Microsoft Internet Explorer 2 (Internet Explorer 2.0) is a graphical web browser released in November 1995 by Microsoft for Windows 95 and Windows NT and in April 1996 for Apple Macintosh (see IE for Mac) and Windows 3.1. Version 2.0 featured support for SSL, [cookie|cookies], VRML, and Internet newsgroups.
Version 2 was also included in Microsoft's Internet Starter Kit for Windows 95 in early 1996, which retailed for 19.99 USD and included how-to book and 30 days of internet accesses on MSN among other features. In addition to being sold in the starter kit, Internet Explorer 2 was the first version to be included in OSR versions of Windows; it was bundled with Windows 95 OSR 1. There were 16-bit and 32-bit versions depending on the OS. Version 2.1 came out for Macintosh in August 1996, the same month version 2 for Windows was superseded by Microsoft Internet Explorer 3, which was heavily changed from version 2.
Version 2 launched with twelve languages including English but this expanded to 24, 20, and 9 for Windows 95, Windows 3.1 and Mac respectively by April 1996. The 2.0i version supported double-byte character-set. It lacked many features that became common in later IE versions, including the Blue 'e' logo, integration with Windows Explorer, and bundled programs. Its market share was also much lower than later versions. During its tenure, IE market share only went up to about roughly 3-9% by mid 1996, before IE3 came out.
Internet Explorer version 2 was released in beta in October 1995, only 2 months after version 1 came out in Microsoft Plus! for 95 that August. It was released for Windows 95 and Windows NT 3.5 in November 1995 and was bundled with NT 4.0 in July 1996. The Beta for Mac on PowerPC came out in January, and the finalized version in April for 68k and PowerPC. Version 2 featured support for SSL, cookies, VRML, RSA, and Internet newsgroups. Version 2 was also the first release for Windows 3.1 and Macintosh System 7.0.1(PPC or 68k), although the Mac version was not released until January 1996 for PPC, and April for 68k. Version 2.1 for the Mac came out in August of 1996. Version 2 was included in Windows 95 OSR 1 and Microsoft's Internet Starter Kit for Windows 95 in early 1996, It launched with twelve languages including english but this expanded to 24, 20, and 9 for Win 95, Win 3.1 and Mac respectively by April 1996. The 2.0i version supported double-byte character-set.
The Mac version supported the embedding of a number of multimedia formats into web pages, including AVI and QuickTime formatted video and AIFF and WAV formatted audio. The non-beta final version was released three months later on April 23 1996. Version 2.1 fixed bugs and improving stability, but also added a few features such as support for the NPAPI (the first version of Internet Explorer on any platform to do so) and support for QuickTime VR. AOL 3.0 for Macintosh used the IE 2.1 rendering engine in its built-in web browser. The various 16 and 32 bit versions largely depended on the OS although Windows NT would use the 16 bit versions for Windows 3.1.
IE replicated many of the quirks of Netscape, and allowed importing bookmarks from it. In May 1996 [Software] announced it was providing Microsoft with various technology for Internet Explorer 2.0 for Windows 3.1, including a PPP network, 16-bit email client, and other technology.
|Major version||Minor version||Release date||Significant changes||Shipped with|
|Version 2||2.0 Beta||October 1995||Support of HTML tables and other elements.|
|2.0||November 1995||SSL, cookies, VRML, and Internet newsgroups.||Windows NT 4.0 Windows 95 OSR1 Internet Starter Kit|
|2.01||Bug fix release.|
|Major version||Minor version||Release date||Significant changes|
|Version 2||Version 2.0 Beta||January 23 1996||Beta for PPC only|
|Version 2.0||April 23 1996||PPC and 68k Supported|
|Version 2.1||August 1996||Bug fixes; NPAPI support|
Shdocvw.dllversion numbers plus related notes. Unlike later versions, early IE version numbers were numerically out of sync with the .dll numbers because they were based of the Windows version numbers (due to its beginnings in the Microsoft Plus! pack, which also based of the Windows number). IE 1 started with 4.4 because Windows 95 was version 4 of Microsoft Windows.
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