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Security Tweaks for IE8 using the Registry

Kathryn Scheller

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Can I make the following changes to IE8/Vista security using the Registry rather than using Tools/Options?

1. Allow previously unused ActiveX controls to run without prompt

click enable

2. Turn off for ActiveX controls

scroll to activeX and plug-ins

under automatic prompting for activeX

click enable

3. Turn off for Downloads

scroll to downloads

under automatic prompting for file downloads

click enable


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As per this KB article, you can set these options to what you want each to be under the security Zone key that maps to the security zone you want to change. You need to change the value in each security zone you want the setting to be "enabled" under. The security zones are:

  • HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\Zones\1 == Local Intranet Zone
  • HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\Zones\2 == Trusted Sites Zone
  • HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\Zones\3 == Internet Zone

Within each zone key, you can set the following DWORD values to 0, which equals "enabled":

  • 1208 == "ActiveX controls and plug-ins: Allow previously unused ActiveX controls to run without prompt"
  • 2200 == "Downloads: Automatic prompting for file downloads"
  • 2201 == "ActiveX controls and plug-ins: Automatic prompting for ActiveX controls"

(for reference, 0 == enabled, 1 == prompt, and 3 == disabled for almost all of the DWORD values found under the Zones keys)

Once you've set these, simply close all IE windows and the next time IE is opened, these settings should be "enabled".

In the future, you should consider using google. It would have found this for you (notice the KB article in question is the very first link returned).

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