Runing IE7 Beta 2 Preview next to IE6 (the right way)

UPDATE: See this post for the latest release of IE7 standalone.


IE7 Beta 2 Preview - Standalone IE7 Beta 2 Preview is available. Unlike previous releases, this is available to anyone who wants to try it out. Usual Beta Disclaimers apply: It is a Beta product and may cause grevious blah blah blah whatever. On to the fun!

This release does include an uninstall, which should return your machine to the previous working state (presumably IE6). However, you can also run IE7 in standalone mode which allows you to keep IE6 as your primary IE version but keep IE7 handy for testing, as long as you use the IE7 standalone launch script to remove two registry keys after IE7 is shut down.

Some caveats apply:

  • The standalone mode is unsupported and didn't play well with the IE6 Cumulative Security Update (December 05). The point is that you can't count on Microsoft to test against IE7 in standalone mode. However, I am running this on my system and it is working for me without problems.

  • Not all features work correctly in standalone mode. In my tests the search, feeds, and other non-browsing features didn't work. However, you can use it to browse and test websites.
  • IE7 writes a registry key that conflicts with IE6, so you need to launch it from a batch file that deletes the registry key when you shut down IE7. Fortunately, such a script is available here. Running IE7 in standalone mode without the launch script, as Scott Hanselman and others have tried, can cause problems.
  • IE7 Beta 2 Preview is only available for XP at this point.

It's a good idea to take a look at how your sites render in IE7 now, especially if you've been using IE specific hacks. The IE team has fixed a lot of the quirks in their CSS standards support, so things like the Star-HTML hack no longer work (read more on the IE Blog). The CSS Zen Garden design page in the screenshot above works in IE6 but has overflow problems in IE7. Looks like the MSN page needs some work, too. Notice the toolbar area, the positioning of the ad, and the way content from the middle column runs past the right border, for starters.

The IE7 Developer Checklist has some good things to look at, including pointers to some common CSS problems.

Update - if setting up the launch script is more work than you'd like, and you don't mind downloading from a non-Microsoft source, you can easily find zipped IE7 redistributions with the launch script already set up.

MSN Homepage in IE7


  • Wow thanks Jon! I owe you a beer if you are ever in Edmonton.

  • Instead of creatinng a .REG file and launching REGEDIT, why not use the REG command-line tool. The following works just as well.

    REG DELETE HKCR\CLSID\{C90250F3-4D7D-4991-9B69-A5C5BC1C2AE6} /f

    REG DELETE HKCR\Interface\{000214E5-0000-0000-C000-000000000046} f

  • Craig -

    That's definitely cleaner, but reg.exe is an XP / 2003 thing so it wouldn't work on previous Windows versions. I know the IE7 Beta 2 Preview is XP only at this point, but it's worth 5 or so more lines in the batch file so that it will work anywhere.

    I generally keep with older DOS commands so they'll work anywhere unless there's a big tradeoff involved.

  • Model dialogs seem to fail with this stand alonge siting access denied errors. Also onchange even on drop down for some reason sent the popup blocker mad.

  • I have tried running IE7 in standalone mode, using the batch file Jon created. However when I do so I get the following error and nothing works in IE7:

    Windows Task Manager: taskmgr.exe - Entry Point Not Found

    The procedure entry point InternetGetSecurityInfoByURLW could not be located in the dynamic link library WININET.dll.

    This sounds to me as if WININET.DLL is the wrong version? The version in my IE7 folder is 7.00.5296.0 and the one in WINDOWS\SYSTEM32 is 6.00.2900.2781.

    What (if anything) am I doing wrong?

    Windows XP Home SP2, IE6 SP2



    Please send help on e-mail

  • Steven and PREDRAG -

    IE7 standalone mode will will let you view pages, but a lot of the other features won't work. This is just for testing how a page displays. The dll's in your system32 folder are ignored in standalone mode.

  • If I run the script in an admin acount it works fine. But it didn't run in a normal user acount. So I run it with run as. It works, but only one time! Any idea?

  • I installed the IE 7 Beta then uninstalled it...

    Now when ever I open IE6 it opens the page in Firefox, I googled for "IE6 opening files in Firefox" and this is the only page that came up, I noticed a member on this forum had the same experience, but I couldnt quite follow how to resolve it?

    Can anyone offer any advice?

    Thanks Access

  • Hi - I'm very non-technical but have the same issue as Steven re: The procedure entry point InternetGetSecurityInfoByURLW could not be located in the dynamic link library WININET.dll I downloaded IE7, found it crashed a bit and (in my stupidity) couldn't see a simple download on microsoft for IE6.0 SP2 (i.e. it only seemed to be wrapped up in SP2), so I uninstalled SP2 and re-installed it. Now I get the above error and I can't open Norton and IE will only (partially) work with Norton disabled. Firefox is o.k. though. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE ... is there a simple answer? p.s. I found the WININET.dll in Windows/System 32 and it is 6.0.2900.2781

    Thanks in advance heaps. I'm running XP home with SP2

  • Just been to the weblog noted by Jon Galloway above and it seems to have solved the IE probelsm ... now I've just got to get Norton sorted. A BIG thanks Jon.

  • IE7 is fine but I can't get some of the material that I got with IE6 because I keep getting the InternetGetSecurityInfoByURLWwininet.dll message when I try to copy material from files I receive

  • I'm getting the InternetGetSecurityInfoByURLW IE7 bug as well, it's very annoying as I cannot now play any games bought through Vales 'Steam', everytime IE7 or Steam starts up I get the error.

    WinXP Pro SP2 + all patches.

  • I have the same problem as "Adam". None of my games work :'( And norton is asking me to uninstall and reinstall but it came with the computer so i have no disk for it. WinXP Home SP2 + All Patches Except WGA Tool

  • Forgot to include contact info XD - is my email

    maizcul is my Xfire, that's where you'll probably find me.


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