Uninstall Internet Explorer 8

Martin Brinkmann
Aug 29, 2008
Updated • Sep 21, 2017
Internet Explorer

Windows users who installed the second beta version of Internet Explorer 8 on their devices started to report errors that they encountered shortly after doing so.

Steven Hodson over on Winextra was one of the first to point out display problems with elements not being in their right place on websites. Steve noticed as well that the Share This plugin, used by millions of websites, would lock Internet Explorer 8 completely and increase memory usage of the browser quickly to 300 and more Megabytes.

Any users who experiences these issues on a production machine may want to remove the Internet Explorer 8 Beta again from the system to go back to Internet Explorer 7 for the meantime. While it is suggested to test beta versions on development machines only, this is not always the case, and if the damage is done, it needs to be corrected.

The following guide explains how to uninstall Internet Explorer 8 on Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008.

Some Windows XP users might not be able to uninstall Internet Explorer 8. This happens to users who installed a previous version of Internet Explorer 8 and later on the Service Pack 3 for Windows XP. A warning is issued to those users during installation of Internet Explorer 8 that the installation will become permanent.

Affected users may still be able to go back to a previous version of Internet Explorer, but only if a backup or System Restore point is available that dates back to a time before IE8 was installed.

Uninstall Internet Explorer 8 in Windows XP and Windows Server 2003

  • From the Start menu, open Control Panel and click Add or Remove Programs
  • Click Windows Internet Explorer 8 Beta 2 and then click Remove.
  • Your computer will be reverted to Internet Explorer 6 + previous IE6 security updates or Internet Explorer 7 + previous IE7 security updates depending on what you had before the upgrade.
  • You can confirm that by clicking Help, then About Internet Explorer next time you launch Internet Explorer.
  • Be sure to check for any new security updates.

Uninstall Internet Explorer 8 in Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008

  • From the Start menu, open Control Panel and click Programs
  • Click Programs and Features and click View Installed Updates (located in the left side menu
  • Select Windows Internet Explorer 8 and Uninstall
  • Your machine will be reverted to IE7 + previous IE7 security updates
  • You can confirm that by clicking Help, then clicking About Internet Explorer next time you launch Internet Explorer.
  • Be sure to check for any new security updates.
Uninstall Internet Explorer 8
Article Name
Uninstall Internet Explorer 8
Find out how to uninstall Internet Explorer 8 from a Windows machine, and what you can do if the web browser won't install properly anymore.
Ghacks Technology News

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  1. Rajesh Gowda said on April 13, 2011 at 11:27 am

    Hello all,

    If you do not find SPUNINST folder under C:\Windows\ie8
    Please copy the same folder structure from another server and run spuninst.exe.

    It would probably as some files that may be required to uninstall, as and when it asks for a file find the file in another pc and copy it on to the PC.

    IMP: IEENCODE.DLL.000 file is required.
    I could not find this file any location.
    What i did was, i copied the IEENCODE.DLL file to another location and renamed it as IEENCODE.DLL.000
    and feed this file when uninstaller asks.

    done.. your IE 8 is uninstalled successfully!

  2. elena said on December 16, 2009 at 12:27 am

    thanks so much!
    i updated onto IE8 a couple weeks ago, and i hated it, so i just stop using IE and downloaded google chrome, but that dowsnt let you work online so i had to go back to IE, but i just couldnt work with the one i had so i came over here and BAM! its gone
    thanks lots….again

  3. Lindsay said on July 3, 2009 at 11:09 pm

    Internet Explorer 8 just plain SUCKS! Had best luck with Glary Absolute Uninstaller freeware!

  4. Josefina said on June 12, 2009 at 6:59 am

    I took out Internet Explorer 8 in Windows Vista, I diiid I am soo happy thank so much for your help, for me IE 8 is a really bad prograaaam

  5. stiv said on June 6, 2009 at 1:36 am

    THANK YOU,, this ie8 wudnt let me on sum sites that yu download stuff off of,, it was pretty stupid,, it kept kicking me off,, and/or freezing my computer,, microsoft,, yu suck,, check the new updates b4 making ppl upgrade,,

  6. bill m said on May 23, 2009 at 9:05 pm

    download revo uninstaller. You will see the ie8 graphic on the screen. You will also need to download and use an app called unlocker. Job done. (win xp pro sp3)

  7. Michelle said on May 8, 2009 at 11:06 pm

    I have a question. We downloaded IE 8 (we have Vista and had IE 7 before) and now we get a pop up saying “Do you want to continue running scripts? yes/no” every time we click on IE. It does nothing whether we say yes or no. It’s frustratng as a pop up initially but also stops us from opening links. We tried going to internet options and disabling the notice but it STILL happens?

    What do we do:?

  8. Manx said on May 1, 2009 at 2:56 pm

    Try uninstalling using this method: http://tinyurl.com/d9xg5m

  9. IE sucks said on April 10, 2009 at 12:47 pm

    ie sucks…. dont install it to get head ache.

  10. Erica said on April 10, 2009 at 3:05 am

    I’m having the same issue. Yesterday, I tried to uninstall it and got an error message. (invaild syntax. c command is not allowed more than one time). I also did a system restore to revert back to ie7. I got rid of ie8. then, ie7 was disabled. I had XP Sp3 before ie8. I’m not sure what to do here.

  11. Hudson said on March 30, 2009 at 6:36 pm

    I too downloaded the latest virus (IE8) when on restart it kept crashing. Finally able to get things running long enough to uninstall and go back to 7, but still having crashes. Scanned for malware and/or viruses but nothing there. Any suggestions??

  12. ah said on March 21, 2009 at 12:32 am

    I went through all this and this is how I was able to reverse it. On the page that has uninstall updates (where this article says IE8 should be located), the lower left has a spot to show windows updates, click on this. under this page I was able to find IE 8 and uninstall it. I could not find it anywhere else, the command prompts did not work, I could not find spuninst.exe. I hope this works for someone else.

  13. Koster said on February 26, 2009 at 2:51 am

    i get the same as sunson. sooooooooooooooooooo frustrated.

  14. sunson said on January 17, 2009 at 7:22 pm

    it says
    invaild syntax. c command is not allowed more than one time !!!!!!!!!!!!!

  15. mo said on January 1, 2009 at 7:20 am

    thank you. I was about to get in trouble with internet explorer 8. It messed up my northon anti virus and it was super slow. i couldn’t do sytem restore for some reason can someone tell me how to do system restore

  16. Freakin Pissed said on December 27, 2008 at 11:27 am

    OK: For Real this time! 9 HOURS LATER! This is exactly HOW TO REMOVE WIE8 Beta 2 for those of us who aren’t familiar with how to program a computer!

    Alternative steps for Windows Vista or for Windows Server 2008
    To uninstall Internet Explorer 8 Beta 2 in Windows Vista or in Windows Server 2008, follow these steps:
    Carefully select and then copy the following command:
    FORFILES /P %WINDIR%\servicing\Packages /M Microsoft-Windows-InternetExplorer-8*.mum /c “cmd /c echo Uninstalling package @fname && start /w pkgmgr /up:@fname /norestart”

    Click Start, and then type cmd.exe in the Start Search box. In the list of programs, right-click Cmd.exe, and then click Run as administrator. (I did NOT have to use Run as admistrator option)

    Note If you are prompted for an administrator password or for confirmation, type the password, or click Continue. Right-click inside the Administrator: Command Prompt window, and then click Paste to paste the command that you copied in step 1.

    Press ENTER to uninstall Internet Explorer 8 Beta 2. When the uninstall program is finished, restart your computer.

    Verify that your earlier version of Internet Explorer was restored.

    If this method did not work for you, please contact support for Internet Explorer 8

    (http://support.microsoft.com/oas/default.aspx?prid=12357) for additional help.

  17. Freakin Pissed said on December 27, 2008 at 9:55 am

    PSS: This is what I get for EVERY webpage I try to open:

    Internet Explorer cannot display the webpage

    What you can try:

  18. Freakin Pissed said on December 27, 2008 at 9:54 am

    PS: none of my security systems work; none of my search bars work; nothing works! PLEASE HELP!

  19. Freakin Pissed said on December 27, 2008 at 9:53 am

    Alright, I’ve tried EVERYTHING in this thread. None of my programs work. I can’t search the internet; all the upgrades I keep installing aren’t helping; there is NO files named above found ANYWHERE on my VISTA os; no program to run as mention by anonymous; no unintall found; no upgrade files to remove; I run multiple businesses from my network and I can’t do ANYTHING (nor can my employees) with Internet Explorer 8; what a freakin mistake to upgrade to this version;

    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE Someone help me and all of us get out of this MESS!


  20. Jerry said on December 12, 2008 at 12:50 am

    Thanks for the uninstall explorer 8 Beta from Vista. It worked great, my problems are over and my Norton 360 now works, amoung other things

  21. R.P. Singh said on December 6, 2008 at 11:33 am

    I’m fully satisfied with Mark’s comment. I also tried to find out the uninstall file in the windows dir., program files, installed updates list but I could not find it. Isn’t there any way to uninstall the IE 8 beta 2?

  22. Mark said on October 26, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    I have IE8 B2 on my Vista Business, and want it gone.

    I must make it clear none of the solutions in this thread work .My IE8 seems to be in the IE folder and is not removable through the methods listed.

    I think quite a few people have this problem, and people keep writing: go to program/feature/updates folder and uninstall or run the spuninst.exe or goto the IE8 folder in the windows directory – for me and many other people none of these things exists and can not be done.

  23. Anonymous said on October 8, 2008 at 3:27 pm

    Just go to Run and insert this:


  24. Al said on October 6, 2008 at 4:14 pm

    I also could not find IE8 in the Add/Remove programs.

    I searched again and found it under “Windows Internet Explorer 8 Beta 2”

    I was then able to remove it and go back to IE7

  25. Anonymous said on September 13, 2008 at 7:08 am

    theres an easier way and fairly painless. enter your (C:) Drive, enter “WINDOWS”, look for “ie8”. there are a lot of files there but find, “spuninst” (click it of course), and that should uninstall Internet Explorer 8. and the same goes for all the I.E’s.

  26. Grr... said on September 6, 2008 at 10:12 pm

    XP Pro. SP2. Can’t find IE8 in the Add/Remove Programs

  27. Lee said on September 3, 2008 at 9:55 am

    “IE 8 Beta 1 for Life says, August 30th, 2008
    *Click Programs and Features and click View Installed Updates

    If only it could be found there…If only…

    Ditto, am unable to uninstall IE8 now as it’s not displaying under Instaled Updates. Am getting a lot of supposed connection problems and Pages not found until I switch to compatibility mode. Also IE8 crashes (and recovers) way too often at the mo. I NEED TO GET RID OF IT. Grrr

  28. Get-Thread said on August 31, 2008 at 12:38 pm

    IE8 in my computer the memory usage is 30 MB compared with the Firefox (60 MB)

  29. IE 8 Beta 1 for Life said on August 30, 2008 at 5:24 pm

    *Click Programs and Features and click View Installed Updates

    If only it could be found there…If only…

  30. Steven Hodson said on August 29, 2008 at 11:27 pm

    Thank You!!! :)

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