Microsoft preps IE 5 beta, IE 4 bug surfaces

Microsoft will release the first full beta version of its next-generation Web browser, Internet Explorer 5.0, during the first week of November. While the technology preview of Internet Explorer 5.0, released in June, was aimed at developers, Beta 1 will be geared more for end-users, a representative said. A host of ISPs and corporate customers met with Internet Explorer teams on the Redmond, Washington, campus this week to go over the new browser.

Microsoft will release the first full beta version of its next-generation Web browser, Internet Explorer 5.0, during the first week of November.

While the technology preview of Internet Explorer 5.0, released in June, was aimed at developers, Beta 1 will be geared more for end-users, a representative said. A host of ISPs and corporate customers met with Internet Explorer teams on the Redmond, Washington, campus this week to go over the new browser.

Announcement of what Microsoft considered the first full-fledged beta of Internet Explorer 5.0 came one day after rival Netscape Communications released the latest version of its competing Communicator 4.5.

Meanwhile, Danish users of Internet Explorer for Windows reported a bug that allows hackers to bypass the browser's security settings and infiltrate an intranet.

The so-called "Look ma, no dots" bug, reported by software watchdogs BugNet, strikes when an IP address is recalculated to a single number, without periods. Internet Explorer recognises IP addresses with no periods as intranet addresses, so users who set their Internet Explorer security zone to "intranet" would be affected. Also, proxy servers block the security hole.

The recalculation can be performed by multiplying the first part of an IP address by 2563, multiplying the second by 2562, multiplying the third by 256, multiplying the fourth by one, and then adding those values together, according to BugNet.

Microsoft Corp., in Redmond, is at http://www.microsoft.com/. BugNet is at http://www.bugnet.com/.

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