How to stop Windows 10 blocking ActiveX install for IE

Matthew Adams
by Matthew Adams
Windows & Software Expert
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  • ActiveX is still used for rendering multimedia content. However, errors are quite common since the framework has not received any updates in recent years.
  • If your computer is blocking ActiveX installation for IE, the below guide is all you need to fix this issue in no time.
  • You can also switch to Opera and confirm that Windows 10 no longer blocks the ActiveX install.
  • Visit our Web Browsers Hub for more tips and tricks to easily enhance your browsing experience.
How to stop Windows 10 blocking ActiveX install

ActiveX is an increasingly antiquated software framework that is still utilized within Internet Explorer and other Microsoft applications.

ActiveX controls enable some websites to display interactive content, such as toolbars and games. Yet, antiquated ActiveX controls can also assist malware to install unwanted software on Windows.

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Consequently, Windows might automatically block ActiveX controls installing. That will happen for users who have enabled Internet Explorer’s ActiveX Filtering setting.

Then, some content might be missing from a page. When filtering isn’t enabled, users might still see prompts at the top of IE requesting permission to install an ActiveX control.

This is how users can stop Windows 10 blocking ActiveX controls installing.


QUICK TIP: You’ve seen how tricky Internet Explorer’s ActiveX Filtering setting really is and deselecting it or turning it off for specific websites might not necessarily sound like music to your years.

Given the circumstances, our advice is to think outside the box and try out a different browser that instantly solves the problem.

Instead of wasting valuable time to turn off ActiveX Control Prompts and add pages to Trusted Sites, install Opera. The first thing to point out about it is that it never blocks ActiveX controls installing.

In addition to that, other key ingredients worthy to be mentioned include real privacy thanks to the included VPN, dark and light themes to reduce eye fatigue, and a built-in ad blocker to load webpages faster than ever before.

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How can I stop Windows 10 blocking ActiveX install for IE?

1. Turn Off ActiveX Filtering for All Websites

  1. Internet Explorer users can lift ActiveX blocks by deselecting the Active X Filtering setting.
  2. To do so, click the gear icon at the top right of IE’s window.
  3. Then, select Safety and deselect a ticked Active X Filtering option.
  4. Alternatively, users can turn off ActiveX filtering by clicking the Tools button in IE and selecting Internet Options. Press the Custom level button on the Security tab.
  5. Then, select Disable for the Allow ActiveX Filtering setting shown in the snapshot directly below.

2. Turn Off ActiveX Filtering for a Specific Website

ActiveX Filtering

When ActiveX filtering is on, a blue circle, or stop icon, appears on the right side of Internet Explorer’s URL bar.

Users can click on that to open a dialog box window that states, Some content is filtered on this site.

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Then users can click the Turn Off ActiveX Filtering button on that dialog box to enable ActiveX controls for a specific website. However, the filter will still block ActiveX controls on other pages.

3. Add Pages to Trusted Sites

  1. First, click the Tools button in Internet Explorer.
  2. Select the Security tab shown directly below.
  3. Select the Trusted sites option.
  4. Press the Sites button to open the window in the snapshot directly below.
  5. Enter the URL of the website that the Windows has blocked this software error message pops up for.
  6. Press the Add button.
  7. Deselect the Require Server Verification (https:) for all Sites in This Zone option.
  8. Click the Close button.

Windows might also block ActiveX controls installing when the publisher cannot be verified.

Then, an error message will pop up stating that Windows has blocked this software because it can’t verify the publisher.

Then it might be a good idea not to install ActiveX. Nevertheless, users can still deselect a Require server verification option to install ActiveX even when Windows can’t verify the publisher.

4. Turn Off ActiveX Control Prompts

  1. Users can also configure ActiveX controls to install automatically without any prompts. To do so, click the Tools button in Internet Explorer to select Internet Options.
  2. Select the Custom level option to open the window shown directly below.
  3. Then scroll down to the Automatic prompting for ActiveX controls option and select Disable.
  4. Select Enable for the Run ActiveX controls and plug-ins option.
  5. Select Enable for the Download signed ActiveX controls option.
  6. In addition, select Enable for both the script ActiveX controls settings. Just select Enable for all the ActiveX settings that include Prompt radio buttons.

So, that’s how Internet Explorer users can lift ActiveX control blocks to remove content filtering from pages.

However, remember that ActiveX can also compromise your system with unwanted software and content. It might, therefore, at least be worth keeping the ActiveX prompts on.

FAQ: Learn more about ActiveX

  • Is ActiveX still supported?

ActiveX is still supported on Internet Explorer 11 although Microsoft’s latest browser, Edge, is not compatible with ActiveX. The fact is ActiveX is slowly going away and the Internet architecture is moving to HTML5.

  • Is ActiveX safe?

ActiveX is safe in itself but it is very vulnerable to malware attacks. Malicious code can easily bypass ActiveX controls making the browsing experience completely unsafe.

  • Where is ActiveX located on my computer?

ActiveX control files are located on your computer’s hard drive. The default location should be in the folder where you stored downloaded programs.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in March 2020 and has been since revamped and updated in August 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

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