Microsoft Edge: Configure IE Mode (Part 2)

In part one of this series I showed the configuration settings required to enable IE Mode for Microsoft Edge. The settings can be applied using Group Policy or Microsoft Intune.

In this post I will create the Enterprise Site Mode List XML file and test the configured sites to confirm that the specified sites can be successfully opened in IE Mode on Microsoft Edge.


Enterprise Mode Site List Manager

One of the configuration settings that we applied was specifying the path to the Enterprise Mode Site List XML file. This file will list the sites that should be opened in IE Mode on Microsoft Edge. The Enterprise Mode Site List Manager application provides an easy GUI interface to create and update the XML file.

I have provided the download location for Enterprise Mode Site List Manager in the references section. Once installed we can use the application to create our Enterprise Mode Site List file.


Create the Enterprise Mode Site List XML file

You will be presented with an empty screen when you open the application for the first time.



Use the Add button to configure the list of sites that should be opened in IE Mode on Microsoft Edge. This will open the Add new website window. Here I will enter the URL of the website and some additional settings which I will discuss next.



Open in

This determines how the website will be opened. There are three options to choose from: IE11, MSEdge and None.

MSEdge will always open the site in Microsoft Edge. This will not open the site in IE Mode. None will open the site in any browser that the user chooses.

The option we want to use is IE11. This will open the site in IE Mode on Microsoft Edge. Please note that the requirement for this to work as expected, is that you configured the setting Configure Internet Explorer integration as I have done in part one of this series. If you have not configured this setting then the site will always open in Internet Explorer.

Standalone IE

The standalone IE option can only be used when the “Open in” option has been set to IE11. This will ensure the site opens in Internet Explorer. This may be required when you have legacy sites that doesn’t work in IE Mode on Microsoft Edge, and you want the site to be opened with Internet Explorer to ensure compatibility for end users.

Although the site then opens with Internet Explorer, you have the option of managing this automatically, instead of leaving it up to the user to determine which browser should be used. They can still use Microsoft Edge because Internet Explorer will be launched automatically where needed.

Allow Redirect

Select this option to manage server side redirects. The sever side redirect will open in the browser as specified in the “Open in” setting.

Compat Mode

Select the appropriate compatibility mode required for the site. If the site is known to work only in Internet Explorer 7 mode, for example, then select IE7 Enterprise Mode. I’ve provided a link to the article “Fix web compatibility issues using document modes and the Enterprise Mode site list” in the references section. You will find additional details on compatibility modes in this article.



I’ve created my list of sites to open in IE Mode which I will use for testing, as shown in the image below:



We can now save the list of sites to an XML file once we have added all the required sites. To do this, select File then Save to XML. Provide the name and location to save the file. This doesn’t have to be the intended target location as the file can always be copied later.

Notice the version details on the screen once you have saved the file. The version history gets updated with every save. When you close and re-open Enterprise Mode Site List Manager, it will display the previous configuration and version number.



Take note of the version number to ensure the XML file is saved with a higher version number whenever changes are made to the configuration. The version number is saved in the XML file and is used by the clients to determine if there is a newer version of the file which may contain additional sites.

Below is an image of the XML file contents after I have saved it for the second time.



Publish the Enterprise Mode Site List XML file

We recommend using a HTTP or HTTPS location, instead of a file share, for the Enterprise Mode Site List XML file. I have published my Enterprise Mode Site List XML file using static website hosting in Azure Storage. My XML file is publicly accessible which means my client devices can obtain the new version of the file from any location when I make configuration updates. There is no need for a connection to the corporate network.



In real world scenarios you would most likely add some legacy intranet sites to the list which may not be accessible outside of the corporate network, thus the XML file can be published on an internal location. You also may not want to publish and expose your internal DNS names on a publicly accessible location.

Publish the file using HTTP or HTTPS but carefully consider whether your want to publish this file externally, or internally only. Also remember that this location should match the location of the “Configure the Enterprise Mode Site List policy” setting that we configured using Group Policy or Intune, in part one of this series.


Testing

To test that my IE Mode configuration is working, I’ve opened five sites. 3 of which are the sites that I’ve configured in my Enterprise Mode Site List XML file. From the screenshot below, you can see that all the sites are opened on different tabs, in the same Microsoft Edge browser window.


microsoft.com and office.com are running normally and the other three tabs can be seen with the Internet Explorer logo

Let’s review each site to confirm that the compatibility mode for each site is working as configured in the Enterprise Mode Site List XML file:


bing.com is running in IE8 Enterprise Mode as configured

bubblemark.com is running in IE11 Mode, and Silverlight is also active and working all within the same Microsoft Edge browser.

whatismybrowser.com is running in IE10 Mode and the site is also detecting my browser as Internet Explorer 11 on Windows 10, although this tab is open in Microsoft Edge.

Summary

IE Mode on Microsoft Edge provides compatibility for legacy sites that require Internet Explorer 11. IE Mode enables users to access modern and legacy sites using a single browser.

In this two part series I have demonstrated to easily configure the required settings to enable IE Mode for legacy sites. This should enable you to start testing the legacy intranet sites in your organization and providing a simplified, single browser experience to your end users.


References

About IE mode

Configure IE mode policies

IE mode FAQ

Download Enterprise Mode Site List Manager

Enterprise Mode and the Enterprise Mode Site List

Edge does not load local Enterprise Mode site list file

Fix web compatibility issues using document modes and the Enterprise Mode site list

Add single sites to the Enterprise Mode site list using the Enterprise Mode Site List Manager

Configure IE mode policies

Static website hosting in Azure Storage


Related Articles

Microsoft Edge: Viewing applied policies

Microsoft Edge: Deploy with Intune


Series

Microsoft Edge: Configure IE Mode (Part 1)

Microsoft Edge: Configure IE Mode (Part 2)


Authors