Internet Explorer 8 Hands-On Lab for Developers

After running the “Internet Explorer 8 Hands-On Lab for Developers” last week, I have now published the content online for everybody to try.

The lab files can be downloaded as follows:

·         The Presentation (PPTX)

·         The Lab Manual (PDF)

·         The Sample Code used (a Visual Studio Web Developer 2008 Express project)

The lab first introduces the newly released Microsoft Web Platform Installer in order to install Visual Web Developer 2008 Express edition. You don’t need to do this however to follow the lab, you can use your favorite XML/HTML editor and web server which is all you need to complete the lab. I just chose Visual Web Developer because of its great HTML/XML editor and built-in developer web server.


The lab walks you through building an “Accelerator”, a “Web Slice” and a “Search Provider with Search Suggestions”. It also shows how to create your custom edition of Internet Explorer 8 using the “Internet Explorer Administration Kit 8”.

The Accelerator built during the lab will allow you to mark any text on any given web page and search for this item on


It’s very easy to adapt the Accelerator to your own web site, if you already have search functionality using a parameterized URL.

The Web slice built allows you to subscribe to’s weather report, which then sits in Internet Explorer’s Favorites bar and tells you, if updated information is available.


The Search provider created in the Hands-On lab will query Wikipedia and shows Search Suggestions as you type, including images and descriptive text.


Finally, you will learn how to use Internet Explorer Administration Kit 8 to create a custom Internet Explorer 8 installation package containing the Accelerator, Web Slice and Search Provider created in the lab as well as your custom start page(s), favorites and application title.


The whole lab takes about two hours to complete and should give every developer a good idea how to optimally exploit Internet Explorer 8 for his site.

The best part is that all these add-ons are not applications that need to be installed, they are simple XML descriptors (in case of the Accelerator and the Search Provider) and HTML elements in your existing page with a special ID=”hslice” attribute which if not recognized by another browser is simply ignored. So introducing these add-ons won’t either break the user’s computer or the hosting web page.

For visibility, the add-ons can be uploaded to, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 8 Add-On gallery.

Give it a try! And have fun, creating Internet Explorer 8 Add-Ons.

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About TechPreacher

Software Development Engineer working for Microsoft in Switzerland. Focusing on the Internet of Things and Windows development. EV geek and passionate gamer, with a life.
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