Updated Look for IEBlog

Today we introduce an updated look and layout for the IEBlog. Here’s an overview of the design and layout changes we made:

  • New font family – We’re using the Segoe UI font to align with Windows 8 Metro style.
  • New color scheme – We have a new color scheme inspired by the Windows 8 Metro style Start screen.
  • Improved performance – The blog’s home page defaults to excerpt view. This substantially reduces load time since excerpts do not contain images or videos.
  • Fewer borders – We’ve removed the borders around the right rail items resulting in a cleaner look.
  • Updated right rail content – We’ve removed the tag cloud and limited the monthly archive list to 24 months. The links section has been updated somewhat and we’ve added the Microsoft Translator machine-translation widget for visitors who may wish to read our blog in languages other than English.

We hope you like the new style as much as we do.

—Ted Johnson for IEBlog

Comments (64)

  1. Mitch 74 says:

    I can't say I'm a fan of the new look – too "VGA-ish" for me, the loud colors take me back to Windows 2.0… So nope, not a good start.

    Let's see if you fixed the markup… Nope, still more than 50 errors and 40 warnings per page, on a Transitional doctype even (errors go up to over 60 with a Strict doctype). No cookie.

    Well, the homepage is indeed lighter, so that's a plus.

    Is the comment form working properly now? Yes! Great, another plus. You struck balance, people!

  2. Laurent says:

    Its simple and clean, and the fact that the text is now fixed width is welcome change. I like it.

  3. Andrew says:

    Looks decent, but the social icons on this page aren't inline. Otherwise a pretty good redesign.

  4. Xero says:

    At last something that we were desperately waiting for! 🙂 Thanks IE team.. Can you please ask the application developers to get rid of the post-back method (use ASP.NET MVC3 with EntityFramework instead!) and the session timeout for non-logged in users while posting comments as well? Currently its somewhere 15-30 minutes.

    The most interesting thing is; MVC3 team at Microsoft has given the example of complete blogging system in their tutorials: msdn.microsoft.com/…/gg685494. It takes minutes to configure it in MVC way with the existing underlying database… but those Telligent guys are stuck with the classic ASP post-back method!

    Finally, Mr. Ted, can you please ask the web designers to redesign this old game page as well http://www.microsoft.com/…/downloads.html and  this time, pleaseee remove the line at the top saying "Click here to Install Silverlight".. I hate to see this line because it's totally lame! First of all, there is no Silverlight component on that page & secondly I have the latest version SL5 RC installed, so why it's offering me to install it again. Whoever designed it should be interviewed again.

    Thank you and keep up the great work!

  5. Jamie says:

    This looks great on IE6! Thanks for supporting my favourite browser guys!

  6. Merlin says:

    It's simple and clean but to be honest, I prefer the old design. It's a little too minimalist for me.

  7. David Naylor says:

    Ignore the haters. I like it!

  8. L. says:

    Thanks for the update.  The switch to Segoe UI is welcome, but… What is with the big, blue rectangles?  Maybe it stands for Metro's Start screen—rectangles everywhere—but it looks like Microsoft's welcome page 10 years ago.  It's angular and old-fashioned.  I don't like it.

  9. Arieta says:

    @Mitch 74: Have you checked Google in the validator yet? So many terrible markup errors! Completely ruins the site, don't you agree?!

    In fact have you checked *any* site that relies on CSS3 today? Because that alone automatically makes it IMPOSSIBLE to generate valid code! All such CSS3-based designs are full of dirty browser prefixed css values! Of course you can still make a legit CSS3 design with a well-formed, error-free markup… but it won't work on any browser.

  10. Don Reba says:

    It's ok, but I can't help feeling there is a waste of effort somewhere in "designing" a site to look like a quick layout prototype.

  11. LW says:

    Agree with someone, this is like a webpage from… 20 years ago…

    Agree it is inspired by Metro… but ugly implementation.

  12. Brian says:

    It is simple and clean, like sites used to be in the 90s. That's good.

    However, validation of this page alone shows 57 errors and 43 warnings.

    This is a critical problem. It hardly inspires hope in the IE team when their own blog is hideously fails validation.

    Presentation is only just lipstick. It makes something ugly look good.

    But a pig can only get so beautiful. Changing the makeup does not change the core problems.

    You need to spend your time fixing the real issues.

  13. Quppa says:

    Looks decent. It would be great if the blog software could be fixed to stop silently rejecting comments.

    > New font family – We’re using the Segoe UI font to align with Windows 8 Metro style.

    What about aligning with the Windows Vista or Windows 7 style? Segoe UI is hardly new to Windows 8. (The hinting improvements to Segoe UI Light in Windows 8 are definitely welcome, though.)

  14. Netanel says:

    Like It.

    Finally it doesn't load the complete last year every time I open it. I think it can be better if all of the newest article was displayed on the index page.

  15. alvatrus says:

    Overall, I like the new design.

    Minor niggle: the blue rectangles are too heavy and detract from the content.

    But the (default) excerpts view is a welcome new feature. Now let's hope this posts in one go…

  16. I like it, feels clean (less dense) and crisp 🙂

  17. David W says:

    Who gives a flying turd about a new template? This is not why I subscribe here.

  18. Andrey says:

    The blue blocks are very bright and draw to many attention as it should be.

  19. David W says:

    Oh great, and as part of the update, you managed to mess up your GUIDs *again*, so my RSS reader is spammed to hell. Please try focusing on non-cosmetic nonsense like that, or say, the dumbtarded 'postback' crap needed to submit a simple comment, why not just a <form> like the rest of the world? Stupidtastic

  20. Vilius says:

    Comments links is not clickable in Excerpt View.

  21. meni says:

    To echo what David W is saying, there might be place for AJAX form submition on the net. Youtube might be an example, where it's nice to post comments while the video is playing without a page reload. But this blog isn't one of these examples! KISS. Use the simplest technology that works, in this case a simple submit button.

    I think this comes from using WebForms. Now there's an idea. Why don't we take all those VB developers and instantly make them web developers by adding some abstraction layers on top of HTML. Sometimes I think that it's best Microsoft doesn't do anything, lest it do more harm. Just keep on working on Windows and office 😉

  22. @IE Team says:

    The best upgrade ever. Great job. Thanks IE Team. I love you.

  23. Tim Snadden says:

    Making this blog validate would align nicely with the big Microsoft 'standards' charm offensive. If that is beyond your capabilities you might want to try wordpress. I hear there are some nice themes you can download and use for free. 😉

  24. Dmitriy Pashkevich says:

    Seeing empty lines in the beginning of page source hurts my eyes so badly!!!

    Its almost 2012, people! What kind of example are you giving to your entire web developers community?!

    P.S. And please, hire a designer already.

  25. fr says:

    It's pretty generic looking, you could at least have put in the IE logo somewhere!

  26. AndyCadley says:

    The new style is OK, but the underlying MSDN blogs platform is where all the real problems have been. Until that gets fixed, trying to use the blogs is always going to be a bit painful.

  27. jestempies says:

    The new design is so-so, but better than before 🙂 The platform, however, seems broken — I can't even access this page when I'm logged in, and I get the following message instead:

    "Your email address is already in use by another user, jestempies.

    In order to complete account creation you must first change the private email that is set for the user jestempies. Please sign out and then sign in with the Windows Live ID associated to the jestempies account. Modify the private email and then reattempt to create this account.

    If you do not recognize this user jestempies, please use the site feedback form to report this problem so that we can assist you in creating your account.


    I was able to log in before, so I suppose you must have broken something.

  28. Mario says:

    I like the new look of the IEblog it seems to load faster. :~)

  29. Luigi says:

    When will IE10 be in beta?

  30. Scrollbars says:

    One feature i would like to see in IE10 is a way to stop scrolling on a page using the arrow keys..

  31. dave says:

    +1 loading the summary snippet list by default!

    +1 for readable font

    -1 for not fixing the postback button on the comment form (I'm about to see if under the covers you've finally fixed the comment form bug)

  32. dave says:

    post worked on first submit – is it too early to celebrate?

  33. Erik Madsen says:

    Hello 1995.  This is taking it too far.  I understand the need to show customers that you "get" mobile computing.  But to dumb down more capable platforms for the sake of solidarity with the least capable device is a big mistake.

  34. Marcos Freitas says:

    I like the cleaner look and the fixed width body (which makes the posts more readable on my screen). It's an evolution compared to the previous version.

  35. Yeah! We want that you put the Internet Explorer logo appear somewhere! :]

  36. Anon says:

    Very nice and clean. Lovely, very much says "This will be the future of GUI"

    Also, I am starting to be convinced that the WebM crowd here are spammer bots and not real human beings.

  37. Klimax says:

    Would it be possible to change "Archive " into link to get full list of months?  (Like The old new thing has blogs.msdn.com/…/archives.aspx )


  38. Klimax says:

    Just spotted small problem with "Post" button – it is grey and so is "publishing" text when sending comment, so it's invisble…

  39. Does ANYBODY realize that the IE team does NOT control the blogging software? It's not like they are able to go in and fix the comment submit button.

  40. Ria says:

    This page still defaulting to IE9 standards documents mode… 🙁

  41. Andrey says:

    I like it!

  42. @Klimax: Thank you for the suggestion to show all months in the archive list and pointing out the color problem with the "Publishing" text. I'll address these this evening.

    @Ria: You are correct. Once the hosting group has a chance to complete tests on IE10, they will switch all of blogs.msdn.com to run in the latest IE document mode.

  43. Rachael says:

    @Ted Johnson [MSFT] – apparently there is a problem with the new blog design eating comments a few hours/days after they are posted.

    This **very important** comment has been deleted multiple times instead of being ansered by a Microsoft staff member.

    I'm going to re-post it on behalf of the original author since it is critical that an answer is provided before moving forward with the media api.


    Q.) Is Microsoft is fully committed to natively supporting an open video format for HTML5 Video playback AND the Media Capture APIs?

     [__] Yes

     [__] No, Microsoft intends to further ruin the future of the Web by only supporting h.264 – an invalid option for HTML5 video


  44. Rachael says:

    @Tom Winter – we are all aware that they are using outdated community server blogging software, but choosing the wrong platform to host your blog isn't the blog author's problem… it's yours.  You either need to contact the original blog software author and request a fix, or put your money where your mouth is, and switch to a more reliable platform.

    So far we've tried to put a bandaid or two on and we're hoping they'll fix the underlying problem vs. getting rid of the ASP postbacks design failure.

  45. Shola says:

    Overall good, clean design – which is what Metro UI is all about.

    However, I use outlook as my reader hence, I have to view article in the browser to see any changes.

  46. Nick says:

    Breaking this comment into several chunks because the filtering on comments on this blog is pathetic.

    Well I'll give you points on attempting to clean things up but I'm gonna have to knock you down a few pegs for the mess under the covers.

    1.) You included an old version of jQuery… why?

    2.) You actually included 2 copies of jQuery… why?

    3.) onsubmit="javascript:…." – seriously? who writes your code – Mickey Mouse?

    4.) classic ASP postbacks – ouch, way to stay away from the bleeding edge

  47. Nick says:

    Breaking this comment into several chunks because the filtering on comments on this blog is pathetic.

    5.) your doctype – no plans to go for HTML5 since you blog all the time about how you actually suggest and promote standards

    6.) invalid boolean attributes for an xhtml doctype

    7.) all your JavaScript function names start upper case – convention dictates that functions start with a lower case letter unless you are creating a JavaScript "Class"

    8.) The fixed width looks horrible on my widescreen display… only taking up 1/3 of the horizontal screen space

  48. Nick says:

    Breaking this comment into several chunks because the filtering on comments on this blog is pathetic.

    9.) and best of all, the actual post button implementation is oh so clean and simple – NOT.   Here's the exact code under the covers (i pity anyone that needs to debug this catastrophe) (note extra dashes added to overcome the crudtackular an-ti-sp-am filters)

    – – – –

    –<span class="field-ite–m-input"><a oncl–ick="postCom–ment(this);" id="ctl00_cont–ent_ctl00_w_60353__99f6–75_ctl00_ctl00_ctl00_ctl05_bpComme–ntForm_ctl05_btnS–ubmit" class="int–ernal-link add-reply" href="javas–cript:W–ebForm_DoPostBackWithOp–tions(new WebF–

  49. Nick says:

    Breaking this comment into several chunks because the filtering on comments on this blog is pathetic.

    orm_PostBack–Options("ctl00$co–ntent$ctl00$w_60353$_99f675$ctl00$ctl00$ctl00$ctl05$bpComm–entForm$ctl05$btnSubmit", "", true, "BlogPostC–ommentForm-ctl00_content_ctl00_w_60–353__99f675_ctl00_ctl00", "&qu–ot;, false, true))"><span></s–pan>Post</a></sp–an>

    – – – –

    All that mess for a button that just submits a form… FAIL.

  50. Anon says:


    h264 is a the proper option for HTML5 video tag because

    (1) it is free

    (2) it is videly supported

    (3) it is already hardware accelerated

    (4) it is very performance friendly

    (5) it is future-proof

    (6) it offers much better quality/compression ration

    (7) it is not going to benefit Google's agenda and greed

    Now, please go away.

  51. R says:

    System ate my comment before, but this thing would look even sweeter in my browser if it used a Segoe webfont like some of the marketing pages do (beautyoftheweb and Windows Phone, for example).

  52. Mike says:

    @Anon – you are obviously in the dark on h.264 – it is most certainly ***NOT*** free, and thus one of the fundamental reasons why it is not valid for open HTML5 Video.

    In addition, it is ***NOT*** widely supported.  If you look at the HTML5 Video support table on Wikipedia en.wikipedia.org/…/HTML5_video you'll see that the ***ONLY*** browser that supports it is Internet Explorer.

    Developers and the WorldWideWeb want a sustainable format, that is open and free just like the rest of the Web.  h.264 is ***NOT*** that format, and never will be.  This has been discussed over and over.  Give up on h.264 and get on board with a valid format ASAP please.

  53. Anon says:


    I define "free" as: Something that you do not have to pay to use as long as you are an end user.

    By this definiton h264 is free. h264 is not free for companies, but please do not defend companies.

    You also seem to be in the dark about BluRay, Adobe Flash Player, IE9, Everything Apple, Silverlight, multitude of video streaming websites, downlodable video, and common sense. h264 is de-facto standard. It is not yet a standard for HTML5 and anyone who supports a better tomorrow MUST support h264 (see my post above for reasons).

    Please stop spreading FUD. As long as Microsoft and Apple will provie h264 support, h264 will be free. That is all there is to it.

  54. Harold says:

    @Anon – you're the one spreading FUD. There's several reasons why no other browser is willing to pay the ransom required to use h.264 for HTML5 Video.

    It isn't a valid open HTML5 Video format – plain and simple.  Stop drinking the MSFT/MSDN koolaid

  55. Anon says:


    Repeat after me.

    Windows offers FREE h264. h264 is free, there is no ransom.

    Get it? No? If not, repeat after me,

    Windows offers FREE h264. h264 is free, there is no ransom.

    Get it? If not, go to the start of this comment and try again.

    I swear people like you are whats wrong with the society.

    The only reason you are against h264 is because Google told you to be.

    You are a little Google zombie, trying to advance Google's interests.

  56. Thumbs up. The color scheme is better than the old ugly one and I am all for the performance improvements.

    The only thing that is missing is a moderator. Don't like all this trolling.

  57. Some guy says:

    We hope you like the new style as much as we do. Do you like it? No? Well bummer, we hoped for it.

  58. Apeksha says:

    Overall good

  59. OS upgrade says:

    I always tell everyone I know to avoid Microsoft browsers because MS requires that you upgrade your OS first.

  60. Sterling says:

    I can't say that I like the new look of the blog, but it could be worst. It does seem faster, though.

  61. Selenite says:

    This is much less readable that it used to be.

    See http://www.contrastrebellion.com

  62. Mitch 74 says:

    @Arieta: "my competitor's code sucks, so my code shall suck too"? Great way to bring the Web forward. That's the kind of thinking that got us Quirks Mode, a bazillion DOCTYPEs triggering Quirks, Almost Standard or Standard mode, the X-UA-Compatible header, a web browser that contains: 1 (IE5 Quirks), 2 (IE7), 3 (IE8), 4 (IE9)… 5 (IE10) – FIVE! rendering engines just for compatibility reasons, ten years before a new push was given to improve HTML… Yeah, that's just great thinking.

    Before you ask, yeah, I try to program my pages to validate – and I validate them as XHTML 1.0 Strict when possible, because I don't want to hit the W3C validator every time I load a web page (there's a marvellous little Firefox extension that validates a page as soon as it is loaded, but unfortunately it doesn't do HTML5 yet). What do I let get away?

    – "target", because it came back in HTML5

    – "IFRAME", because IE7-8 can't understand OBJECT calling an HTML page.

    As soon as a HTML5 validator extension exists for any browser, I'll switch to that one.

    And again the "Post" button failed. I'm really feeling disappointed with the overhaul: "pig with lipstick".

  63. Sam says:

    Can we get a hault to all new blog posts until the comment form submission is fixed once and for all?!?!

    We've told you a million times it fails regularly and we've told you over and over that the legacy ASP postback

  64. Sam says:

    …ASP postback code is so error prone it isn't funny.

    Just add a submit button that does a regular form submit!

    It's embarrassing that the blog for the #1 (by usage) browser is the only blog we know with known bugs for comment submission and that they haven't been addressed for over 5 years.

    PS if you don't know how to do it, get help from the community… You have 100's of qualified developers reading this blog every day – just ask one of them to fix your blog!!!

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