If you’ve visited sites like YouTube using your shiny new Windows 8 and IE 11 computer, you may have encountered a very annoying issue where your browser crashed or freezes for no apparent reason. Actually, this is mostly related to IE 11, because I have had several clients complaining about browser crashing on Windows 7. as well.
Internet Explorer and Flash usually work fine together, but with the release of IE 11 and certain issues with recent versions of flash, there have been many more crashes and freezes than you could possibly solve. If you’re having trouble on a specific site, like YouTube, there is an easy solution. If this is a more general problem, you will need to troubleshoot a few more issues. Read on to find out how to get flash and IE 11 to work together again.
YouTube freezes in IE 11
I’m going to start with YouTube / Flash / IE 11 issues because I have heard this complaint more often from my clients. It seems to be happening on Windows 7 and Windows 8 / 8.1 on the home page or while watching certain videos. There are two main ways to solve this problem.
1. Switch to YouTube HTML5 player. Not all videos can be played with YouTube’s new HTML5 player, but many can. You can use the default HTML5 in YouTube player if possible by going to the HTML5 registration page:
First, you need to use a compatible browser. IE 11 is compatible and you should see a series of green checkmarks to indicate it.
At the bottom, you will see the Request HTML5 Player button. Go ahead and click on it and now this default browser will use the HTML5 player instead of the default one. However, this did not fix the problem for everyone, and since it is not possible to play all YouTube videos with the HTML5 player, you will still run into a freeze and crash issue. However, it is still recommended to enable this.
2. Enable ActiveX Filtering – I won’t go into details, but enabling ActiveX filtering will block certain interactive content and applications from loading in the browser. It is disabled by default, but enabling it fixes the YouTube freeze issue. You can leave it enabled for other sites, but keep in mind that this may cause the game or video to load incorrectly. You probably won’t run into this problem, but if you do, you can simply turn it off again.
To enable ActiveX filtering, press the ALT key on your keyboard when IE 11 is open, then click on “Tools” and simply click on “ActiveX Filtering”.
If you go back and click on “Tools” again, you will see that there is a checkbox next to it, which means it is now enabled. Restart your browser and try going to YouTube again and see if the problem occurs.
Fix general flash issues
If you are having problems with Flash on other sites like Facebook or elsewhere, the solutions above may not work or you may not be able to. Also, enabling ActiveX filtering can be annoying as it can block content on other sites. In this case, there are some steps you can take to resolve the issue.
Revert Flash to a previous version
Revert Flash to the previous version
If you experience this problem after installing the latest version of Adobe Flash, you may need to revert to a previous version. Several customers reported installing the latest flash version and then crashing. However, before downgrading to a previous version, make sure you have the most recent version installed because Adobe is aware of this issue and will probably release a fix, so if you do not have the latest version you should update first. to the latest and only revert to the previous version if that doesn’t work either.
You can follow Adobe’s guide to installing an older version of Flash which guides you through the entire process step by step. Then you will need to go to the Flash Player archive page and scroll down to the following list:
Before doing this, you will want to check what version of flash you have installed. You can do this by clicking the gear icon in the upper right corner and clicking on “Manage add-ons”.
Now click on Toolbars and Extensions and you should see a Shockwave Flash object listed. If you don’t see it, you need to open a web page with actual Flash content. You can visit this page before going to the add-on management dialog:
You will see the Flash version in the section below. You can now download the old version from the archive page, of course after deleting the current version.
Disable Enhanced Protected Mode
Turn off enhanced protected mode
IE 11 on Windows 7 and Windows 8 comes with Enhanced Protected Mode turned on by default. In Windows 8.1 it was actually disabled because it was causing a lot of problems. You can make sure it is disabled by going to the gear icon again, but this time clicking Internet Options.
Click the Advanced tab and then scroll down to almost the bottom of the list. There you will see the option “Enable Enhanced Protected Mode”. Make sure it is not installed. Make sure to restart IE 11 and then try the offending site again.
Compatibility View Settings
Display compatibility settings
You can also try adding the problem site to the Compatibility View option in IE 11. This seems to fix the problem for certain users on certain sites. To do this, click the gear icon and select Compatibility View Settings.
Go ahead and enter the name of a website like youtube.com or any other site that is causing IE 11 to crash or freeze. It’s not a good shot solution, but it does help.
Disable Adobe Flash
As a last resort, you can try disabling Adobe Flash. Obviously the downside here is that you won’t be able to view Flash content, but that might be ok on sites that automatically support HTML5 like YouTube, etc. Flash content on a specific site, but just don’t want to IE 11 kept freezing and freezing, in which case completely disabling flash would have been the best option.
To do this, you follow the same instructions I showed above to find the version of flash memory installed on your system (click the gear icon, click Manage Add-ons).
In the lower right corner, you will see a Disable button. I personally don’t care about flash and never really need it, so I just leave it disabled. With flash disabled, you no longer have to worry about IE 11 freezing. If you come across another solution or fix for this problem, feel free to post it in the comments. Enjoy!