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Internet Explorer 6 on Windows 7 (IE6 + Windows 7)

January 13, 2011 1 comment

 

Internet Explorer 6 with Windows 7

Yes Internet Explorer 6 is still used worldwide!

Actually  I was writing about similar topic (IE6 on Windows 7 using XP mode) once before because a lot of enterprises today are running their line-of-business (LOB) web applications on Internet Explorer 6. In other words those applications can’t run or they do not behave normally on Internet Explorer 8. Also we all know that migrating on Windows 7 causes that you can’t use Internet Explorer 6 anymore. Of course you can use XP mode or Microsoft Enterprise Desktop Virtualization (MED-V), but what if you don’t have the possibility to use virtualization technologies. Anyway obviously, compatibility issues of line of business applications with new Internet Explorer 8 (or 9 when it RTM’s) is a major showstopper for many companies today. 

According to Gartner Research, IE6 compatibility problems will cause 1-in-5 organizations to take longer than expected or spend more than they budgeted for their Windows 7 migration projects. Problem is that approximately 40 percent of the Web applications used by companies still running IE6 won’t work on IE8 – the browser bundled with Windows 7

Ok so what’s the solution?

Luckily there is one great add-on to IE 8 which allows you to run complete IE6 engine inside IE8 tab. In that way you can easily without any fear migrate to Windows 7, migrate to new Internet Explorer and still use your older LOB web applications. Company that developed that product is called Browsium,  and product is called UniBrows. As they say Unibrows is:

 

an innovative new product that removes a key impediment to enterprise upgrades by enabling millions of IE6-based line-of-business web applications to run unmodified on Windows 7 or on IE8 on Windows XP (and IE9 when it is released). UniBrows is an IE add-on that runs the complete IE6 rendering engine and web-application platform inside an IE8 tab. UniBrows is not virtualization, does not run a separate instance of IE, and does not change the default browser or normal browsing behavior.  By installing UniBrows on client PCs running Windows 7 or Windows XP with IE8, organizations can upgrade their OS and browser platforms organization-wide immediately and then rewrite or replace legacy applications on an independent schedule.

So key characteristics to remember here are:

  • UniBrows allows you to run your IE6 LOB web applications normally on IE8 and IE9  when it will be released.
  • UniBrows is simple to deploy
  • It does not require any changing in applications or in your current IE8 browser.
  • It can be configured (with Group Policy) to automatically know which web sites to           open with UniBrows add-on.
    If you are interested in this solution find out more here.

Internet Explorer 6 with Windows 7 and XP mode

Internet Explorer 6 and 8 on Windows 7Nowadays XP mode is getting very popular because it is really useful feature of Windows 7, especially in enterprise business environment. Simply said with XP mode you can run fully licensed version of Windows XP along with Windows 7. Of course this Windows XP is virtualized and it has different features and possibilities than standard virtual XP with earlier versions of Virtual PC. Now with Windows Virtual PC beta, you have a great feature with seamlessly integrated applications installed in virtual Windows XP. So, with Windows Virtual PC beta (XP mode), shortcuts of application installed in virtual Windows XP, appear in your host Windows 7, as if  applications were installed  locally.  Of course you can see whole virtual Windows XP with start menu and desktop or you can only see applications.  All that said, it is clear that XP mode is similar to Microsoft Enterprise Desktop Virtualization (MED-V), but MED-V of course has more features like centralized management, various policies etc…

OK, so how can you publish application shortcuts of applications installed in virtual Windows XP, to your Windows 7 host. Well it is really very simple. All you have to do is install application as you normally would, in your Windows XP. For example, download one simple application, save it to Windows 7 desktop and then copy it to Windows XP desktop. Shared folders now work great with Windows Virtual PC beta, so you can navigate to any Windows 7 folder and copy application to Windows XP workspace. After that, just install application normally and you are done – application shortcuts are published by default to Windows 7 start menu in folder Windows Virtual PC >Virtual Windows Xp applications. So the procedure for newly installed applications is really simple, but what with Internet Explorer 6 that is already part of Windows Xp?

All you have to do in this case, is even easier.  Just create shortcut for Internet Explorer, in virtual Windows XP in following folder:  C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Start Menu. Same procedure works for XP command prompt, Outlook Express, My Documents etc… So after that, Internet Explorer 6 shortcut is published in Windows 7 start menu, and Internet Explorer is seamlessly integrated in Windows 7 as you can see in following picture.Windows 7 with IE6

Download Windows Virtual PC beta, and virtual image of Windows XP for free here and try it for yourself, it is rather simple.