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About ActiveX Filtering

ActiveX Filtering TestDrive Demo

ActiveX Filtering allows you to browse the Web without running any ActiveX controls.

As you browse the Web, you may encounter webpages that don't work properly unless you install an ActiveX control. ActiveX controls are powerful browser plugins that enable many rich web experiences. However, many of these controls are written by 3rd parties and Microsoft cannot guarantee their quality.

After installing an ActiveX control to use on a particular site, you may find that this control is now running on many other websites as well. Sometimes, such controls may be used to display content that you don't want to see, and they might even prevent you from having a good experience when viewing the webpage. Moreover, ActiveX controls may introduce performance, reliability, security or privacy issues while browsing.

ActiveX Filtering puts you even more firmly in control of the ActiveX controls running in your browser. When ActiveX Filtering is enabled, you can choose which websites you want to allow to run ActiveX controls. Sites you have not approved cannot run these controls, and the browser will not show prominent notifications prompting you to install or enable them.

Try it out!

You can test-drive ActiveX Filtering by following the instructions below!

First, enable ActiveX Filtering via the Tools Menu:

Tools Tools menu icon > Safety > ActiveX Filtering

When you visit a webpage that contains ActiveX controls, IE will prevent the controls from loading. IE displays an icon in the address bar to indicate that the ActiveX controls have been filtered:

Screenshot of the ActiveX Filtering icon on IE's Address Bar

If you visit a webpage that contains ActiveX content you want to view, you can simply turn off filtering for that website. Click the icon to display the fly-out window.

Screenshot of the Flyout window for ActiveX Filtering

From here you can choose to turn off ActiveX Filtering. Once you take action, IE refreshes the page to ensure that all ActiveX content on the webpage runs. Now that you've turned off ActiveX Filtering for the webpage, the icon on the address bar changes state accordingly.

After you've finished viewing the content, you can click on the icon and turn filtering back on if you'd like, or you can leave filtering off for this website.