Microsoft will release the latest version of Internet Explorer at noon Eastern time on Thursday, and major changes in a bid to maintain dominance in the browser and head of an increasingly crowded field browsers, including the still-surging Mozilla Firefox.
IE8 will be available at launch in 25 languages, for Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows Server in both 32-bit and 64-bit editions. However, IE8 won't be available for the Mac.
Internet Explorer 8 brings to the table a number of new user-friendly features, increased standards support, and much better security. The browser has been downloaded several million times since it in public testing mode, a little over a year ago, represents one of Microsoft's largest beta test ever.
Increased security is one of the most important features IE8. NSS Labs, an independent study released early Thursday shows IE8 significantly besting Mozilla Firefox, Apple Safari, Google Chrome and Opera in the catch and block malware. With its Smart Screen Filter, IE8 Release Candidate 1 taken 69% of malware, while Firefox 3.07 taken only 30%.