Configure Internet Explorer 8 To Open Or Load Websites In Internet Explorer 7 Standards Mode

Microsoft offers IE8 which is a new version of Windows Internet Explorer that replaces the old IE7 version. However, it has been noticed that the new version IE8 has a number of compatibility issues. The main complaint related to IE8 includes frequent freeze, hang or crash issues while browsing or sometimes while opening a new tab.  

The cause of this issue is the rendering engine in IE8 which behaves in a different manner as compared to IE7. In IE8, by default the rendering engine used is IE8 standards mode which might not be compatible with some of the websites, thus causing problems while loading them.

However, to resolve this compatibility issue related to IE8, Microsoft offers webmasters with a Meta element which they can choose to put on their web pages so as to open or load the web pages in Internet Explorer 7 Standards Mode.

From time to time, Microsoft also updates the IE8 compatibility/ incompatibility list which includes all the websites which are compatible/ incompatible with Internet Explorer 8. But, not all incompatible websites use the Meta tag offered by Microsoft. Some of the websites might not load efficiently on Internet Explorer 8 if they are unable to comply with the stringent browser protocols.

Therefore, it is better to make necessary configurations in Internet Explorer 8 so as to open or load all websites in Internet Explorer 7 Standards Mode. In IE8, you can easily identify whether a website needs to be loaded in compatibility view or not, as for such websites, IE8 displays a small “broken paper” like icon towards the end of URL/ address bar.

To reduce the possibility of browser crashes in IE8, you need to display all websites in Internet Explorer 8 Compatibility View mode which would automatically open web pages in Internet Explorer 7 Standards Mode. To turn on or enable the Compatibility View mode in IE8 for displaying all websites, follow the below mentioned steps.

  1. You need to click on the “Tools” menu and then select the option “Compatibility View Settings”.
  2. Within the dialog box that appears, check or tick the checkbox corresponding to the option that allows you to display all the websites or web pages in Compatibility View mode.
  3. Finally, close the dialog box after you finish.


Once you have done this, all websites in IE8 will open in Compatibility View mode i.e. in Internet Explorer 7 Standards Mode.