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Blimey. Cor luvvaduck and no mistake. Just after the announcement that Opera are complaining to the European Union about Internet Explorer’s dodgy standards support, Chris Wilson reports that an internal build of Internet Explorer 8 passes the Acid2 test.

This doesn’t necessarily mean that IE8 has fixed all its float oddities, or its hasLayout hilarities. But what it does mean is that there is another browser war, and Microsoft did decide to come.

Added 20 December 2007: Markus Mielke of the Internet Explorer team confirms “HasLayout will be history with IE8“. Exciting times…

(This post translated into Polish.)

Your Replies

#1 On December 19th, 2007 4:46 pm WaSP Member agustafson replied:

For those keeping score, this means:

* generated content,
* data URLs,
* proper CSS layout, and much more.

Kudos to the whole IE team for making this happen, I’m looking forward to checking out the beta. How soon can we have that?

#2 On December 19th, 2007 5:40 pm Jim replied:

Are data URIs certain? There’s a version of the Acid2 test that substitutes HTTP URIs for data URIs.

#3 On December 19th, 2007 6:46 pm WaSP Member agustafson replied:

From my conversation with Chris Wilson yesterday, I believe Data URIs are in.

#4 On December 19th, 2007 7:19 pm IE8 will pass Acid2 | K-Squared Ramblings replied:

[...] (via WaSP Buzz) [...]

#5 On December 19th, 2007 7:35 pm Jim replied:

Thanks for the info, agustafson.

#6 On December 19th, 2007 8:55 pm Hey WaSP Webmaster: How to Fix Acid2 | K-Squared Ramblings replied:

[...] With internal builds of IE8 passing Acid2, a lot of people are looking at the Acid2 test with browsers that are supposed to comply… but don’t. [...]

#7 On December 20th, 2007 6:48 am Programando em .NET » IE8 passa no ACID2 Test replied:

[...] E não é Fake, tá até no site do ACID Test [...]

#8 On December 20th, 2007 7:39 am Internet Explorer concienciado con los estándares | Espira Tecnologías Web replied:

[...] El Acid Test 2, el test que realiza The Web Standards Project para la implementación de estándares en los navegadores, ha sido satisfactoriamente superado por el IE 8 (todavía no definitivo), algo importante y a tener en cuenta en el mercado de los navegadores. [...]

#9 On December 20th, 2007 8:44 am Hi-TechLife » Internet Explorer 8, primo beta test entro metà del 2008 replied:

[...] Microsoft ha reso noto che la prossima versione del suo browser web Internet Explorer 8.0, ha superato l’Acid2 Browser Test, una pagina web appositamente pensata per i vendors affinché questi siano sicuri che i loro prodotti supportino idoneamente gli standard web. E’ ragionevole quindi pensare, è la stessa società di Redmond a renderlo noto, che entro i primi mesi del 2008 possa essere rilasciata una prima beta del browser. Link per approfondimenti [...]

#10 On December 20th, 2007 10:01 am IE8 passa no teste do Acid2 » Revolução Etc replied:

[...] Sim, você leu certo. Uma versão em desenvolvimento do famigerado e infame Internet Explorer 8 passou nos testes do Acid2. É um verdadeiro marco na história dos padrões web. Resta saber se a equipe de desenvolvimento do Internet Explorer vai conseguir manter esta façanha até o lançamento da nova versão do browser azul. Conforme Bruce Lawson disse, isso não significa (ainda) que os bugs de floats etc serão corrigidos para a próxima versão, mas significa que uma nova guerra de browsers está para ser travada entre Opera 10, Mozilla Firefox 3 e Internet Explorer 8. [...]

#11 On December 20th, 2007 3:27 pm Vectorpedia(Rick) replied:

The company has been consistently dunned by critics over the past dozen years for not making IE entirely compliant with various Web standards. Due to its sheer dominance of the browser market that lack of compliance, say critics, has helped to prevent consistent behaviors between competing browsers – and thus discouraged the use of any browsers other than IE.

Indeed, IE7′s inability to completely pass the Acid2 test was one of the criticisms hurled at Microsoft last week by Opera-coincidence ? :)

#12 On December 20th, 2007 5:18 pm Bruce Lawson’s personal site  : IE8, Opera, CSS and Standards getting in a tizzy replied:

[...] I’m also glad that Opera have raised the stakes with a complaint to the European Union. A few outbursts aside, I’ve never been anti-Microsoft, but I am most definitely anti-monopoly. A monopoly can never benefit consumers , and must be forced to compete. When Microsoft had a competitor in Netscape, it innovated: Internet Explorer had the best CSS support and IE6 was a marvellous browser that ushered in the era of CSS-based design. But once Microsoft killed Netscape, Internet Explorer stagnated, and we all know the woe that caused. But once there was a convincing competitor in Firefox, Microsoft began innovating again—and look! IE8 passes Acid2! [...]

#13 On December 21st, 2007 3:55 am Martijn ten Napel replied:

Although I relate to everbody’s scepticism giving Microsofts past behaviour, I cannot say otherwise than this is the news we have been hoping for. It seems that someone in Microsoft has given the opportunity to the IE team to go ahead and make things right. In my mind, the positive attitude of Molly as the voice of ‘the community’ has helped, but the change must have come from within Microsoft. Let’s hope that with HTML5 and CSS3 everybody will play along nicely; I think by now browser makers have learned that nothing is gained by going a different route.

#14 On December 21st, 2007 4:44 am IE8: light at the end of a long tunnel « I’m Simon Dickson. replied:

[...] Things are looking up. Firefox v3 will include an updated ‘rendering engine’ which will pass the test; and there’s been joy bordering on hysteria at the news this week that the latest test build of Internet Explorer version 8 – full release next year some time – passes the test. [...]

#15 On December 21st, 2007 6:49 am Webvibes » Blog Archive » Microsoft snapt ‘t! replied:

[...] Sinds vandaag is bekend dat Internet Explorer 8, de opvolger van Internet Explorer 7, geslaagd is voor de Acid2 test. Dit is geen officiele test, maar heeft zich ondertussen bewezen als een ontzettend zware test die dan ook veel betekend. Er zijn maar enkele browsers (Firefox 3 Beta, Opera, Safari en dus ook IE8) in staat om deze test te kunnen halen. Dat Internet Explorer 8 geen verschillen meer vertoont met Firefox of Opera, betekent dat niet. Maar het zal ons webdevelopers toch een stuk makkelijker worden gemaakt. [...]

#16 On December 21st, 2007 9:45 am mazury replied:

Sounds like the old Microsoft Cairo project . Each time a competitor was about to release a new product or new version of a product, Microsoft would launch a press release stating how much better everything would be with Cairo, who would be just six months away. The press and potential customers turned away from the competitor and started to talk about the marvelous Cairo future instead.

Except that Cairo never materialized.

#17 On December 25th, 2007 8:23 pm minimal design replied:

I’ll believe it when I see it… Somehow I’m not holding my breath…

#18 On December 26th, 2007 2:04 pm Jeremy Anderson replied:

Somehow, I’m fairly certain they’ll find a way to non-compliance by release time.
Anybody have any word about an attempt to implement HTML5 support?
IE7 is 10 years behind web standards now. How far behind will IE8 be?

#19 On December 29th, 2007 11:17 am F-LOG-GE » Blog Archive » Ende gut, Anfang gut replied:

[...] Die zweite gute Nachricht ist die Ankündigung des Internet Explorer 8. Nicht nur die Tatsache, daß es einen in absehbarer Zeit geben wird, ist erfreulich, sondern daß Microsoft auch tatsächlich an einer Verbesserung gearbeitet hat. Die derzeitige Entwicklerversion besteht den Acid2-Test und wird auch das seltsame “hasLayout” nicht mehr besitzen. Es scheint, Microsoft ist wirklcih auf dem Pfad der Besserung. Es konnte ja auch nur besser werden. [...]

#20 On December 31st, 2007 2:26 pm IE8 passes the Acid2 test??? Really??? | replied:

[...] passes Acid2 test ??? Posted on 2007.12.31  Print Post  Categories: Software; Tagged with: Acid2, browser, IE, Microsoft, screenshotThey say that aninternal build of Internet Explorer 8 has passed the Acid2 test, a CSS-compatibility testing page from the Web Standards Project, but I question it: is it necessarily so? [...]

#21 On January 1st, 2008 12:28 am Britney Simpsons Blog » IE8 passes Acid2 test replied:

[...] IE8 passes Acid2 test [...]

#22 On January 6th, 2008 10:00 am Chris M replied:

All we need now is for it to render Identically to Firefox, which would reduce every piece of design work to simply coding fixes for IE5.5/6 and IE7.
The of course fixing it all for that other irritatingly buggy browser, Safari.
For all the money Apple makes as “the other platform”, why doesn’t Opera take their silly lawsuit and point it at them, rather then take the obvious route. Not as good advertising for a browser that has been a flop?

#23 On January 7th, 2008 10:02 am johnnysaucepn replied:

Opera hasn’t launched any lawsuits, and has been far from a flop. It’s increasing revenues consistently, and has achieved what it has on its own, without being financially dependent on Google and co.

#24 On January 9th, 2008 7:22 am OKTOBLOK » Blog Archive » IE8 houdt zich aan webstandaarden replied:

[...] Acid2 De nieuwste browser van Microsoft, waarvan een bèta versie uitkomt in het eerste half jaar van 2008, zal ook de Acid2 test doorstaan. Hiermee zal IE8 zich aansluiten bij Opera en Safari die al jaren slagen voor deze test. Ook de bèta van Firefox 3 is geslaagd voor deze test. [...]

#25 On January 11th, 2008 1:24 am Faberlica replied:

I wait for output IE8 with impatience.

#26 On January 15th, 2008 9:31 am 4 Web Resolutions for 2008 at Web 2.0 & White Wall Wisdom replied:

[...] With Microsoft finally being pressured into releasing a standards-compliant Internet Explorer, subsequently revealing that IE8 has passed the Acid2 test in an internal debug build, and hinting at a release sometime in mid-2008, we can finally glimpse the possibility of bringing web standards (at least in terms of CSS/XHTML) to the masses. Additionally, Firefox 3’s ability to pass Acid2 natively (better late than never!) as well as Opera’s Kestrel builds with exhaustive CSS3 support (on desktop, the Wii and mobile phones), means we’ve never been able to reach as many platforms or people with the same features before. I believe this to be a ‘watershed’ year, where we’ll either see the myriad of Web Standards take off, or if they prove to be fundamentally flawed (they’re already proving difficult to implement), this may well be the beginning of complete dominance from other proprietrary solutions like Flash. There’s an emerging school of thought that standards are discouraging quick progression through lack of competition. I strongly disagree, as if one looks at the greatest problem plaguing the web, incompatibility, a look back into the past reveals that rampant browser competition in the late 90’s (IE Netscape days) resulted in far too many different proprietrary solutions for the same thing – something that still haunts us today. [...]

#27 On January 16th, 2008 3:17 am What’s the best test for Acid3? - The Web Standards Project replied:

[...] Perhaps you expected this announcement, given the news that IE8 passes Acid2. Or maybe it already seems like old news, if you caught the recent Slashdot post. In either case, the news is true — Acid3 will be coming soon! [...]

#28 On January 16th, 2008 12:38 pm Butler replied:

I think Opera move might have influenced the timing of the announcement but not the whole process. But heck I’m sure the Opera folks are having a nice laugh about the announcement. MSN moves at such slow speeds I’m sure this was in the works for quite some time.

#29 On January 17th, 2008 10:28 am Free Man replied:

Very Noce

Thanks sir

#30 On January 21st, 2008 6:38 pm Computer-Freak replied:

Well, miracles happen… But I’ll have to see it to believe it.

#31 On January 22nd, 2008 8:20 am Uberhype replied:

Any news on when the beta of IE8 is available?

I’ll choke on my cornflakes if the rumours are true.

#32 On January 23rd, 2008 6:48 pm Issues » Blog Archive » Microsoft makes themselves look stupid to web developers again. replied:

[...] Stupid Microsoft has yet again shitted the web dev community off with recent announcements about how IE8 will pass the Acid 2 test. Not that that’s the bad thing. The Acid 2 test is like the grand-daddy of browser rendering tests, something that Microsoft has completely ignored despite continual and unabated pleading from the web dev community. This announcement is like the light at the end of the tunnel for web developers. What it means is that after all this time, web developers eventually will no longer have to write a bunch of IE specific, standards breaking hacks for Internet Explorer. They can maintain standards compliant code, as well as get their layouts to work correctly in IE. OMFG! [...]

#33 On January 24th, 2008 2:48 am Seattle Willy replied:

Thank God. No browser is perfect, but what are standards if they are not… standard?

#34 On January 31st, 2008 9:39 pm Microsoft’s IE8 Provides Opt-In Standards Compliance for Developers replied:

[...] You may or may not have heard about IE8 pacing the ACID2 test. Which I think should have been good news right? But it’s never enough for Microsoft, or more accurately, those who are always looking for something to pick on Microsoft for in their methods. [...]

#35 On March 3rd, 2008 9:23 am Telneg replied:

Acid2 is for me not a clear statement, if a Browser is good or bad. It points out however, which language scope already today a Browser understands.

#36 On March 6th, 2008 12:49 am James replied:

It’s now available to all on the MS website… but typing is DOG slow.

#37 On March 6th, 2008 11:24 am Sean111 replied:

Why is it that the acid test here it passes but the one at it still fails? Something seems pretty fishy…..

#38 On March 6th, 2008 1:24 pm WK replied:

yes, typing is weirdly slow.
It passes Acid, Acid2 but not Acid3
For a while, I think i should just use IE7 Emulation mode

#39 On March 7th, 2008 3:43 am DC replied:

I agree with #37, it seems very strange that it passes the acid2 test HERE, is fails.

Surely this version of the acid2 test hasn’t been altered to allow IE8 to pass, has it?!?

NOTE: Opera 9.26 passes BOTH acid2 tests, so why does IE8 fall down on the one?

I smell a rat the size of a dog!

#40 On March 10th, 2008 9:00 pm Reprotected replied:

I hope Mozilla Firefox 3.0 will pass the test, I’m more proud of Firefox than Internet Explorer.
Anyways, does Acid2 count on Script/Download Security?

#41 On March 11th, 2008 7:35 am Pestalence_XC replied:

Guess what.. I have been using the Beta of IE 8 for over a week now.. it works fine.. only it seems to have a small hang up using text boxes on search pages, but other than that.. it is great.. supports PNG as far as I can tell, and renders Acid 2 as advertised…

To get IE 8 (Beta) go to

#42 On March 11th, 2008 7:43 am Pestalence_XC replied:

Almost forgot.. it comes in 2 flavors.. 32 bit and 64 bit.. supports XP 32, XP 64, Server 2003, Server 2008, Vista 32, and Vista 64. On 64 bit systems you have 2 actual browsers installed.. the 32 bit which connects to your desktop icon (or your main Start menu and quick launch) and works with the 32 bit plugins.. and in your start menu / Programs, you have Internet Explorer and Internet Explorer (x64) .. 64 bit browser will not support 32 bit plugins.. so get started on 64 bit plugis ..

#43 On March 13th, 2008 1:52 pm SEO from the ground up replied:

I’ve fiddled with IE8 a touch, but have been a Firefox user for as long as I can remember.

From what I’ve seen, and now (reinforced) read, I’ll rest comfy in my choice.

#44 On March 13th, 2008 6:52 pm slither replied:

I really hated ie6 with all its crashes and errors, but I have to admit that altough I still prefer using firefox I have surfed the net with the new ie and I could see a lot of improvements. Firefox still remains number 1 for me.

#45 On March 19th, 2008 12:31 pm العاب فلاش replied:

All waiting for the new Microsoft innovation IE8 …

But what all of us want that there should be uniform standards to display the same form and locations of all sites and works by everyone

#46 On March 20th, 2008 4:20 am Drabdesign replied:

I must admit trying to get some sites to sit nicely in all browsers is a ridiculous situation to be in. Now if it looks OK in IE and Firefox, I am happy.

Lets hope that soon all xhtml and html will work in all browsers, there by stopping the need to create new ones!

#47 On March 25th, 2008 10:56 am mad_raz replied:

I totally agree with Drabdesign. I know I’ve lost hours trying to make my webistes fit in all nicely in all browsers. I’ve seen some impreovements concerning this in ie7, lets just hope ie8 will take it to the next level.

#48 On March 25th, 2008 7:49 pm Cilyan Olowen replied:

I just wonder something …
Why does the test fail when trying this page : ?
I’m testing IE8 and I tried the acid test 2 both here and on the link given before. Here the test passes, but not at the second link.
By the way, acid3 score is 18 (I think I remember ie6 with wine on linux did better).
IE8 ? Wait and see, it’s really a beta.

#49 On March 31st, 2008 1:05 am منتديات replied:

All waiting for the new Microsoft innovation IE8 …

thank u ,,,,,,,,,

#50 On April 6th, 2008 2:40 am Seamos serios :: Internet Explorer 8 (Beta) kalean da :: April :: 2008 replied:

[...] Denbora asko igaro da IE martxan jartzen ez nuenetik, baina gaur bertan irakurri dudanean, IE8ren Beta bertsioa jaisteko aukera zegoela, animatu naiz eta jaistea erabaki dut. Acid 2 testa gainditzen zuela adierazten zuen albiste hau irakurri nuenean jakin-mina piztu zitzaidan eta horregatik gaur froga hori egitera ausartu eta animatu naiz. [...]

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