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Final preview of IE11 for Windows 7 uncanned

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A preview of the final build of Internet Explorer 11 for Windows 7 has been released by Microsoft, bringing "30 per cent more speed" than any of its rival browsers when run on the OS, according to Redmond.

It also supports multi-touch, and although there aren't very many Windows 7 touch PCs out there, this might be useful for businesses using Windows 8 PCs running the Win7 OS because of business-critical apps.

Microsoft said the new release of IE11 contains re-designed developer tools. IE11's JavaScript engine, Chakra, is "nine per cent faster" than IE 10 and 30 per cent faster than "the nearest competition" - Chrome version 29 - on WebKit SunSpider benchmarks, it said.

The biggest change, though, is for the developers, who gain a redesigned and enhanced suite of in-browser F12 tools.

Among the changes: the IE11 Console makes it easier to debug WebGL content and map it to JavaScript; there's an improved file picker in the debugger; DOM Explorer will allow devs to tune live websites; and new tools will make it easier to find the source of memory leaks.

Microsoft has attributed the changes to "the overwhelming enthusiasm and feedback we have received from developers."

Standards have been updated with the addition of a version of Pointer Events – which lets you decide how HTML elements respond to mouse and touch "events" – which is now a candidate recommendation specification from the World Wide Web (W3C) Consortium.

"With Pointer Events support across the full range of Windows devices (and soon to other browsers), websites can easily build experiences that work equally well with mouse, keyboard, pen, and touch," Microsoft said.

A completed version of IE11 for Windows 7 is expected by the end of the year. The release preview is here. ®

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