Microsoft has made a number of changes to their Web browser with the release of Internet Explorer 8. Though they have good intentions, you may find some new features may be more of an annoyance than helpful. In this article, we'll review some of these possible annoyances and their fixes.
Remove the history and favorites from the address bar results
In earlier versions of Internet Explorer (IE), as you type an address, it would list matching URLs of sites as you type. Then you could select the desired URL without having to type the full address. As you've probably noticed, Microsoft has added your browsing history and favorites to the AutoComplete feature of the address bar in IE 8.
I think Microsoft had good intentions, but I don't care for the new AutoComplete functionality. It can cause some confusion by listing expired pages for account-based sites and irrelevant results. It can also be a privacy problem, as it shows page titles in addition to the simple URLs.
If you want to remove the history and favorites from the AutoComplete results and show only previously typed URLs, here's how:
Prevent coloring of tabs by turning off Tab Grouping
After doing some browsing in IE 8, you'll probably notice certain tabs being colored, such as Figure 2 shows. This is part of the tab grouping feature. If you open a link in a new tab, the new tab will be a part of the same group. However, all these colored tabs can get annoying and confusing.
If it's not a helpful feature for you, you can easily turn off tab grouping. Open the Internet Options windows and in the Tabs section, click the Settings button. Then simply uncheck the Enable Tab Groups option, as you see in Figure 3.
Disable the ability to restore previous browser sessions
Another feature Microsoft introduced in IE 8 is the restoration of previous sessions, accessible by clicking Tools > Reopen last browsing session.
The ability to reopen the entire last browsing session is quite helpful, but also brings up privacy issues when sharing your computer. Luckily, you can disable the feature, in both home and professional editions of Windows.
Here's how to disable the restoration feature in XP Professional, using the Group Policy settings:
The process is similar in Windows Vista Business, Enterprise, and Ultimate or in Windows 7:
A trick I've found in the Home editions of Windows--or any edition or version of XP and Vista--is to prevent IE from storing the last session details/history: