Microsoft asks internet users to upgrade from IE6 - again

The problem facing Microsoft is two-fold, Infosecurity notes, as whilst some users are accessing the internet using older technology machines incapable of supporting IE8 or 9, many corporates are using Windows 2000, which does not support IE7 and above.

To persuade users to upgrade, Microsoft has opened a new website - - which attempts to explain the case for the new and secure version of IE.

Commenting on the site, Graham Cluley, Sophos' senior technology consultant, notes that IE 6.0 is creaking and old, but adds that he finds it interesting to look at a graphic of the world that shows the percentiles on IE 6.0 in use in various countries.

India, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan and Vietnam, he says, are all doing a poor job of choosing a hardened web browser, with IE6 responsible for 10% or more of the browser usage in those countries.

"But the worst country by miles is China, where - according to Microsoft - Internet Explorer 6 accounts for over a third of the browser usage", he said in his latest security blog.

"I wonder how much of that is related to pirated copies of the software that users have chosen not to replace with legitimate later versions", he mused.

Despite this, Cluley says that this is a good campaign by Microsoft - and "although it is clearly designed to switch people to Internet Explorer 9, anything which encourages computer users to throw its ageing predecessor IE6 in the garbage bin has to be applauded."

The Sophos senior technology consultant added that he was amused by the way in which Microsoft phrased its request on Twitter:

"It's not often that we encourage you to stop using one of our products, but for #IE6, we'll make an exception:", said the tweet.


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