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Monday 13th November, 2006 09:16 Comments: 1
I don't normally slag people off, but after catching up with all the stuff that happened over the weekend, I came to the conclusion that there are a lot of idiots in the UK.

First we have two researchers at Glamorgan. Given my previous experience with two members of staff there (over two separate things), I came to the conclusion they're idiots. Well I can now state that their researchers are idiots too. On The Register is an article about IE7.

Recently, Microsoft released Internet Explorer 7, the latest version of its web browser. Even more recently, it added it to the "critical updates" section of Windows Update. Many organisations, to keep their computers up-to-date and bug-free, allow these critical updates to be installed automatically overnight, with no user intervention.

Internet Explorer 7 is a nice update to IE6, enabling tabbed browsing, and introduces other features seen in other web browsers like Firefox and Opera. Typically, IE7 will overwrite IE6 as the default Microsoft browser.

Okay, how many times do I have to say it? IE7 will not automatically install itself without user intervention.

IE7 will only be offered to users who are running with local administrator rights.

Also, IE7 will not download and install silently, even if the user has local admin rights and Automatic Updates is set to download and install updates automatically. Instead, the user will see a large window advising that IE7 has been downloaded and is available to install. At this stage the user will be given three choices; install, don't install, or install later.

Internet Explorer 7 will be offered as a high-priority update if a local admin user has Automatic Updates enabled or if they perform a manual scan for updates using the "Express" install option on the Windows Update or Microsoft Update sites. It will also be offered as a recommended update to a local admin user who performs a manual update scan on the Windows Update and Microsoft Update sites using the "Custom" install option.

For businesses etc. using WSUS/SUS/SMS IE7 is being released as an "update rollup" therefore it is not auto-approved under default WSUS settings. The only way that IE7 will automatically be approved is if the WSUS admin has chosen to adjust WSUS's settings to automatically approve update rollups.

Also, their wording on how IE7 "typically" replaces IE6 as the default browser is very poor. Does that mean that installing IE7 will sometimes leave IE6 as the default browser? I think not. It is an upgrade. If your default browser was IE6 it will become IE7 and remain the default browser. If your default browser was something else then IE6 will become IE7 and your default browser (e.g. Firefox) remains your default browser.

However, it appears that IE7 has forgotten its "managed" roots and allows users, by means of a few simple clicks, to permanently choose a home page of their choosing!

Now, this isn't a security threat of any sort, but for an organisation trying to keep the same branding company-wide, it can get difficult.

Actually, it appears that the old group policy setting (that I think has existed since IE5 appeared) still works:

Run gpedit.msc,

Go to Local Computer Policy -> User Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> Internet Explorer -> Disable changing home page settings

Enable it and put your corporate web site's URL. Then open IE7, see the new homepage, notice how you can't change the homepage to anything else.

Close IE7, go back and select "Not configured", open IE7 and notice your old home page now shows, and that you can change it.

Okay, moving on to idiots number two and three: a father and son were escorted off a flight from Exeter Airport after threatening cabin crew who asked them to turn off their mobile phones. The plane was forced to return to the gate after the pair refused to turn their phones off and threatened staff. A 38-year-old man and a 16-year-old boy were arrested for recklessly endangering an aircraft and passengers and released on bail until 18 January. I'm not sure I have to add anything, except to simply declare them idiots.

Okay, so this next person probably isn't an idiot, but they could have worded it better. Singer Ms Dynamite spent the night in hospital after having a high-speed car crash while filming for Sky reality television show The Race.

The Sky spokesman said: "We take health and safety very seriously and cover it from every angle.

Yes, I'm sure they cover it from every angle with all their cameras, it makes really good TV to watch people crash. I know (okay, I hope) they meant they cover health and safety from every angle, but they probably could have worded it slightly better.

On to global warming, and a big collective group of idiots. More than 180 countries have gathered in Kenya to discuss ways of extending the Kyoto agreement on climate change which is due to expire in 2012. Scientists say much tougher caps are needed to avert catastrophic weather changes. Several thousand environmentalists in Nairobi were protesting that industrialised nations are doing too little to curb global-warming gases. I have a great suggestion for them, get America to join the Kyoto agreement. Without them, it doesn't really matter what the rest of the world does. Sure, I can switch to energy saving lightbulbs (actually, I already have them in the flat), and I could wear more jumpers intead of having the heater on in winter, and I could take the train to work instead of my car. But I wouldn't be surprised if all my hard work is ruined by one American that drives across several states in his gas guzzling Jeep.

I'm sure I can add more idiots to this list, but it's only 10AM.
Avatar Robert - Wednesday 15th November, 2006 10:49
It seems that I wasn't the only one to spot the "half-baked conclusion based on incomplete research" about IE7:

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