February 16, 2022

Using Internet Explorer on Mac: How to Make it Work?

Using Internet Explorer on Mac: How to Make it Work?

While it’s probably not something you would of your own volition, there are times you might need to use Internet Explorer on Mac. Chances are your corporate intranet can only be accessed with IE, but you’ve only got a MacBook on your hands – what should you do?

If you’re wondering how to use Internet Explorer on Mac, there are some ways to do it, even though there is no official support for IE on Mac from Microsoft since 2005. Whatever your reasons are for wanting to return to this now-obsolete browser, here’s how you do it:

Why isn’t Internet Explorer available on Mac?

Back in 1996, Apple was in dire need of a proper browser for their operating system, and Microsoft was ready to help, as they already had the successful Internet Explorer on their hands. Both companies signed an agreement and Microsoft developed a new browser for Apple – Internet Explorer for Mac OS X.

The browser didn’t last long, though – in 2003, it was superseded by Apple’s new browser, Safari. Even though this app is still available for download on Softonic.com, it’ll only work on Mac Os X 10.6 and earlier versions, and the software itself is almost 20 years old and virtually non-usable for modern websites.

Even though there is no native Internet Explorer app available for Mac, Microsoft Edge is. If that’s enough for your needs, go for it – it’s actually a decent browser and offers much better security measures than Internet Explorer.

Emulating the real Internet Explorer on Mac

In case you’re trying to access content that can only be viewed on Internet Explorer, there are two ways three ways to do it – two simple ones, and one a bit more complicated.

The first and easiest way to access Internet Explorer on Mac is by simply signing up for a free account on ToolCamp. With ToolCamp, you can run a range of useful apps, including Internet Explorer, from any device straight from your browser. Paint, OneNote, Inkscape – and lots more accessible without having to install any software at all.

You can also “trick” the websites you’re trying to access into thinking you’re using Internet Explorer, while in actuality you’re using the native Safari browser on Mac. How to do it? It’s actually quite simple:

  • Open Safari app and goto Preferences > Advanced
  • Make sure “Show Develop menu in menu bar” is checked
  • Go back to the browser. On top, select Develop > User Agent
  • Choose from the available options

This should work for most websites. If for any reason it doesn’t, and you’d rather tinker around yourself than let ToolCamp do it for you, there is one other way: setting up a virtual machine.

How to use Internet Explorer using a virtual machine?

If you have some computer knowledge and would still like to run the original Internet Explorer for any reason, virtual machines are your best bet.

The easiest of the tools that can be used to run Internet Explorer on Mac is WineHQ. It provides a compatibility layer for Mac systems that can boot Windows apps, including IE. To install Internet Explorer on WineHQ, you’ll need the setup files that you can download from the official Microsoft website, in addition to any prerequisites like Microsoft Silverlight or .NET Framework depending on the browser version you choose.

You could also set up your own virtual machine by hand – there is a variety of software available on the Internet that will allow you to do just that, but it is definitely more complicated than using Wine. You’ll also need an original Microsoft Windows system of your choosing, which isn’t necessary with WineHQ.