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Solutions: Tips for troubleshooting in Internet Explorer

I recently purchased a new computer with Vista and Internet Explorer already installed. I am finding that Explorer will quite often freeze up, and I have to close the program and start over — I get "program not responding." I also have a trial of Norton's Internet Security that was already on the machine. Do you have any ideas of cause and what I might do to solve this very annoying condition?

Internet Explorer problems can often be difficult to troubleshoot. This is how I approach troubleshooting them: First, run Internet Explorer without any add-ons. Click Start, Run and type "C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe" -extoff exactly as shown here (including the quotes) and make sure you leave a space between the last quote and -extoff. Internet Explorer will start with a message warning you that it is now in "Add-Ons Disabled" mode. See if your problems persist. If not, then your next step would be to run Internet Explorer as you normally would and then disable one by one the currently active add-ons. To do this: Click Tools, Manage Add-Ons, Enable or Disable Add-Ons. Disable only one at a time, restart Internet Explorer and test again to see if the problem persists. Do this until you find the offending add-on. Either remove it or check to see if there is an updated version (i.e. Adobe Flash). If nothing seems to solve the problem, another option is to reset Internet Explorer 7 settings back to defaults. To do this from within Internet Explorer: Click Tools, Internet Options, Advanced tab and then click the Reset … button. It will then display the warning window telling you exactly what this action does.

Send questions to or Personal Tech, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731. Questions are answered only in this column.

Solutions: Tips for troubleshooting in Internet Explorer 01/02/09 [Last modified: Monday, January 5, 2009 11:38am]
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