You've known it's coming. You've seen countless posts about its official arrival at MIX09. And now you can expect to see many of your "average users" adopt Microsoft's latest browser via the magic little tool known as Windows Update. On Friday, the IE Team (via their blog) announced that IE8 would start rolling-out as an update for the Windows user base starting sometime next week. As the IE Team so plainly put it:
Monday, April 13, 2009
"Starting on or about the third week of April, users still running IE6 or IE7 on Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows Server 2003, or Windows Server 2008 will get will get a notification through Automatic Update about IE8. This rollout will start with a narrow audience and expand over time to the entire user base. On Windows XP and Server 2003, the update will be High-Priority. On Windows Vista and Server 2008 it will be Important."
The IE Team goes on to say that IE8 will not be installed automatically. Users won't wake-up one morning and find their version of IE changed. They will have to opt-in to the install, but we all know many users "blindly" opt-in and say "yes" to dialogs from Microsoft. So, expect IE8 to rapidly replace IE7 and (hopefully) IE6 browsers around the world starting next week. You have made sure you site works in IE8, haven't you?
As a reminder, the Q1 2009 Sp1 release of the RadControls for ASP.NET AJAX fully supports IE8, so make sure you grab, test, and install that update if you need to gurantee IE8 support and you don't want to use the Compatability Meta Tag.