My post about problems with IE8 ("Thinking about upgrading to IE8? Think twice") inspired passionate responses from folks on both sides of the fence, including some who wanted to tear the fence down and come after me with fondue forks and Bic lighters.
Moments after I posted my screed, the Microsoft fanboys came out like mosquitos after the first spring rain. I and/or InfoWorld was called "an idiot," "moron," "liar and not to be trusted," and "the Fox News of IT Journalism."
[ Find out how Microsoft is pushing the IE8 upgrade -- and Cringely's take on it | Stay up to date on Robert X. Cringely's musings and observations with InfoWorld's Notes from the Underground newsletter. ]
Welcome to the Conversational Web. Don't forget to wear your Kevlar undies.
The e-mails I received, however, were mostly the opposite -- about two to one against IE8. Many people had problems with plug-ins and Web site display (yes, even in "compatibility mode") and several had downgraded back to IE7 -- or wished they could. Like this one from reader D. L.:
About 8 months ago MSN prompted me to change to IE8. Actually it wouldn’t let me off the screen until I said "OK"; at that time it was a beta product. I lost the ability to actually get my MSN mail on the computer and if I did get into the Hotmail portion of the site I couldn’t open up any of my email without “error on page.” I cannot access Facebook, certain business related Web sites including Dun & Bradstreet do not support IE8 so therefore do not work.... IE8 has been a nightmare to use. I have been onto the Microsoft Web site to try and downgrade, when I go through the install of IE7, it tells me at the end that a new version is already installed that it cannot downgrade....I just want my IE7 back.
It wasn't all bad news. T. S. counters with the following:
No tales of woe here. I’ve done about 30 IE upgrades so far over a half dozen laptops no problems so far. The majority have been on systems running XP some XP-64 and a few Vista. As far as the comment about people needing to update Flash or Java well there are good security reasons even the average person should try to keep those plug-in up to date if more people would keep them up to date there would be a lot fewer exploited systems in the world.
Of course, you don't have to upgrade to IE8 if you don't want to. Right? Well, not necessarily.