If you launch Internet Explorer and receive an error message “Microsoft Internet Explorer has encountered a problem and needs to close,” there are several things you can do to try and fix the problem. Since IE is very integrated with Windows, it’s possible a program running in the background is causing it to crash. Or it’s possible there is an add-on installed that is causing problems. The following steps should help you troubleshoot the error in IE and resolve any issues you’re having.
Try To Recreate The Error in IE
If you can re-create the error when you do something specific, then this should help determine what is causing the problem with Internet Explorer. For instance, if you launch a website that has a lot of video on it, you might want to update your flash player. Or if you’re clicking on something in your toolbar, try disabling that toolbar in the menu. Internet Explorer 7 and 8 have add-on capabilities similar to Firefox. The add-ons are not necessarily from Microsoft and should be disabled as one of the first steps you take to troubleshoot the “Microsoft Internet Explorer has encountered a problem and needs to close” error.
To disable add-ons, go to Tools, then click the Manage Add-ons link in the menu. You might see several add-ons listed. For quick troubleshooting purposes, disable them add. If that corrects the problem, enable them one at a time until you find the culprit. Be sure to restart IE each time you make a change. If you disable all of the add-ons, and the problem continues then the add-ons were not the problem.
Upgrade To The Latest Version of IE
It’s always a good idea to be running the latest version of any browser. There are security patches and feature upgrades released in newer versions of Internet Explorer that help make it more compatible with the Internet. You can visit the IE website to download the latest version of IE.
Reset Internet Explorer
If you’re running IE 7 or IE 8, then you have the ability to reset Internet Explorer. This essentially re-installs it. You might lose your settings and bookmarks as a result, so make sure you copy your Favorites. To reset IE, click Tools, then Internet Options. Click on the Advanced tab and toward the bottom of the menu you will see a button that say Reset. Click that and IE will revert.
Disable Programs From Running At Start-up
A program that runs in the background might be causing Internet Explorer to crash. You can prevent non-essential applications from running using msconfig. Go to the Start button, then in the run dialog box type msconfig and click OK. Under the startup tab, review programs in the list you know do not need to run and uncheck them. Click Apply and then restart your PC.
Update Common Internet Plugins
Along with updating IE to the latest version, you should update plugins such as Flash and Java. Some website use these plugins heavily, while some do not use them at all. Updating Flash and Java will ensure you have the latest security and functionality necessary.
Viruses Can Cause IE To Crash
Viruses use your browser and Internet connection to do their deeds. If your PC is infected with malware, it could break your connection or cause IE to crash frequently. Reboot into safe Mode with Networking by restarting the PC and by tapping the F8 key until you find the boot menu. Safe Mode With Networking should allow you to get to the Internet and download Malwarebytes. Install the free version and allow it to update and scan. Remove anything it finds and restart the PC.
The Microsoft web browser is tightly integrated into the OS. In the past, you could not uninstall it without breaking something. You now have alternative web browsers you can use if IE becomes too problematic for you. If you continue to have with Microsoft Internet Explorer problems, be sure to join our free computer repair forums.