If you've spent any amount of time with a Windows RDP server, you will have realised that internet browsing isn't smooth sailing out of the gate. After opening the browser for the first time in Windows Server 2012 R2, 2016, and 2019, you'll get the error: "Internet Explorer Enhanced Security Configuration is Enabled".
Trying to access any other site will set you an error, informing you that the current website is being blocked by the Internet Explorer Enhanced Configuration. With the feature on, you'll have to manually add each website you want to visit to a whitelist.
Internet Explorer Enhanced Security is enabled by default for a reason. It stops users, scripts, or applications from accessing content that could lead to attacks on your server. For many Windows RDP use cases, there's little reason to leave Enhanced Security disabled for an extended period.
However, you may want to disable IE Enhanced Security temporarily while you perform initial server setup, activate application licenses, or do some quick research. You may also have a third-party security application that significantly reduces the risk.
Whatever the case, we're going to show you how to quickly disable IE Enhanced Security in all Windows Server versions.
How to Disable IE Enhanced Security
Thought it's hidden behind a few menus, actually disabling Internet Explorer Enhanced Security is quite simple. It doesn't even require a restart:
1. Open the Server Manager
Press Start and type
Server Manager, then click on the top result.
2. Click "Local Server" in the sidebar
3. Locate the "IE Enhanced Security Configuration"
To edit its preferences, click the
4. Toggle "Administrators" and/or "Users" to off
Of course, it's entirely up to you whether you want to allow regular users to freely browse the internet. Once you press OK, the policy will immediately take effect and you'll be able to browse as usual.