MS removing Java applets from its Web sites

Microsoft Corp. has ordered the removal of Java applets from its Web sites.

As a result, Webmasters across www.microsoft.com are scrambling to eliminate the more than 570 Java applets in use on the company's different Web pages and sites, according to sources.

"I made the directive for two reasons," said Tim Sinclair, editor-in-chief of Microsoft's busy Web site. "Sometimes they are large and downloading [takes a long time]. And we are looking for better compatibility across browsers and other platforms." Microsoft claims www.microsoft.com gets 121 million hits a day and is growing at a rate of 10 percent a month.

Saying the removal process would take between 30 and 60 days, Sinclair added that the ban primarily focuses on "navigational" applets and that, in some cases, exceptions would be made to leave applets on the site. HTML and JavaScript would be used in the place of the downloadable Java applets, he said. Microsoft conducted an internal review of its site and the applet ban was one among many decisions made, including keeping pages below 60KB, Sinclair said.

Nonetheless, the ban speaks volumes about Microsoft's ambivalence

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