Internet Explorer 7

In this lesson you’ll learn how to use Internet Explorer’s new features, including tabs, add-ons, RSS feeds, and the Instant Search box.

Although Microsoft unveiled Internet Explorer 7 months before shipping Vista, it was optional: You didn’t have to install it. With Vista, however, it’s the stock Web browser–and that’s a good thing. Let’s take a look at a few of its more noteworthy new features.
First and foremost, IE now offers tabs, meaning you can load multiple Web sites within a single IE window. To open a new tab, click the empty tab or press Ctrl-T, then click one of your Favorites or type in a Web address. To switch between tabs, just click the one you want. You can also press Ctrl-Tab to cycle between them, or click the Quick Tabs tab to see thumbnails of all your open tabs. You can even drag and drop tabs if you want to change their order...

If you regularly visit news sites and blogs, you’ll appreciate IE’s new RSS feed reader. RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication, the method used to subscribe to sites that regularly post new items and information. While viewing such a site, look for the orange RSS icon in the toolbar and click it. You’ll see a preview of the site’s feed and an option to subscribe. To access your subscriptions, press Ctrl-Shift-J to open IE’s Favorites Center; click a feed to see the latest posts from that site.
Internet Explorer’s search tool is no longer limited to Microsoft’s search engine. Now you can use it with Google, Yahoo, eBay, Wikipedia, and many others. Click the down arrow to the right of the search box’s magnifying glass, click Find More Providers, and then choose the one(s) you want. When the time comes to actually conduct a search, click that arrow again to choose the engine you want.

Finally, IE 7 lets you expand its capabilities by installing add-ons–little programs that add or tweak features. To see what’s available, click Tools > Manage add-ons > Find more add-ons. Unfortunately, most of the add-ons cost a few bucks, though you may be able to find a few free ones.

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