Remove / Uninstall Internet Explorer 8 from your Windows 7 computer
Internet Explorer comes with Windows 7, and fulfills more than one function; aside from being the system's default browser, and an alternate web browser after you've installed Firefox/Chrome/Opera, Internet Explorer is still used behind the scenes to display "web content", or HTML code in general. When you click on a program's help file, for example, the Internet Explorer's "rendering engine" is used to display that content; likewise, some applications rely on the operating system's underlying browser system (Internet Explorer for Windows 7), to display some portions of the application.
Caution: Given what we said above, we don't recommend that you uninstall Internet Explorer from your computer; it is, however, possible, and this tutorial explains how to do it. We assume that you are enough of a "power user" to figure out how to work around the limitations, and downright crippling effect at times, that follow removing IE from your Windows 7 PC.
Tip: since Windows 7 ships with IE8, you need to uninstall it as a program. Since then, Microsoft has released Internet Explorer 9, which is installed as an "update". See this other tutorial to learn how to uninstall IE9 from your computer, a different process altogether.
Delete Internet Explorer from Windows 7
Follow these steps to uninstall IE from your computer:
- Click on the start menu, and type the word "uninstall" in the search field. Once Windows 7 displays the search results, click on "Uninstall a program":
- The Control Panel will open with a listing of all applications that can be uninstalled from your computer; Internet Explorer is not one of them, since it is considered a "Windows feature", integral part of the operating system. (The exception is "beta" versions of upcoming Internet Explorer, which can be uninstalled the traditional way: how to uninstall a program in Windows 7.)
- To remove Internet Explorer 8 from Windows 7, click on the "Turn Windows features on or off" link displayed in the left pane, and enter the Administrator's password if prompted to do so.
- A separate "Windows Features" dialog will open, and take a few seconds (possibly over a minute) to load all the components you can uninstall from Windows 7.
- Once all Windows features have loaded, scroll down if needed until you see "Internet Explorer 8" - it should normally be in third position; in that case, no scrolling required:
- Uncheck the Internet Explorer 8 checkbox; then, click on the OK button to proceed. Windows 7 will remove Internet Explorer from your computer, and prompt you to reboot (restart your PC) to complete the uninstall process.
- The next time you login to Windows 7, Internet Explorer will be gone.
Re-install Internet Explorer 8 on Windows 7
As you may have guessed, the process can be reversed: to re-install Internet Explorer on your computer, simply follow the steps we explained above, but this time check the "Internet Explorer 8" checkbox before clicking on OK to apply the change.up ↑