How to Use the Pop-up Blocker in Internet Explorer 11

Block those annoying pop-ups in IE 11

Internet Explorer 11 comes with its own pop-up blocker, which is activated by default. The browser allows you to modify some settings such as which sites to allow pop-ups on, as well as notification types and preset filter levels. This tutorial explains what these settings are and how to modify them.

This tutorial is only intended for Windows users running the IE11 web browser (IE11 was the final version of Internet Explorer release for use with Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 in 2013. In Windows 10 IE has been replaced by Microsoft Edge although it is still available to use.)

Disable/Enable the Pop-Up Blocker

  1. Open Internet Explorer and select Tools (gear icon) at the top right corner of the browser then select Internet options.

    Internet options in Internet Explorer 11.
  2. IE11's Options interface should now be displayed, overlaying your browser window. Select Privacy , if it is not already active.

    Viewing the Privacy tab in Internet Explorer 11.
  3. The browser's privacy-based options should now be visible. Towards the bottom of this window is a section titled Pop-up Blocker, containing an option accompanied by a checkbox as well as a button.

  4. The option accompanied by a checkbox, labeled Turn on Pop-up Blocker, is enabled by default and allows you to toggle this functionality off and on. To disable IE11's pop-up blocker at any time, simply remove the checkmark by selecting it once. To re-enable it, add the checkmark back and select the Apply button found in the bottom right-hand corner of the window.

    The pop-up blocker is disabled in Internet Explorer 11.
  5. To view and modify the behavior of IE's pop-up blocker first select Settings.

    Pup-up blocker settings in Internet Explorer 11.

Pop-Up Blocker Settings

IE11's Pop-up Blocker Settings interface should now be displayed, as shown in the example above. This window allows you to create a whitelist of websites where pop-ups are permitted, as well as make modifications to how you are notified when a pop-up is blocked and to the restriction level of the pop-up blocker itself.

The top section, labeled Allowed sites, lets you add or remove the addresses of websites from which you wish to allow pop-up windows. In the example below, we are allowing to serve pop-ups within the browser. To add a site to this whitelist, enter its address in the field labeled Address of website to allow and select Add. To delete a single site or all entries from this list at any time, use the Remove and Remove all accordingly.

Whitelisting Lifewire website in Internet Explorer 11.

The bottom section, labeled Notifications and blocking level, provides the following options.

Play a Sound When a Pop-Up Is Blocked

Accompanied by a checkbox and enabled by default, this setting instructs IE11 to play an audio chime whenever a pop-up window is stifled by the browser.

Show Notification Bar When a Pop-Up Is Blocked

Also accompanied by a checkbox and enabled by default, this setting causes IE11 to display an alert informing you that a pop-up window has been blocked and giving you the option to allow said pop-up to be displayed.

Blocking Level

This setting, configurable via a drop-down menu, allows you to choose from the following group of preset pop-up blocker configurations:

  • High will block all pop-up windows from all websites, allowing you to override this restriction at any time by using the CTRL ALT keyboard shortcut. ​
  • Medium, the default selection, blocks all pop-up windows except those located in your Local Intranet or Trusted Sites content zones. ​
  • Low blocks all pop-up windows, with the exception of those found on websites deemed to be secure.
Blocking level setting for the pop-up blocker in IE 11.