Microsoft’s once popular web browser Internet Explorer will be retired and go out of support on June 15, 2022, which comes with a host of implications for users, IT pros and developers.
The announcement, which came in a Wednesday blog from the Redmond tech giant, comes as Microsoft is trying to push its new web browser, Microsoft Edge, which the company says offers better compatibility, productivity and security.
Especially for organizations, that last piece is extremely important. After June 15, 2022, nobody in your organization should be using Internet Explorer.
Microsoft previously said Microsoft 365 and apps won’t be supported for Internet Explorer 11 starting Aug. 17, and already ended Microsoft Teams support for the browser.
So, what does this mean for IT administrators, developers and end users? Here’s a look at what to expect heading into next summer’s death of Internet Explorer as we know it.
Which platforms will be affected?
According to Microsoft, the Internet Explorer 11 desktop application delivered via the semi-annual channel will go out of support for customers running Windows 10 client SKUs and Windows 10 IoT, versions 20H2 and later.
However, websites that need Internet Explorer to open can still be accessed via Edge’s built-in Internet Explorer mode. And, organizations still using Internet Explorer with a large set of legacy Internet Explorer-based websites and apps can also use Internet Explorer Mode in Edge.
Other versions that remain unaffected include Internet Explorer platform (MSHTML/Trident), including WebOC and the Internet Explorer desktop application on Windows 8.1, Windows 7 Extended Security Updates, Windows 10 Server SAC, Windows 10 IoT Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC), Windows 10 Sever LTSC and Windows 10 client LTSC.
What if we still rely on Microsoft Edge?
For most users, Microsoft Edge is already installed on their device, and Microsoft is making it easier to bring over passwords, favorites and browsing data from Internet Explorer to Edge.
If an organization has legacy browser dependencies or apps that run on Internet Explorer, then they have enable legacy browser support in Edge by setting up Internet Explorer mode. For IT pros to help their organization make this switch, Microsoft offers this helpful guide and a customer adoption kit.
Microsoft is also offering a Microsoft Edge customer adoption kit to help organizations and end users make this transition.
What happens to the Internet Explorer app?
According to Microsoft, the app won’t be removed from computers, but it won’t Internet Explorer. Instead, it will redirected to Edge.
Website that require Internet Explorer can still be opened via Internet Explorer mode.
The MSHTML (Trident) engine, which is the underlying platform for Internet Explorer 11, is the same engine used by Internet Explorer mode, so it will continue to be supported. As will WebOC. So, custom or third-party apps that rely on the MSHTML platform should continue to work.
Microsoft says Internet Explorer mode will continue to be supported until 2029 at the latest, so you have some time to figure out a transition to Edge or another browser if you still rely on IE11.