Well, it really depends on what you think the “IE problem” is. If you haven’t heard about Google’s Chrome Frame, it’s a plugin for IE (6, 7, and that basically replaces the IE rendering engine with Google’s Chrome. It has gotten a lot of attention as an “IE killer”. It allows IE users (especially those on IE6) the ability to run modern web apps much better. I’ve started getting questions about whether it solves ‘the IE problem’.
Many enterprises have IE6 apps that don’t work properly on other browsers. IE6 works only on Windows XP, effectively keeping these users hostage to XP. Not only can they not move to other browsers or OSes, they can’t move to Windows 7 since IE6 does not run on Windows 7. Thus far Microsoft has not provided a way to run IE6 (apps) on Windows 7 except for a very heavyweight “XP mode” virtual machine.
So, you may think of your IE6 problem as one of two things:
1. If it’s “I have to have IE6 and I’m on XP but I want a modern rendering engine”, then yes, Google Chrome Frame is a potential solution.
2. If it’s “I want to go to windows 7 and I need to run ie6 apps”, then no, I’m afraid it’s not much help.
Most have scenario 2 as the issue. And it’s this that will haunt Microsoft by delaying Windows 7 upgrades in enteprises for a long time unless they address it. And it will be a source of pain to enterprises as well.
Even in scenario 1, if desktops are truly locked down, then users likely can’t download and install a plugin any more than they could just install the Chrome browser or another browser. So it doesn’t really solve too much.
So, while Google is at least doing something here, it isn’t going to help with “the IE6 problem” very much.
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