Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate available via Automatic Update

Starting today, Monday, February 14, 2011, the Automatic Update (AU) feature of Windows Update (WU) will offer users of Internet Explorer 9 Beta an upgrade to the Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate. This rollout will start with a narrow audience and expand over the next few days to cover all Internet Explorer 9 Beta users. This post provides information on how the Automatic Update delivery will work and announces the release of Internet Explorer 9 Automatic Update Blocker Toolkit.

How IE9 RC Automatic Update Delivery Works

Screen shot showing new updates available notificationAU will notify you when Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate is ready to install. You can click on the bubble to launch Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate installation. You can also install Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate from Windows Update manually by launching Windows Update from the Start Menu and checking for updates.

Screen shot of Windows Update showing an update ready to install

When Windows Update starts installing Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate, you will see the IE9 installation screen:

Screen shot of Internet Explorer 9 install dialog

To install Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate, click Install. If you choose Ask me later, WU will re-offer Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate to you during the next update scan. If you choose Don’t Install, WU will not offer Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate via AU to you again, and Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate will appear as an optional item on Windows Update. Users who decline the update can download Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate from We strongly encourage all IE9 Beta users to upgrade to the IE9 RC.

IE9 Automatic Update Blocker Toolkit

With IE9 RC released via Automatic Update, now is good time to prepare for the final IE9 release (the Release-to-Web, RTW, build). To help our users be more secure and up-to-date, we will eventually distribute the IE9 RTW build via AU and WU to all users. We know that in a corporate environment, the IT organization often wants to delay the introduction of a new browser until they have fully tested its compatibility with internal applications and sites. We’ve done a lot of work in IE9 to maintain compatibility with sites designed for Internet Explorer 8 and Internet Explorer 7 and intranet sites continue to run in Compatibility View (IE7 mode) by default. Regardless, we know many IT organizations will want to test IE9 before it is widely deployed.

To help prevent users from installing IE9 RTW through Automatic Update, we are providing the IE9 AU Blocker Toolkit which, when deployed, prevents IE9 RTW offered as an important update via AU. 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 Toolkit also provides an unblock procedure which can revert the block. We believe this approach strikes a good balance by helping customers become more secure and letting organizations control when they are ready to deploy IE9 to their users.

The Toolkit to Disable Automatic Delivery of Internet Explorer 9 is now available from the Microsoft Download Center.

The IE9 Blocker Toolkit has no impact on the IE9 RC AU deployment to IE9 Beta customers and, further, will not block the final version of IE9 offered to users who already have pre-released versions of IE9 installed on their machine. This is to ensure that we provide the latest security fixes to users running older pre-release versions of IE9. The toolkit, also, does not prevent users from manually installing IE9 from the Microsoft Download Center.

There are different registry keys used to block or unblock automatic delivery of IE9 and IE8. If you previously used the IE8 Blocker Toolkit to block IE8 from being offered as an important update, you will need to run the IE9 version of the Blocker Toolkit to block IE9 from being offered via AU.

Organizations that use an update management solution such as Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) or System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) do not need to deploy the Blocker Toolkit. WSUS and SCCM allow organizations to fully manage deployment of updates released through WU, including IE9.

We encourage the timely deployment of IE9 while at the same time respecting your desire to deploy it on your schedule.

—Vishwac Sena Kannan and Jatinder Mann, IE Program Managers

Comments (33)

  1. engine switch says:

    in b4 arguments for IE switching to another engine

  2. sodaxp says:

    Great news! 😀 keep up the good work MS 😀

    Best regards from Peru!

  3. kevindees says:

    What OS(s) will this AU include? Also, is this for IE7-8 only?

  4. Raan says:

    Please do something about Gmail in IE9 RC.

    IE9 RC + Gmail + DISQUS…/9614b3b3-9ff7-4b42-ad3b-604f4793645b

  5. Prior Semblance says:

    Does this mean we aren't too far from the final IE9? I'd love to see IE9 released in the next few months so I can start getting the IE8 users I know to update =p

  6. Vishwac Sena Kannan [MSFT] says:

    @kevindees: As called out in the blog, this Automatic update made available today only targets existing IE9 Beta users (on all IE9 Beta supported platforms).

  7. Uwe says:

    All my Windows applications hosting IE as an editor ("designMode"="On") don't switch to design mode anymore 🙁 Any hints on this?

  8. Björn says:

    And IE9 will be offered through MU/WU ~3 months after release?

  9. Juro says:

    I am wondering when the IE 9 RTM is intended to be shipped (in about one/two months or more)? I am eager to propose my clients to use the new IE official version for the future web projects I will develop for them..

  10. kai says:

    I look forward to the next version of Internet Explorer to restore all of the customization that was removed from this release. I'm sorry to see that requests of power users are getting ignored over and over. Doesn't it occur to the IE team that the great success of Firefox in the non-geek community is driven by requests from power users and subsequent implementation by FF developers?

  11. Richard says:

    with the beta the Psychedelic browsing demo achieved approx 1500 FPS (as does Chrome 11 Canary) whereas the RC now gets approx 100-150 FPS. The only difference is the browser – I only use the machine for IE9.

  12. Björn says:

    @Máté Benyovszky: By changing the global setting.

  13. Michael Flanakin says:

    That's what I'm talking about!!! I wish all pre-releases could be handled this way. Give me an option to see pre-release Microsoft products as optional updates. That would greatly simplify the beta process for us faithful beta users.

  14. IE Release Date says:

    Its a fair bet that IE9 will be released (RTM at least) at MIX this year, Apr 12- 14.  Worst case, we can expect the RTM date to be announced then.

  15. @Björn: thanks. Globally (Win7) font smoothing was switched off, but ie9 forced the use of it. Using Microsoft Cleartype tuner I switched on ClearType at a low level, which helped me te get readable fonts

  16. Lance says:

    Are their any statistics on if the percentage of users who turn off automatic updates is better in Win7 & Vista is any better than previous versions?

  17. Mike says:

    Stop trying to change the world's terminology.  Its RTM! always was, always will be.

    Just print:  IE9 RTM will be officially launched on April 12, 2011.

  18. Jeff says:

    I am using IE9 Beta and i didnt get the update through my update and i have my WU set  to automatic so what does that mean

  19. GmY says:

    Very nice news !! I love IE.

  20. Stephanie says:

    We are thinking of doing some internet marketing ourselves, what do u think of using a website and newsletter like this

  21. Will Peavy says:

    I just ran SunSpider with IE9 RC and Chrome 9, and my results:

    IE9 RC: 380.2ms

    Chrome 9: 597.2ms

    Nice work IE team!

  22. geniuseire says:

    window7 pro 64 bit  IE 9 rc


    gigabyte mobo 785, amd phenom 11 x 4 core (765 blk ed)  3.40ghz

    4 gigs ram,  [ ATI 5700 series 1 gig of memory (windows 7 experience index 7,4) ]  

    NIS 2011

    HD Western Digital WD5001AALS Caviar Black Hard Drive – 500GB, 7200 rpm, 32MB, SATA-3G

    IE 9 rc (Clean install)

    On cold boot up, opening ie 9 takes 33 seconds to populate home page/google (it makes no diff.. if its Bing/ Cnn etc. )

    All add ons disabled. (also same issue using ie 9rc 'no add ons') checked and unchecked gpu rendering in options advanced, no difference

    Using ie 9 therein after cold boot runs very quick and smooth. Opening and closing ie 9 very quick indeed,

    Just on every cold boot up it takes 33 secs to open and populate, any clues.

    Reverted back to ie 8 much faster (4secs) to open and populate on cold boot ups

    Posted on Ms Answers last friday no solutions yet…………………/d4ab5c7f-a778-479b-96b8-9e05cc8a12fc

    As a side note, The only programs/services besides Ms windows  is Norton Internet Security suite 2011 that starts up at boot up.

  23. Máté Benyovszky says:

    @Máté Benyovszky: I believe that unlike XP there is no way to turn off font anti-aliasing and there is only the option of switching to greyscale anti-aliasing.

  24. George says:

    IE9 RC fails to install via Automatic Update, exactly the same way the downloaded version failed on my machine (see my post in Acting on Feedback: IE9 Release Candidate Available for Download). Essentially, I have all updates installed, Windows Updates sees nothing out of date, IE9 fails to install citing missing updates, and it fails further when clicking the [Get Updates] button. This is really annoying.

  25. @Richard: What type of graphics card do you have? Inside Tools > Internet Options > Advanced, is "Use software rendering" ticked at the top?

  26. @geniuseire: There's a known issue on first startup on certain hardware with a certain number of fonts installed. We have a plan to address this, thanks.

  27. kevindees says:

    @Vishwac Sena Kannan, Thanks.

  28. George V. Reilly says:

    Please make a Virtual PC image for IE9 RC available.

    I downloaded the Vista+IE8 VPC image last night. It's almost two years old, so there were ~80 updates, which bloated the main VHD to 10GB. Then I had to install Vista SP2 on a differencing disk, 6GB. Only now have I finished installing IE9.


  29. geniuseire says:

    ERIC , Thank you for your response the accelerated graphics is unchecked (rendering)  Graphics card Ati Radeon 5770 1 gb gddr5

  30. Geniuseire says:


    I use a third party utility program PCPITSTOP Optimize 3.  When doing a scan it hangs and displays an error message.

    I contacted PcPitStop and they inform me that it is an issue with ie 9.

    Below is a copy of the message.


    File: http//

    Line 198:

    Wrong number of arguments or invlaid property assignment.

    Please report this error to technical support"

    Yes the program runs in IE8 no problem.

    PcPitStop say uninsatll ie9 and revert back to ie8.

    Perhaps you may have a solution or suggestion.

  31. ie9RC user says:

    At Win7 64bit, two "iexplore.exe*32" keep running at background.

  32. nathan says:

    This is really good and it help me a

  33. Peter Cross says:

    Ditto on the designmode issue mentioned here.  This is a pretty serious issue that was not present in the beta.

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