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FBS’s support for IE6 is coming to an end

Jan 30, 2010 Michael Wurzer

We’re about to release a new customizable dashboard for flexmls Web, but the upgrade won’t be available to users of IE6.  Why is this?  Because IE6 is eight years old and is so limited in its support for web standards that it’s impractical, if not impossible, to develop web applications that take advantage of the power of modern browsers while also supporting IE6.  Accordingly, we’re left with the choice of either not taking advantage of the capability of modern browsers or developing them and limiting support for IE6.  We choose the latter.  We’re not alone in this choice.  Just yesterday, Google announced that it’s Google Docs and Sites products will no longer support IE6.

We understand that some corporate IT departments still require IE6 for their computers, and so we’re deploying the new customizable dashboard in a way that will maintain the old dashboard for IE6 users.  So, we’re trying hard not to break things for IE6 users and preserve their current experience even though they won’t have access to the new features.  Importantly, however, the fact that IE6 is now so incompatible with modern browsers that we cannot develop new features supporting IE6 is a strong signal that this is the beginning of the end of support for IE6.  As new features are added that cannot support IE6, there will come a time where we can no longer maintain backward compatibility.  The hope is that everyone is able to upgrade to a modern browser by that time.  Keep in mind, for security and many other reasons, even Microsoft strongly urges all IE6 users to upgrade.

One last point is important: We spend a lot of time in our development efforts working on browser compatibility issues.  Supporting old browsers like IE6 make it difficult to support newer browsers like Chrome from Google.  We now officially support recent versions of IE, Firefox and Safari, and we expect to be able to officially declare full support for Chrome soon as well.  Being able to put IE6 and other older browsers behind us will help a great deal in that effort.