Microsoft Announces Final Steps to Disable Internet Explorer 11

Microsoft has shared additional information regarding the upcoming end of Internet Explorer 11 (IE11). The company will allow customers to choose when the remaining components of IE11 will be removed from their devices. While IE11 has already been disabled on certain Windows 10 platforms through a Microsoft Edge update, users will have control over the timing of its complete removal.

Customer Control and Timeline

Microsoft has provided organizations with the ability to determine when to remove IE11 visual references from their devices using the Disable IE policy. This allows them to maintain control over the process and decide when to eliminate all traces of IE11. However, a small subset of exceptional scenarios where IE11 is still accessible will be redirected to Microsoft Edge in the coming months. This redirection ensures that users have access to a supported and more secure browser.

Previously, Microsoft had planned to remove all IE11 visual references, including icons on the taskbar and the Start Menu, with the May non-security preview release scheduled for May 23. However, with the recent Edge update that disabled IE11, users are now informed that “Internet Explorer (IE) has been retired and is no longer supported.”

Background and Incompatibility

Microsoft had initially announced the discontinuation of IE11 support in Windows 10 and Microsoft 365 in August 2020. The company later issued an official retirement announcement in May 2021. Since October 2020, IE11 has automatically launched Microsoft Edge when visiting incompatible sites. A comprehensive list of 7,604 incompatible web domains includes popular platforms like Microsoft Teams, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Google Drive.

Availability and Support

While IE11 is no longer shipped with Windows 11 and has been officially retired from various Windows 10 versions, it will remain available on Windows 7 Extended Security Updates (ESU), Windows 8.1, and all versions of Windows 10 client LTSC, Windows Server SAC, Windows Server LTSC, and Windows 10 IoT LTSC. Microsoft encourages users to transition to Microsoft Edge with IE mode for backward compatibility, as it will continue to receive support until at least 2029.

Steps to Transition and Collaboration

To enable IE mode in Microsoft Edge, users can toggle on the “Allow sites to be reloaded in Internet Explorer” option in the browser settings. This mode ensures compatibility with IE-dependent applications while benefiting from the features and security of Microsoft Edge. Microsoft urges customers to make the switch and offers a comprehensive guide on getting started with IE mode.

Microsoft’s collaboration with the Quad Partnership for Cable Connectivity and Resilience, as well as efforts to strengthen critical digital infrastructure, demonstrates its commitment to providing secure and reliable digital experiences. Customers can expect continued technical support and security updates for IE11 on compatible Windows versions throughout the lifecycle of those operating systems.


Microsoft is proceeding with its plan to permanently disable Internet Explorer 11, with customers having control over the removal timeline. By transitioning to Microsoft Edge with IE mode and removing all IE11 visual references, users can ensure a smooth transition while benefiting from enhanced security and compatibility. Microsoft’s ongoing support for IE11 on specific Windows versions and its emphasis on collaboration with industry partners demonstrate its commitment to providing reliable digital infrastructure.

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