The Basics of Internet Explorer

Internet Explorer (IE), released as part of Windows since 1995, has also become available on Mac and Unix systems.

At one time, Internet Explorer (IE) was the dominant web browser; however, over time its market share fell due to competition from Firefox and Chromium-based browsers such as Chromium-based browsers such as Chromium Browser. Now IE is end of life and will be replaced by Microsoft Edge on Windows 10 starting 2022; Microsoft Edge will also be offered as Semi Annual Channel Install option for new Windows installations.

The Icon

After much delay in releasing their web browser, Microsoft finally introduced Internet Explorer in 1995 and quickly made headlines for being the most widely used. Bundled with Windows operating system, Internet Explorer quickly rose in popularity to become the leading web browser worldwide; its success triggered what came to be known as the “Browser Wars,” when Netscape–one of Microsoft’s main competitors–complained that by bundling IE with Windows it had limited free competition and become an unfair monopoly.

At first, Internet Explorer (IE) was the only browser to support favicons – 16×16-pixel images used as bookmarks to identify which website the user wanted to visit – though other browsers eventually adopted the standard. Furthermore, IE was also the pioneering browser in offering toolbars, providing one-click access to features normally located within menus such as back/forward/home buttons as well as search buttons, channel bars for news feeds and font size adjustment without opening dialog windows.

IE went beyond traditional browser functions by introducing pop-up blocking and tabbed browsing capabilities, as well as an ActiveX framework for running add-on components; developers could then utilize plug-ins created using ActiveX controls to extend browser functionality further by developing plug-ins. ActiveX controls run with higher privileges than client-side scripts; malicious add-ons could potentially use this to compromise computer security.

As of 2016, Internet Explorer had seen its market share diminish since reaching its zenith in the early 2000s with about 60% worldwide market share. It reached a decade low of 49.7% worldwide market share in 2011; however, Microsoft still maintained it for legacy reasons.

Internet Explorer’s iconic symbol is an eye-catching lowercase “e” with an inviting blue lowercase letter “e” featuring a diagonally crossing curved swoosh that connotes movement and fluidity; an ideal image to reflect its fast browsing capabilities and white background that softens and streamlines elements within it. These characteristics combine for an aesthetically pleasing design that exudes professionalism.

The Address Bar

Entering a URL (Uniform Resource Locator) into a Web browser’s address bar causes it to use that address to navigate directly to that website, showing its title, favicon (if it exists), keywords matching a webpage or site, search engines being utilized and RSS feeds being recognized – much like they do for regular Internet search boxes – among many other things. Furthermore, address bars also recognize Web feeds so you can subscribe regularly visited sites using RSS.

An Internet browser’s address bar may offer various features and functions depending on its capabilities and version. For instance, many modern browsers provide a feature which autocompletes website addresses when typing them based on browsing history and bookmarks; it may even suggest corrections for common typos! Some browsers even feature a button you can press to display all bookmarks or favorites at once for easier organization and access.

Your browser’s address bar serves another important purpose by displaying a status indicator that shows whether a Web page is currently downloading or loading; typically a small green circle next to its URL; it may also indicate whether or not that page is not currently available at that moment in time.

If your address bar has become difficult to access, it could be because too many other toolbars are “crowding” it by default. To remedy this, place your cursor over the gray vertical bar just left of “Links” in the Links toolbar – this should turn into a double-headed horizontal arrow when clicked and dragged, making room for Address bar visibility once again.

The Tools Menu

The Tools menu allows you to configure Internet Explorer. Depending on your version of Windows and browser, this may allow you to set up home pages or perform housekeeping tasks here. It also gives access to mail and news services; and allows you to reduce IE toolbars so as to open up more viewing area; either via this menu or the standard buttons on the right side of your screen.

The View menu offers options to change encoding, view page source and adjust text size, as well as quickly launching a separate session of Internet Explorer (IE). Furthermore, this menu allows you to close current IE windows, open specific folders within your file system or display a status bar that displays Internet connection status.

Prior to Internet Explorer 8.0, clicking the Menu button would display a small menu that mimicked this menu’s functionality. With Internet Explorer 8 or later versions however, this menu was hidden by default; you may still enable its display using any one of several methods outlined below.

Once selected, selecting the Home button opens a dialogue box from which you can set your homepage address as the default homepage, set a search engine and add or remove web addresses as your home page address. With Add to Favorites button you can store internet web pages easily accessible later using bookmarks, Netscape users may recognize this function.

Use the “Delete Browsing History” button to delete temporary Internet files and website files, as well as those associated with websites you visit regularly. Your mouse cursor may become inactive while this function performs its task – this should only take a few moments!

The Help button opens IE help function, providing online assistance and information about your browser version as well as providing download and installation updates. Furthermore, using About to view additional details regarding patents held by it or Disable items to temporarily move its entry from HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE or HKEY_CURRENT_USER Software Microsoft Internet Explorer Extensions registry keys into a temporary location while unregistering any associated COM object’s DLL module that might exist (using this menu).

The Internet Options Dialog Box

The Internet Options dialog box allows you to customize Internet Explorer settings. Here you can manage multiple Internet and browser-related options such as browsing history, security settings and managing add-ons. Furthermore, its Advanced tab enables advanced settings like proxy servers and LAN settings.

The General tab enables you to choose a homepage and default website for Internet Explorer, and set the settings for its Delete Browsing History and AutoComplete History buttons, which delete browsing history stored by IE8. Furthermore, Windows Search may be selected instead of custom search engines, and whether or not IE8 asks to save passwords (though this should not be done as anyone who gains access can view them).

To secure Internet Explorer, click on the Security tab. From here you can select either High or Medium security levels for Internet Zone; setting High helps protect against phishing attacks as well as cross-site scripting attacks that run within web pages such as phishing or cross-site scripting attacks. Moreover, Protected Mode essentially sandboxes your Web browser preventing malware from executing commands on your system.

Other security options here include a popup blocker and the ability to only download files or software when you click them. You can also set maximum download sizes, enable use digital signatures to validate identity of downloaded programs check box and display confirmation dialog box when downloading program from internet. Moreover, Internet Explorer Security Options allow administrators to prevent third parties from inserting ActiveX controls or plug-ins directly. Although these options typically do not change for individual end users but they can help IT administrators troubleshooting Internet Explorer issues more effectively.

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