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4/26/2006
01:51 PM
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Microsoft Plugs IE Add-Ons With New Site

The Add-Ons for Internet Explorer page hosts both free and for-fee add-ons. A search tool can be used to sift through the material.

Microsoft on Tuesday launched a site to promote Internet Explorer add-ons in an attempt to compete with Mozilla Corp.'s long-running site that specializes in extensions for the open-source Firefox browser.

The Add-Ons for Internet Explorer page hosts both free and for-a-fee add-ons to IE 6 and IE 7 Beta 2, and is organized in security, time saving, browsing, and entertainment categories. A search tool can be used to sift through the add-ons.

"We want to make it easier for users to find valuable add-ons, and to promote our partners who develop add-ons," said Tina Duff, an IE program managers, on the team's blog.

IE 7 Beta 2 users can access the site from the browser's Tools menu (Tools/Manage Add-Ons/Find More Add-ons).

Until Tuesday, IE add-ons, which include toolbars, download managers, pop-up blockers, and multimedia plug-ins, were spread throughout Microsoft's massive site, or if not there, on publishers' own Web sites.

The move is an obvious counter to Mozilla's Firefox, which has an extensive list of extensions -- that browser's terminology for an add-on -- here. The Extensions site has been in operation since before the release of Firefox 1.0 in 2004.

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