Friday, December 14, 2007

Internet Explorer troubleshooting problems

If you are tired of Internet Explorer crashing or bringing viruses, just use Firefox

Download Mozilla Firefox from the button on the sidebar. Look on the right

Problem: Crashes or hangs

If IE crashes, the most likely problem is that there's a buggy add-on (Toolbar or Browser Helper Object). In order to verify and isolate the buggy add-on, follow these steps:

  1. Start IE in No Add-ons mode, either by right-clicking the Desktop icon, or clicking START | RUN and typing: iexplore.exe -extoff
  2. Determine if IE fails.
  3. If not, use Tools | Manage Add-ons to disable all browser extensions and toolbars.
  4. Restart IE and reenable browser extensions one-by-one.
  5. Once you've found a broken extension, contact the manufacturer and ask for an update.


If IE still crashes on startup, and you've got Google Desktop installed, please ensure that you update to the latest version of Google Desktop.

Problem: The "Mail" button is missing

You can customize the toolbar to add or remove icons, including the mail icon

  1. Right-click the Star icon in the IE window
  2. Choose Customize Command Bar
  3. Choose Add or Remove commands
  4. Click on the Read Mail item in the Available toolbar buttons list
  5. Click the Add button to move the button to the Current toolbar buttons list
  6. Click the Close button

If the button still isn't visible, it may be pushed off the side of the screen. To fix this:

  1. Right-click the Star icon in the IE window
  2. Uncheck Lock the Toolbars
  3. Drag the dotted splitter in the command bar to the left until all of the buttons are visible

Problem: Website blocks IE7 (e.g. it "requires" IE6)

Run into a website that requires IE6? Spoof the site by tweaking your user-agent.

Problem: ClearType Text appears fuzzy

IE7 turns on a text-smoothing technology called "ClearType" by default. ClearType is scientifically proven to make text easier to read, particularly on LCD flat panel monitors.

If ClearType looks fuzzy on your monitor, you might want to try the ClearType tuning wizard, which can help you adjust the display of ClearType.

If you still don't like the appearance of ClearType, you can turn it off by unchecking the checkbox: Tools | Internet Options | Advanced | Multimedia | Always use ClearType for HTML.

Problem: Slow Startup

1. Follow the "Crashing on startup" steps above to see if starting in No Add-ons mode starts much faster

2. If you're not using a proxy, uncheck IE's "Automatically detect settings" option on the Tools | Internet Options | Connections | LAN Settings dialog.

Problem: Slow Page rendering

1. Increase the connection limit. This tweak allows IE to make up to 16 connections per server.

2. Ensure that both "HTTP1.1" checkboxes in Tools | Internet Options | Advanced are checked.

Problem: IE7 Setup fails to install Internet Explorer


Problem: My address bar won't turn green?

IE7 includes a cool new feature that turns the address bar green when a secure site presents an Extended Validation certificate:

EV Certificate UI

If you're having trouble with this feature, on a site you know has an EV certificate:

  1. Ensure that you either have the Phishing Filter set to "Automatic" mode or Tools > Internet Options > Advanced > Security > Check for Server Certificate revocation checked.

  2. If that doesn't work, install this: Windows Root Certificate Update and restart.

Problem: After installing, IE7 starts then vanishes

It's possible that one of IE's DLLs isn't installed correctly

  1. Click START | RUN and type cmd
  2. In the command prompt, type cd\
  3. In the command prompt, type cd Program Files
  4. In the command prompt, type cd Internet Explorer
  5. In the command prompt, type regsvr32 IEPROXY.DLL


Problem: Error message about PSAPI.DLL

If you install IE7 and the following error message begins to show:

The procedure entry point GetProcessImageFileNameW could not be located in the dynamic link library PSAPI.DLL

  1. Search your hard disk for PSAPI.dll.
  2. Any copies of this DLL that are found outside of the Windows or Windows\System32 folder should be renamed to PSAPI.bak.

Problem: IE always goes to instead of your homepage

If IE7 always goes to the RunOnce page on startup, even after you've tried to save the first run settings, it's possible that the mechanism that IE is using to save the settings does not work for some reason.

You can prevent IE from going to the RunOnce page and cause it to go directly to your homepage by running this script.

Problem: I installed a "branded" version of IE7, but I'd prefer a "plain" copy without toolbars and customizations.

An article on this topic can be found here: How to remove branding in Internet Explorer 7.

Problem: A remote user is having problems with Internet Explorer. How can I collect information about his system to help me to troubleshoot?

Have the user run Netcheck and send you the log file.

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