How to Install Internet Explorer Without a Browser
When you think of the Microsoft Windows operating system, you almost instinctively think of the Internet Explorer browser. Windows and IE go together like bacon and eggs or cheese on a pizza.
Though Microsoft has moved to Edge as their default browser, there are still instances when you might need to use Internet Explorer for compatibility purposes. But how can you install Internet Explorer when you don’t have a pre-installed browser? There are plenty of options for just such a situation. Read on to discover the many ways to install IE without using a browser.
Installing the IE Browser, Without One
When installing an internet browser, it may seem like a catch-22 situation if you don’t already have a browser pre-installed. After all, if you have no browser, how can you visit the Microsoft website to download Internet Explorer? Let’s look at our options.
It May Already Be There
The latest versions of Windows 10 have switched the default browser to the new Microsoft Edge. In doing so, Internet Explorer is now deprecated and unsupported. That being said, Internet Explorer is still included with the operating system by default, even though it is not prominently displayed.
Before pulling out your hair trying to install Internet Explorer, make sure that you don’t already have it tucked away on your system somewhere. Open your Start menu by pressing the Windows key and typing “Internet Explorer.”
If you see the Internet Explorer application displayed in the list of results, this means that you already have IE installed. Most Windows machines today still have IE pre-installed but hidden in-favor of the Edge browser, which is more secure and up-to-date.
Use the Terminal to get IE
If you find that your system doesn’t have Internet Explorer installed and has no other browser available, you’re not stuck. Open up the Windows terminal (either Command Prompt or PowerShell), and use the following command to obtain the latest Internet Explorer:
curl.exe -o IEInstall.exe https://download.microsoft.com/download/2/9/4/29413F94-2ACF-496A-AD9C-8F43598510B7/EIE11_EN-US_MCM_WIN764.EXE
Copy and paste the above command into the terminal on Windows 10, and press Enter to download the Internet Explorer install file. Make a note of where the file is saved, then run the downloaded file to install IE on your system.
Borrow Another System
If the terminal doesn’t work in your situation, the next easiest option may be to borrow another machine. You can download the Internet Explorer Installer to a USB thumb drive and then transfer it to your intended system. You could also download the file using a smartphone or tablet and then send it to yourself via Bluetooth file transfer or e-mail.
Use Your Windows Install Media
If none of the above options work for you, there’s still hope. You can install Internet Explorer using your system’s recovery media without the need for any active internet connection.
First, open your start menu and begin typing “Windows Features” until you see the option titled Turn Windows features on or off. When you click the item, a new window will appear with various features to add or remove. Alternatively, you can reach this screen by navigating to Control Panel > All Control Panel Items > Programs and Features > Turn Windows features on or off.
In the Windows Features list, scroll down until you see Internet Explorer 11 and select the checkbox. When you click the OK button, you might be prompted to insert your Windows 10 install media (disc or USB stick), after which Internet Explorer will be installed on your system.
It’s also possible that your system has been set up with a separate recovery partition, in which case Windows will not ask you to insert any media.
A Specific Use, But Easy to Abuse