Microsoft’s new Chromium-based Edge browser will be available in a stable version next month, and the company already shared its plans to automatically replace the “old” Edge by the new browser on machines running the Windows 10 April 2018 Update or newer. This won’t happen until January 15, though, which is the date when the stable version of the new Microsoft Edge is expected to ship.
Once this stable version of Edge is installed on a Windows 10 PC, it will replace the old Edge everywhere, which will be then hidden in the OS. For users who would prefer to keep the old Edge around, Microsoft has provided a Blocker Toolkit for organizations that would like to block the automatic installation of Microsoft Edge to PCs in environments where Automatic Updates is enabled.
- Open the Group Policy Editor.
- Under Computer Configuration, go to Administrative Templates>Microsoft Edge Update>Applications.
- Under Applications, select “Allow Microsoft Edge Side by Side browser experience” and then click Edit policy setting.
- Select Enabled and then click OK
“For the best experience, the Allow Microsoft Edge Side by Side browser experience should be enabled before the new version of Microsoft Edge is deployed,” the support page explained. Microsoft did build an “IE Mode” into its new browser for enterprise users needing to test their apps in Internet Explorer 11, but the company didn’t do the same for its old EdgeHTML engine. The “old” Edge will live on PCs running older version of Windows 10, as well as other platforms such as Windows 10 Mobile and the Xbox One, but the move to Chromium finally allowed Microsoft to bring Edge to more platforms including Windows 7, Windows 8.1, and macOS.