Microsoft has officially retired its browser, Internet Explorer. This presents a hassle for some. But could surprise many people who didn’t know that the 1995 relic was still even around. Those of us who were there during the early days of the internet may remember downloading IE via CD-ROM onto a computer shared with the whole household. And, of course, that dial-up modem buzzing away still haunts us. All of that just to pull up the latest Geocities page using Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator (which retired back in 2008).
Microsoft is, of course, still in the game, even if Internet Explorer is officially “dead.” A wistful blog post from the company, which we saw thanks to AP News, also includes the nitty-gritty you need to know if you still use IE or visit websites that require it for proper viewing. If you try to use the browser, you’ll get directed to the Microsoft Edge browser instead. All saved preferences will transfer over. Edge also has an Internet Explorer mode to view websites that aren’t compatible with other browsers. Engadget reported that half of Japanese businesses and some government agencies never made the switch away from IE, so the death of Internet Explorer may require some scrambling. But, to be fair, Microsoft announced the retirement date over a year ago.
The above 1995 commercial for the first version of Internet Explorer is a throwback to a simpler time on the internet. Increased speed and browser security are important updates. But if you need more Microsoft nostalgia in your life now that IE is gone, you can always turn to Clippy for advice in Microsoft Teams. Or you could play Microsoft Flight Simulator, which is still going strong.
Internet Explorer joins the iPod in retirement. We’d say that maybe they could enjoy it together but, let’s face it, they were never compatible.
Melissa is Nerdist’s science & technology staff writer. She also moderates “science of” panels at conventions and co-hosts Star Warsologies, a podcast about science and Star Wars. Follow her on Twitter @melissatruth.