Internet Explorer/The basics and installation
Internet Explorer is one of the most popular browsers out there , before and now. For those who think that IE is outdated compared to the likes of Chrome and Firefox , they are terribly wrong. Since the advent of IE9 , Internet Explorer is back on the force again. The latest version of IE , IE11 , is available for Windows 7 and 8.1 users.
|For Windows XP usersː- You must upgrade your Windows version immediately .Both Windows XP and IE8(the latest version of IE for XP are no longer supported by Microsoft since April 2014. This means that any security issues will NOT be fixed after that and could put your PC into risk. Note that an anti-virus will not fully subvert this risk. Additionally , Windows 7 based users not using IE11 must upgrade to that version by January 2016 to avoid risking the loss of security upgrades.|
Internet Explorer is already included with Windows. But for those who do not use Windows Update , their version might be too old. You can either go to Microsoft's website to download the latest version of Internet Explorer for their version of Windows or let Windows Update do the work by itself. It is important to note however that unlike other browsers , the latest versions of IE cannot be used by users running on Windows version below 7. Windows Vista is limited to the still good IE9 and Windows XP users to IE8 , which is no longer supported for them. Users running Windows XP should upgrade immediately to Windows 7 or later. You should enable Windows Update , it's important for IE and Windows to get important security updates. You'll need a restart after installation , so save your files.
|Windows version||Initial IE version||Latest version|
|Windows 10 1||11||11|
1 - Internet Explorer has been replaced by Microsoft Edge in Windows 10. However , IE11 has been retained for backwards compartibility.
The majority of features of Internet Explorer are available on all the supported platforms. However , mostly due to architectural changes , a few special/specific features may not be available for your version of Windows. Here are some of them(A bracket shows the version with which they were first introduced)
- Protected Mode(IE7 +) This is a security feature that reduces the chance of attack by sandboxing IE in a 'Protected Mode' and reducing its privileges , thereby preventing it from making system-wide changes and also reducing the impact if a breach does occur. This feature is not available for Windows XP only.
- 256-bit encryption(IE7+) This increases the bit encryption to 256 bits , increasing security. This feature is not available for Windows XP only.
- Website pinning(IE9+) This useful feature allows websites to be pinned to the Windows taskbar. Not available to Windows Vista users.
- App pinning(IE10+) This feature allows websites to be pinned to the Apps section in the Start menu. Only available to Windows 8 and higher users.
- Metro mode(IE10+) This is a separate Metro-optimized version of Internet Explorer that is designed with touch in mind. This version cannot use plug-ins and is available for Windows 8 users and later users only.
Pre release versions(Betas)
Internet Explorer does not usually have as much betas or development versions as other browsers have.
However , if you're after the latest pre-release version of Internet Explorer , you can download it.
If you're running Windows 7 , you can download Internet Explorer Developer Channel 
The version for Windows 8.1 does not work currently as it has expired.
The latest pre release versions do not work on Windows Vista or XP.