Microsoft Releases IE8 Blocking Tool
When Microsoft issues the general release of Internet Explorer 8, enterprises will be able to deploy a new blocking tool to prevent unauthorized installations of the browser. The tool is called the IE8 Blocker Toolkit, and Microsoft released it for free download earlier today.
Blocking capability may be something that enterprises will want, especially for those organizations that haven't yet fully tested IE8 compatibility.
To configure the tool, IT professionals can run the Registry file in individual PCs or manage it via Group Policy in domain-joined networks, as explained on Microsoft's IE Blog.
This IE8 tool has no time limit. Previously with IE7, Microsoft had offered a blocking tool that eventually expired, explained Robert Boedigheimer, a development manager with a large food supplier and distributor. "With this, there is no time limit," Boedigheimer said. He noted that the software will give organizations more control over when IE8 is supported within the enterprise.
Microsoft will distribute IE8 via Automatic Update, as well as the Windows Update and Microsoft Update Web portals. For IT professionals using Windows Server Update Services or Systems Management Server 2003, the use of the blocking software is optional, since those solutions offer greater control in managing updates.
Microsoft has not announced a release date for IE8, but a company official recently said that availability is imminent.
The IE8 Blocker toolkit can be downloaded here.
Jeffrey Schwartz is editor of Redmond magazine and also covers cloud computing for Virtualization Review's Cloud Report. In addition, he writes the Channeling the Cloud column for Redmond Channel Partner. Follow him on Twitter @JeffreySchwartz.