Customizing Internet Explorer

Learn how to customize Internet Explorer 11 so the browser looks and functions how you want it to.

Internet Explorer add-ons

Add-ons add different functionality to Internet Explorer. For example, add-ons can add new search engines to the address bar, block ads, and keep you updated on current events.

To install an add-on:

  1. Click the drop-down menu in the address bar, then select the Add button in the bottom-right of the menu.
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  2. The Internet Explorer Gallery will appear. Click search providers on the left, then select the type of add-on you're looking for.
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  3. Select an add-on to learn more about it.
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  4. You'll be taken to a page with more information on the add-on. If you want to install it, click Add to Internet Explorer.
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It's important to note that add-ons are not necessarily created or approved by Microsoft. Many are created by third-party providers or even individual users, so they may not always be safe to install. We recommend reading user reviews carefully before installing an add-on.

Accelerators and web slices

Accelerators and web slices are types of add-ons that are available for Internet Explorer. Accelerators allow you to translate, search for, or map text you've selected in the browser. Web slices give you real-time updates for specific websites in your Favorites bar. For example, you could use a web slice to get quick updates on sports scores or the weather forecast.

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In our experience, web slices don't work consistently and aren't available for many websites, so their usefulness may be limited.

To manage add-ons:

If you don't like an add-on, the Manage Add-ons feature allows you to disable or remove it from Internet Explorer.

  1. Click the Tools button in the top-right corner of the browser, then select Manage add-ons.
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  2. The Manage Add-ons dialog box will appear.
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  3. Select the type of add-on you want to manage on the left. A list of installed add-ons of that type will appear. From here, they can be temporarily disabled or removed.
    screenshot of Internet Explorer 11