The answer to the differences between the wiki and browserchecker.xml according to Blackboard? It is very much intentional to leave unsupported browsers in the browserchecker.xml just in case those unsupported browsers do still work.
Also in the answer was that in general only the two most recent stable browsers will be kept as supported. Since IE8 is the most recent, IE7 should also be kept. To have deprecated IE7 would mean something really bad was found with it as only one browser is supported on WinXP. (One users have to put in Standards Mode to get to work.) The matrices of supported browsers.
So it sounds like, IE7 was dropped from the supported list early because there were significant problems. Yet Blackboard doesn’t use their method of telling end users which browsers to use not to use the browser they dropped from support… On the chance it does?
My head hurts.
UPDATE 4pm: Apparently Blackboard has 4 slots to test Internet Explorer. When the two operating systems were WinXP and WinVista, that meant they could test IE8 and IE7 on the two. 2 browsers x 2 OSes = 4 total. When Microsoft added Win7, that meant they needed to test IE8 on 3 operating systems and IE7 on 2 (5 total).
When IE9 comes out soon, there will be 8 potential browser and operating system combinations with only 4 testing slots. Most likely at that point the Windows Vista support for IE7 and the Windows XP support for IE8 will also have to be dropped in order to add support for IE9 on Windows 7 and Windows Vista.
|Internet Explorer 9||Internet Explorer 8||Internet Explorer 7|
|Windows XP||likely won’t test||likely won’t test||likely won’t test|
|Windows Vista||priority||priority||likely won’t test|
|Windows 7||priority||priority||not available|