Troubleshooting and Internet Explorer’s (No Add-ons) Mode

In our previous post about IE’s Reset Internet Explorer Settings feature, we’ve discussed how incompatible browser extensions, add-ons, spyware or malware can cause compatibility issues such as application hangs in IE7.

In this post, we wanted to go into more detail about how to troubleshoot with Internet Explorer 7. So, how does one go about identifying the cause for toolbar or add-on program problems?

To identify if an incompatible browser add-on or extension is at the root of your troubles, we recommend taking advantage of Internet Explorer’s (No Add-ons) mode. The following are steps to do this:

  1. Click Start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools, and then click Internet Explorer (No Add-ons).
    If your browser appears to be working properly in Internet Explorer (No Add-ons) mode, continue with the following steps to help identify which add-on may be causing the problems. If you’ve used Internet Explorer’s (No Add-ons) mode and are still experiencing issues, try our KB Article, How to perform common troubleshooting steps for Internet Explorer 7 Beta. Information found here can help you further troubleshoot problems that may be connectivity and network-related or caused by a third party application or by a specific website’s code.

  2. To isolate the specific browser add-on that is contributing to the issue, you can use IE’s Manage Add-ons feature to pick specific add-ons to disable:
    1. Click Tools -> Internet Options.
    2. Click the Programs tab, then Manage add-ons (see figure below):

      Note: The Manage Add-ons option under Tools is disabled in No Add-ons mode so you must go to Internet Options, Programs, Manage add-ons to manually enable/disable add-ons.
      Manage add-ons

    3. Select an add-on in the Name list, and then click Disable (see figures below):

      Manage Add-on - Select an add-on to be disabled

      Disable add-on

    4. Click OK, OK again, OK again and then close IE.

  3. Restart IE normally and see if your problem is resolved.
    1. If it is, you should uninstall the specific add-on via Control Panel’s Add/Remove Programs or the applications own uninstaller.
    2. If the problem persists, you will need to repeat steps 1-3 until you have identified the specific add-on causing the problem.
      Tip: Disable several add-on’s at once to speed up your process of elimination.

In general, updating to the latest version of a toolbar or extension can resolve most issues. Below we’ve included a few commonly known problems and where to get the latest updates:

  • Google Desktop: Google has fixed an issue that was known to cause IE7 to crash when opening new tabs. The latest version is now available here.
  • MSN 1.02 Toolbar: The MSN 1.02 toolbar crashes Internet Explorer 7. The workaround is to disable the toolbar, using manage add-ons or, uninstall it. You can download the latest version here.
  • Microsoft Developer Toolbar: Older versions of the Microsoft Developer Toolbar does not display correctly on systems running Internet Explorer 7 Beta, and can cause hangs. You can download the latest version here.

The following is a list of known incompatible toolbars that can cause crashes or hangs in IE. We’re actively working with application owners to provide newer, compatible versions so please expect to see updated versions soon of your favorite toolbars. The current workaround is to disable or uninstall these when running IE7:

  • RoboForm Toolbar
  • Cooxie Toolbar
  • Diodia Download Toolbar 2.4.01
  • AskJeeves Toolbar
  • CitiBank’s Virtual Card Number Generator
  • Mojicon Dispenser 1.05    
  • Logos Toolbar

Check the Release Notes for Internet Explorer 7 Beta for the latest list of incompatible toolbars and where to find updated versions that work with IE7. The release notes also discusses some known incompatible programs and extensions as well as workarounds for common issues.

If you want to give us feedback or submit a bug on an incompatible application or extension, visit the Microsoft Connect site and sign up for our Internet Explorer Feedback program in order to access the IE pages.

As always thank you for using IE7!

Keryn Mark
Program Manager

Comments (44)
  1. Clinton Godlesky says:

    How about a grouped Favorites options. Say you can set a favorite which is 4 tabs at once. So when you select the favorite, all 4 tabs open.

    Also, in Beta 3, after some use, the browser will not allow you to browse anywhere. It says everything is unavilable. If I close the browser and open a new one, it starts working again.

    Sorry for posting here, but I had no luck trying to comment through the beta website.

  2. Aaron Sauve [MSFT] says:

    We actually have the ability to open any folder within your favorites in tabs. You can right click on the folder and choose "Open in Tab Group", or click the blue arrow that appears to the right of the folder when you hover over it.  Both of those should work!

    – Aaron

  3. Tim says:

    Any chance, that in future, all screenshots posted to this Blog, are done by someone that knows what they are doing?

    Posting such pixelated images here, just adds to our disbelief that IE7 is going to fix all the problems in IE6.

    If you expect us to look at IE7 as a professional product, the images you post should appear professional also.

    Mind you, thanks for not using jpegs anymore. At least we don’t suffer with those here lately.


  4. Hey guys….

    I have some of the intranet settings enabled for IE7+ on Vista 5472 and after some standard ActiveX add-ins from Microsoft and Adobe I end up with a warning box when ever I open IE7+ with the "Windows host Process (Rundll32)" pop up…..

    Any chance you could explain a little more about this…???



  5. Ervin J says:

    My workaround for the RoboForm Toolbar was to disable IE7. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    You see, between these two, RoboForm is far more useful and addictive.

  6. the monkey says:

    and somehow, i have no problems whatsoever!!!!!

  7. hAl says:

    Why not have IE detect it it has shutdown improperly (like MS word can) and when restarting after a crash ask the user to startup normally or with Add-ons disabled or with settings reset.

    Would it be possible to built in detection of what add-on causes a crash ? This could highly improve stability as it seems most crashes are cuased by failing 3rd party software ?

  8. AJenbo says:

    If you do implement crash detection then i would also be nice if it opted to open all the pages you where on at the time of the crash.

    The images for this artical are preaty horible, it looks like they where saved as jpg’s using mspaint and then converted to png, probably by some upload tool, it’s sad but it’s not somthing that will make me switch away from IE, after all tech guy’s aren’t grafic guys so it could be excused you, altho you should probably be supervised when posting on the blog ๐Ÿ˜›

  9. genn says:

    Can you add a function in the right click menu–"This Frame>Open Frame in New Tab/Window" like Firefox and Opera have?

  10. Russell Chappell says:

    I seem to have come across a bug which displays sporadic images in the wrong place. I have a table which is approx 8 columns and 230 rows. Using the 3 end columns to display a certain images the rest displaying text. IE7b3 seems to get confused to which image to display and I end up having the wrong image rendered for the first 20 to 30 rows. Checking the properties of then image it says its using the image displayed, but looking at the code it should be a different image.

    Is there any quick fix available or do I have to wait for the next BETA?

  11. ha says:

    please increase ability to save any web page.

  12. Russell, you might want to include specific URLs that display the problem.  I disabled all add-ons and still have problems with several pages on my site, including the following example pages:

    They work fine in IE6 Win, but IE7 Win renders them as dozens, if not hundreds, of screen-widths wide, such that accessing some of the content requires about a dozen screens worth of horizontal scrolls right.

  13. EricLaw [MSFT] says:

    @Russell: I saw this problem intermittently on some Beta-3 builds, but I haven’t seen this happen on any post-Beta-3 builds.  I suspect you’ll need to wait until RC1 for a fix.

    @Genn: It’s trivial to add a menu extension to open the current frame in a new window.  If you’re a developer, check out  If not, there are downloads available that offer this one.

    @AJenbo: Tab-recovery is a good idea and something that we’ll be looking at for a future release.  For now, this is something that a plugin could readily provide.

    @hAl: If the callstack points to the faulting plugin, IE will identify the faulting plugin and you may even see a WindowsUpdate page providing more detail about the failed plugin.

    @netweb: This is called the "Elevation" dialog. The problem is that you have an addon (perhaps the Adobe BHO?) that runs rundll32 on browser startup.  This requires a prompt for security purposes, because this rundll32 call executes outside of Protected Mode.

    @Tim: Sorry about the pixelated images, but I think it’s a mistake to conclude anything about IE7 from the quality of the quick little snapshots used on the blog. I hope you’ll agree that there’s more important things for us to concentrate upon?

  14. EricLaw [MSFT] says:


    The problem is the % margin inside the table. The work around should be something like this:

    <!–[if lte IE 7.0]>



  15. Eric, fix confirmed, thanks!

  16. leveling says:

    I think this is a good fix, hope u can do better.

  17. Lars says:

    I am trying to enable my add-ons but the manage add-ons option is greyed out.  Any suggestions on reolving?  Thanks.


  18. EricLaw [MSFT] says:

    @gflorek: Yes, band objects, toolbars, menu extensions, and all other IE6 extensibility points still work in IE7.  There should be no significant changes.

    On Windows Vista IE7, you will need to ensure that your addons work correctly in Protected Mode, which restricts where your add-ons can write to the disk and registry.

    @Lars: Are you on a domain where group policy might have disabled manage addons?  Is just the menu item grayed out, or can you get to it using Tools | Internet Options | Programs?

  19. IEBlog says:

    Hi there, itโ€™s Max again, and with the availability of our first release candidate (RC1) build of IE7,…

  20. This person has been in touch with me a couple of times but I&#39;ve not been able to respond. &quot;The

  21. AbdulRahman M says:

    Above mentioned steps do be followed done now its not hanging

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