IE 8 Release!

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Dean Hachamovitch, General Manager of the Internet Explorer, will be announcing the availability of Windows Internet Explorer 8 at MIX09 in his keynote address on March 19.  You can watch the keynote and other happenings live at MIX09 by visiting:


Internet Explorer 8 takes a big step forward in browser innovation focused on the way people use the web today. Faster, easier, safer and more reliable than ever before, Internet Explorer 8 is the best version of Internet Explorer we’ve released to date. For example, through Accelerators and Web Slices we are optimizing the browser experience by removing repetitive, time consuming actions, and Internet Explorer 8 offers protections against malware that are far superior to the protections in other browsers.


 Some new features in Internet Explorer 8 include:

·         Accelerators. Accelerators give people easy access to the online services they care about most from any page they visit and allow users to browse faster by eliminating most of the clicks required to access desired content and services.

·         Web Slices. With Web Slices, people can see the information they want to see most often without going away from the page they are on. Appearing in the Favorite bar, users can identify Web Slices with updates when in bold and they can see a rich Web Slice visualization of their content with access back to the source Web page.

·         Instant Search Box. The enhanced Instant Search Box in Internet Explorer 8 is more helpful, making it easier for people to find content of interest and increasing the relevancy of search results. As users type a search term, they can see real-time search suggestions, including images and rich text, from their chosen search provider.

·         Smart Address Bar. Provides matches as the user types across History and Favorites searching against all parts of the URL string (and the page title) instead of just the beginning. Allows mistyped entries to be removed from the Address Bar.

·         Enhanced Tabbed Browsing.  Tabs are grouped and color-coded so people can quickly discern which are related. It is easy to group or ungroup tabs or reopen closed tabs.

·         Performance improvements. We’ve reduced the time that people must wait when starting the browser, opening a “new tab” and loading a page.

·         SmartScreen Filter. Built upon the Microsoft Phishing Filter, the SmartScreen Filter helps protect against a broader set of phishing threats and helps protect from sites that attempt to download malicious software. The SmartScreen Filter is now easier to use with enhanced user interface and warning messages to reduce users’ click-through to confirmed sites.

·         Domain Highlighting. Internet Explorer 8 highlights the domain name of the URL string in the Address Bar in bold text, making it easier for people to tell which site they are on and aid them in identifying phishing sites and other deceptive sites. The domain name is in black, standing out from other characters in the URL, which are gray.

·         Cross-Site Scripting filter. Helps protect users and systems from attacks that can lead to information disclosure, cookie stealing, account/identity theft or otherwise masquerading as the user without permission.

  • InPrivate. InPrivate helps to protect people’s data and privacy from being retained locally on the PC they are using. This protects against third parties who might be in a position to track their online activities.  The consumer has the ability to use either of the features (InPrivate Browsing or InPrivate Filtering) independently.
    • InPrivate Browsing. When activated, InPrivate Browsing helps ensure that History, temporary Internet files and cookies are not recorded on a PC after browsing. When in InPrivate Browsing, toolbars and extensions are automatically disabled and browsing History is automatically deleted when the browser is closed.
    • InPrivate Filtering. InPrivate Filtering helps protect privacy by enabling the consumer to block content coming from third parties that are in a position to track and aggregate their online behavior. Users are provided with notice, choice and control of which third parties to allow and which ones to block.

For a comprehensive look at the features in Internet Explorer 8, please see the fact sheet available here:




Get the facts: About Office 2007 File Format

Office 2007 uses new file format with extension name as .docx, .xlsx, .pptx, many users do not understand why Microsoft update the new format, and thought that only Office 2007 can open and edit those file format.  Please see below.
Get the facts: About Office 2007 File Format

  • By installing “Microsoft Office Compatibility Pack for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint 2007 File Formats”, Office 2000-2003 can open, edit, and save documents, workbooks, and presentations in the new file formats of Office 2007.
  • .docx, .xlsx, .pptx is XML-based file format with compression of ZIP technology.
  • Open XML already is an international open standard.  It’s certified by ISO (as ISO 29500) and ECMA (as ECMA-376)
  • Open XML is platform independent and easily coexists with other document file formats, including Open Document Format (ODF).
  • Open XML has important features supporting long-term document retention, preservation, and accessibility.

Free Hard Drive / Hard Disk wipe tool

Many students and friends keep asking me for a free hard drive wipe tool, I found this one may be useful for yours.

CopyWipe™ is a utility for copying or securely overwriting (wiping/erasing) entire hard drives. CopyWipe can ease and expedite the transition to a new hard drive by copying the entire contents of one drive to another. CopyWipe can also help prevent confidential or private data from being recovered, by securely wiping the contents of a drive. A number of options are provided for wiping, most of which exceed governmental standards (such as DoD 5220.22-M, NAVSO P-5239-26, etc.); this allows the user to choose an optimal balance between security and duration of the wiping operation.