How to Change the Default Languages in IE11

Display webpages in the language of your choice

Man and woman saying how are you in different languages while holding hands

XiXinXing / Getty Images

Internet Explorer 11 supports dozens of global dialects, so it's straightforward to set a default language to match your preference through settings changes within Windows itself.

These instructions apply to Windows 10. The version of Internet Explorer does not matter.

How to Specify a Preferred Language for Browsing

Before a webpage is rendered, IE11 checks to see if it supports your preferred language. If it doesn't and you have additional preferred languages chosen, it checks them in the order in which you list them. If it turns out that the page is available in one of these languages, IE11 displays the page in that language.

To modify your preferred language:

  1. Press Win+I to launch the Settings app then click the Time & Language setting.

    Windows Settings
  2. Select the Language group from the left side of the window.

    Language Settings
  3. In the Preferred Languages section, click or tap the Add a preferred language option then click a language followed by Next.

    Install new langauge in Windows 10
  4. Each language offers slightly different customization features. Select the components you need then click or tap Install.

  5. The new language appears in the Preferred Languages list. Drag each language you install into a rank-order. Websites will default to the highest-ranked language on your list.

    Windows display languages

Browser Language Defaults

Internet Explorer does not independently control its language selections. Although you can launch the Language settings app through IE 11's menus, the operating system itself controls the language, and the selections you make in the Language settings app govern all other browsers, too.

The process for changing the display language for Windows 7 is similar, but the steps are a bit different.