What is Internet Explorer? A Comprehensive Guide

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If you’re reading this article, chances are you’re familiar with the term “Internet Explorer.” But what exactly is it? In simple terms, Internet Explorer is a web browser developed by Microsoft that allows users to access and browse the internet.

As one of the most popular web browsers in the world, Internet Explorer has played a significant role in shaping the way we use the internet. Its user-friendly interface, advanced security features, and compatibility with various websites and applications make it a valuable tool for both personal and professional use.

Internet Explorer has been around for over two decades, with the first version released in 1995. Since then, it has undergone various updates and improvements, with the latest version being Internet Explorer 11.

Despite the growing competition from other browsers like Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer remains a reliable and trusted option for millions of users worldwide. In the next sections, we’ll take a closer look at the features of Internet Explorer, its different versions, how to use it, and more.

Features of Internet Explorer

Internet Explorer comes with a range of features that make it an efficient and user-friendly web browser. In this section, we’ll cover some of the key features of Internet Explorer.

User Interface

One of the most notable features of Internet Explorer is its intuitive user interface. The browser is designed with a clean and simple layout, making it easy to navigate and use. The user interface includes various features like tabs, bookmarks, and a search bar, allowing users to browse the internet with ease.

Security Features

Internet Explorer is equipped with advanced security features to protect users from online threats like malware and phishing. The browser has built-in security tools like SmartScreen Filter and Tracking Protection, which help to prevent malicious websites and unwanted ads from appearing on your screen.

Compatibility with Websites and Applications

Internet Explorer is designed to be compatible with a wide range of websites and applications, making it a versatile tool for both personal and professional use. The browser supports various web technologies like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, enabling users to access and interact with different types of content on the internet.

Add-ons and Extensions

Internet Explorer comes with a range of add-ons and extensions that allow users to customize their browsing experience. These add-ons and extensions can help users to improve their productivity, enhance their security, or simply add some fun elements to their web browsing. Some popular add-ons and extensions for Internet Explorer include AdBlock Plus, LastPass, and Pinterest Save Button.

In the next sections, we’ll dive deeper into the different versions of Internet Explorer, how to install and use the browser, and common issues with Internet Explorer.

Versions of Internet Explorer

Internet Explorer has gone through numerous versions since its initial release in 1995. Here’s a brief overview of each version from 1.0 to 11:

Internet Explorer 1.0

Released in 1995, Internet Explorer 1.0 was the first version of the web browser. It offered basic functionality, including support for Hypertext Markup Language (HTML) and File Transfer Protocol (FTP).

Internet Explorer 2.0

Released in 1996, Internet Explorer 2.0 introduced several new features, including support for Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), Javascript, and cookies.

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Internet Explorer 3.0

Released in 1996, Internet Explorer 3.0 was a significant update, featuring a completely redesigned interface and support for new technologies like ActiveX and Java.

Internet Explorer 4.0

Released in 1997, Internet Explorer 4.0 was another major update, introducing features like Dynamic HTML, which allowed for more interactive web pages. It also included an integrated email client, making it a one-stop-shop for internet browsing and email.

Internet Explorer 5.0

Released in 1999, Internet Explorer 5.0 continued to improve upon the previous versions, with enhancements like the ability to save web pages for offline viewing and support for XML data.

Internet Explorer 6.0

Released in 2001, Internet Explorer 6.0 was one of the most widely used versions of the web browser. It introduced features like pop-up blocking and improved support for Cascading Style Sheets (CSS).

Internet Explorer 7.0

Released in 2006, Internet Explorer 7.0 was a significant update, featuring a completely redesigned interface and improved support for web standards like CSS.

Internet Explorer 8.0

Released in 2009, Internet Explorer 8.0 introduced features like Accelerators, which allowed users to perform common tasks with just a few clicks, and WebSlices, which allowed users to keep track of changes to their favorite websites.

Internet Explorer 9.0

Released in 2011, Internet Explorer 9.0 featured a streamlined interface and improved support for HTML5 and CSS3.

Internet Explorer 10.0

Released in 2012, Internet Explorer 10.0 was designed specifically for Windows 8, with a touch-friendly interface and improved performance.

Internet Explorer 11.0

Released in 2013, Internet Explorer 11.0 is the latest version of the web browser. It features improved performance, support for new web technologies, and enhanced security features.

Overall, each version of Internet Explorer has introduced new features and improvements, making it a reliable and trusted option for internet browsing.

How to Install and Use Internet Explorer

If you’re interested in using Internet Explorer, you’ll need to ensure that your computer meets the system requirements. Internet Explorer can be installed on computers running Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, and Windows 10.

Once you’ve confirmed that your computer meets the system requirements, you can proceed to download and install Internet Explorer. The process is straightforward and can be completed in a few simple steps:

Steps for Downloading and Installing Internet Explorer

  1. Open your web browser and navigate to the Microsoft Download Center.
  2. Search for “Internet Explorer” and select the appropriate version for your computer.
  3. Click on the “Download” button and wait for the installation file to download.
  4. Once the download is complete, double-click on the installation file to begin the installation process.
  5. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the installation.

Congratulations! You’ve successfully installed Internet Explorer on your computer. Now, let’s take a look at the basic functions and settings of the browser.

Basic Functions of Internet Explorer

Internet Explorer is a user-friendly browser that offers various functions to enhance your browsing experience. Here are some of the basic functions you can use:

  • Tabbed Browsing: Internet Explorer allows you to open multiple tabs within the same window, making it easy to switch between different web pages.
  • Favorites: You can save your favorite websites in Internet Explorer for easy access later.
  • History: Internet Explorer maintains a record of the websites you’ve visited, making it easy to revisit them later.
  • Search Bar: You can use the search bar in Internet Explorer to search for information on the internet.
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Settings in Internet Explorer

Internet Explorer also offers various settings that you can customize to suit your preferences. Here are some of the settings you can adjust:

  • Homepage: You can set your preferred homepage in Internet Explorer.
  • Security: Internet Explorer offers various security features, including pop-up blockers and phishing filters, to protect your computer from malicious websites.
  • Privacy: You can adjust the privacy settings in Internet Explorer to control how your browsing data is collected and used.
  • Add-ons: Internet Explorer offers various add-ons and extensions that you can install to enhance your browsing experience.

By adjusting these settings, you can personalize your browsing experience and make the most out of Internet Explorer.

Common Issues with Internet Explorer

Despite its many useful features, Internet Explorer is not without its issues. Here are some of the most common problems users may encounter:

Compatibility issues with websites and applications

One of the most significant issues with Internet Explorer is its compatibility with certain websites and applications. As technology advances, many websites and applications are designed to work optimally with newer browsers like Google Chrome and Mozilla FirefoThis can lead to compatibility issues with Internet Explorer, resulting in errors, slow loading times, and other frustrating issues.

Slow performance and crashes

Another common problem with Internet Explorer is slow performance and crashes. This can be caused by various factors such as large file sizes, outdated software, or malware infections. Slow performance can be especially frustrating when browsing the internet or trying to complete important tasks online.

Security vulnerabilities

As one of the most widely-used web browsers in the world, Internet Explorer has been the target of numerous security attacks over the years. Vulnerabilities in the browser can put users’ personal information and sensitive data at risk. It’s important to keep Internet Explorer updated and to take other security measures such as using antivirus software and avoiding suspicious websites.

Solutions to common issues

Fortunately, there are several solutions to common issues faced by Internet Explorer users. For compatibility issues, users can try using compatibility mode or switching to a different browser. To improve performance, clearing the browser cache, disabling add-ons, or updating software can be helpful. For security vulnerabilities, installing updates and using antivirus software can help protect against attacks.

By taking these steps, users can enjoy a smoother and more secure browsing experience with Internet Explorer.

Alternatives to Internet Explorer

While Internet Explorer has been a popular browser for many years, it’s not the only option available. In fact, there are numerous alternative browsers that offer unique features and benefits. In this section, we’ll take a look at some of the most popular ones.

Overview of Popular Browsers

Google Chrome

Google Chrome is currently the most widely used web browser in the world. It’s known for its fast browsing speed and seamless integration with Google services like Gmail and Google Drive. Chrome also offers a vast library of extensions and add-ons that allow users to customize their browsing experience.

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Mozilla Firefox

Firefox is another popular web browser that’s been around since 2002. It’s known for its strong privacy features and open-source development model. Firefox also offers a wide range of extensions and add-ons, and it’s often praised for its fast browsing speed.


Safari is the default browser for Apple devices, including iPhones, iPads, and Mac computers. It’s known for its clean and simple interface, as well as its seamless integration with other Apple services like iCloud and Apple Music. Safari also offers strong privacy features and fast browsing speed.

Microsoft Edge

Microsoft Edge is the successor to Internet Explorer and was first introduced in 2015. It’s known for its sleek and modern design, as well as its integration with Windows 10. Edge also offers a range of features, including support for extensions and add-ons, and strong security features.

Comparison of Features and Performance

When it comes to choosing a web browser, there are several factors to consider. Some users prioritize browsing speed, while others value privacy and security. Here’s a brief comparison of some of the key features and performance metrics of the browsers we’ve discussed:

Browser Browsing Speed Privacy Features Extension Support User Interface
Chrome Fast Moderate Yes Modern
Firefox Fast Strong Yes Customizable
Safari Fast Strong Limited Simple
Edge Fast Strong Yes Modern

Pros and Cons of Using Alternative Browsers

While each of these browsers has its own unique features and benefits, there are also some potential drawbacks to consider. For example, some users may find that certain websites or applications are not compatible with their preferred browser. Additionally, some browsers may require more resources or have higher system requirements than others.

Ultimately, the best browser for you will depend on your specific needs and preferences. It’s always a good idea to try out a few different options and see which one works best for you.


In conclusion, Internet Explorer may have been around for over two decades, but it remains a valuable tool for browsing the internet. Its user-friendly interface, advanced security features, and compatibility with various websites and applications make it a reliable choice for personal and professional use.

Despite the growing competition from other browsers, Internet Explorer has a loyal user base that appreciates its ease of use and familiarity. However, it’s important to note that there are alternative browsers like Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox that offer similar features and performance.

As technology continues to evolve, so will web browsers. It’s likely that we’ll see more updates and improvements to Internet Explorer in the future, but it’s also important to keep an eye on emerging technologies and trends.

At Digi Waz, we strive to provide timely and insightful coverage of the latest digital trends and advancements. Stay tuned to our website for more informative articles like this one.


  • Microsoft.com
  • Statcounter.com
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