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22 May 2014

IE 8 Users Restricted to Outlook Web App Light

Office 365 logo Today Microsoft has announced restrictions for Office 365 users who use Internet Explorer 8. From June 30th these users will only have access to the light version of Outlook Web App.

Use the latest versions
Microsoft's cloud platform Office 365 is designed to work with modern version of Internet Explorer, and for the best experience Microsoft recommends the latest browsers, Office clients and apps. They also recommend users to upgrade all software when new versions are released.

This is the same recommendation as we give to subscribers of the kalmstrom.com products and our reason for always giving free upgrades. We generally follow Microsoft's support practices. This means that we are quick to support new versions of the Microsoft platforms but also that we stop supporting old versions when Microsoft does so. I wrote about this in an earlier blog post titled Goodbye Windows XP.

Continue with IE8?
Maybe you still want to use an old version of Internet Explorer, to access older web apps and services? What will happen in this case is that newer Office 365 features will not work, and user experiences will diminish. One example on this is that only the light version of Outlook Web App will be displayed if you are using Internet Explorer 8.

Outlook Web App Light
The light version of Outlook Web App has fewer features than the standard version. One of the limitations is that the light version does not support shared mailboxes or shared calendars, something I think many organizations consider to be a serious drawback. Neither can you import or export messages and contacts or create or modify tasks and notes. For more information on the limitations, refer to Microsoft's detailed comparison.

IE11 Enterprise Mode
Office 365 logoTo help users avoid the disadvantages of keeping an old browser version, Microsoft suggests these organizations to upgrade to Internet Explorer 11 and use the new Enterprise mode. This mode eliminates common compatibility issues, and at the same time you get the speed and performance of a modern browser.

By Peter Kalmstrom
CEO and Systems Designer
kalmstrom.com Business Solutions