In the past, Microsoft has introduced toolkits to Windows 7 to block Internet Explorer and other updates from the operating system. In anticipation of Internet Explorer 11 being bundled with Windows 8.1 and the Windows 7 preview being released, Microsoft has released a toolkit to block the deployment of IE 11 through Windows Update in Windows 7.
The IE 11 toolkit has been set up so that companies and individuals can block automatic downloads of IE 11 which may occur through the everyday Windows Update process, if those businesses or individuals feel they are not yet ready to upgrade their older versions of Internet Explorer on their network or to a PC which won’t be taking advantage of what IE 11 has to offer with its Modern-inspired design. The toolkit, which also supports a handful of Windows Server clients, does not block manual downloads of IE 11. Let’s see how it works for Windows 7 users.
Details on the IE 11 Upgrade in Windows 7
The official Internet Explorer 11 release will be available October 18, 2013, to Windows 7 users and those buying a new Windows 8.1 PC. For those upgrading to Windows 8.1 from a Windows 8 machine, you’ll have access to IE 11 as soon as you finish the upgrade. Microsoft released a similar toolkit to block IE 10 installation and upgrading in Windows 7 when that was released in the beginning of 2013. This process is similar although the blocker toolkit has become less invasive and more efficient than its predecessor, especially for older machines.
Internet Explorer 11 will come as a high priority update from Microsoft for Windows 7 users. If you have automatic updates enabled, you’ll automatically download and install IE 11. If you have automatic updates enabled but installation disabled, you’ll be able to stop the update from occurring in time to use the toolkit block IE.
How to Block IE 11 from Windows 7
Before you begin, make sure you’re logged in as the Administrator on your PC. You’ll need to run elevated commands and it’s easier to start off as the Administrator for the overall process.
Once download, click the on the installer.
You may need to see a security warning about the installation, if so, click “Run” to continue.
Microsoft will give you a rundown of the license terms of using the IE 11 Blocker Toolkit. Once you read through them and agree, click “Yes.”
You’ll be asked to extract the toolkit to somewhere on your PC. Click “Browse” to choose a place, then click “OK.” We recommend using your desktop as you’ll only need to keep the CMD file if you’re going to unblock the deployment of IE 11 down the line.
Windows 7 will extract the files and you’ll want to head to that folder.
Once there, click on the “IE11_Blocker” command script to run the toolkit blocker. This will run the command script and create the registry key that will block the automatic update of Internet Explorer 11 on Windows 7 machines.
Running the toolkit this way will only block it on your account on a Windows 7 PC. You’ll need to use the elevated Run command to deploy the toolkit in different ways.
Open the “Run” command on your Windows 7 computer.
You’ll need to make note of the location of where you extracted the CMD file because you’ll need to that to point the Run command to where it needs to look before running the command itself.
These are the four commands you can use:
- [location on PC of the CMD file]/IE11_Blocker.cmd /B (blocks delivery on local PC)
- [location on PC of the CMD file]/IE11_Blocker.cmd Name /B (blocks delivery on computer Name)
- [location on PC of the CMD file]/IE11_Blocker.cmd /U (unblocks delivery on local PC)
- [location on PC of the CMD file]/IE11_Blocker.cmd Name /U (unblocks delivery on computer Name)
Using the IE11_Blocker.cmd /B command is the same as clicking on the CMD file itself. However, if you want to do more than just block it, depending on your PC setup, you’ll need to run this commands as needed.
For more advanced Windows 7 users, if you don’t want to use the Microsoft toolkit to do this, you can manually create a registry key with the following settings:
- Registry Key Location: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Setup\11.0
- Key Value Name: DoNotAllowIE11
- Values: 0 = not blocked, 1 = blocked
We recommend using the toolkit. It’s the quickest way to block IE 11 deployment on Windows 7 machines.
If at any time you want to unlock the deployment and make the upgrade to IE 11 in Windows 7, you can run the above commands coupled with the toolkit to unblock the upgrade. You’ll run Windows Update from there, and upgrade IE 10 to IE 11 on your own schedule.
Blocking Deployment Through Local Group Policy
You’ll notice the toolkit came with a ADM command file. This allows you to create a new setting in the Local Group Policy to block deployment on the entire PC. Make sure you’re logged in as an Administrator before running the ADM file. This ensures that the Local Group Policy creation process completes properly.
Click on the ADM command file where you extracted the toolkit.
Once run, you’ll want to head to the following area in the Local Group Policy in Windows 7:
Computer Configuration/Administrative Templates/Classic Administrative Templates/Windows Components/Windows Update/Automatic Updates Blockers v3
Block IE 11 installation on the computer here, then save your settings.
Restart your PC, and you’re good to go. You won’t have to worry about anyone dealing with IE 11 on your Windows 7 machine.
IE 11 was designed for Windows 8 and Windows 8.1. There’s no denying that. However, Windows 7 users can take advantage of everything it has to offer if they want. Without the rest of the Modern environment of Windows 8 and 8.1, it may seem rather over the top and they may want to ignore the IE 11 release and update. Microsoft’s toolkit makes that possible.
Have you tried the IE 11 preview for Windows 7? If so, what are your thoughts? What do you love and what do you hate? We’d love to hear your opinion on IE 11 in Windows 7, so share it with us below!