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The upcoming browser ballot choice is coming soon, and I have a couple of questions, if anyone knows:

  1. Will the choice be per user or per machine? For a school, which has one domain user per student, but many students per machine, the difference is noticeable.
  2. Will the choice be configurable through domain policies? Ie. the IT Department forces all students to use IE, or Firefox, or Chrome, or whatever, or will this effectively circumvent the EU directive and thus not be permissible or possible?
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I don't want to post this as an answer because I have no authority on the subject. I imagine the choice will be per user and that it will be controllable to some extent. I don't believe the EU directive can control what a company or school chooses to do on the basis of security and continuity, so if a company wants to force their users to use IE, they should be able to. I think this has more to do with letting the average consumer know they have a choice when it comes to a web browser on their OS. – maik Feb 22 '10 at 19:50
Also not authoritative, but my understanding is, if an organisation decides to restrict their machines to the use of a specific browser that does not conflict with the EU directive. The directive is there simply to give users, which includes companies and other organisations, a choice, rather than having IE forced on them. – John Gardeniers Feb 22 '10 at 20:31
up vote 0 down vote accepted

I've been testing this because it has appeared on some of my test PCs already. It appears to be per machine, but it does put a desktop icon so that anyone can click on it later. Most annoying.

I've used domain policies to prevent the running of firefox.exe, opera.exe, safari.exe, chrome.exe and most importantly browserchoice.exe (the program used by the update). To do this, goto into Active Directory Users and Computers, right-click on your domain name, goto properties and group policy. Edit the Default Domain Policy, expand user configuration, administrator templates, and click system. Double-click "Don't run specified windows programs", enable it, and fill in the list of full names mentioned above including the .exe bit. Computers will enforce the policy over a short period of time, other wise run both "gpupdate /target:computer /force" and "gpupdate /target:user /force" at a command prompt to update it now.

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