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XP loaded without IE, will auto updates still be available?


Basil
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I have built up an nLite disc to install XP Pro with all my laptop drivers and settings, and it works fine. I am wondering if I choose NOT to install Internet Explorer 6 at all, can I still get auto updates and set a custom auto update to not install IE afterwards? I use Firefox for browsing. Or is IE hard coded into auto updating? Any gotchas if I also say do not install Media Player, as I also use something else for that purpose? Cheers.

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Be careful removing IE entirely - Windows Update no longer uses IE for downloading or installing updates, but if you don't install IE that means you won't be installing wininet or urlmon binaries, which WinHTTP uses from time to time to do connection-based security and zone lookups. Not having those binaries can actually cause issues with WinHTTP apps (like Windows Update). It's not a guarantee, but it's still possible too. Also, any applications that host the WebBrowser Control (WebOC) will not be able to display anything, as mshtml will not be on the system either.

I am usually all for doing what you want (hey, it's your box after all ;)), but removal of IE from a Windows system isn't necessarily a wise way to go, as other components rely a lot on certain IE components for functionality (even including Explorer). If you don't use it, it is probably better (functionality-wise) to simply leave the latest version installed (IE8) and patch it regularly. This way it stays patched, you still have the necessary supporting components on the system that IE provides, and you can still use whatever browser you want other than IE.

I can't speak to Media Player removal, although that would remove default codecs and handlers from Explorer that you'd have to replace with something else. It's not as critical as removing IE though (Microsoft provides a version (Windows XP N) without WMP for the EU already).

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Great in depth reply, thanks for going to such lengths! I have to admit I didn't really understand a lot of the technical stuff, but I now know that I should just let IE sit there, I had no idea it was all so interwoven. Thank you again, much appreciated :)

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