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Internet Explorer 'Browser Ballot' system in action

Microsoft has begun testing of its Internet Explorer 'Browser Ballot' screen for European copies of Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7. Currently testing is restricted to the United Kingdom, Belgium and France, with the download being offered via Windows Update.
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Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Contributor on

Microsoft has begun testing of its Internet Explorer 'Browser Ballot' screen for European copies of Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7. Currently testing is restricted to the United Kingdom, Belgium and France, with the download being offered via Windows Update.

So, what can users expect?

Well, here's what users need to look out for in Windows Update:

What happens after installation and a reboot depends on whether Internet Explorer is set as the default browser.

If Internet Explorer isn't set as the default browser, then nothing happens and life carries on as normal.

However, if Internet Explorer is set as the default browser, then several things happen:

  1. An 'Information Regarding Web Browsers' pop-up appear, introducing the 'Browser Choice' program.
  2. If Internet Explorer is 'pinned' to the Windows 7 taskbar, it will be unpinned.
  3. A link 'Browser Choice' link is added to the desktop.

Here's the list of browsers on offer:

It's going to be really interesting to watch out for the following:

  • Any change in browser usage share over the coming months in Europe.
  • Whether 'baddies' try their had at their own 'Browser Choice' screen in order to push malware.

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