Windows XP Internet Explorer Problems - Possible Causes
If you know the basics of IE problems, you need not call in any technician for repairing Internet Explorer in Windows XP again and again. You can solve most of the Internet Explorer problems yourself.
Among the different Windows XP Internet Explorer problems are:
- Internet Explorer shuts down as you are searching;
- Internet Explorer freezes and does not respond;
- Internet Explorer cannot print or closes at Print Preview;
- Internet Explorer redirects you to other sites;
- Internet Explorer won’t install; and many others.
You just need to know your browser to keep it in shape and if anything goes wrong, you can get into repairing Internet Explorer in Windows XP yourself. Though Windows XP Internet Explorer problems are aplenty, the root causes of many are the same.
Among the main causes for Internet Explorer problems are: add-ons and accelerators. Sometimes the components added by third party programs turn out to be incompatible with your version of IE thereby causing Internet Explorer to crash or IE 8 Freeze. Even an improper installation process loads a corrupt Internet Explorer that can give you headaches. With these common causes of Windows XP Internet Explorer problems in mind, let us see how to go about repairing Internet Explorer on your own.
Maintenance and Repairing Internet Explorer in Windows XP
Let us start from IE add-ons. While repairing Internet Explorer in Windows XP for any problem such as “IE does not start”, try to start IE without add-ons. To do this, right click on the IE icon and select Start without Add-ons. This will load your copy of Internet Explorer without any of the add-ons and accelerators - not even the default ones.
In many cases, the problem is with the add-ons. You may see that the problems are gone when add-ons are disabled.
What happens is almost every application (such as MS Office or Adobe products), puts its own add-on into Internet Explorer. For well-coded applications such as the ones mentioned above, there is no problem. But there are several others - your Download Accelerator or applications claiming to speed up Internet Explorer - that do not care much and create conflicts with other add-ons and accelerators.
If the problem is with add-ons and accelerators, I recommend you turn off all of them. Then turn on each add-on one by one, and see which one is creating problems. Once, the add-on that creates the problem is found, you can remove it or uninstall the corresponding program. Though it takes some time, this is the simplest approach to repairing Internet Explorer in Windows XP.
NOTE: If you are unable to determine which of the add-ons is creating problems, go for a RESET to get rid of Internet Explorer problems. However, a RESET will remove all of the add-ons and accelerators other than the default ones that came with your copy of IE8. To reset IE8, select Internet Options from the Tools menu or Control Panel. In the Advanced tab, click the Reset button. This will remove all extra add-ons and restore your IE to a fresh state.
You can fix several Internet Explorer problems using the RESET option, repairing Internet Explorer in Windows XP on your own, without the help of any technician. This works magic when IE8 does not start, IE8 gives a blank page, IE8 cannot open the home page, IE8 redirects you to other sites, and many more similar Windows XP Internet Explorer problems. You can always get the add-ons you need by reinstalling the corresponding program. However, make sure that the add-on will not create problems again before allowing the IE add-on.
More Tips on Repairing IE - Windows XP Internet Explorer Problems
Another step to identity Internet Explorer problems while repairing IE is to associate it with problems caused when you try to use some special application from within Internet Explorer. Some of the most common Windows XP Internet Explorer problems are: IE8 shuts down while at Print Preview; Internet Explorer 8 shuts down when you are searching; or Internet Explorer does not download anything. In all the above cases, you can see IE calling third party applications. For example, when you are trying to print from IE, you are initiating the printer (drivers) and when you are downloading something, you initiate the download manager.
You can go about repairing Internet Explorer in Windows XP when you call a third party application by checking the compatibility of the third party component with your copy of Internet Explorer. Make sure you have the latest application that goes well with IE. If the application is outdated, or if you are using its latest version on stale browsers (eg IE6), you are calling for trouble. Keeping both IE and “IE related applications” - updated - is an important part of maintaining and repairing Internet Explorer.
In some cases, the problem is known. One example is Internet Explorer won’t print or Internet Explorer shuts down at Print Preview if you have HP SmartPrinting technology turned on. Other applications such as Roxio and SuperNova are not compatible with IE8. You can check with the manufacturers of these products to get a patch for repairing Internet Explorer in Windows XP. Similarly, you can check for patches for other programs if you feel that IE is giving you problems due to these programs.
If none of the above works, the best thing you can do for repairing Internet Explorer is a reinstall. If you are using the default version (IE6) or IE7, I strongly recommend you try Internet Explorer 8. In many of my previous articles, I had asked people to install IE8 using Windows Updates instead of using a downloaded installer. With major search engines bringing in optimized versions of IE8, “Internet Explorer 8 optimized for Google” is the most stable browser you can get instead of the standard MS IE8.
Performing a Clean Install of IE8: If you already have IE8 or IE7, remove it using Add/Remove programs. If it does not appear there, chances are you installed it prior to installation of Windows XP SP3. In this case, you have to uninstall SP3 as well, so that you can uninstall IE. Prior to installing IE8, turn off your antivirus and firewall as they mistake temp installation files with Trojans and could give you a corrupt IE8 again. In this case, you will get the message that IE8 is installed but when you try to open it, you get IE6. You can turn them ON again once you are finished with installation.
This article listed the most common troubleshooting steps for repairing Internet Explorer in Windows XP. Please note that a reinstall is the last resort but often works to solve most Windows XP Internet Explorer problems. For any doubts or clarifications on repairing Internet Explorer or Internet Explorer problems, you can always use the comments section to get into touch with me!
List of Windows XP Internet Explorer Problems and Repairing IE8 (How to Speed up Internet Explorer 8)
This post is part of the series: Which is the Best Browser from Microsoft?
Which is the best browser from Microsoft? Certainly, the latest version of Internet Explorer is the best browser. However people are divided on the question. This series deals with IE, helps you determine the best browser from MSFT, helps you reinstall Internet Explorer in Windows 7, and more.
- How to Check the Version of IE and Other MS-Based Software
- How to Reinstall Internet Explorer in Windows 7 and Vista
- Problems with Internet Explorer in Windows XP - Repairing IE
- Printing Problems with Internet Explorer 8: Known Issues and Troubleshooting
- Managing Favorites in Microsoft Internet Explorer