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A sneak-peek at IE7

Windows users have anticipated the next version of Internet Explorer ever since Microsoft broke with tradition last year and promised to release the new Web browser independently of its operating system.

Now they can take a sneak peek at the program at, a blog dedicated to all things Windows-related. The blog obtained screen shots of IE 7 "Beta 2 Preview," which appears to be the new test version Microsoft promised to release to the public before the end of March. Microsoft released the first test version in July.

The screen shots at are a bit fuzzy, but they do show some anticipated new features, such as tabbed browsing. "Likewise a number of the under-the-bonnet changes are also shown on some screenshots, such as the ability to delete browsing history," writes Matt Whipp on the PCPro blog.

IE7 is also expected to sport new security features, including defenses against spyware and phishing scams.

Microsoft has not yet said publicly when it plans to make the final version of IE7 for Windows XP available. A version for Windows Vista, the next version of its operating system, is expected by the end of the year.