Fix: IE not connecting to the Internet [Windows 11 Guide]

by Sonia Martin
Sonia Martin
Sonia Martin
Sonia is a tech enthusiast that fell in love with Windows after having experienced working on a different OS. Being above all, a down-to-earth kind of person, she... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • If Internet Explorer is not connecting to the Internet, checking your network is the first logical step.
  • But what if IE is the only one that refuses to connect while other browsers do? Clearly, connectivity is not the issue.
  • Don't worry, we have no less than 3 simple ways to make Internet Explorer connect to the Internet again.
  • Check them out below and get plenty more out of this guide to browse like a pro.
Why is my Internet Explorer not connecting?

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While you can still find the Internet Explorer 11 on Windows 10, there is no way to use the old Internet Explorer as a standalone browser in Windows 11.

With that out of the way, we promise the most confusing part of this guide is done with, and from now on, things will only get a lot easier.

So, Windows 11 comes with Edge pre-installed as the default browser which is also why you will notice that Internet Explorer opens Edge instead.

You can still use the IE compatibility mode in Win 11 to open legacy sites and apps, but not the IE 11 itself as an autonomous desktop app.

That’s why conventional manipulations such as resetting IE settings, reinstalling, disabling add-ons, clearing cookies, and other similar techniques you’d apply to fix IE crashes in Windows 10 don’t really work as they simply no longer apply.

Don’t worry, we have a few tricks you can try. In fact, here are 3 simple ways to make Internet Explorer connect to the Internet again plus a little something on top.

So, let’s not waste any more time and get straight to it, shall we?

How do I get Internet Explorer to connect to the Internet?

1. Reenable Internet Explorer mode on Windows 11

  1. Press the Windows key + I on your keyboard to quickly open the Settings.
    From the left pane, select Apps and go to Optional features.
  2. Use the search field under Installed features to locate the Internet Explorer mode.
  3. Press the arrow to unfold the options and select Uninstall.
  4. To reinstall the IE mode, simply return to the Optional features screen.
  5. Now, press the View features button next to the Add an optional feature listing.
  6. Search for Internet Explorer mode and choose Install.

2. Troubleshoot and reset your network

  1. Open the Settings once again and remain on the System tab.
  2. In the main area, select Troubleshoot.
  3. Extend the Other troubleshooters section.
  4. Hit the Run button next to Internet Connections. In the new window, select Troubleshoot my connection to the Internet.
  5. If there is no recommended fix, resetting your network can set the records straight.
  6. Return to the main Settings screen and this time, select Network & internet from the left pane.
  7. On the main area, click on Advanced network settings.
  8. Scroll until you see the More settings section and click the arrow next to Network reset.
  9. Finally, press the Reset now button.

Why is Chrome working and not Internet Explorer?

Tip icon
➡ If Internet Explorer is not connecting to the Internet, but Chrome does, the issue is clearly not related to any connectivity flaws, and resetting your network will have no impact.
➡ Adding to the fact IE’s days are counted (and we mean that in the literal way as the old browser will be officially retired in June 2022), it may be the right time to start looking for a new one.
➡ Thus, switching to Opera makes perfect sense. It’s a modern browsing instrument with enhanced rendering capabilities, serious performance optimizations, tons of customization options, and all the privacy and security features you could dream of.
➡ Moreover, you can import all your preferences, passwords, settings, and so on and sync them across all your devices seamlessly.


Why bother to fix connection problems in Internet Explorer when you can enjoy error-free browsing?

3. Tweak the Internet Properties

  1. Use the search field on your taskbar and type in internet.
  2. Select Change the search provider in Internet Explorer from the list of results.
  3. Here, you first need to select the Connections tab. Click LAN settings.
  4. In the new windows, click Automatically detect settings and press OK.
  5. Now, select the Advanced tab and check the box corresponding to the Use software rendering instead of GPU rendering option under Accelerated graphics.
  6. Press OK and restart your device.

If Internet Explorer is still not connecting to the Internet, you might be dealing with interferences caused by overzealous security software.

4. Check your security software

Antivirus, firewall, and VPN – this is the holy trinity of cybersecurity and despite the obvious advantages, each of these apps can cause interferences and end up blocking legitimate programs while trying to keep you safe.

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Permanently eliminating them is not recommended. However, you can determine if any of them are at the source of the problem and take further appropriate measures.

To temporarily disable the Microsoft Defender firewall, follow the steps below:

  1. Open the Settings and select Privacy & security in the left pane.
  2. Next, click on Open Windows Security.
  3. Choose Firewall & network protection.
  4. Head to Public network and switch the Microsoft Defender Firewall off.

To temporarily turn off your VPN, follow the steps below:

  1. Open the Settings and select Network & internet in the left pane.
  2. Now, choose VPN in the right-side menu.
  3. Finally, locate the VPN connection and select Remove from the menu.

If you’re VPN turns out to be the culprit, you can further prevent Internet Explorer not connecting to the Internet problems by switching to a more versatile privacy program.

Private Internet Security boats impenetrable confidentiality and uncompromised encryption for your data, online activity, and traffic. And it does so without getting in your way or interfering with other apps (as long as they are trustworthy and authentic, of course).

What about antivirus? Can I prevent IE from connecting?

Finally, the same goes for your antivirus solution. You don’t need to delete it, simply disable it for the time being and check if Internet Explorer is able to load web pages.

If so, use a specialized uninstaller tool to make sure no software leftovers remain to plague your system and proceed with the removal of your current security program.

Eset antivirus windows screen

Of course, leaving your system exposed to vermin, bugs or hacking attacks is not the answer. Instead, you can download and install ESET Internet Security.

This tolerant and lightweight software boats a modular architecture that allows you to seamlessly collaborate with other security programs without messing up your settings or complicating your life in any way. What’s not to like?

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