Back in 2014, Microsoft announced that it would stop supporting older versions of Internet Explorer (IE) and that people would need to upgrade to the latest version. On 12 Jan, this came into effect, so for the most part, there will be no technical support or updates (including security patches) for IE 8, 9 and 10. See also: Windows XP support has ended; what to do now

Internet Explorer 8, 9, 10 support has ended: Check your version

To be clear, the latest version of Internet Explorer available for Windows Vista, 7 and 8 will still be supported. The table below shows which version you need to be running to ensure you’re receiving updates which should fix any security vulnerabilities.

Windows Version

Internet Explorer Version

Windows Vista SP2

Internet Explorer 9

Windows 7 SP1

Internet Explorer 11

Windows 8.1 Update

Internet Explorer 11

The latest version for Windows XP is IE8, but as XP is no longer supported, you really need to upgrade to a newer version of Windows.

How to check which version of Windows you have

You can check the version of Windows you’re running by going to the Start menu, typing Computer, then right-clicking on Computer in the list of results and choosing Properties. The screen which pops up will tell you exactly which version (and if it’s 32- or 64-bit) your PC has. If you don’t have a start menu, you’re running Windows 8. Here, press the Windows key to open the Start screen (if you’re not on it) and type Computer to bring up the search results.

How to check which version of Internet Explorer is installed

Similarly, you can check which version of IE your computer is running by launching it from the Start menu, then clicking the Tools menu in the menu bar or cog icon near the top-right corner and then the About Internet Explorer.

You’ll see the version number, and also an option to Install new versions automatically. Tick this if you want to be upgraded to the latest version.

Most home versions of Windows will have automatic updates enabled, but you can check if this is the case by opening the Control Panel in Windows, searching for Windows Update and then clicking the Check for Updates button. This will also ensure Windows is up to date, as well as Internet Explorer.

Internet Explorer support has ended: what to do next

Internet Explorer 8, 9, 10 support has ended: what to do next

It’s easy to upgrade to the latest version of IE but, naturally, there are alternative web browsers. You can read our Best web browsers round up to decide which you like best, or if you’d prefer something more unusual and less mainstream, our roundup of the best alternative web browsers.

Depending on your opinion, Chrome or Firefox are two of the best options and you can download these by searching for them using Internet Explorer’s search box. Don't forget you can run as many web browsers as you like: you're not limited to just one.