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Howto: Run Internet Explorer 7 within Ubuntu 10.04 (Lucid Lynx)

As a webdeveloper, I am obviously required to test the websites I create in the most common A-grade browsers to ensure that they are usable and functional for the majority of the visitors. After switching from Windows to Ubuntu, I soon recognized the need for an Internet Explorer clone to test website for malfunctions. Having a dualboot (Windows and Ubuntu installed on one system) did work for some time, but last week I started looking for a better and faster solution. First I ran into a IEs4Linux, a software package enabling the use of Internet Explorer 5, 5.5 and 6 on Linux (with partial support for Internet Explorer 7 in a two year old beta). While this package might be handy for webdevelopers still supporting antique browsers, I searched further and ran into a Spanish tutorial that enabled me to install Internet Explorer 7 within Ubuntu. Unable to find a good English tutorial, I decided to write my own tutorial using the knowledge from the Spanish version and my installation experiences. By following the steps below, you should be able to run Internet Explorer 7 within Ubuntu without much trouble.

1. Open the Ubuntu Software Center by going to Applications » Ubuntu Software Center. In the new screen, search for ‘PlayOnLinux’ using the searchbox in the upper right corner.
Install PlayOnLinux

3. Install’PlayOnLinux by clicking on ‘Install’ in the list. Depending on your security settings, your root password might be requested in order to continue. After the PlayOnLinux installation has been completed, you can exit the Ubuntu Software Center (File » Close).
Install PlayOnLinux

4. Open PlayOnLinux through the menu by going to Applications » Games » PlayOnLinux. In the new screen you should pick the option ‘Install’ to start adding new programs to PlayOnLinux.
Install Internet Explorer

5. Select ‘Internet Explorer 7’ in the category ‘Internet’. Note that you can also install ‘Internet Explorer 6’ if you prefer to do so. Click ‘Apply’ to continue the installation.
Install Internet Explorer

6. A new screen will pop up which will show some general information about the software you are about to install. Click ‘Forward’ to continue.
Install Internet Explorer

7. In the next screen, you will get a notice that the software will prepare the required packages. Click ‘Forward’ to continue and wait for the screen from step 8 to appear.
Install Internet Explorer

8. Once preparations have been made, the program informs you that it will download Internet Explorer 7 for you. Again click ‘Forward’.
Install Internet Explorer

9. In the new screen you can select the language you want to use within Internet Explorer 7. Select the language you want to use (e.g. English) and click ‘Forward’ to start the download and installation.
Install Internet Explorer

10. The program will now download Internet Explorer 7 and start the installation. This new installation wizard will guide you through the setup of Internet Explorer 7. Follow the wizard until the installation is complete; then continue with step 11.
Install Internet Explorer

11. When completed, the installation wizard will ask you to reboot your system. You must select ‘Restart now (Recommended)’ here in order to continue, but your system will not reboot (the reboot is only required in Windows).
Install Internet Explorer

12. The wizard will be replaced with a new screen in which you can choose the location of Internet Explorer. For this tutorial, I have selected a desktop icon which allows me to open Internet Explorer 7 from an icon on the desktop.
Install Internet Explorer

13. Depending on your choice, a menu item or desktop item will be created and you can click ‘Forward’ to complete the installation.
Install Internet Explorer

14. Internet Explorer 7 is now installed and you can close the main window of PlayOnLinux (File > Exit).
Install Internet Explorer

Installation completed

You can now open Internet Explorer 7 using the new menu item or desktop item and start browsing. Note that the menu item has been created in the submenu Applications > Other. You can of course always change this using the ‘Main Menu Manager’ (System > Preferences > Main Menu).
Internet Explorer within Ubuntu

Update 23/08/2011:
As the PlayOnLinux package seems to be broken every now and then, I had to search for a more reliable method to test my creations in Internet Explorer. Having found one, I just wrote a new blog that explains how you can run Internet Explorer 8 under Ubuntu 11.04 (more stable and reliable than the above method). You can find it here.

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Comments (24)

The IE7 runs very very slow in my playonlinux. Is there something I need to do to get it running faster?

Sorry for the somewhat late reply due to my stay in Croatia. I just checked my own installation and the program starts in about 4 – 5 seconds. Loading this weblog (homepage) takes about 2 seconds which seems normal. If your loading times exceeds dramatically*, you might want to try reinstalling IE7. In addition, you can try other programs in PlayOnLinux to compare speeds (in other words: to see if PlayOnLinux is the problem / slow).

* I would not consider a few seconds more a big problem as you would not want to use IE7 as a main browser ever on Linux. Also note that ActiveX components will not work and might slow down the loading of the webpage a bit.

I have installed IE7. Will I be able to play Netflix movies on Linux. I go to Netflix and when I go to the login screen I get “can’t download %ws and login screen never appears.

Since Netflix uses ActiveX components to stream the movies and other parts of the website, you will not be able to view this website the way it was intended. Please keep in mind that this ‘Linux version’ of Internet Explorer is only able to render normal CSS / HTML so you can view what your template would look like in Internet Explorer and thus debug them. The application should not be used as a default browser under Linux, as there are much better alternatives anyway (FireFox, Chromium etc.).

Thanks Arno. I knew I was dreaming when I thought I could watch Netflix movies using only Ubuntu and never use Windows again.

Thanks Arno. Saved me a lot of time and hastle!!

Hi, i have installed the PlayOnLinux on my ubuntu 10.04. It is showing me under games menu but i am unable to load this program. I clicked it but nothing happens. Any idea? what i do for this. I have checked in my installed softwares it is also listed there.

Hanan Ali

Although the application does show in you Software Center, that does not mean that the installation of the application or its dependencies was successful. If the program itself does not start, you might want to try to reinstall it and see if that makes a differences. If that does not work, I recommend you to post on the PlayOnLinux forum ( as there are several experts registered there who can help you solve startup problems with the program better than me.

Loved this post.. Thanks

“…to test website for malfunctions.”

You mean of course:

“…to test websites for 100% compliant code that gets Internet Explorer to misbehave.”

Very useful and educational post nonetheless, thanks for that! 🙂


I install PlayOnLinux on ubuntu10.10. but i could not able to run the IE-7. Do i need to install any other application?

Under Ubuntu 10.10 I had problems installing IE7 (or at least making it work correctly) that were not present with version 10.04. As I now use the newest Ubuntu (11.04) I can only test it there and it seems not to be working correctly with PlayOnLinux 4.0+. However, PlayOnLinux might update the package for this version at any time since it’s the newest version currently available, so it _might_ be fixed soon. Your best option is thus to upgrade to the newest Ubuntu if a reinstall of PlayOnLinux does not fix your problem and wait for the devs of PlayOnLinux to fix the package.

On a side note, I figured out that you need a Gecko package which is available for Ubuntu 11.04 to. You should open a terminal and execute the following lines to install this package if PlayOnLinux 4.0 does not automatically do this for you (it does give you the option to do so):

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-wine/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install wine1.2-gecko

I just wrote a new article that uses a virtual environment to run Windows / IE for testing purposes. Since the above method did not work for you, you might find this one useful:

Arno it didn’t worked with my system. The screen is going blank when i select internet explorer

The package is currently broken (see the update at the bottom of the article) so I wrote a new article using an alternative and more stable method: . As you can run IE8 in compatibility mode, you will also be able to test IE7. Hope this helps.

thanks Arno for your guide
I installed the playonlinux then IE7 but it couldn’t open Security page and the following message is displayed
“there is a problem with this websites security certificate”
site Address is “”

Sorry for the late reply; as you can see we were busy updating the weblog and for some reason the comments-form got broken in the process. Anyhow, the above method is just for viewing templates and not for actual usage (for which you need a full-feature browser). However, you can try the method I described in my new blog which uses a virtual machine with a completely working browser:

Hi Gideonse,

Is there any way to install IE with Java. I want to test some java based website and application on IE in Ubuntu desktop.

Hello there!
First,Thanks for this good article.
Second, There is website that only accept IE7 + Flash,Do you know and way to enable the flash drivers on my IE7 that run in ubuntu?

I you really need the flash plugin then I advice you to make a VirtualBox with Internet Explorer in it. A tutorial can be found here:


Thanks a ton. I m not sure about IE7 but playonlinux works superb smooth with IE6. I was trying alot with ies4linux but it didn’t worked after long try of 1 complete day…


This is awesome, thanks!
Greetings from Denmark 🙂

Excellent article. I am also very impressed with your responses to every single query submitted. Well done for that. The Internet needs more people like you!

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