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How many Windows Live services are there?

August 15th, 2006 by Zack Whittaker

Quote – Just How Many Windows Live Services Are There: Microsoft Watch

“Microsoft officials say there are 20 Windows Live services available in beta and/or final versions. But it looks like the real count is in excess of 40. And that’s not including a number of Live services which Microsoft has yet to acknowledge, but sources say are in the pipeline. There are more Windows Live services than meet the eye.”

Oh Mary  So naive… but she’s not wrong, and that’s coming from a semi-Microsoft official. September’s gonna be a nice squishy month for you Live addicts… pay special attention to which categories this entry lies in… there’s a lot of them

Edit: don’t ask me to go into specifics, you know I can’t. Just bide your time, sit quietly and I’ll let you know as soon as things become available – I’m just stirring hype in this entry.

Edit: As of 20th August, there are officially 42 Windows Live services in total.

Posted in Daily Life, Gadgets, Internet Explorer, Windows Live, Windows Live Messenger, Windows Mobile, Windows Vista, Xbox and Gaming | 4 Comments »

Live Messenger… Live Spaces… Live Writer…. *cough*

August 15th, 2006 by Zack Whittaker

So… as the name suggests, Windows Live Messenger was released (far too early, server issues and all), then came some other releases like Custom Domains and the Toolbar and Live OneCare, then came another great communications tool, Windows Live Spaces which made me very happy indeed. Then, little did I know about, Windows Live Writer makes an appearance. Although news to me after some internal speculation, that was let out of the bag and a public beta is available.

So what next? And when? Heehehehehehe

Posted in Internet Explorer, Windows Live | 1 Comment »

Toolkit to Disable Automatic Delivery of Internet Explorer 7

July 28th, 2006 by Patrick S

With the upcoming mandatory update of Internet Explorer 7 via Windows Update  for Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 soon after the final version of the browser is released (planned for fourth quarter 2006),  many System Admins will be up in arms (especially the ones that loathe IE). Never fear Microsoft have released a patch making a non-expiring Blocker Toolkit available for those organizations that would like to block automatic delivery of Internet Explorer 7 to machines in environments where Automatic Updates is enabled.

  • The Blocker Toolkit will prevent machines from receiving Internet Explorer 7 as a high-priority update via Automatic Updates and the “Express” install option on the Windows Update and Microsoft Update sites. The Blocker Toolkit will not expire.
  • The Blocker Toolkit will not prevent users from manually installing Internet Explorer 7 as a Recommended update from the Windows Update or Microsoft Update sites, from the Microsoft Download Center, or from external media.
  • Organizations do not need to deploy the Blocker Toolkit in environments managed with an update management solution such as Windows Server Update Services or Systems Management Server 2003. Organizations can use those products to fully manage deployment of updates released through Windows Update and Microsoft Update, including Internet Explorer 7, within their environment.

You can find the download right here. (Validation required)

-Patrick S

Posted in Internet Explorer, MS News, Products, Windows Server System, Windows XP | Comments Off on Toolkit to Disable Automatic Delivery of Internet Explorer 7

Windows Live Favourites – use it for your own website

July 24th, 2006 by Zack Whittaker

Got this information through work. Windows Live Favourites lets you add a website directly to your own online favourites by a one-click command. The information’s available from here (click Add Bookmarklet) of which you can right click the link or save it as a Quick Link in your Internet Explorer browser, and whenever you see something you like, simply click on it. However… why not do this with your website?

Right click this image (image dimensions 237×49, non-official logo) – and save to your drive. Then upload this image to your own server and position on your website. Link the image to the following address, whilst changing the appropriate bits:

Make sure that you put a target=”_blank” on the hyperlink to make sure that it opens up the Save Favourite in a new window so they keep your site in view.

Please note: the above image is not an official image, and please make sure you download and upload the image to your own server. If we see anyone hotlinking to this image (and trust me, we can tell), we’ll remove the image. It’s so we can save our bandwidth a bit 🙂

Posted in Internet Explorer, MS News, Windows Live | 4 Comments »

Search Plugins for IE-Part 2

July 6th, 2006 by Patrick S

Upon entry to MSBLOG today you may have noticed (or may not) the search bar at the top right of the page in IE7 (if installed). Note the change in color of the arrow on the side of the magnifying glass to yellow.
The gleam of the arrow means that you can add MSBLOG to your search providers-This feature is not that new, but not many people really know about it-let alone how to implement it on their site.
Microsoft has documented this on their MSDN website…but i thought i would go one step further and write a more simplified tutorial…
(on a side note Dennis wrote about a similar feature a couple of months ago using the registry on the local computer to add search providers.)

This search feature is comprised of two main parts:

  1. A link within the header of your site(s) defining the type of script and a direct path to your XML script
  2. And the XML script itself-This mainly describes the search string and where to link to when the user hits search.

 Lets Get Started…

First things first lets write that XML script-I will show a less detailed script but the user can go into detail using things like multiple Parameters etc.
Ok, My demo script looks like this…







It pretty self explanatory but ill try describe it as best i can… Here I have added a description of the search, a name for the search and a contact email if it was queried. The template is MSBLOG’s search URL, the search term is added in the correct place (for this is where the keywords are inserted)

I then insert a couple of lines of code in the header of your template, linking to your XML template in which ever directory you have uploaded it to your server (here it is in the root directory)
html insert template

Now take a look at your home page…it should the little magnifying glass arrow to the right should be glowing yellow. If you drop that menu down there will be a gold star (sort of like the messenger “gleam” icon next to your page name (what you wrote in the short name field in your XML script).

And we’re done…Who ever visits your site now will see this cool feature that is simple to add and works a charm…Be the first to have it 🙂


finished look


Any Question’s or comments are welcomed :D-Feel free to add MSBLOG to your search providers also 😉
Made with help from Documentation located from the following Pages…HTML and DHTML Overviews/Tutorials (MSDN) & A9’s OpenSearch 1.1: Description.

Patrick S

Posted in Internet Explorer, MSBLOG Related | 3 Comments »

Internet Explorer 7 Beta 3 is released!!

June 29th, 2006 by Jabez Gan [MVP]

Microsoft just released IE7 Beta 3 for Windows XP SP2, Windows Server 2003, Windows XP x64 and Windows Server 2003 Itanium today silently.

Please see IE’s homepage at:

Download links:
Internet Explorer 7 Beta 3 for Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2)

Internet Explorer 7 Beta 3 for Windows XP Professional x64 Edition and Windows Server 2003 x64 Edition

Internet Explorer 7 Beta 3 for Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1 (SP1)

Internet Explorer 7 Beta 3 for Windows Server 2003 ia64 Edition (Windows Server 2003 for Itanium-based systems)

I do not expect much changes between Beta 2 and Beta 3, but I’m sure the well known bugs will be resolved in this Beta 3.

In the meantime, do keep checking out the release notes at (haven’t updated to Beta 2 at news writing time).

Posted in Internet Explorer, MS News | 2 Comments »

Clickety-drag tabs for IE7 in Vista 5456

June 28th, 2006 by Zack Whittaker

Has anyone else noticed that in Internet Explorer 7 in the latest build of Vista, build 5456, you can click and
drag the tabs around to rearrange them? Cool stuff 🙂

Posted in Internet Explorer, Windows Vista | 8 Comments »

Bug in IE6, but fixed in IE7, And please use GIF over PNG in your Gadgets

June 20th, 2006 by kenlin@HK [MVP]


Update news from Team, they found a new bug in IE6 when IE doing the Image Filtering.
Details here,


We have recently released a workaround for a bug in IE6 where image filters for PNG can cause a hang on the site. This IE bug is already fixed in IE7, but we still needed to workaround it to make sure the site works properly for IE6.

To understand the problem, here is an explanation from the IE team (thanks Peter Gurevich!):

  • Each IE 6 window is a UI thread. 
  • The HTML page and any script you written for the page run in the UI thread.  Therefore filters in your page or in script will download on the UI thread
  • IE’s implementation of the AlphaImageLoader filter downloads images synchronously 
  • Synchronous loading of an image or successive images on the UI thread has the potential to hang the browser and adversely affect the user experience.

Our workaround is to stop applying transparent image filters to PNG. As a result, your transparent PNG will not look as great as it used to. I would encourage you to change to using transparent GIF moving forward.Sorry for the inconvenience – the SDK will be updated with this new info in our next release.

James Lau
Program Manager Team

Posted in Bugs, Internet Explorer, Windows Vista | 3 Comments »

SearchBox Plugins for IE7 by

May 28th, 2006 by Dennis Fraederich [MCP]

Today we present you our first two plugins for the new Internet Explorer 7 SearchBox feature.

1) The first add-in is a English to German and vice versa translator with a integrated dictionary. It’s based on I came across it last week and because everyday I’ll talk to much english-speaking people like readers/members and betatesters too, it’s a very helpful service for me. I thought how can I use it in my daily work without accessing the site everytime I’ll want to translate something. Then the new Internet Explorer 7 SearchBox feature came across my mind. 🙂
So I started searching the Windows Vista Registry to find the corresponding registry keys for the SearchBox feature. While writing this posting I used it very often to find the right words I didn’t knew before. Maybe we have some german-speaking readers who will find it a bit useful. Add-in



2) The second one is especially for Sometimes I want to find some older news/postings on without loading the entire website every time. So guess what I could use for it? Yes, the SearchBox feature of Internet Explorer 7! 😀 Add-in



Download: SearchBox Plugins for IE7 by Size: 467 Bytes


Maybe you want to write your own plugin to use i.e. instead of
Here is a short description how to achieve it:

1. Install the lastest Windows Vista beta OR Internet Explorer 7 for Windows XP.
2. Open the registry editor by pressing Windows + R, enter regedit and hit enter.
3. Move to the following key: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes
4. Right click on SearchScopes and click on New -> Key and name it i.e.
5. On the right side right click again then create a new String
6. Name it DisplayName, then double click it and enter the name which should show up in Internet Explorer 7, i.e.
7. Again create a new String and name it URL
8. Double click the URL and enter your address which will receive the search content you enter in the SearchBox of Internet Explorer 7. It could like this:{searchTerms}
9. The variable {searchTerms} will be replaced with the content you enter into the SearchBox and then send with the complete URL to a tab of your window.
10. Close the registry editor to and close all open Internet Explorer 7 windows to activate it.

Overall I have written two very small plugins to have those features integrated into my Internet Explorer 7.
Atleast I hope some of you find them a bit helpful too.
Tell me your opinion, suggestion, positiv and of course negativ critisism too via WLM or the comment function.


Dennis Fraederich [MCP], a Microsoft Betatester
Contact on WLM: mcgiga[at]

Posted in Internet Explorer, MSBLOG Related | 5 Comments »

Explaining Windows Internet Explorer 7+

May 24th, 2006 by Zack Whittaker

The reason why Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 copies of Windows Internet Explorer 7 are branded as “Windows Internet Explorer 7” in the About dialog, whilst in Vista it is referred to as “Windows Internet Explorer 7+” is because of the main difference in the operating systems.

Vista has a core of security – I mean the whole thing is based on security and making everything incredibly secure. Having the 7+ identifies that the Vista copy of IE7 has extended features that integrate with the operating system itself, such as Parental Controls which restricts what specific users access, and Protected Mode which helps virtualise areas of the disk so that if anything harmful access the machine, then it won’t attack the computer.

So basically, the 7+ version is the Vista one and will harbour some of the core security features of the operating system, whilst 7 is just for Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 which won’t be less secure in anyway and will still have all the same features as 7+ except not have the core operating system parts. Hope that makes sense! 🙂

Posted in Internet Explorer, Windows Vista | 1 Comment »

Atom Feeds the same as RSS

May 20th, 2006 by Patrick S

Looks like Microsoft will be considering Atom an “RSS format” in Windows Vista.

From the Windows Vista Developer Center RSS homepage:

Windows Vista will support all common RSS formats, including: RSS 1.0, 2.0 and Atom 0.3. We will support Atom 1.0 when it’s released.

And from the RSS Support in Longhorn article:

RSS, as we use it in this document, refers not to a single format (such as RSS 2.0), but to the general concept of feeds of syndicated content. It should be considered to cover all feed formats that meet the basic criteria of updateable [sic] collections of items.

Source John Lamansky’s blog

Posted in Internet Explorer, Windows Vista | Comments Off on Atom Feeds the same as RSS

Internet Explorer 7 worldwide sites

May 5th, 2006 by Patrick S

Microsoft Have just released a worldwide sites for the new IE 7 for many different languages.

You can find the worldwide main site HERE

This new move allows people from all corners of the world to try IE7:

Internet Explorer 7 will be available in several languages when the final product is released in the second half of 2006. Internet Explorer 7 Beta 2 is available now in Arabic, English, Finnish, and German. Refer back to this page in the coming months to find a version of Internet Explorer 7 in your preferred language.

-Patrick S

Posted in Internet Explorer | Comments Off on Internet Explorer 7 worldwide sites

Internet Explorer 7 Beta 2 is OUT!

April 25th, 2006 by Jabez Gan [MVP]

There was IE7 Beta 1 for technical beta testers, and then IE7 Beta 2 Preview, and now, Internet Explorer 7 Beta 2 is finally released, to the public!

Internet Explorer 7 Beta 2 for Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2)
Internet Explorer 7 Beta 2 for Windows XP Professional x64 Edition and Windows Server 2003 x64 Edition
Internet Explorer 7 Beta 2 for Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1 SP1
Internet Explorer 7 Beta 2 for Windows Server 2003 ia64 Edition (Windows Server 2003 for Itanium-based systems)

IE7 Beta 2 Checklist:

IE7 Beta 2 Release Notes:

Do More with IE7:


Posted in Internet Explorer | 4 Comments »

How to Run IE 7 without installing it

April 9th, 2006 by Patrick S

If you want to test IE7 without the risk of installing a beta software, here is a simple way to do it. This method does not install IE 7 the usual way- instead you just run it from the installer package and hence your system does not get littered with beta dlls all over the place.

  1. Download IE7 beta from the MS website at . Save the file at a location from where you want to run it. For example C:\IE7Beta
  2. Right click the file and select “Extract Here” option from the Winzip/WinRAR context menu.
  3. Once all the files are extracted, find the file named “shlwapi.dll” and delete it.
  4. Create a file by name “IEXPLORE.exe.local”. Make sure that it does not have the .txt extension. [Go to Tools-> Folder Options -> View -> uncheck “Hide extensions for known file types”.]
  5. Launch iexplore.exe from the same folder and verify that it works.
  6. Right click on iexplore.exe and select “Send To…-> Desktop (Create Shortcut)”.

This method also helps in running both IE7 and IE6 side-by-side! A great help for web designers. To uninstall, just delete the folder where you extracted the installation package!

Trivia: With the new beta, the browser is no longer called “Microsoft Internet Explorer”. It is now “Windows Internet Explorer”.
My two Cents blog

Posted in Internet Explorer | 1 Comment »

PNG Transparency demo

April 5th, 2006 by Zack Whittaker

Well, it took me a good few hours to master… but I’ve finally got a demo up and running. The demo shows transparent PNG image files can be viewed and manipulated in Internet Explorer. In IE7, the support is “enhanced” but if you have a version of Internet Explorer 5.5 or above, you can still view it.

Please note: only Internet Explorer 5.5 and above can view the demo’s – any other browsers such as Firefox will just get a standard image that does nothing much except move around the screen when you click and drag on it.

Feel free to check it out – two options to choose from – the sandbox leaves the menu to the left so you can navigate around the site afterwards, the fullscreen demo enables you to really see the whole screen.

PNG transparency demo

Posted in Internet Explorer, Windows Vista | 7 Comments »

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