The Rocky Road to IE8

I thought I was going to have to spend this evening rebuilding my machine. Just because I installed the new IE8 Release Candidate 1. It didn’t go well at the start:

  1. Installs IE8. Installation goes very (suspiciously) smoothly. In fact it did most of the work when I was at my coffee break.
  2. Fired up the new browser and it complained that the version of “Windows Live Sign-in Helper” was out of date and then opened up a window with the message “Internet Explorer Add-ons are not running”. This confused me a bit, for a while I thought that all Add-ons were broken, not just one, and I spent a few less than happy minutes trying to turn them back on.
  3. Gave up on that, and went off to download a new Live Sign-in helper.
  4. This insisted on installing a new copy of Messenger, and a whole bunch of other stuff, including an upgrade for Windows Live Writer (yay!) which I love.
  5. Fired up IE and, lo and behold, the message about the sign in helper had gone.
  6. But I couldn’t get onto the Sharepoint pages at work. Wah. The server gives a message which implies that the server doesn’t understand my browser. Mention this to system support. Their installation of IE8 works fine. Double Wah.
  7. Start Messenger for a moan to other people. Messenger starts running, and then hangs, whilst the fans in the laptop ramp up to warp speed. Sure enough, it is taking all the processor time. Kill Messenger, shutdown IE, and then have to do some proper work for a while.  Spend the afternoon timetable juggling. The only thing keeping me smiling is the disk image I happen to have at home, which means I can return to my starting point in around half an hour.
  8. Get home and reboot the machine. Everything works. Web sites, Sharepoint, Messenger, the lot. The new Messenger front end is really cute and seems to reach out to a whole bunch of other services, which is very interesting. I like the look of IE 8 (even though it has to drop back to Compatibility View to work properly with my blog pages – hopefully Squarespace will fix that eventually). Pages load more quickly and there are some new buttons I’m looking forward to pressing.
  9. Fire up Windows Writer and it looks even more spiffy, I’ll have to wander around the program and see what is new.

I’d advise you to take a look at IE8. I’m sure you won’t have the fun and games that I’ve had. I’ve done some searching and nobody else has had problems like mine (do they ever..) It must be something funny about my machine that upset things at the start. You can find IE8 at:

And I even managed to sort out the timetable problem too.