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Fast-forward, and now Opera works with this feature, but Microsoft's "if opera" check remains.
A possibility, no?
Maybe you would do that but you are also not in court claiming you do not use these kind of tactics to push users away from a competitors product. Seriously, how many average computer users would read that "warning" and click on the button saying 'download IE 6.0' because they were told the browser didnt make hotmail work right? I say a good number.
You may find this post about Opera's User Agent Spoofing [webmasterworld.com] relevant - see particularly message 5.
Brett began that thread to share SuperStats response to their own inaccurate browser detection (at the time).
I'm not a Microsoft booster by a long shot. But in all fairness, this particular problem isn't necessarily intentional.