In those years, the IE browser we used together

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Text / Liu Xingliang

Source: Liu Xingliang Time (ID: liu_xingliang)


Microsoft has announced that starting today, Internet Explorer will be permanently shut down. Microsoft recommends users to use the Edge browser that the company launched in 2015.

At the age of 27, the IE browser has come to an end.


Our generation is fortunate to have witnessed the entire history of China’s Internet development. From the BBS and MUD games based on the Novell network operating system that were popular on campus in the pre-Internet era, to the rise, bubble, prosperity, and ebb of the Internet, to the current mobile Internet era. In the next era, we are about to witness the interconnection of all things.

Unlike the Novell network operating system, which can only be limited to a local area network, and is based on the simple expression of the command mode (similar to DOS and Linux/Unix), the Internet based on TCP and http protocols will expand the scope of interconnection to the world, and the Internet is popular. The WWW (World Wide Web) of the world, and HTML (Hypertext Transfer Markup Language)-based web pages have a richer form of expression, breaking through the dim colors of the command line, and can display pictures, showing a slim ability and friendliness. command line.

As a result, a brand-new Internet era with Web as the main way of presenting information is coming. A whole new way of life is in vogue, we call it “surfing the web”.

WWW is destined to go down in history as a great invention. The Web has become the main way for people to obtain information, gradually replacing letters and newspapers. The software that supports the Web is the browser. Since then, the most frequently used software on the computer has become the browser, and it has also become the first software that many people start to open after turning on the computer.

Back then, Microsoft didn’t realize the importance of web browsers. The forerunner is Netscape, with its Netscape Navigater, which has few rivals.

Netscape successfully went public with this browser software and became the pioneer of the Internet.


Microsoft started making browsers out of Netscape’s ambition to make the Web browser a network operating system.

▲The picture comes from the Internet ▲The picture comes from the Internet

Microsoft is getting nervous, because once Netscape is done, Microsoft’s Windows position will be threatened. So, Microsoft took out its housekeeping skills – imitation, just as Windows imitated the graphical user interface of Apple’s operating system in the early years!

Microsoft did not buy Netscape directly, but authorized the core technology of the browser (Netscape also bought the license and developed it by itself), so the familiar Internet Explorer (IE for short) was born.

Then, there was a fierce browser war!

Ultimately, Microsoft relied on bundling IE with Windows, and came from behind! Netscape, on the other hand, was losing ground, forced to sell itself, and finally disappeared. The Web-based network operating system has not been completed, but it has killed itself.

However, the network operating system of the Web, Google later picked it up and made it again, and also made a notebook Chrome Book. All applications are based on the Chrome browser. As a student netbook with low performance requirements, it is still good. This is later.

Netscape disappeared, Netscape’s technology didn’t completely disappear, and it evolved into Mizilla Firefox, an open-source IE competitor.


The dispute between IE and Netscape is a typical example of “they are born from the same root, so why is it too urgent to fry each other”. Their common “father” is Mosaic.

Mizilla Firefox can be said to be the son of Netscape, so the battle between Mizilla Firefox and IE in the future is a battle between uncles and nephews. This is another arena, just like the feudal dynasties in history, the struggle for power has never stopped, what is the blood relationship? In the face of interests, there is no sympathy to speak of, and the sword sees blood.

Microsoft’s wave of operations is actually similar to the mandatory installation in the current mobile phone arena. Whether you like it or not, whether you need it or not, it will be packaged for you first, and it cannot be deleted yet, so you can seize the opportunity.

A lot of people are not so particular about it, and they don’t care which browser it is. Since there is IE, I should use it. I am one of them. Especially new users of the Internet, who know nothing about the world, of course, who is who they see at first sight, who cares whether it is love at first sight or not.

This wave of operations by Microsoft is very powerful, but it also brings trouble. Mandatory installation is not a thing here, but it is different in the United States. Microsoft is thus caught in a lawsuit, which is an alleged monopoly lawsuit. Finally, Microsoft compromised, allowing users to uninstall IE and use other IE browsers.

The days when Netscape disappeared was the golden age of IE. Even if others are allowed to uninstall IE, few people actually uninstall it. Because compared with IE, Netscape does not have any advantages, most people can’t find the reason to uninstall IE and install Netscape.

IE at that time was not so good, but because it was the first choice for people to obtain information, that is, the entrance of traffic. At the time, many people may not have realized the traffic, but it did happen in IE.

In those days, IE was lonely, its lonely carnival. The era of the Internet belongs to us, and it also belongs to IE.

You don’t need to know what its kernel is, what its working mechanism is, or even you don’t know what HTML is, what Javascript is, it doesn’t matter, you only need to know IE. It can do many things you want: mail, news, browse pictures, enjoy videos…


Many years later, many people say that Microsoft is not an Internet company, that it has missed the golden age of the Internet, and sleeps on Windows and Office in the PC era, just like the rabbit in the race of the tortoise and the hare.

This view actually ignores the existence of IE.

Microsoft is not missing the wave of the Internet, IE is the entrance of massive information on the Internet, and countless well-known Internet companies were born on it. What Microsoft misses is business. Its concept is still stuck in the thinking of buying software, and it does not realize that the value has shifted.

The most valuable thing in the Internet age is not software, but services, or traffic to be precise. Traffic is business, and IE is the entrance of traffic. We could have made money based on this entrance, but limited by Microsoft’s inertial thinking, we missed this precious opportunity in vain. On the contrary, a lot of rogue software was born on IE, and these plug-ins have ruined the reputation of IE.

In the Internet age, IE is only a tool after all, and it is purely a software tool with limited imagination space and limited storytelling ability, so it is difficult to be favored by emerging capital.

So, everyone knows that everyone uses IE unintentionally to make a wedding dress for others. The years when IE was at its peak were also the years Microsoft lost.

Fortunately, Microsoft is a big business, and there is no one to replace Windows and Office, so it can still be too big to fail.


The king of the Internet age is Google.

▲The picture comes from the Internet ▲The picture comes from the Internet

Google has a unique product philosophy. It is very focused on user experience. Google’s products are not fancy, they are practical, they can be as simple as possible, but they must solve the pain points of users.

Google’s main business is search services, and its main income is online advertising, but it is a company with pursuit, and it has made a lot of unprofitable products. The user experience of these products is very good, at least the professionals think so, although many of these products also did not succeed.

Among them, one of the winners is the Chrome browser that we are familiar with.

When Google launched the Chrome browser, it was actually questioned by many people in the industry. The reason is very simple. First, IE was in full swing at the time; second, Google rewriting the browser was equivalent to reinventing the wheel. Repeating the creation of the wheel has always been discouraged in the software industry. big.

However, Google, that is, Google, its browser happened to be liked by some IT people at first, mainly based on two points: first, it is simple enough, there is no fancy interface, and there are not so many functions; second, this more For the key, it’s fast enough. Chrome uses a different browser kernel than IE.


The core of the browser determines the characteristics of the browser.

The kernel used by IE is Trident, which is developed by Microsoft. In addition to IE, the Maxthon browser, 360 browser, QQ browser, Sogou browser, etc. we have seen are all developed on this kernel. The basics of these browsers are the same, just with different extensions and different interface styles. The skin is different, the soul is the same.

Google first used Apple’s Webkit kernel, the same as Apple’s browser Safari. Later, Google also parted ways with Apple to develop its own kernel, Blink.

The interesting thing is that the domestic manufacturers are very smart. They have chosen dual-core technology, that is, two souls under the same skin, whichever is easier to use.

Compared with Google’s kernel and IE’s kernel, an important feature is the use of multi-threading technology. Non-professionals don’t need to be intimidated by the word thread, it’s actually like a lot of people doing one thing at the same time, and this thing is downloading. This is obvious. Compared with downloading with multiple people and downloading by one person, of course, the former is faster, and the more people are more powerful.

Of course, this requires the computer to pay an extra price, that is, it will take up more CPU and memory resources, but in this era, the configuration of computer hardware is very high, and it does not constitute a bottleneck at all. It’s not a problem. That’s the secret to how fast Chrome is.

Chrome quickly eroded IE’s share by word of mouth without any special promotion. Many people who have used Chrome unknowingly stand on its side, forgetting IE, Safari, and Firefox.

I’m sorry, just like the fate of Netscape, people’s liking for the new and the old makes the share of IE slip rapidly. In less than 10 years, Google’s browser has been the top performer, Chrome has gone from zero to more than 70%, and IE’s share is less than 2%. Even Microsoft’s new browser, Edge, uses the same kernel as Chrome, essentially ditching IE since 2015.


No technology or product is eternal, no matter how beautiful it was, it inevitably follows several stages of the life cycle of initiation, explosion, peak, decline, and demise.

IE is dying now too. Technology is warm, and technology is cruel. In the long river of history, the so-called greatness is just a shining moment. After completing the historical mission, it turned into ashes and disappeared in people’s memory.

Therefore, it can be foreseen that Chrome, which is now unparalleled, will also have a similar fate as Netscape and IE. Just like life in the world, it’s just a passerby. It’s just that if you look at life as a process rather than a result, then as long as you have been brilliant, you will be very proud.

IE was abandoned by Microsoft, which is a trouble for some government and school units that may still rely on IE browser. They must evaluate the impact of not using IE, and gradually support new browsers such as Chrome by improving the software. Although Microsoft claims that they will support the IE kernel in Edge at the same time, it is estimated that it is temporary, and who knows when it says it will not support it.

▲The picture comes from the Internet ▲The picture comes from the Internet

I also hope that these units do it sooner, because I have had a lot of painful experiences.

One time, I submitted a message, but I didn’t know I had to use the IE browser at first. I used Chrome, but there was a problem. Then I tried Safari, but it didn’t work. Then I used Firefox, but it still didn’t work. Finally, I finally figured out that I can only use IE. , Although the experience of IE is very bad, it has to be used. However, if the interface is to give a prompt “Please use IE browser”! It’s okay to meet a professional like me. Most people are not professionals. They are really helpless in this situation.

That’s nothing, I’ve come across more perverted ones. The company needs to issue a “no criminal record” because of something, and it can only be submitted online. The website of the relevant department requires that the application can only be submitted on the IE8 browser. After tossing for three or four days, I finally found a dusty computer in the company’s waste warehouse of an old friend. The computer’s system is Windows XP, and the matching browser happens to be IE8. That was the most crashing browser I’ve ever had.


Reminiscing about the IE browser I used, writing emails, reading news, writing blogs on it… I had a lot of fun…

When the old friend of IE is about to go through the ages, let us line up and give it the last ride together: old friend, go well, don’t say goodbye!

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