Sunday, August 16, 2009

MSN Explorer

If you do use MSN Internet access to connect to the Web, you get a nice little bonus—the use of MSN Explorer. MSN Explorer is meant to be a frontend to the Internet, much like that provided by America Online to its subscribers. In reality, however, MSN Explorer is a customized version of the Internet Explorer Web browser—which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. If you know how to use IE, you know how to use MSN Explorer.

As you can see in Figure, MSN Explorer includes a number of buttons on top of what would normally be called the browser window. These buttons take you directly to MSN channels and services; think of them as shortcut links.

The other function of MSN Explorer is to actually connect you to the Internet. You use MSN Explorer to dial into the MSN service (if you’re connecting via dial-up), or to perform log in functions if you’re connecting via broadband.

You’re provided with a sign-in screen that displays your different user names; click a name to connect and sign in.

Of course, you don’t have to use MSN Explorer to access the MSN portal. Even if you’re using MSN Explorer to connect to the Internet, once you get connected you can launch Internet Explorer (or any other Web browser) and access the MSN site from there. Other than the dedicated channel buttons, there’s nothing special about MSN Explorer that’s necessary to use the MSN site; you can also access it via the IE, Netscape, or Opera browsers.

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