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How to Repair Internet Explorer: What to Do When IE is Corrupt?

written by: Rita A.•edited by: Brian Nelson•updated: 9/25/2010

If you are having problems with Internet Explorer then it may be corrupted. Internet Explorer is a stable browser but it still has problems and there are several ways to repair it.

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    Repair Corrupted Files

    There is a utility called Windows File Protection that keeps files on your computer updated with the newest Microsoft Approved Files as they are installed on your computer. It monitors the system files and if one is replaced or deleted it restores the file. This works with System File Checker (SFC). This scans the protected files and verifies the versions, and replaces missing or corrupted system files with proper versions. If it cannot find these files on your system it will ask you to insert the Windows setup CD. To run SFC you type the command at the Command Prompt.

    Click Start and type cmd in the Search field. Right-click on cmd and click Run as Administrator. The command prompt window should open.

    cmd 

    Type sfc /scannow at the C: prompt and press Enter. A scan of the files on your computer will begin. This will take a few minutes to complete. When it is finished, the box will disappear and it will not show any results or let you know if problems were found. Open Internet Explorer to check if this scan fixed your problem.

    sfcscannow 

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    Run Internet Explorer in "No Add-Ons" mode

    If an add-on is damaged it can cause problems and conflicts with Internet Explorer. The trick is to start Internet Explorer with No Add-Ons at all. If it works fine then you know an add-on is causing the problem. You will need to turn on one add-on at a time until you determine which add-on is causing the problem.

    To start Internet Explorer with No Add-Ons

    Click Start and type Internet Explorer in the Search field. Click Internet Explorer (No Add-Ons). Internet Explorer will open without add-ons, toolbars, or any plug-ins.

    There are other troubleshooting steps you can do such as repairing Internet Explorer.

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    Reset Internet Explorer Browser Settings

    You can reset Internet Explorer to its default configuration settings to see if the problem is being caused by the configuration settings. Please note that when you reset Internet Explorer browser settings it will disable all add-ons, plug-ins and toolbars installed. If you want to use any of these in the future they will have to be reinstalled.

    Open Internet Explorer and click Tools in the top left. Click Internet Options then click the Advanced tab. Click the Reset button under Reset Internet Explorer Settings.

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    Clear Cache in Internet Explorer

    There can be corruption in the temporary Internet files used by Internet Explorer. You can clear the cache to fix this problem.

    To do this in Internet Explorer 7:

    Open Internet Explorer 7 and click Tools then Delete Browsing History. In Delete Browsing History click the Delete All button. Click the checkbox next to Also delete files and settings stored by add-ons then click OK.

    To do this in Internet Explorer 8

    Open Internet Explorer 8 and click Safety then Delete Browsing History. In Delete Browsing History, click the Delete button.

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    Reset Security Settings

    Sometimes security settingsg in Internet Explorer can cause problems with some websites. You can go back to the default security settings to determine if this is the problem. To do this:

    Open Internet Explorer and click Tools then Internet Options. Click the Security tab and select Reset all zones to default level and click OK.