Get significant speed gains from some configuration changes in IE8

Being in web development — nothing irks me more than slow web browsers. I typically use Google Chrome (because of its rendering speed and the javascript engine which is written into the browser) but during any web development the “IE Clan” of browsers still accounts for some 70% of the market and therefore development and testing on it is a must. When I upgraded my browser sometime ago to the latest IE8 — I was astounded by the sheer lag of the browser on Vista Ultimate when loading pages, new tabs and even just in starting. Because I don’t really use the browser regularly — it has never really bothered me — but more recently I have been doing some testing on it, and the slow response time is just so painful.

Luckily, I have discovered a solution that improves IE8 Speeds hugely on my PC — regsvr32 actxprxy.dll — from the command prompt. This command re-registers the ActiveX Interface Marshaling Library — which controls ActiveX/COM object interfaces — or in normal English translation — allows your PC to load IE faster. This results in seriously increased performance and therefore with some other minor tweaks — allows you to have a smoother IE8 experience. To get it all happening simply follow these steps in Vista:

1. Press the Start Button and type into the Search Bar — cmd.

2. It will appear under the Programs list, and you can right click on it and Run as Administrator.

3. A new black window will appear with the command line window on c:Windowssystem32>.

4. Type into this window regsvr32 actxprxy.dll

5. A prompt should appear with DllRegisterServer in actxprxy.dll succeeded. Click OK & Restart your PC.

6. You can stop here — but if you don’t notice any improvements continue.

7. Once restarted open IE8, go to Tools → Internet Options → Advanced → Reset (this will reset browser to default settings)

8. Close & Restart the Browser and you will go through the Welcome to IE8 screens again — here is where you need to adjust things:

  • Select Suggested Sites — No
  • Select Custom Settings
  • Set your Default Search Engine (Google, Yahoo or Bing)
  • Select Yes to Updates
  • Select Turn Off Accelerators
  • Select Smart Screen On
  • Select Compatibility View Off

9. Once this is done, you should see some serious improvements in your browsing and rendering experience :)

Drop a note in the comments if this has worked for you!