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Thursday, October 05, 2006

Replacing the DHTML Editing Control in Windows Vista and Beyond

Replacing the DHTML Editing Control in Windows Vista and Beyond

Summary: The DHTML Editing Control will not be included in Windows Vista. Web pages and Windows applications that use the control must be modified to continue to provide a WYSIWYG HTML Editor. (25 printed pages)

Applies to:
   Internet Explorer 7 on Windows Vista
   Web pages intended for Internet Explorer that host the DHTML Editing Control
   Windows applications that use the DHTML Editing ActiveX control or the TriEdit ActiveX document


Effect on Windows Applications
Effect on Web Applications


The DHTML Editing Control is an ActiveX control designed for WYSIWYG HTML editing in Web pages and Windows applications. It was originally released to the ActiveX Control Gallery in early 1998 by the Microsoft Visual InterDev development team. It quickly became apparent that the tight coupling between Internet Explorer and the control made it desirable to ship the control as part of each Internet Explorer update, and the control has been shipped as part of Internet Explorer since the release of Internet Explorer 5 in early 1999.

Several factors combined to make continued support of the control less desirable over time. Internet Explorer has continued to evolve, incorporating WYSIWYG editing features of its own in Internet Explorer 5.5 and Internet Explorer 6. At the same time, security has become a major focus for Internet Explorer. To increase security, the browser restricts access to potentially dangerous content, but the editor focuses on ensuring that its changing content is safe to persist. Several security bulletins resulted in a more locked-down browser environment, which reduced the utility of the DHTML Editing Control and raised its cost of ownership significantly.

The decision was therefore made to remove the control from Windows Vista. The control was present in the Beta 1 version of Windows Vista, but is absent in subsequent Beta releases and in the final release of Windows Vista.

This paper describes the effect of this decision on existing applications that use the control, how to determine what applications and Web pages use the control, and how to mitigate the impact of this change on these applications and on Web pages.

Replacing the DHTML Editing Control in Windows Vista and Beyond

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