Internet Explorer (almost) Breathes its Final Byte on Wednesday
Microsoft will finally end support for Internet Explorer on multiple Windows versions on Wednesday, June 15, almost 27 years after its launch on August 24, 1995.
After finally reaching its end of life, the Internet Explorer desktop application will be disabled. It will be replaced with the new Chromium-based Microsoft Edge, with users automatically redirected to Edge when launching IE11.
This retirement affects Internet Explorer 11 desktop apps on specific versions of Windows 10 delivered via the Semi-Annual Channel (SAC) to systems running Windows 10 client SKUs (version 20H2 and later) and Windows 10 IoT (version 20H2 and later).
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Internet Explorer is also not available on Windows 11, where the new Chromium-based Microsoft Edge is the default web browser.
Windows releases where Internet Explorer will still be available after June 15, 2022, include Windows 7 ESU, Windows 8.1, and all versions of Windows 10 LTSC client, IoT, and Server.
“The Internet Explorer (IE) 11 desktop application will end support for Windows 10 semi-annual channel starting June 15, 2022,” Microsoft says on the IE11 lifecycle page.
As Microsoft further explains, “for supported operating systems, Internet Explorer 11 will continue receiving security updates and technical support for the lifecycle of the Windows version on which it is installed.”
Other Microsoft apps and services have also ended support for IE11 over the last few years (a complete list is available here).
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Internet Explorer will live on with Edge IE mode
Internet Explorer’s demise likely doesn’t surprise anyone since Microsoft has been encouraging customers to switch from Internet Explorer for years.
In August 2020, it announced plans to ditch support for Internet Explorer 11 web browsers in Windows 10 and Microsoft 365, with an official announcement of the Internet Explorer 11 desktop application’s retirement issued on May 19, 2021.
Microsoft moved on to discontinue IE support in Teams on November 30, 2020, and end support across Microsoft 365 apps and services on August 17, 2021.
“Customers are encouraged to move to Microsoft Edge with IE mode. IE mode enables backward compatibility and will be supported through at least 2029,” Redmond added.
To enable IE mode in Edge, you must go to edge://settings/defaultbrowser, toggle on ‘Allow sites to be reloaded in Internet Explorer,‘ and restart the web browser.
In this Getting Started guide, you can learn more about IE mode and how to transition to the new Microsoft Edge.