Aug 06

Why you should upgrade your Internet Explorer 6

Have you been getting annoyed lately by Microsoft Office’s popup to upgrade your Internet Explorer (IE) to version 8? That is if you’re using IE.

ieIf you’re still on IE 6, you have probably been getting a message at the top of some web sites that you are using an outdated browser, asking to switch to another browser, such as IE 8, Firefox, etc.

Newer versions of software are supposed to work better and offer better protection for your online experience, but there always seems to be a bug that has to be fixed, making you wonder how ‘safe’ the upgrade is.
So how do you trust which version to use? Why are you almost ‘forced’ to upgrade if you’re totally satisfied with your current browser? Then again, why do some people not want to upgrade when it really easy to do?

I get annoyed by all update requests, because it interrupts or delays my browsing and it’s hard to keep track off what needs to be updated. Of course it’s your choice, but if you don’t you’ll have to decline each time you open a browser and one can only bear so many popups…

This article on Internet Explorer 6 on CNN brought me a whole different point of view, that of the web developer.
It seems that IE 6, which was created in 2001, cannot keep up with today’s web technology and web developer constantly have to create fixes so that IE 6 users can still view sites without getting error messages. Developers agree that IE 6 is an awful browser that no one should be using. Well duh! If someone would have explained that sooner, I’d have updated my browser weeks ago. The IE 6 No More  site does a good job of explaining this.

If you’ve ever wondered why some people or companies are still on IE 6 and are not upgrading, here’s a plausible explanation. People may be totally comfortable with their old browser and resist change, but it’s different story for companies. Why would a company not want to get better protection with the latest browser? The main reason: they have legacy software that was created for IE 6, and it may require a good bit of resources (time + talent = money) to upgrade. Aha!

ffHowever, there is still a way around this. They could install another browser (Firefox, Google Chrome, etc.) and continue using IE 6 for company applications only.

My default browser is Mozilla Firefox but I also use Internet Explorer and Google Chrome, especially when testing web sites. Firefox makes it super easy and quick to upgrade to a newer version, which unfortunately feel like a chore with IE.

Now that you know all of this, go ahead and allow a few minutes to run the update next time you get the popup request.