Internet Explorer 8 Can Be Uninstalled In Latest Windows 7 Build

Martin Brinkmann
Mar 4, 2009
Updated • May 28, 2017
Internet Explorer

A complaint of browser developer Opera that Microsoft has undermined competition by integrating its own Internet Explorer with the Windows operating system is currently being investigated by the European Union. If Microsoft is found guilty the company could face hefty fines and be forced to untie Internet Explorer from its next operating system installment Windows 7.

The latest build of the operating system Windows 7 (build 7048) which leaked to the Internet earlier this week apparently includes an option to uninstall Internet Explorer 8. While this uninstallation does not remove the tie-in of the web browser in the operating system, it does remove the Internet Explorer executable from the computer system.

Users should keep in mind that the Internet Explorer rendering engine is being used for various integral parts of the operating system, and that it most likely would require a rewrite to untie it completely.

It is unclear if the option to uninstall Internet Explorer has been added because of the complaint. It certainly looks that way considering that the option to uninstall Internet Explorer was not available in the beta build of Windows 7.

The real question is if it will be enough to please the European Union. Most end users will probably never make use of this option as it does not make a huge difference for most users. Many experienced users will install an alternative web browser like Firefox or Opera immediately after finishing the installation of the operating system.

Removing only the executable will not have an impact on system performance at all. What's your take on this? Should Microsoft offer an option to remove Internet Explorer from the Windows operating system?

Update: Windows 7 has launched in the meantime and while you cannot remove Internet Explorer physically from the hard drive of the system, it can be disabled.

Microsoft furthermore added a browser choice option to the operating system that users could make use of to install a different web browser with little effort on it as well.

Article Name
Internet Explorer 8 Can Be Uninstalled In Latest Windows 7 Build
Windows 7 users and administrators may remove Microsoft's Internet Explorer 8 web browser from the operating system after installation.
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  1. CONNIE said on March 6, 2010 at 10:18 pm

    IE8 keeps going into “not responding mode” and IE7 never did this. I hate IE8. MS has had enough time to get this glitch fixed. It is 2010 and nothing has happened.
    My new computer has IE8 and I want IE7. I want nothing on my computer that has any thing to do with IE8.

  2. Marco said on March 5, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    My default browser is Google Chrome, but sometimes I need Internet Explorer, because some pages works with Active X or only works with IE.

    For this reason, I would’nt uninstall IE.

  3. Blake Elias said on March 5, 2009 at 4:08 am

    In Windows XP I think you used to be able to remove it like Mike said, go Control Panel > Add/Remove Programs > on the left side: Add/Remove Windows Components > Find IE, uncheck. In Vista I went to the same place, but I can’t find IE anymore. Weird. Either way, I bet you could still delete the executable. At the very least there’s nothing making you use IE (how is it a monopoly?), and you can change the default browser (again, no monopoly)…who needs to remove it entirely?

    Nobody gets upset with Apple for bundling Safari with the Mac OS, did they? The folks at Mozilla could pull the same trick and say it’s not fair, it “undermines the competition” for Firefox on Mac. But they don’t because such a monopoly claim would make no sense, just like it makes no sense here.

  4. CardGameInstructions said on March 4, 2009 at 8:47 pm

    that’s is excellent, a choice for the user.

  5. Paul(us) said on March 4, 2009 at 7:51 pm

    There are many sites who are only want to convers (compitable) with the the Microsoft Internet brouwser. First fix that problem.

  6. Mike said on March 4, 2009 at 4:37 pm

    I agree with darkkosmos, most windows users are morons (say 70% of them) and uninstalling anything is “too time consuming”. Not to mention the option to remove IE is already their (just click “remove system applications”)

    I hope IE does not get taken out (IE8 is actually ok from a developer point of view and I don’t want another wave of idiots who can’t figuring something out for themselves spamming up forums), but if it is MS should put FF in just to annoy opera :P

  7. darkkosmos said on March 4, 2009 at 3:57 pm

    This is just going to lead to the problem of idiots who can’t figure anything out to uninstall the only browser they have. Opera is just complaining because they have about 1% share lol

  8. 1000FreeOnlineGames said on March 4, 2009 at 3:56 pm

    That’s a good for me

  9. Klemen said on March 4, 2009 at 3:27 pm

    It’s their OS, so why not integrating their own browser. You still need IE to download Firefox :)
    Uninstalling it is pointless, since some (older) software requires IE to run, and not the real default browser. And to be honest, IE8 doesn’t look half bad nowadays.

    There were rumors tho, that you would be able to choose which browser to install when installing the OS. That could be useful (and would only require browser software update after first login to the new OS).

  10. Danny said on March 4, 2009 at 3:03 pm

    It doesn’t hurt to have the option, but I hope it won’t uninstall IE when there are no other browsers installed. In other words: it should be idiot-proof.

    I probably won’t use it myself. I use Chrome as my primary browser and IE for sites that need it.

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