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Internet Explorer 10 Release DateBack in November last year, we announced the availability of a “preview” version of Internet Explorer 10 for Windows 7 users (users of Windows 8 already have the full IE10 browser!)

Why was Internet Explorer 10 not made available to Windows 7 at the same time as Windows 8? Could it be that Microsoft intentionally delayed the release in order to encourage/boost sales of Windows 8? Whatever the reasons, it’s finally looking like IE10 is about to be officially rolled out to Windows 7 through Windows Update!

Whilst Microsoft are remaining tight lipped over the precise release date, there are a number of indicators that point to a release this month.

The strongest indicator follows an announcement on Microsoft’s official IE blog yesterday that the “IE10 Automatic Update Blocker Toolkit” is now available to download.

What’s the “IE10 Automatic Update Blocker Toolkit” we hear you ask?! Basically it’s a small application that can be downloaded in order to prevent IE10 being delivered to your computer through Windows Update when it becomes available.

Why would you want to do that? Well, most people wouldn’t – that is unless you’re a large organization/company who’s IT department isn’t ready/doesn’t want to update to IE10 just yet. The reason is usually because they’re worried about compatibility issues with web based business applications deployed within their organization. With our web-based room scheduling software, MIDAS, there are no such worries – MIDAS runs great in Internet Explorer 10!

So if your organization uses MIDAS, we’d encourage you to deploy IE10 as soon as it becomes available!

What light then does the release of this update blocker shed on a potential release date for IE10?

Well, Microsoft have previously released update blockers just prior to the release of IE9, 8, etc

For example:

  • IE7 was released on Wednesday 18th October 2006 (the IE8 blocker was released 84 days earlier in July 2006)
  • IE8 was released on Thursday 19th March 2009 (the IE8 blocker was released 73 days earlier in January 2009)
  • IE9 was released on Monday 14th March 2011 (the IE9 blocker was released 32 days earlier in February 2011)

So, given that length of time between a “blocker” being made available and the actual browser release has decreased for each major incarnation of IE over the years, it’s sensible to assume, given that the IE10 blocker was made available yesterday, that IE10 can expect to be fully released before the end of the month!

Now, the second Tuesday of each month, is affectionately known in the IT world as “Patch Tuesday” – the day on which Microsoft regularly release a big update of security patches. “Patch Tuesday” this month will be 12th February – so could Microsoft be gearing up to release IE10 through Windows Update on the same day?! …is 13 days a long enough time period to allow all those IT departments who wish to prevent an automatic update to IE10 to download and deploy the blocker? After all, we’ve noticed that Microsoft tend to panda more to the needs/demands of large corporation’s IT departments than to regular home users, so they’re unlikely to push IE10 through a Windows Updates update until they’re happy that those who want to block it, have done.

Either way, as soon as we learn that IE10 has been fully released and available through Windows Update, we’ll be sure to let you know!

…and if you’re an IE user we’d certainly encourage to upgrade to IE10 when you can, it really is a big leap forward from IE9!

UPDATE: 26th February 2013: Internet Explorer 10 is now fully available to download for Windows 7

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