Feb 032013
 

Microsoft have launched a new tool to block Windows 7 SP1 from receiving a future IE10 upgrade as an automatic update. IE10 is currently only available to W7 users as a Release Preview version (for testing) but the release of this tool is likely the precursor to an imminent launch of the final live version.

IE10 is already part of Windows 8 and is undoubtedly an improvement in performance and security over IE9 so why not let it upgrade your browser automatically?

The most obvious reason is that corporations may need to keep using an older version of IE for compatibility with existing intranet/business applications – or at least want to thoroughly test the final release of IE10 before rolling it out.

However, home users who never use IE at all (preferring Chrome or Firefox etc) may also wish to avoid upgrading IE automatically – the download of IE10 Preview Version is 20% to 40% larger than IE9 which gives an indication of how much extra is included – why update a program to a bigger version if you’re not going to use it?

Microsoft IE Blocking Tool – The IE10 Blocker Toolkit is a free download from Microsoft here. Although it will block the IE10 automatic update, you could still manually install IE10 later by downloading it from Microsoft.

The tool is a program file download – run it or save to your PC and run it from there. You must accept the license agreement then Browse to where you want to save the 4 files that comprise the Toolkit. Once the files are saved, open an elevated Command Prompt – click Start then type Command into the Search box and right click on the Command Prompt program link then choose ‘Run As Administrator’.

In the Command Prompt window, type CD followed by the full path to where you saved the 4 files (e.g. CD C:\Users\Bill\Downloads) then press Enter.

Type ie10_blocker.cmd /B then press Enter to enable the blocking of IE10 automatic upgrades. You should see a confirmation message: “Blocking deployment of Internet Explorer 10 on the local machine. The operation completed successfully.” Now close the Command Prompt window.

What The Blocking Tool Does – It creates a new registry key HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Setup\10.0 with a value name of DoNotAllowIE10 and a value of 1.

This value disables automatic delivery of IE10 via Automatic Updates or the Windows Update site ‘Express’ install method.

To Remove The IE10 Block – If the value of the new registry key is anything other than 1, or it does not exist, the IE10 update is no longer blocked.

Therefore either change the value of DoNotAllowIE10 to 0 (zero) or, more simply, just delete the whole HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Setup\10.0 key. To delete the key:

  • Press the Start button then type regedit into the Search box and press Enter to open the Registry Editor.
  • Browse down to select the above key, right click it and choose ‘Delete’ then confirm ‘Yes’ to delete it. Now close the Registry Editor.

Conclusion

Businesses and private users of other browsers can block automatic upgrades to IE10 using this toolkit. Advanced users could just add the registry key manually if they prefer but the toolkit provides a confirmation message which is useful to know that it has taken effect.

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