Reset Microsoft Internet Explorer

IE9 logoThere are times when internet browsers start to run sluggish and do not perform as they should do, it could be due to Malware, a rogue or incompatible browser add-on or that it is just slow. So the below FixIt tool can allow you to automatically try and fix IE or also on the page are the manual instructions, personally I would always start with the automatic option.

“Is browsing always slow in Internet Explorer? Does it frequently stop responding (hang), or stop working (crash)? Do you receive error messages that indicate that Internet Explorer has “encountered a problem and needs to close”? Or that a Visual C++ “runtime error” has occurred in Iexplore.exe?

If so, then you might want to try resetting Internet Explorer. When you reset Internet Explorer settings, all add-ons and customizations are deleted, and you basically start with a fresh version of Internet Explorer. This article helps you reset Internet Explorer.”

 Run the FixIt tool from HERE

Microsoft to start Automatic Updates for IE in Windows XP, Vista and 7

ie_logoIn January of 2012 Microsoft will start pushing out updates for the aforementioned Windows Operating System versions, who’s users may have an older version of Internet Explorer (IE), this update will move you to the latest for your Windows version as XP cannot run IE9, so likely if you are running IE6 you will update to IE8.

Those users or corporate customers who have run the tool to deny any update in IE will have this option respected and you should not be updated to the latest version.

Today we are sharing our plan to automatically upgrade Windows customers to the latest version of Internet Explorer available for their PC. This is an important step in helping to move the Web forward. We will start in January for customers in Australia and Brazil who have turned on automatic updating via Windows Update. Similar to our release of IE9 earlier this year, we will take a measured approach, scaling up over time.

As always, when upgrading from one version of Internet Explorer to the next through Windows Update, the user’s home page, search provider, and default browser remains unchanged.

Good for Consumers, Developers and Enterprises

The Web overall is better – and safer – when more people run the most up-to-date browser. Our goal is to make sure that Windows customers have the most up-to-date and safest browsing experience possible, with the best protections against malicious software such as malware.

For consumers, the safety benefits are one of the key reasons that the industry has been moving towards automatic updates as the norm. This is increasingly important since the biggest online threat these days is socially engineered malware, which typically targets outdated software like Web browsers. The latest Microsoft Security Intelligence Report, which is based on data from over 600 million systems in over 100 countries, is good reading to give you a sense of risks that stem from outdated software.

We want to make updating to the best protection possible as fast and simple as we can for Windows customers. IE is how millions of Windows customers connect to the Web, so keeping that part of Windows updated at all times is critical to keeping them safe online. With automatic updates enabled through Windows Update, customers can receive IE9 and future versions of Internet Explorer seamlessly without any “update fatigue” issues.

I have to agree with many of the points raised in the post and the quotes from other sources in that keep your browser or even PC and all its software up to date is the best security option you can use, anything out of date is a risk.

Full information HERE from Ryan Gavin, General Manager, Internet Explorer Business and Marketing and Microsoft.

Story on Internet Explorer users being of low IQ was fake

When I first read this a week or so back I was thinking HUH, how do you measure that with an end user and link it to the browser you use, the data in their report was basic and bland with some text inconsistencies, that went on to say basically say IE6 to IE8 where the cause of lost revenue for companies having to adapt websites to work with said browsers, and this is where they lost me as that had nothing to do with the IQ of end users!

“A story which suggested that users of Internet Explorer have a lower IQ that people who chose other browsers appears to have been an elaborate hoax.

A number of media organisations, including the BBC, reported on the research, put out by Canadian firm ApTiquant.

It later emerged that the company’s website was only recently set up and staff images were copied from a legitimate business in Paris.

It is unclear who was behind the stunt.

The story was reported by many high profile organisations including CNN, the Daily Mail, the Telegraph and Forbes.”

Still did get the company some very expensive high profile media advertising for free!

Full article at BBC Technology News HERE

Microsoft Update KB2524375 to Block Fraudulent Certificates

Privacy 001This update is one you will wish to make sure you have installed, its purpose is to block a set of Certificates that had the digital signature of Comodo as the Certification Authority on them, this could have lead to users going to an unsafe or spoofed website, which had been exploited.

Mozilla the makers of Firefox Browser have also updated Firefox to take into account of these fraudulent certificates, so do update that browser to the latest version.

Microsoft is aware of nine fraudulent digital certificates issued by Comodo, a certification authority present in the Trusted Root Certification Authorities Store on all supported versions of Microsoft Windows. Comodo advised Microsoft on March 16, 2011 that nine certificates had been signed on behalf of a third party without sufficiently validating its identity. These certificates may be used to spoof content, perform phishing attacks, or perform man-in-the-middle attacks against all Web browser users including users of Internet Explorer.

The following domains are affected by the certificates:

  • login.live.com
  • mail.google.com  
  • login.yahoo.com (3 Certificates)
  • login.skype.com
  • www.google.com
  • addons.mozilla.org
  • Global Trustee

You should have already been offered this update over the last few days via Windows Update, but if you have not then run Windows Update or you can visit the download site of KB2524375  – Microsoft Security Advisory: Fraudulent Digital Certificates could allow spoofing HERE (just choose your Windows version and download and double click the file to install)

Read the full text of the advisory HERE

If you wish to double check to see if you have this update already, just open up Windows Update and click Update History, then look down the list for KB2524375, if you have it then you are ok, if not go to Windows Update or download from the link posted earlier.

Speckie

SoftwareI have a very bad habit of trying to type way way too quickly on web forums etc. and I mistype or misspell a lot s a consequence of this, so previously I had been using the great ieSpell, but this does not allow real-time spell checking.

So I came across this free application called Speckie for Internet Explorer while looking over applications that had been mentioned on forums and websites, which does allow real-time spell checking so I thought I would give it a test.

On install the setup will download any applications you may need and it does need Visual Basic C++ by Microsoft, so don’t be alarmed if that also installs.

Capture

You can get a large set of dictionaries for your language HERE as various countries are supported.

An in usage its not bad, fairly quick to underline the spelling mistakes , which then you can right click to bring up a list of suggestions or you can add the word to your custom dictionary if you know the word is correct.

speckle 002  speckle 003

Only works in Internet Explorer but covers IE6,7,8,and 9. But don’t despair Firefox user as you do not need a spellchecker as it already has one built in which works good.

Download HERE                                                                                 (works in Windows XP, Vista and 7 in 32bit and 64bit)

Internet Explorer 9 goes final

Finally one of the versions of Internet Explorer (IE) that I feel is a great successor to previous versions of IE in IE9 has been released, it had been downloaded by near 40 million users around the globe in its Release Candidate (RC) form and has been adopted by 2% of Windows 7 users already.

clean_browser_interface  pinning_by_grabbing

This version of Internet Explorer has been redesigned in a few ways, it now uses the power of your Graphics Card to help graphics and video show more smoothly on screen, to the security benefits possibly being better than that of Mozilla’s Firefox and Google’s Chrome. I run a test version of Mozilla Firefox in Minefield and its very quick but IE9 on the same PC for me is much quicker.

trusted_home  add-on-performance-advisor

Plusses

  • Pinned Sites – just drag the icon of the website in the address bar to the Task Bar in Windows 7).
  • Notification Bar – is better with much more information.
  • Download Manager – I have been DCRing (Design Change Request)this for the past few IE versions in beta, and its very good and also scans your downloads for potential malware for you.
  • Add On Performance Advisor – Lets you know what Add-ons maybe slowing our browsing down.
  • Tracking Protection – Stops sites you add to this list from tracking your progress around the site in question and where you have been on other sites.

Minuses

  • Bookmark Manager is not great and still doesn’t allow you to double click an entry to open the said site, you can right click and choose open, but too many clicks for my liking.

All the above said, its still early days and some more usage over the coming months with the release version will allow us to see if this is a great version of Internet Explorer, personally I think it is.

Give it a try and see what you think!

Learn more and Download from HERE                                                                               (compatible with Windows Vista and Windows 7, both 32bit and 64bit, sadly not XP compatible)

IE6 Countdown Timer

With Internet Explorer 6 having been around for near on 10yrs and with newer browsers not only Internet Explorer 8 and soon 9, but with Firefox and Opera all have improved security in browsing as well as speed. Microsoft are calling it a day of IE6 and have a countdown timer with information of % of users per country.

IE6countdown 001

“There are many benefits of upgrading to a newer version of Internet Explorer – improved speed, tabbed browsing, and better privacy settings to name a few.

The web has changed significantly over the past 10 years. The browser has evolved to adapt to new web technologies, and the latest versions of Internet Explorer help protect you from new attacks and threats.”

IE6countdown 002

While it was a great browser in its day its now time to migrate to a newer version of Internet Explorer or an alternative browser, if you are using IE6.

Webpage HERE

Test Drive Internet Explorer 9 RC

internet-explorer-9The Release Candidate for Internet Explorer 9 the next browser version in the series from Microsoft was release a few days ago and I for one actually like this version of Internet Explorer.

This is the last public test release before IE9 goes live, so its the final time that any major bugs can be ironed out. I do like many of the new options from the download manager that scans your downloads before allowing you to run them, to the new privacy options like “never allow websites to request your physical location” and the Tracking Protection as well as ActiveX filtering.

IE9 001  IE9 002

In this Release Candidate version the speed of Internet Explorer is vastly improved from the beta versions and the hardware acceleration works well.

If you like working with beta software or have a spare PC then give IE9 a try, you maybe impressed.

Download HERE                                                                               Compatible with Windows Vista and Windows 7, sadly not Windows XP

Windows Vulnerability in MHTML

securityBigMicrosoft have released a Security Advisory KB2501696 for Windows Operating System in which an attacker can affect Internet Explorer, and while this was release last week, I thought it maybe prudent in the light of a few news agencies now posting this information to highlight the information and workaround, until the full patch fix is released.

“The main impact of the vulnerability is unintended information disclosure. We’re aware of published information and proof-of-concept code that attempts to exploit this vulnerability, but we haven’t seen any indications of active exploitation.”

While this is a serious issue, it can be blown out of proportion by the media, when in reality its only a proof of concept and may not be exploited, however its always wise to keep your Windows version and all software fully up to date.

“The vulnerability lies in the MHTML (MIME Encapsulation of Aggregate HTML) protocol handler, which is used by applications to render certain kinds of documents. The impact of an attack on the vulnerability would be similar to that of server-side cross-site-scripting (XSS) vulnerabilities.  For instance, an attacker could construct an HTML link designed to trigger a malicious script and somehow convince the targeted user to click it. When the user clicked that link, the malicious script would run on the user’s computer for the rest of the current Internet Explorer session.  Such a script might collect user information (eg., email), spoof content displayed in the browser, or otherwise interfere with the user’s experience.”

More info HERE

Just click the FixIt logo below to enable and disable the workaround fix.

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