Because IE6 is the new Netscape 4.7x

As I read through all the articles spawned by the IE7 announcement (press release), I finally realized something: IE6 is the new Netscape 4.7x.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original blog entry at:

I suspect IE was left to rot because MS owned the browser market. At that point it was clear that Netscape was no threat, and no one else was even vaugely in a position to unseat them. Why spend dev time and dollars on a product that already owns the marketplace?

In the case of SourceSafe, I’m convinced (now that I use it every day) that the thing is simply unsalvagable. It’s basic operational model is simply no good, and I’m sure MS knows that. Once you’ve figured out that the product is a dead end, why throw good money after bad? Better to get working on the replacement! Or, failing that, buy one. Your customers did!

Why put all of your eggs in one basket?

Make a statement. The best way to let Microsoft know that these kind of practices are unacceptable is by moving to the competition. Make the switch now, and don’t look back until Microsoft has proven that they are committed to what you need.


This is what I had to say recently in my weblog about IE. a href=""Internet Explorer Syndrome/a.

Better to get working on the replacement! Or, failing that, buy one.

I totally agree, but MS still bundles (a marginally improved version of) SourceSafe with VS.NET 2005.

What they should have done is bundled a “lite” version of Team System and totally discarded sourcesafe as a failed system!

Instead, SourceSafe is “in the box” so it’s going to live on life support indefinitely for god knows how long. Ugh.

So many new browser are there in the market,and free.You should note that Netscape 8 (beta)is released.So is a new Opera soon.IE still has the activex problem and the browser hijack senario leading to the compromise of your whole pc.There are a number of these hijack that are tricky.Security wise its a pain,a lot of older machine use IE 5./5.5 that are not updated etc,just waiting for remote code exploits and buffer overflows.Just by releasing a AntiSpy ware tool it doesnt mean that things are going to change.They need to repostion themself…or so…

After reading the IE blog post, I almost feel sorry for the IE team. They have soooo much baggage now associated with the product! There are thousands of badly-written sites out there (mostly corporate) that work because the users use IE. “Stirct mode” and “non-strict mode”? What the hell are they thinking? But then, how do you improve a browser without breaking all these sites?

The only way forward I can see is to scrap it, start a new product, change the name - disassociate it from IE - make it properly standards based from the start. Just stop developing IE, IT team! Then, after a few years, all those badly-written sites would hopefully have disappeared, MS will dominate the market as usual and they will have happy developers. It’ll be hard to get all those people to adapt to the new product but hey, no pain, no gain.

You can’t just keep polishing a turd.

Does that demonstrate Avalon/XAML/ClickOnce was designed as a replacement strategy?

I said as much (“E is the new Netscape 4”) on April 4, 2004 in a posting [] to the UWebD list [].

It remains as true today as ever!


On the other hand, after IE 7 has been out for a while, I will have no compunction at cutting off IE6 users in much the same way that many web apps do now for non-IE browsers.

Patrick, that’s a little risky. IE6 will be around for a long, long time as the default browser in Windows XP.

I’ll go out on a limb here and say the market share of IE6 will not dip below 15% before 2010.

why do people even use ie? it’s a load of crap, and it’s microsoft! firefox is the browser for real people

We have 2500 intranet users with IE6-- everything we’ve done is specifically crafted to IE6’s picadillos and bugs. If they make us use a proper working browser in the future, we will have to potentially re-do tons of layout and ASP classic. Ugh! Damned if you do, damned if you don’t! The irony is that I mostly use Firefox with IETab ( for testing…

Microsoft announced IE7 will be distributed via Automatic Update, and classified as a “high-priority update”:

So the market penetration of IE7 should go up much more rapidly than previous versions of IE, which were all manually installed (unless you bought a new OS).

Google Tells Users to Drop IE6. (finally!)

I agree. Your post gave me a flashback to one of mine from last June:
"IE is becoming Netscape 4.7."

And now it’s come true, as you’ve said:
“Because IE6 is the new Netscape 4.7x”