How to Remove Internet Explorer
Microsoft’s Internet Explorer (IE) web browser remains one of the most used browser’s to access the Internet. Many computer users decide to make the shift to alternative web browsers such as Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome to take advantage of better security features, improved browsing speed, or features not found in IE. As a result, a common task that arises for those who do not desire multiple browsers to be installed on their computer is to figure out how to remove Internet Explorer.
Potential Dangers with Removing Internet Explorer
Depending on the version of the Windows operating system (OS) installed on the computer, there may not be a safe way or method to remove Internet Explorer. This is due to Microsoft using the underlying programming libraries and technologies for IE for other Windows processes. These can include Windows Updates, basic functionality of the OS, and other background applications that run in Windows. As a result, if the steps to fully remove IE are considered dangerous or not recommended by Microsoft, the steps to remove the application may disable IE in order to avoid potential dangers to the end-user losing Windows functionality.
How to Disable Internet Explorer in Windows XP
Although Windows XP is now considered a legacy version of Windows, it still finds widespread use. Fully removing IE in this version of Windows is considered dangerous, so the following steps highlight how to disable the browser.
Step 1 – Open Windows Control Panel by selecting the “Start” and “Control Panel” menu options. Alternatively, you may need to select “Settings” prior to the “Control Panel” option based on the setup of the OS.
Step 2 – Click the “Add or Remove Programs” menu option. If this option is not visible, select the menu choice that states, “Switch to Classic View” and then launch the “Add or Remove Programs” menu option.
Step 3 – Choose the “Set Program Access and Defaults” menu button and choose the “Custom” menu option located in the “Choose a configuration” section of the menu screen.
Step 4 – Uncheck the “Enable Access to This Program” menu check box located next to Internet Explorer.
Step 5 – Click the “OK” menu button and restart your computer. Internet Explorer will now appear to be removed, although it is technically disabled in Windows XP.
How to Disable Internet Explorer Using a Proxy Server Entry
Another option to disable Internet Explorer on Windows XP is to use a proxy server entry. The steps will work on any version of IE installed on XP and avoid the issues found with fully removing IE on this version of the Windows OS.
Step 1 – Launch or open Internet Explorer on the computer.
Step 2 – Select the “Tools” and “Internet Options” menu choices.
Step 3 – Choose the “Connections” and “LAN Settings” sub-menu options.
Step 4 – Select the menu check box located next to the “Use a Proxy Server for your LAN” menu option.
Step 5 – Enter “0.0.0.0” in the IP address box and “80” in the port box without the quotes.
Step 6 – Select the “OK” menu button and a fake or dummy proxy server is now active for IE. This will prevent the browser from creating or receiving online connections and is now disabled.
To reverse the process simply reverse the steps and de-select the check box located next to the “Use a Proxy Server for your LAN” menu option.
How to Remove Internet Explorer 7
Microsoft recommends two methods to remove Internet Explorer 7: 1 – Use the Add or Remove Programs application or 2 – Using the Spuninst.exe executable wizard.
Remove Internet Explorer Using the Add or Remove Programs Application
Step 1 – Select the “Start” and “Run” menu options.
Step 2 – Enter “appwiz.cpl” in the search text field followed by clicking the “OK” menu button. Depending on the age and speed of your computer, it may take a bit for the list of programs to populate.
Step 3 – Scroll down the list of programs and select “Windows Internet Explorer 7.” Then, click the “Remove” menu button.
Step 4 – Restart your computer to complete the removal of Internet Explorer 7.
Step 5 – Some end-users will want to ensure that Internet Explorer 6 has been restored on the target computer if conducting testing for legacy browsers. To do so, enter “iexplore” in the Start menu’s search test field. Internet Explorer will launch. Select the “About” menu option and the version number of the web browser will start with a “6” if the removal of IE 7 worked properly.
Remove Internet Explorer 7 Using Spuninst.exe
Step 1 – Select the “Start” menu button followed by choosing the “My Documents” menu option.
Step 2 – Open the “Tools” and “Folder Options” menu choices and select the “View” menu tab.
Step 3 – Navigate to the “Advanced settings” menu list and click the “Show hidden files and folders” menu option followed by clicking the “OK” menu button.
Step 4 – Select the “Start” and “Run” Windows menu options.
Step 5 – Enter “%windir%ie7spuninstspuninst.exe” without the quotes into the search text field followed by clicking the “OK” menu button.
Step 6 – Follow the Windows Uninstall wizard directions to remove Internet Explorer 7 from your computer.
How to Remove Internet Explorer 8
Internet Explorer 8 was released in March of 2009 in both 32 and 64 bit versions. It is the last “new” version of the IE browser family designed to be supported on the Windows XP and Windows 2003 operating systems and was the first IE version to pass the Acid2 web standards test.
Step 1 – Select the “Start” and “Control Panel” Windows menu options.
Step 2 – Click the “Programs” and “Program and Features” menu choices and select the “View Installed Updates” option located in the left-hand side of the subsequently displayed window.
Step 3 – Choose “Internet Explorer 8” on the displayed list followed by clicking the “Uninstall” menu option.
Step 4 – Depending on the configuration of the Windows OS, the administrator password or a simple confirmation may be required next.
Step 5 – Follow the default menu options presented by Windows and then restart the computer. After restart, Internet Explorer 8 will be removed.
How to Remove Internet Explorer 9
Internet Explorer 9 was released to the public on March 14, 2011. It is the first version of IE to support HTML 5 video, Web Open Font Format, and the last of the major web browsers to natively support SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics). IE 9 is the last new version of Microsoft’s web browser to be supported on Windows Vista and is not supported on Windows XP.
Step 1 – Select the “Start” menu button. Then, enter “Programs and Features” in the search text box.
Step 2 – Select the “View installed updates” menu option located on the left-hand side of the window.
Step 3 – Scroll to the “Microsoft Windows” section under the “Uninstall an update” menu label.
Step 4 – Locate Windows Internet Explorer 9 and right click the program icon.
Step 5 – Select the “Uninstall” menu choice and select “Yes” when prompted by the OS.
Step 6 – Choose the “Restart now” menu option to complete the process of removing Internet Explorer 9 from the computer. Alternatively, the “Restart Later” menu choice can be picked, but IE 9 will not be removed until the next computer restart.
Alternative Web Browsers to Internet Explorer
Comparing Mozilla Firefox with Internet Explorer
Mozilla Firefox has been a popular alternative to Internet Explorer for Windows users over the past decade and is also supported on OS X. Some of the advantages of Firefox when compared to IE include:
- Better security.
- Tabbed browsing (now supported on newer versions of IE).
- Faster browsing experience
- Plug-in system (extension enhancements0
- Changeable browser skins.
- Accessibility compliance
- Session restore (now supported on newer versions of IE)
- Download resuming across browser sections.
- Firefox Safe mode feature.
Disadvantages of the Firefox browser when compared to IE include:
- Slower startup time of the browser.
- Does not provide an MSI package.
- Uses more memory than some versions of IE.
Comparing Google Chrome Against Internet Explorer
Google Chrome typically runs faster than Internet Explorer. On the down-side, the browser still lags behind IE in features and sometimes has trouble displaying CSS correctly. When used in conjunction with Google services, the browser will modify search results for the end-user based on past history and Google+ friends browsing behavior. End-users that do not require advanced plugins prefer the simplistic nature of the Chrome browser and improved speed. The Chrome browser does require more computer memory than some competing browsers and may not provide an optimal web surfing experience on older or legacy computers.
Is Internet Explorer Still Supported on Mac OS X?
Internet Explorer 6 is no longer supported by Microsoft for the Mac OS X OS. As a result, the number of Mac users who use the browser has been sharply declining; however, application developers and other niche communities still require the use of IE for the Mac. The options that current Mac users leverage to run IE on top of Mac OS X include running on top of Wine using the WineBottler application, dual booting Mac OS X and Windows, or using virtualization with tools such as Parallels, VirtualBox, or VMWare. Although virtualization is the most effective method of running IE and other Windows programs on OS X, it can prove expensive to legally license a virtual machine application, Windows, and other programs that may been needed to
What is WineBottler?
WineBottler is an open source tool that allows end-users to run Windows programs such as Internet Explorer 6, IE 7, or IE 8 on a Mac. The application allows end-users to run these versions of IE without having to spend money and take time to install Parallels or VMWare to check work or operate IE. The WineBottler application runs on top of the Wine library. The Wine library provides a duplication of the functions of the Windows OS by including alternative implementations of Windows DLLs and the Windows NT kernel.
How to Remove WineBottler (IE) on OS X
There are two methods to remove Internet Explorer on OS X if running it through WineBottler: 1 – Manually remove the files installed with WineBottler, or 2 – Using the WineBottler uninstaller.
Steps to Manually Remove WineBottler
Step 1 – Close all Windows applications being run using WineBottler.
Step 2- Locate the following files using the Mac OS X explorer: Wine.app (contains the Windows environment), WineBottler.app (the installer for the application), and “Internet Explorer X.0.app.” Once located remove or delete the files.
Step 3 – Locate the hidden files created during the WineBottler installation and remove or delete.
~/Library/Preferences?/org.kronenberg.Wine.plist (the underlying Wine library preferences)
~/Library/Preferences?/org.kronenberg.WineBottler.plist (the preferences for the installation of WineBottler)
~/Library/Preferences?/org.kronenberg.bottler_Internet Explorer 6.0.plist (slightly different if you installed a newer version of Internet Explorer)
Step 4 – Locate and delete the WineBottler application support file:~/Library/Application? Support/Wine?
Step 5 – After removing all installation files associated with WineBottler, Internet Explorer will be removed from Mac OS X. Alternatively, the WineBottler automatic removal program can be used to remove the installation: RemoveWine.zip .
How to Remove Legacy Internet Explorer Installations on Mac Computers
If you own an older Mac computer (2003 or older), it may have Internet Explorer installed on the machine. From 1997 to 2003, Macs were sold with IE installed by default. To remove:
Step 1 – Select the Internet Explorer icon located in the computer’s “Applications” folder.
Step 2 – Drag the IE file to the “Trash” located in the computer’s “Dock.” Release the mouse button when the Trash icon turns dark.
Step 3- Open the “Finder” menu and choose the “Erase” menu option. The OS will ask you to confirm the deletion in a pop-up window. After confirmed, Internet Explorer will be removed from the Mac.