Microsoft released to a group of select testers on December 10 a new test build of Internet Explorer (IE) 8.
The new build is for "technical beta" participants only and is not available to the public. According to the note sent to testers:
"We are releasing the IE8 Partner Build to the IE8 Technical Beta for you to help us test and find issues. This build represents a preview of our progress and is best used to verify issues fixed since releasing Beta 2. While we believe it to be of adequate quality for you to use, is not as extensively tested as a milestone build, so it is not meant for the general public but only for testing purposes."
The new IE 8 build is numbered 8.0.6001.18343, testers said.
Microsoft officials declined to detail what is new in the December 10 interim build, beyond general bug fixes.
Update: Here is a PDF of the ReadMe that details what is new in the latest tech build.
IE 8 officials confirmed last month that the final version of IE 8 is not going to be released to the Web this year. Instead, Microsoft is planning on one more public test build, due in the first quarter of 2009, before the final release.
Microsoft officials said last week that they are planning on adding more compatibility-enhancement features to IE 8 with the next test build. But it sounds as if the December 10 build does not include the "Compatibility View" tweaks and that it won't debut until the near-final public Release Candidate next year.