After years of ridicule for Internet Explorer and a lukewarm reception to the initial version of Edge, Microsoft is eager for the new Chromium-based version of Edge to be taken seriously. To this end, the company has been busily adding features and options, and the latest additions are focused on security and making it easier to work from home.
The first change relates to the browser's Profiles feature, and it comes as great news for anyone who is using Edge to bounce between browsing the internet for fun and using it for work. Microsoft has made it easier to create and switch between profiles so you can keep your work and personal life separate.
With Edge 83, Microsoft has not only made it easy to create profile, but has made various enhancements to the feature. Once you have created a work and personal profile – just click your profile icon to the upper right of the browser window and select Add a profile This same menu can then be used to switch between profiles.
Desktop shortcuts to each profile are automatically created so you can easily jump into the one you need to use at any given time. However, Microsoft has also introduced automatic profile switching. While not particularly useful for when you're working from home, if you take your laptop from home to the office, Edge will automatically detect that you're in a different location and load the relevant profile for you.
Safe and sound
Microsoft has also made some important security changes to Edge to make it a safer option for browsing the internet, whether for work or pleasure. Currently only available to beta tester on the Edge Insider program, version 84 of the browser includes changes to the SmartScreen security feature which blocks malicious sites and downloads.
The changes mean that Edge (specifically Microsoft Edge Dev v 84.0.495.2) now blocks apps that are downloaded as ClickOnce or DirectInvoke apps -- techniques used to download and run apps with minimal user interaction. By blocking more suspicious and potentially malicious apps in this way, Microsoft is placing a serious emphasis on security and getting ready to take on the likes of Chrome.