How to Open Internet Explorer 11 in Windows 10

Internet Explorer 11 is on your Windows 10 computer, it's just hidden

What to Know

  • Internet Explorer in Windows 10 isn't obvious since Microsoft favors the Edge browser, but it is there and doesn't require any download.
  • You can find Internet Explorer in Windows 10 through search, in the start menu, or using Cortana.
  • Pinning Internet Explorer to the taskbar is the easiest way to keep it handy in Windows 10.

When Microsoft unveiled Windows 10, they demoted Internet Explorer in favor of Edge. But it's still there so you don't need to install anything extra. You only need to know where to look to find Internet Explorer 11 in Windows 10.

The Chromium-powered Edge browser is worth trying out if you have had poor experiences with the original Edge. This flexible browser runs better than the original since it's packing Chromium under the hood, just like Chrome and Brave. Microsoft recommends against using Internet Explorer 11 for general daily web browsing due to security issues.

How to Open Internet Explorer 11 in Windows 10

Edge is the default browser in Windows 10, so opening any website on Windows 10 will automatically cause Edge to launch. If you want to use Internet Explorer 11 instead, you need to locate and open it.

There are three ways to access Internet Explorer 11 in Windows 10:

  1. Locate it through search or the file manager and click it
  2. Have Cortana launch it
  3. Pin it to your Start menu or task bar for easy access

Since Internet 11 comes pre-installed with every copy of Windows 10, you don't have to download or install it.

Here's the easiest way to launch Internet Explorer 11 in Windows 10:

  1. Move your mouse to the taskbar and click the Type here to search box.

    You can press the Windows key instead.

  2. Type Internet Explorer.

  3. Select Internet Explorer when it appears.

  4. Internet Explorer will launch, and you can browse the web using the same experience you remember from Windows 8 and 8.1.

    Edge will still be the default browser, so you will have to manually open Internet Explorer 11 each time you want to use it.

How to Open Internet Explorer 11 with Cortana

If you have Cortana enabled, there's an easier way to launch Internet Explorer in Windows 10.

  1. Say Hey, Cortana.

  2. Say Open Internet Explorer.

    use cortana to open internet explorer screenshot

As long as Cortana is set up correctly, and can understand the command, Internet Explorer opens as soon as you ask.

Pin Internet Explorer to the Taskbar for Easy Access

While opening Internet Explorer 11 in Windows 10 isn't difficult, pinning it to the taskbar is a good idea if you plan to use it regularly. This allows you to launch the program any time you want by clicking an icon on the taskbar.

  1. Move the mouse to the taskbar and click the Type here to search box.

    You can press the Windows key instead.

  2. Type Internet Explorer.

  3. Right-click Internet Explorer when it appears.

  4. Select Pin to taskbar.

    Click Pin to Start if you want an Internet Explorer icon in the Start menu.

Since you don't need to uninstall Edge to use Internet Explorer, you can go back to Edge if you change your mind. There's no way to uninstall either Edge or Internet Explorer 11. It is possible, however, to change the default browser from Edge to something else.

If you want to change the default browser, you can go with Internet Explorer. However, installing an alternate browser, like Firefox or Chrome, is an option. Unlike Internet Explorer 11 and Edge, these other browsers aren't included with Windows 10 by default.