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The best free Internet Explorer 8 add-ons

Eight ways to improve browsing with IE8


When Microsoft launched Internet Explorer 8 it made much of the web browsers new features that were intended to provide greater security and ease of use. We've put together eight tips will help you take advantage of these new and enhanced features.

InPrivate browsing - cover your tracks

The InPrivate icon lets you know you're browsing privately.

In addition to the usual cookies and web history, IE8 saves form data and passwords, search terms in the search box, and URLs in the address bar - all in the name of making things easier for you. But easier for you means easier for everyone else, too - a nosy boss, a prying parent or spouse, or anyone else you might not want to see what you do on the web.

With InPrivate Browsing, you can browse without leaving a trace. Activate it by selecting InPrivate Browsing from the Safety menu. A new IE8 window will open with a blue InPrivate indicator to the left of the address bar.

Nothing you view in that window will be accessible after you close it: no Web history, no saved cookies, no cached internet files, no saved searches or URLs, no saved form data or passwords - nothing.

Navigate pages without a mouse

With IE8's Caret Browsing feature, you can browse pages, select text and even use Accelerators and other contextual menu functions without removing your fingers from the keyboard. Enable Caret Browsing by pressing F7.

In Caret Browsing, you use the arrow keys to navigate through the page, letter by letter (right and left arrows) or line by line (up and down arrows). To select text, hold down the Shift key while using the arrows.

With text selected, you can use standard keyboard shortcuts, like Ctrl+C to copy. Press Shift+F10 or hit the Application key (the little-used key to the right of your space bar with a picture of a menu on it, shown at right) to bring up the right-click context menu. Use the arrow keys to navigate the menu and Enter to make a selection.

If Accelerators aren't appearing as options in the context menu, you might have a third-party add-on installed that's interfering. The IE7Pro add-on, for instance, displays a customised context menu that doesn't include Accelerators. Tweaking the add-on's preferences settings - or, if all else fails, disabling it - should do the trick.

When you're done with Caret Browsing, hit F7 to toggle it off.

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NEXT PAGE: Protect your privacy and even block ads with InPrivate filtering

  1. Free add-ons to get the most out of your web experience
  2. Cover your tracks with InPrivate browsing
  3. Protect your privacy and even block ads with InPrivate filtering
  4. View incompatible pages with the Compatibility Viewer
  5. Customise the interface
  6. Don't forget these keyboard shortcuts


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