UNIX Platform

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Internet Explorer for UNIX provides a full set of browser features that have been optimized for UNIX operating systems. Internet Explorer supports the primary UNIX installed systems. Users can also remotely use Internet Explorer for UNIX from other UNIX operating systems, such as Linux, Silicon Graphics IRIX, and IBM AIX.

Implementation of the Internet Explorer user interface is consistent with the standard UNIX design. Internet Explorer for UNIX takes advantage of UNIX interface standards and was developed using the Motif look. Users benefit from the power and flexibility of Windows, implemented in a way that is immediately familiar to UNIX users.

Internet Explorer also includes support for existing UNIX applications, such as Emacs, Elm, RN, and VI. This integration uses the UNIX features and functions that users are accustomed to. You can easily configure Internet Explorer to handle e-mail links or open a favorite e-mail client or news reader directly from the browser. Integration with existing applications also includes the ability to read UNIX-specific file types from Web sites without opening the application for that file separately.

Using Internet Explorer for UNIX, you can customize existing applications or Multipurpose Internet Mail Extension (MIME) types directly from the browser. This functionality allows you to configure existing applications to handle different content on the Internet, such as Adobe Acrobat file formats. For example, a user can click on a link to an Acrobat file and Internet Explorer automatically opens the Acrobat Reader.

Some customization features, deployment methods, and maintenance practices for UNIX differ from Windows 32-bit versions. You should consider the following issues when you deploy Internet Explorer for UNIX:

  • Custom packages - You must build custom packages of Internet Explorer for UNIX from a Windows 32-bit computer. On the UNIX platform, the setup package will consist of one self-contained file rather than a collection of files or a set of floppy disks.

  • Digital signatures - Unlike Windows 32-bit versions with Authenticode technology, UNIX does not perform digital-signature verification. UNIX browsers do not support certificates, so automatic-configuration files are not signed. You do not need to sign your programs or .cab files for UNIX. You should, therefore, ensure that your automatic-configuration Web site has restricted access so that no one can tamper with your files.

  • Server installations - The UNIX functionality in the IEAK supports the common UNIX method of installing the customized product on only a few servers. Users can then run Internet Explorer from this location rather than installing the product locally. This configuration is recommended for UNIX installations. Windows Update Setup for Internet Explorer 5 and Internet Tools, which downloads .cab files, is not available on the UNIX platform.

  • Custom channels - When you create custom packages for UNIX, you should verify that any channels you include are displayed correctly for this platform. The channels will display in the Explorer bar, which appears in the left side of the browser window when the user clicks the Channels button, but they will not appear in a separate Channel bar on the desktop.

  • Custom components - For the UNIX platform, you should create a .cab file that contains your custom components and installation scripts. Then, specify the name of the .cab file, the script name, and size information when you run the Internet Explorer Customization wizard.
    When you install your customized IEAK package, it decompresses the .cab file, runs the script, and installs the components before it customizes the browser. After the setup script has run, it is deleted automatically. For more information, see the IEAK Help, which provides procedures and samples to help you create a script file and a .cab file so that you can prepare UNIX components for your custom package.

  • Security options - All security options apply to the Internet Explorer browser, but they are not necessarily applicable system-wide - that is, other programs may or may not respect these options. When you set the security options for Internet Explorer, you should be aware that the following options do not apply to the UNIX platform:

    • ActiveX controls and plug-ins

    • Font downloads

    • Software channel permissions

    • Installation of desktop items

    • Launching applications and files from an IFRAME element

  • Setup download folder - You can find the IE5Setup.exe file in the media type folder created for your language and platform version. For example, the English version of Internet Explorer for UNIX would reside in the \Download\Unix\En folder of your build directory.

  • File naming conventions - You may need to change the case of file names on a UNIX FTP server.

    Use the following conventions for UNIX operating systems:

    • Sun Solaris UNIX
      If you are using a case-sensitive UNIX FTP server, the .cab directory must not be capitalized. You must, however, capitalize the following file names:

    • AT&T UNIX On an AT&T UNIX FTP server, all file names must be capitalized.

    • IRIX UNIX (Silicon Graphics) For IRIX UNIX, you must capitalize the following file names:
      You should also use a text editor to modify the file names listed in the IE.CIF file to match the case of the files.

  • UNIX settings in the Internet Explorer Customization wizard - If you are building custom packages of Internet Explorer for UNIX, the Internet Explorer Customization wizard provides several screens where you can enter UNIX-specific settings. The UNIX Programs screen enables you to specify which programs will run when the user performs tasks related to e-mail, newsgroups, or printing, or when the user views the HTML source of a page. The UNIX Mappings screen enables you to specify the options for associating extensions and MIME types with a program so that the appropriate program starts when a user clicks a link.