"It's a problem that people should have to pay for a whole OS upgrade to get a safe browser. It does look like a certain amount of this is to encourage upgrade to XP." - Michael Cherry, analyst with Directions on Microsoft.

Running Windows 98, Windows ME, Windows 2000? Then you can forget about running a secure browser. The latest security enhancements to Internet Explorer 6 SP1 will only be available for Windows XP.

200 million people worldwide are apparently using versions of Windows prior to XP, and those users will soon find themselves running a browser that is known all over the internet to be unpatched and may indeed be susceptible to attack. This is because Microsoft have confirmed that new version of Microsoft's IE Web browser available only as part of the recently released Windows XP operating system, Service Pack 2. Now that certainly is a good way to step up SP2 downloads.