How to Disable Internet Explorer

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Why keep Internet Explorer when you use another browser. It's just a security risk.

There's no doubt that Internet Explorer has been a prime target of attack for spyware merchants and other ill-intentioned goons. That's why many folks have turned to alternate browsers for their web surfing.

If you are using another browser and don't use Internet Explorer anymore, there's a case to be made that you should remove it from your system. It is, after all, a potential security threat so, if you don't need it, why not get rid of it?

Except, getting rid of IE is not that easy. In fact, with later versions of Windows there's no satisfactory way of removing it completely without risking crippling Windows itself.

That hasn't stopped folks from trying to remove IE, however, and you can find several techniques documented on various web sites. Instead of removing IE I favor the simple and safer approach of disabling it. Sure, it may not provide the same degree of security as complete removal but that's a small price to pay compared to the cost of potentially de-stabilizing Windows.

There are several disabling techniques but I suggest the method below as it's simple, easy to reverse and doesn't interfere with the operation of the Windows Update service. Furthermore it should work with any modern version of IE.

Step 1. From IE select Tools/Internet Options/Connections/LAN Settings.


Step 2. Put a tick in the check box next to "Use a Proxy Server for your LAN ...”

Step 3. Type in "" in the address box and "80" in the Port box. Don't type in the quote marks of course, just what's inside them.

Step 4. Click OK.

What you've done is set up a dummy proxy server that goes nowhere. With these setting IE cannot make an HTML connection to the internet and vice versa. You have simply and effectively disabled IE.

There's no magic in the address, any dead proxy address would work just as well. I've used that particular address to keep things simple.

If you ever need to re-enable Internet Explorer start it up and select Tools/Internet Options/Connections/LAN Settings from the toolbar and un-check the box "Use a Proxy Server for your LAN ...”

If you really want to remove IE more completely then you can check out these resources but, as I said, I don't recommend it.

Windows 95 - Windows 2000 SR1
Windows 2000 and later.


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by Lydia F. (not verified) on 24. July 2011 - 18:40  (76178)

Thank you so much for you posting... very easy to implement. IE did not show up on any of the expanded lists. I know it is on my computer because each time I try to download an older IE version, the response says "unable to download because a more recent IE version is detected on this computer." Any advice for me, please?!

by Nefertiti2013 (not verified) on 5. August 2011 - 4:57  (76948)

when I turned the ie connection off the other browser's connection turned off too!! what can I do??

by Kenji (not verified) on 15. August 2011 - 14:31  (77687)

i ran into this problem as well. but if your using Firefox, follow these steps:

-click on Tools then down to Options
-click on the Advance tab then the Network tab
-under the connection back it'll say "choose how Firefox connects to the internet". in that same box theres a box that says "Settings". click on it.
-under settings select the circle that says "Auto-detect proxy settings for network."

boom. your done. no more pop up windows from IE. ugh...

by Lucky24 on 26. August 2011 - 1:14  (78365)

Can i some how reduce memory usage of IE???

by matea (not verified) on 31. August 2011 - 6:38  (78725)

is there a way to disable internet explorer without disabling the anti virus update??/

by nishant garg (not verified) on 1. September 2011 - 10:56  (78798)

i want to know...
if i did't find the connection option in my internet option..because it has to be some setting to disable the connection option from the internet..
how can i get this option back..

by manjunatha.t (not verified) on 9. September 2011 - 4:33  (79259)

one problem is there , one system is internet option not open , i click the internet explorer, that system showing the this both %some setting are managed by your system administrator,,,,how to solve the problem please i want this problem solve steps.

by gary lee ratchford (not verified) on 8. November 2011 - 12:27  (82907)

Is there a way to disable internet explorer without disabling anti virus ? It is telling me the disconnect might be a part of group policy with sysytem administrator.???

by wanda G (not verified) on 30. November 2011 - 22:34  (84193)

SAME THING happened to ME... RUNNING windows 7 and I REALLY want IE gone period but tried the method of the fake proxy then tried to go into firefox and google and couldn't get on NO CONNECTION so went to FF connection unchecked the FAKE proxy and could get on...
WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAaaa i so want IE gone of my PC but afraid it will mess up.. SICK OF all the space it takes EVEN THOUGH I HAVENT used IE in 6 months when i do a scan for JUNK there IE also collecting everything i have done on the other 2 browsers... WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAaaa

by idaman (not verified) on 8. December 2011 - 0:18  (84612)

unfortunately, whenever i applied the tip/tweaks firefox unable to play my favorite radio streaming, then i had to revert back the setting, and my online radio come back again on firefox. I had turn IE off / disable via 'turn on and off windows features' in control panel (windows 7 starter), as for now doesn't affect my browsing and other W7's application.

by Frederick (not verified) on 15. May 2012 - 19:33  (93508)

This worked perfectly. Thank you A-nony-mouse. Bliss indeed without IE !

by Frederick (not verified) on 17. May 2012 - 19:20  (93617)

Further to my above post, I discovered that this technique caused all sorts of problems from Windows with my internet being disabled, ISP getting stuck and wifi getting disabled. DO BE VERY CAUTIOUS GOING DOWN THIS ROUTE as I spent a couple of hours undoing the damage. Am stuck with IE but better that than no internet & wifi.

by Daisy on 21. June 2012 - 8:11  (95183)

I was very pleased for having been able to disable Internet Explorer. but now I am getting these errors 8e5e0147 and 80072edf when I try to update my windows vista software! Can you please help me asp as my PC it's not working properly for having 35 pending updates already!!! Thank you.

by Anupam on 21. June 2012 - 8:57  (95184)

I think that Windows updates require IE to be enabled. It's because the internet settings are picked up from there I believe. It's no harm in enabling IE. Just don't use it if you have a pretty old version like IE6.

by Laurie (not verified) on 25. June 2012 - 17:38  (95364)

I am trying to fix a problem with my flash player but it keeps telling me that internet explorer is still running even though I never opened it to begin with. I can't figure out where it is running from.... I tried doing this disable of internet explorer but I am still getting the same message, even after a re-start. Can someone help me?

by MidnightCowboy on 25. June 2012 - 18:18  (95365)

Sorry but we cannot provide individual support here in the comments. Please post details of your issue here in our forum:

by retired (not verified) on 22. September 2012 - 2:00  (99577)

I have IE 7 on a 6 month old Toshiba Satellite L775, explorer has stopped working, but firefox and Chrome still connect to the internet. How do get it to work??

by Square (not verified) on 24. October 2012 - 0:10  (101255)

My internet explorer keeps poping up and I do not even use it! I do have pop-up blocker on but it doesn't help at all.

by MidnightCowboy on 24. October 2012 - 0:48  (101257)

This is being triggered because possibly you have IE set as the default browser and programs on your system are trying to connect. It could also be a sign of infection. Please post here in our forum and someone will be able to assist you directly.

Site Manager

by LDII on 24. August 2013 - 19:55  (110306)

It is a bad news. I need to remove IE because it's hijack by Qv06 search engine and I want to reinstall the clear browser.

by MidnightCowboy on 24. August 2013 - 21:59  (110308)

See here for instructions about how to remove the Qv06 search engine. MC - Site Manager.

by johnnymags on 7. October 2013 - 18:17  (111305)

Your information to disable internet explorer worked fine but now my new browser ( Mozilla Firefox ) does not respond. How do I fix that?


by angelhelp777 on 4. May 2014 - 15:28  (116034)

My wife and I have been married 37 years. She has been ill for along time and felt trapped at home until our son bought her a new Laptop(with Vista). It gave her a window to the world. I helped her set up Mozilla Firefox, but never removed IE9. She gets easily frustrated with her computer, so when she kept getting updates for IE9, I used the add/remove tool to remove IE9. After doing so, updates for IE8 started popping I removed IE8...but then updates for IE7 started popping up, but IE7 does not even show in the add/remove program list, but numerous, "cumulative updates for IE7" keep appearing for IE7. I found a blocker on the Microsoft site for Automatic updates, but we still get the update offer from IE7 when we manually update. How do I get rid of IE7 asking for any kind of updates...for manual or automatic installation. It really frustrates her. Thank you. God bless.

by Joe A.TT on 5. May 2014 - 19:15  (116049)

You cannot uninstall Internet Explorer. It is an integral part of Windows. Most likely what you did was uninstalled the updates from IE9 to IE8 but you can't uninstall IE7.

The most you can do is disable IE but you will still continue to get Windows updates for it. That can't be helped. If you want to disable IE please follow this article:

Additionally, make sure you set Firefox as your default browser so that if you click on any links it will launch Firefox and not IE.

Also, for most people, it isn't advisable to turn off automatic updates for Windows. Only advanced users who know what they are about and understand the implications should do that.

If you require any further assistance please post in the forum here:

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