MICROSOFT is about to give millions of Windows users the option of choosing another web browser from their own Internet Explorer. The change follows an agreement made with European competition authorities, who ruled that bundling IE with Windows abused Microsofts dominant position. Windows users in Europe who are running Internet Explorer as their default browser will be able to pick an alternative system from March 1. Those using Windows XP, Vista and 7 will be presented with a ballot screen with five choices, as part of a Windows Update. These will be Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Apples Safari and Opera, as well as Internet Explorer 8. Users can click on the options to find out more about them or install one straight away. In a blog post, Dave Heiner, Microsofts Deputy General Counsel, said: 'Internal testing of the choice screen is underway now. 'Well begin a limited roll-out externally next week, and expect that a full scale roll-out will begin around March 1, a couple of weeks ahead of schedule. Microsoft were investigated by the European Commission after Norwegian browser developer, Opera Software, complained that other browsers could not compete with IE. Internet Explorer is still just in the lead among web surfers in Europe according to statistics from Statcounter. They have 45.4 per cent of the market share, followed by Mozilla Firefox at 39.3 per cent, with Google Chrome trailing with just 6.4 per cent. Google is hoping to capitalise on the Microsoft ballot and launched a big UK campaign for its Chrome browser in Dec 2009. DM