IE11’s new Enterprise Mode (in build 9600.16596)

By | February 4, 2014

Yesterdays Windows 8.1 Update 1 leak (Build 9600.16596, video walkthrough here) has an updated version of Internet Explorer 11, version 11.0.3. It contains the new “Enterprise Mode” or EMIE for short. This post will explain what it does and how you can enable it.

EMIE

What is it?

Enterprise Mode is basically IE8 compatibility mode on an enterprise level, when it’s enabled for a specific site, this site will be displayed in compatibility mode for IE8. This is meant to ease the move to Windows 8.1 for enterprise Windows 7 customers. Many of their internal company sites (for keeping track of stock, accessing employee records etc.) were designed for IE8 or lower, upgrading Windows would also mean upgrading to IE11 so these sites would need some upgrading too.

System admins who are upgrading their company to IE11 can provide IE with a list of sites they’d like to be displayed in Enterprise Mode, or employees can manually turn on Enterprise mode via the tools menu if they sense a site isn’t working like it should.

ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley has a great, more in-depth article about why and how Microsoft is going to offer this Enterprise Mode: Check it out here.

How can you enable it?

Enterprise mode can be enabled using 2 Group Policies (in a corporate environment system admins would do this for their employees). Hit Windows + R and type ‘gpedit.msc’ in the Run window. In the Group policy editor, browse to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Internet Explorer, there you’ll find, among others, these 2 policies: “Let users turn on and use Enterprise Mode” and “Use the Enterprise Mode IE website list”.

policies

“Let users turn on and use Enterprise Mode”

manual

If you enable this policy, users can manually turn on Enterprise mode in the Tools menu of IE11. You can also provide a location to save reports about what sites users enable Enterprise mode on.

manual2

“Use the Enterprise Mode IE website list”

When you enable this policy you can specify a URL This can be an URL or a file on the disk (according to Rafael Rivera) with a list of websites that need to be displayed in Enterprise Mode, when a user visits one of these sites, IE11 will automatically display them in compatibility view.

list

If you still have any questions, let me know on Twitter: @BAV0

Lastly, a BIG thank you to @h0x0d, for discovering the group policies!