IT Pro is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

Head to head: Firefox vs Internet Explorer

In our latest head to head, we weigh up the web's most popular browsers: Microsoft’s Internet Explorer and Mozilla’s Firefox.

But there are also plenty of JavaScript-based applications out there notable examples being Google's Calendar and Docs services. And whenever you visit one of these sites, Firefox will give you a much slicker experience than IE8.

Javascript

Firefox's fast JavaScript support makes web applications such as Google Docs a pleasure to use.

Winner: Firefox

Overall

There's no doubt which browser is the winner: the points stack up decisively on Firefox's side. But it's not as crushing a victory as it may appear.

Most Firefox users don't rely on plug-ins, and if you have Windows Update set to download patches automatically you'll get a comparable level of security from IE8. In many cases, switching from Microsoft's browser to Firefox won't visibly affect your online experience at all.

What differences there are between the browsers may simply reflect their different design strategies, with Firefox's open source coding teams having more freedom to innovate and experiment than Microsoft's more rigid organisation. While several of IE's features follow in Firefox's footsteps, that's not necessarily a bad thing: with a few exceptions, it means the technology has been tried and tested before landing on your desktop. Yes, past versions of Internet Explorer had their faults, but for everyday surfing IE8 is a perfectly respectable choice.

All the same, if you want the latest features and the fastest browser, it's Firefox all the way.

Winner: Firefox

Verdict

Internet Explorer 8 is a mature application offering a good range of comforts and conveniences. But Firefox has the edge thanks to its slicker design, better performance and huge library of plug-ins.

Featured Resources

Activation playbook: Deliver data that powers impactful, game-changing campaigns

Bringing together data and technology to drive better business outcomes

Free Download

In unpredictable times, a data strategy is key

Data processes are crucial to guide decisions and drive business growth

Free Download

Achieving resiliency with Everything-as-a-Service (XAAS)

Transforming the enterprise IT landscape

Free Download

What is contextual analytics?

Creating more customer value in HR software applications

Free Download

Recommended

Mozilla adds paid tier, new features to developer network platform
web development

Mozilla adds paid tier, new features to developer network platform

25 Mar 2022
Chrome vs Firefox vs Microsoft Edge
web browser

Chrome vs Firefox vs Microsoft Edge

8 Dec 2021
Firefox 95 boosts protection against zero-day attacks
web browser

Firefox 95 boosts protection against zero-day attacks

7 Dec 2021
Mozilla to end support for Firefox Lockwise password manager
web browser

Mozilla to end support for Firefox Lockwise password manager

24 Nov 2021

Most Popular

16 ways to speed up your laptop
Laptops

16 ways to speed up your laptop

13 May 2022
Linux-based Cheerscrypt ransomware found targeting VMware ESXi servers
ransomware

Linux-based Cheerscrypt ransomware found targeting VMware ESXi servers

26 May 2022
Open source packages with millions of installs hacked to harvest AWS credentials
hacking

Open source packages with millions of installs hacked to harvest AWS credentials

24 May 2022