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Five Neat Things to Do With the IE Back Button

written by: C.D. Crowder•edited by: Christian Cawley•updated: 12/20/2010

Everyone knows the IE back button returns you to your last viewed page. However, you can take advantage of this feature for many other reasons. Make the most of the IE back button with these five tips.

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    Hide Pages

    Back button It can be difficult to hide Internet pages when someone suddenly appears behind you or walks into the room. For instance, if you're shopping for a gift, you don't want the recipient to see what you're shopping for. Instead of minimizing or closing the screen, which often looks conspicuous, use the IE back button. First visit a non-related page. Then visit the page you want to hide. When someone walks into the room, press the back button and no one will be the wiser.

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    Refresh a Page

    Have you ever had an Internet Explorer page suddenly freeze while trying to go to the next page? Pressing the refresh button may not work or it results in a blank page. This is where the back button comes into play. Press the Internet Explorer back button instead of the refresh button. Suddenly, you are returned to your previous page. You can then visit the problematic page without issue. This is the perfect way to correct Internet Explorer loading errors. More often than not, pressing the back button resets the connection with the server in a way the refresh button does not.

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    Clear Forms

    Often times, you've entered all your personal data into a form before reading the privacy policy or terms of a website. You may have entered data incorrectly, such as skipping a text box. Instead of backspacing each box, press the back button to clear the form without any chance of accidentally submitting the form. The form is cleared and no information is shared with the website. When you open the form again, it is blank and ready to be filled.

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    Skip Pages with the IE Back Button

    The IE back button can be used to skip pages while browsing. One reason to skip pages is when you accidentally log out of a website. On many sites, you can press the back button to automatically log back in without revisiting the log in page. This allows you to skip the main log in screen and any introduction screens. Using the back button also allows you to easily revisit numerous pages in your history without having to use the history section of Internet Explorer.

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    Keep Shopping History Easily Accessible

    It can become confusing having multiple tabs or web pages open. When you are trying to compare prices or shop for specific items, the back button allows you to keep your entire shopping history easily accessible with the press of a button. If you can't remember the name of the site you just visited, using Internet Explorer's history isn't much help. However, press the back button and you are returned to where you started. This isn't just for shopping history. The back button works great for keeping a complete history list when trying to find the perfect website for research, shopping, collecting and other interests.