Today is the day that Microsoft will be pushing out Internet Explorer 7 as an automatic update. I’ve taken a few precautions to keep IE6 at least for the time being, but with any luck I’ll be able to let it go soon. I’ll be checking stats for some of our client sites at USM with an eager eye toward any sharp drop in IE6 usage starting today.
I must admit that there’s a part of me that will miss IE6. Over the years I’ve built up a pretty extensive knowledge of its bugs, and I’ve developed a great aptitude for fixing issues triggered by those bugs. Once its gone, all that knowledge will be of no use and I’ll have one less valuable skill as a developer. For the good of everyone else, however, I’m willing to make that sacrifice.
Update: I’m a little disappointed at the ease with which I dodged the “forced update.” All it took was disabling automatic updates. The more complicated instructions that were floating around only seem to have applied to server versions of Windows. I’m still interested to see how overall IE6 usage changes going forward. A quick and unscientific survey of stats for a handful of sites shows that somewhere between 40% and 50% of Internet Explorer users are still using IE6 or lower. Those numbers come from sites with a fairly general (not specifically high tech) audience.