Posted on May 6, 2015 · Posted in Group Policies

Configure Internet Explorer 10 and 11 settings using GPO in Windows Server 2012

Most Windows administrators even woken up in the middle of the night are able to tell which Group Policy section is used to set proxy server settings for Internet Explorer. It should be reminded that Internet Explorer parameters (including proxy server configuration) are set using Group Policy Editor (gpmc.msc). The necessary policies are located in the user GPO section: User configuration –> Policies –> Windows Settings –> Internet Explorer Maintenance.

Internet Explorer Maintenance section in GPO EditorHowever, in Windows Server 2012 / Windows 8 Microsoft has decided to make their users surprised and to completely removed the Internet Explorer Maintenance section from the Group Policy Editor.

The familiar Internet Explorer Maintenance (IEM) section of the GPO also disappeared in Windows 7 / Windows Server 2008 R2 after you install Internet Explorer 10 or IE 11.

How does Microsoft engineers suggest further define the browser settings (including proxy server) for Internet Explorer? As it turned out, now it is possible to do using GPP (Group Policy Preferences).

Tip. Group Policy Preferences appeared in Windows Server 2008. To make them work in XP (EOS) and Windows Server 2003, you need to install a special extension — Group Policy Preferences Client Side Extensions.

So, in the GPO Editor console (Group Policy Management Console) open User Configuration -> Preferences -> Control Panel Settings -> Internet Settings. In the context menu, click New -> and select the IE version, which settings are to be determined in the policy.

The settings of the following IE versions are available:

  • Internet Explorer 5 and 6
  • Internet Explorer 7
  • Internet Explorer 8 and 9
  • Internet Explorer 10

Tip. Internet Explorer 10 policy also applies to Internet Explorer 11 as well (in the XML policy files you can see that it is valid to all IE versions from to

InternetSettings - XML file

Internet Settings with Group Policy Preferences  IE10 and 11

Create a new policy for IE 10 (and later).

As you can see, the IE settings configuration has become more convenient. The IE settings in the Group Policy Preferences repeat the settings tabs for any compatible IE version.

Specify the home page (General -> Home page). Configure IE 10 Settings

Important. It is not enough to simply save the changes in the Group Policy Editor. Notice the red and green underlines of the IE parameters. A red underline means that this setting is not yet saved and will not be applied. To save it, press F5. A green underline of a parameter means that this setting will be applied using GPP.

The following function keys are available:

  • F5 – Enable all settings on the current tab
  • F6 – Enable the selected setting
  • F7 – Disable the selected setting
  • F8 – Disable all settings in the current tab

Specify the proxy server (Connections ->Lan Settings). Check Use a proxy server for your LAN, and specify the IP/proxy server name and the connection port in the corresponding Address and Port fields. Configure Internet Explorer 10 / 11 proxy settings using GPO in Windows 2012

Tip. Proxy Settings in Google Chrome can be set centrally using special administrative templates in the Group Policies.

So, let’s summarize: the IE settings, starting from IE10, are no longer specified in the Internet Explorer Maintenance section of Group Policies. You have to use Internet Settings with a new interface in the Group Policy Preferences instead. For each version of the IE will have to make their individual settings GPP.

Related Articles