Microsoft starts scrubbing Internet Explorer from most Windows 10 PCs

Shawn Knight

Posts: 14,805   +180
Staff member
TL;DR: Microsoft is permanently scrubbing Internet Explorer from Windows 10 and the disinfection starts today. As highlighted in Microsoft's Internet Explorer 11 desktop app retirement FAQ, IE11 will be permanently disabled on certain versions of Windows 10 through an update that starts rolling out on February 14. It will take a few days for the update to propagate but once finalized, it is… well, final.

Microsoft notes that users will not be able to reverse the change. Trying to load the desktop app after the update will simply redirect users to Microsoft Edge. Favorites, passwords, browsing history, cookies and other browser data will automatically be transferred over to Edge and can be further managed in the browser's settings.

Any visual remnants of IE11, like icons on the Start Menu and taskbar, will be removed as part of the June 2023 Windows security update due out on June 13.

The change will impact most (but not all) versions of Windows 10. IE11 will remain in-support Windows 10 IoT long-term servicing channel (LTSC), Windows 10 client LTSC and Windows 10 China Government Edition (apparently that is a thing).

According to StatCounter, 68.75 percent of desktop Windows users are still running Windows 10. Despite the high market share, most users have likely already moved on from IE11 to something newer like Edge or one of several other alternatives.

Redmond did not ship a version of Internet Explorer with Windows 11 so if you are already running Microsoft's latest operating system, don't expect any changes. If you recall, Microsoft officially retired IE11 last year but is only now putting the final nail in the coffin.

It is worth mentioning that Microsoft Edge has a built-in compatibility mode for legacy sites and apps that still rely on Internet Explorer, and has committed to supporting IE mode until at least 2029. We have a full guide on how to set up and get the most out of IE mode in Edge should you need it.

Image credit: Philipp Katzenberger, Denny Muller

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Posts: 153   +184
I personally do not use IE11 but at work we have a system that views the camera's and IE11 seems to work best with the web interface that the camera's use. We have tried Google Chrome as well as EDGE and neither seem to work as well as IE11 does. I guess MS is going to force me to block MS updates on that Windows 10 system.


Posts: 4,216   +4,995
Edge is good but MS is annoying about it which makes people not want to use it just out of spite. Anyone relying on IE had years to switch, can't say I feel sorry for them.


Posts: 262   +332
Edge is good but MS is annoying about it which makes people not want to use it just out of spite. Anyone relying on IE had years to switch, can't say I feel sorry for them.
edge is just chrome with a ms remakeover why would you use it when you can use chromium free of ms and google crap?


Posts: 43   +53
TechSpot Elite
Tell this to Hikvision who still sell cameras which need IE11 to access web based GUI.

I've encountered this exact problem in the last few days. Why Hikvision! ActiveX controls for your cameras, seriously!?

Good thing I found a workaround though. It turns out IE11 is actually still hiding in Windows 11. You just need to create a little .vbs script to resurrect it from its hidden grave. Save the following code as "ie.vbs" or file name of you choice, and simply run to bring up ye olde IE to install those ancient ActiveX plugins.