs.

  66. AntiLuddite says:

    @ JabCreations, XP is an incredibly unproductive and pathetic OS compared to Windows 7. I can safely say you have NEVER used the Windows 7's search feature. I have indexed my WHOLE hard disk and by using the start menu search I can locate any file on my ENTIRE computer within a fraction of a second. I no longer have to remember file names and locations. Just type in anything you remember about that particular file, and even before I have finished typing, the file pops up. Launching applications and Control Panel applets have also become so much more productive.

    Bottom line is, XP's UI is completely ununsable and fugly. It's a pathetic, insecure and ancient OS compared to Windows 7. So, Microsoft is absolutely right in dropping XP support.