HTML and DOM compatibility changes

Recent versions of Internet Explorer have changed the behavior of several HTML and DOM features to better support modern standards and to ensure consistency with other popular browsers. Here, you'll learn how to use these changes effectively.

In this section

Topic Description

AutoComplete event handling

To help you create effective cross-browser solutions involving autocomplete, this topic describes AutoComplete event behavior for recent versions of Internet Explorer.

Binary behaviors and XML schema

As of Windows Internet Explorer 9, XML schemas no longer allow binary behaviors to be imported using namespaces. This affects IE9 standards mode and later document modes.

Content attributes and DOM properties

In earlier versions of Windows Internet Explorer, content attributes were represented on JavaScript objects as Document Object Model (DOM)] expandos. Starting with Internet Explorer 9, content attributes are no longer connected to DOM expandos; this improves interoperability between Internet Explorer and other browsers.

CreateElement no longer supports angle brackets

As of Internet Explorer 9, the createElement triggers an "object not found" exception when you use angle brackets (< >).

Creating and firing synthetic events

When creating and firing synthetic events, the createEvent()/BindEvent() pattern has been deprecated and the DOM L4 event constructor pattern using new Event() is recommended.

Encrypted Media Extensions Updates

Since its initial implementation in Internet Explorer 11, the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) specification has changed significantly. The Microsoft Edge implementation has been updated to reflect these changes.

Fullscreen API Changes

With Microsoft Edge

IFrame resources are freed when removed from the DOM

If you remove an iframe element from the DOM, it no longer responds to DOM APIs calls.

MIME types and plain text content

In IE9 Standards mode, documents delivered with a "text/plain" MIME type will not be MIME-sniffed to another type. Documents will render or download as plain text only.

MIME types and stylesheets

Web servers send a HTTP response header named "Content-Type" that specifies the MIME-type of the file that is being sent. For security and standards-compliance reasons, style sheets should be delivered with the "text/css" MIME type.

Native XML object types and legacy websites

Internet Explorer 9 introduces the concept of native XML objects. Native XML objects can be rendered within a page and used with the same DOM APIs supported for HTML objects.

New and legacy drag and drop

Microsoft Edge rounds out its support for the most current HTML5 drag and drop model (using a DataTransferItemList as a data store for the drag operation).

Object element fallback applies to the DOM

When an object element has fallback content (typically, an embed element), Internet Explorer 9 now parses this content and includes it in the DOM, whereas previous versions of Internet Explorer did not.

Overlapping elements are cloned

Overlapping formatting elements are cloned in Internet Explorer 9 to reduce ambiguity in the DOM.

Pointer events updates

To comply with the Candidate Recommendation of the W3C Pointer Events specification, the IE11 implementation has changed slightly from that of Internet Explorer 10.

Reducing MIME type security risks

The script and styleSheet elements will reject responses with incorrect MIME types if the server sends the response header "X-Content-Type-Options: nosniff". This is a security feature that helps prevent attacks based on MIME-type confusion.

Script elements and event execution

IE9 mode introduces the standards-based and interoperable load event for script elements. Previous versions of Internet Explorer supported only the non-interoperable onreadystatechange event for script elements.

Table object model consistency

To improve consistency between Internet Explorer and other browsers, the IE9 mode includes several changes to the table object model.

Web Cryptography API updates

Since its initial implementation in IE11, the W3C specification has changed significantly. The Microsoft Edge implementation has been updated to reflect these changes.

Whitespace preservation and the DOM

Any white space that you add to a webpage persists in the DOM.

Window event behavior has changed

In order to provide more consistency with industry standards and other popular browsers, behavior of window.event has changed in IE11.

Window object properties are cleared when orphaned

Properties on the global object (window) are cleared when a window is orphaned. The properties are cleared to allow garbage collection of the orphaned window when no additional references to it are found. Additionally, timers stop firing and event propagation (inside the orphaned window) stops immediately.

XSLT compatibility changes

In Internet Explorer 9, the processing of XML and Extensible Stylesheet Language Transformations (XSLT) files has been modified for improved standards compliance and interoperability with other browsers.

ActiveX controls and plugin changes

Browser features and compatibility changes

CSS and layout compatibility changes

JavaScript compatibility changes

Legacy feature support changes

Internet Explorer compatibility changes by version