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Microsoft opens Windows 7 to competing browsers

Faced with the possibility of a new fine for breach of competition with the integration of Internet Explorer in Windows, Microsoft presented a new proposal that involves maintaining IE with a pre-installed browser, but giving users an easy way to choose to install other competing browsers.

The European Commission has already shown its appreciation for this proposal, not only for the option given to users of installing other browsers but also for the possibility for computer manufacturers to pre-install other navigation applications before putting the computers up for sale.

Microsoft has already announced the appearance of the page that will be presented to users in the browser so that they can choose to install other browsers, including Firefox 3, Safari 4, Google Chrome and Opera.

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Microsoft details on its website the information provided to the European Commission with this installation option and the possibility of deactivating IE by OEMs and system administrators.

The proposal to the European Commission (which can be downloaded in .doc format) also indicates that the manufacturer will maintain the offer of the Windows 7 version E in Europe, which had already been promised before.

This version is only available in Europe and allows manufacturers (OEMs) to market their PCs with or without Internet Explorer, installing other browsers competition.

In addition to this option, Microsoft stresses that manufacturers and system administrators can easily disable Internet Explorer through the Windows features area.

The Internet Explorer installation files are then removed to a disk location as a backup copy so that they can be reactivated if the user so desires.

Several options have already been put forward for the new Windows 7 so that Microsoft could satisfy the requirements of the European Commission, including a version without Internet Explorer just for Europe, as it had been done before with the Media Player.