-Hi, I'm Seth Rosenblatt for CNET and in this first-look video, I'll be giving you a tour of what's new in the Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate.
Likely to be the last pre-released version before Microsoft goes public with it.
You can get Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate for Windows 7 or Vista in both 32 and 64 bit flavors.
Like a recent Firefox 4 beta, the new IE9RC comes with advertiser tracking protection.
Unlike the Firefox version,
IE is, actually, surprisingly strong using both a header-based solution and blacklists.
It also comes with a white list for sites that you actually do want to track you and you can configure how often an ad tracker pings you before it gets blocked.
The lower the number, the less tolerance for targeted ads you have.
Another long awaited security enhancement for internet explorer is an ActiveX filter, which you can use to block all ActiveX content and then selectively activate it on
per site basis.
For people unfamiliar with why ActiveX technology is potentially dangerous, it requires full access to the operating system that the browser is running in.
Obviously, a major risk.
The new ActiveX filter gives you the ability to restrict ActiveX on a per-site basis with a toggle in the location bar.
Both the ad tracking protection and the ActiveX filter can be enabled from the Gear menu and then the safety submenu.
To selectively allow ActiveX content, click on the icon
on the location bar.
Expended support for HTML5 and other future web technologies in the RC means that developers will now get some love from the HTML5 geo location feature, semantic tags, CSS3 2D Transforms, and support for the Web and Video Codec.
These features are largely present in other browsers, so that they are finally coming to Internet Explorer must be no small comfort to developers.
For us end users, this means, for example, that we can start using Google Docs in IE9.
IE9RC now places fastest on WebKit SunSpider test according to Microsoft.
CNET will have updated benchmarks for all of the stable browsers soon.
After having used over the course of a day, IE9RC did not crash on me once something its beta processors could not manage.
Some sites loaded slowly and there were some occasional pixelation wonkiness with HTML5
video that took a page refresh to fix, but overall, IE9RC looks good, runs smoothly, and ought to impress the pants off any browser watchers and it's actually a Microsoft product.
With your first look at the Internet Explorer 9 Release Candidate, I'm Seth Rosenblatt for CNET.