3 Easy Ways to Continue Using Internet Explorer on Windows 11

by Vladimir Popescu
Vladimir Popescu
Vladimir Popescu
Managing Editor
Being an artist his entire life while also playing handball at a professional level, Vladimir has also developed a passion for all things computer-related. With an innate fascination... read more
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  • Besides all the requirements for Windows 11, another popular app didn't make it to the OS.
  • It seems that the Internet Explorer browser is disabled and can't be installed at all.
  • Users who still need it can enjoy a feature called IE Mode, which can be accessed through the Microsoft Edge browser.

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What came as a surprise for most users is that Microsoft revealed after 26 long years Internet Explorer will be disabled in Windows 11. However, we will show you how to download and install it even on this operating system.

While the browser wasn’t the most successful one, if you don’t count the popular memes making the rounds over the Internet, there are still plenty of users that were expecting Internet Explorer to make an appearance in Windows 11.

Some say that they were hoping for at least an Internet Explorer 32-bit. But as the OS only runs 64-bit software, it seems like this app has no place in the roster.

On that note, if you want to know more about how different Windows 11 is from Windows 10, take a look at our article.

Now let’s see how you can download Internet Explorer on Windows 11 and start using it as soon as possible.

How to download IE 11 on Windows 11?

  1. Visit Internet Explorer 11’s download page and click on the Download button.
  2. The download process will now start automatically, and all you will have to do is wait for it to complete.

Keep in mind that this download method might not work after the software has been officially discontinued on June 15, 2022.

How to install Internet Explorer on Windows 11?

Firstly, we have established that installing it is quite impossible. In fact, you can even download and install Internet Explorer 11 on Windows 11 and you will still be prompted with Microsoft Edge instead.

If you take a closer look at the system requirements for Internet Explorer 11 you will find out that it’s only for Windows 7 PCs with Service Pack 1.

And if you still have that old OS, we can help you with a full solution on how to install Internet Explorer on Windows 7.

Many users are wondering if they can install Internet Explorer on Windows 11. While the answer is yes, the application won’t run at all, so technically, you can install it without using it.

However, there are three ways in which you can use Internet Explorer. Follow along as we will explore them right after we see why Microsoft removed it from Windows 11.

Why did Microsoft remove Internet Explorer from Windows 11?

For starters, Microsoft did warn that the Long-Term Servicing Channel (LTSC) of Windows 10 would include Internet Explorer. Even though a consumer removal was planned for June 15th, 2022.

In the same blog post, Microsoft also said that Internet Explorer is less secure than modern browsers. Moreover, they said that it doesn’t deliver an up-to-date browsing experience.

For these reasons, they are encouraging users to use Edge, a modern web browser based on Google’s open-source Chromium code:

Not only is Microsoft Edge a faster, more secure and more modern browsing experience than Internet Explorer, but it is also able to address a key concern: compatibility for older, legacy websites and applications.

Sean Lyndersay, Microsoft’s program manager for Edge.

On the official Windows 11 specs, Microsoft states that Internet Explorer is indeed disabled in Windows 11. As Microsoft Edge now includes the IE Mode feature.

So, Windows 11 has fully removed this browser. And users that still use shortcuts such as iexplore are redirected to Microsoft Edge instead.

No surprise here, considering Microsoft is known for being constantly headed towards the future. Although it sometimes holds on to some of its past features and apps.

How can I run Internet Explorer on Windows 11?

Although you can install it, unfortunately, Internet Explorer will not run on Windows 11. As we mentioned above, after the installation, you won’t find any apps to run.

The only way to use the remnants of the old browser is to enable the Internet Explorer Mode in Windows 11. Keep on reading to find out the methods to do that.

How do I enable Internet Explorer in Windows 11?

1. Enable IE Mode from Edge

  1. Open Microsoft Edge and click the ellipsis button on the top-right corner.
  2. From the drop-down menu select the Settings option.
  3. Next, click on the Default browser option.
  4. Under Internet Explorer compatibility, click on the drop-down menu next to Allow sites to be reloaded in Internet Explorer mode and select Allow.
  5. Next, click on the Restart button.
  6. From now on, whenever sites require Internet Explorer, you can use Microsoft Edge to reload the page using IE mode.

2. Open site with IE Mode on Edge

  1. Open Microsoft Edge then click on the ellipsis button in the top-right corner to select the Settings option.
  2. Tap on the Add button from the Internet Explorer mode pages section.
  3. Type or paste the address of the website you want to see in Internet Explorer mode and click on the Add button.
  4. When you access the website you entered and you click the menu button from Edge, you will have the option to Reload in Internet Explorer mode. Note that if you don’t add the URL of the website first, you won’t see this option in the menu.
  5. If you want to load the website without the IE mode, just delete the website by clicking the bin icon in the Settings menu.

You might also be interested in how to change the default browser in Windows 11. That will help you open external links with the same app.

3. Let Internet Explorer open sites in Microsoft Edge

  1. Follow the steps from the first solution until you reach the Default button option in Microsoft’s Edge settings.defautl edge button
  2. Under the Internet Explore compatibility section, click on the Let Internet Explorer open sites in Microsoft Edge drop-down menu and select the preferred option between:
    • Never – Internet Explorer will never switch to Edge to load the website.
    • Incompatible sites only – Internet Explorer will still load the websites, but those designated for a modern browser will load in Microsoft Edge.
    • Always – Internet Explorer will always switch to Edge to load sites.open IE in
  3. Websites will now open in Microsoft Edge according to your configuration set in the second step. You will know you are in IE Mode as a little Internet Explorer icon will appear in the address bar.

What does the IE Mode in Edge have to offer?

According to Microsoft, IE Mode aims to provide its users with a method to use the legacy infrastructure of IE inside the chromium-based Microsoft Edge:

IE mode on Microsoft Edge makes it easy to use all of the sites your organization needs in a single browser. It uses the integrated Chromium engine for modern sites, and it uses the Trident MSHTML engine from Internet Explorer 11 (IE11) for legacy sites.

This means that Microsoft Edge with its IE mode will completely replace the Internet Explorer 11 desktop app.

With this change, users will be capable to restrict their use of the Internet Explorer browser. Thus making it able to only access those legacy sites that necessarily need it.

To make the transition easier, Microsoft even put out a PDF guide. It is intended for people and companies using IE as their default browser to prepare them for the app’s retirement.

An Internet Explorer update for Windows 11 will never come. Yet there are ways in which you can work around this issue.

As an alternative for this browser, you can find multiple other options designed for the present day. For example, the Opera browser is a smart choice to substitute Internet Explorer or Edge.

Having a modern and friendly interface, this browser can offer a plethora of features. From pinboards, multiple workspaces, an embedded ad-blocker, to a free VPN.

On top of that, you have integrated messaging apps directly into your homepage sidebar. Or even a crypto wallet if you need it. By using this browser you have everything at your fingertips, on desktop and mobile too.

Opera

Forget about Internet Explorer and check out Opera, a browser that works great with Windows 11 and supports legacy devices.

Is IE Mode better than Internet Explorer?

The main purpose of IE Mode is to make it easier for people and organizations to use one browser. At this moment, Edge is the only browser with built-in compatibility for legacy sites and apps.

IE Mode will still be able to support a lot of Internet Explorer’s functionalities. Such as all document and enterprise modes, ActiveX controls, Browser Helper Objects, Internet Explorer settings, and the F12 developer tools.

Taking this into consideration plus the fact that Edge also provides more features on its own, the browser and its IE Mode can be thought of as being better than Internet Explorer.

Moreover, one of the most interesting things about Edge and its IE Mode is the economic impact it had on organizations.

According to a study by Forrester on The Total Economic Impact™ Of Microsoft Edge, the avoided cost of legacy application modernization from using IE Mode leads to almost $1.2M in total savings.

So, maybe this change isn’t so bad after all. Weighing the fact that IE Mode will still be able to support a lot of Internet Explorer’s functionalities and generate savings, productivity gains, and security for organizations.

And judging from the small number of users who would still need, for some reason, to use Internet Explorer, this won’t be recorded as such a great loss for the operating system.

Now even though a reinstall of Internet Explorer on Windows 11 will not be possible, to use this feature, all you need to do is go through the above steps.

With all this talk about Internet Explorer, don’t forget that there are a lot of other browsers out there. Check out the best browsers for Windows 11 and make a selection according to your needs.

Alternatively, if you started using the IE mode and you encountered issues while connecting to the Internet, take a look at the guide linked in order to learn how to fix it.

It’s interesting to see what exactly will happen to this interesting feature, once Microsoft decides to completely be done with Internet Explorer. Let us know your opinion in the comments area below.

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