20 years and 11 editions later, saying goodbye to Internet Explorer

20 years and 11 editions later, saying goodbye to Internet Explorer


Microsoft’s Internet Explorer wasn’t the world’s first web browser, but thanks to the dominance of the Windows OS, it quickly became the most used. Some swore by it, others preferred alternatives such as Netscape, and later Firefox and Chrome. Nearly 20 years after its launch, Microsoft is preparing to retire the IE name – with Windows 10 will come a new browser moniker. So let’s take a look back at 11 editions of Internet Explorer.

Microsoft Internet Explorer

IE 1

Launch date: August 16, 1995

Notable: Based on Spyglass Mosaic, it was released with Windows 95

Microsoft Internet Explorer 2

IE 2

Launch date: November 22, 1995

Notable: Added SSL, cookies and an integrated email and news client.

Microsoft Internet Explorer 3


Launch date: August 13, 1996

Notable: Added Cascading Style Sheets support, support for ActiveX controls and Java applets. First version to use the blue “e” logo.

Microsoft Internet Explorer 4

IE 4

Launch date: September 4, 1997

Notable: Marketing slogan was “The Web the Way You Want It.” Integration with the OS led to the United States vs. Microsoft anti-competitive case.

Microsoft Internet Explorer 5

IE 5

Launch date: March 18, 1999

Notable: Launched with Windows 98, and reached over 80 per cent market share.


Microsoft Internet Explorer 6

IE 6

Launch date: August 27, 2001

Notable: Shipped with Windows XP, and peaked at 90 per cent market share. It faced criticism over alleged security flaws.

Windows Internet Explorer 7

IE 7

Launch date: October 18, 2006

Notable: First major update in five years, introduced tabbed browsing, page zooming and an integrated search box.

Windows Internet Explorer 8

IE 8

Launch date: March 19, 2009

Notable: Launched with Windows 7, and was the last version to run on Windows Server 2003 and Windows XP.

Windows Internet Explorer 9

ie 9

Launch date: March 14, 2011

Notable: Wasn’t tied to an OS upgrade, and featured the marketing slogan “Fast is the new beautiful, Welcome to a more beautiful web.”

Internet Explorer 10

IE 10

Launch date: October 26, 2012

Notable: Features two different interfaces: a Metro app without plug-in support and a desktop version with plug-in support.

Internet Explorer 11

IE 11

Launch date: October 17, 2013

Notable: The last version of Internet Explorer, it performed better than Firefox and Chrome on several speed benchmarks.

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Jeff Jedras
Jeff Jedras
Jeff Jedras is a technology journalist with IT World Canada and a member of the IT Business team. He began his career in technology journalism in the late 1990s, covering the Ottawa technology sector for Silicon Valley North and the Ottawa Business Journal. He later covered the technology scene in Vancouver before joining IT World Canada in Toronto in 2005, covering enterprise IT for ComputerWorld Canada and the channel for Computer Dealer News. His writing has also appeared in the Vancouver Sun & the Ottawa Citizen.

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