Vista: How to Keep Users from Clearing IE’s History of Their Browsing

Internet Explorer keeps a history of cookies, sites that have been visited, and form data. This history can be quite useful in tracking the browsing practices of an employee or your child (or even spouse). Many people are aware of the fact that they can delete this history from the browser, but you can take away this ability in situations that call for such action.

1. Click the Windows Orb and input gpedit.msc into the Start Search text box. Select gpedit.msc when it appears in the listing. Click Continue when the UAC prompt appears.

2. When the Group Policy Object Editor appears, go to the left pane and expand either Computer Configuration or User Configuration (depending on whether you wish to apply this to any user on the computer or just a specific user).

3. Expand Administrative Templates.

4. Expand Windows Components.

5. Expand Internet Explorer.

6. Select Delete Browsing History.

7. In the right pane, you will see the following listed:

Prevent Deleting Cookies
 
Prevent Deleting Web sites that the User has Visited
 
Prevent Deleting Temporary Internet Files
 
Prevent Deleting Favorites Site Data
 
Turn off "Delete Browsing History" funtionality
 
Prevent Deleting Form Data
 
Prevent Deleting of Passwords
 
Disable "Configuring History"
 
Prevent the deletion of temporary Internet files and cookies

8. Double click the desired setting. When the Properties window appears, select the Enabled radio button.

9. Click OK.

10. Repeat steps 8 and 9 until you have enabled all of the desired settings.

11. Close the Group Policy Object Editor.

 

About Rob Rogers

Once a prolific author here on Tech-Recipes, Rob has moved on to greener pastures.
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11 Responses to “Vista: How to Keep Users from Clearing IE’s History of Their Browsing”

  1. December 18, 2008 at 3:26 pm, okay said:

    ccleaner to the rescue ! — will delete these files anyway !

    Reply

  2. December 18, 2008 at 10:16 pm, Innocent Bystander said:

    Yup, but I suppose if you’re an “average salaryman” working at a company that needs to lock down this much, they’re not going to go give you install permissions to your machine, anyhow, so ccleaner is out. They probably won’t give you browsing permissions either, so who cares what their browsing history is/was.

    So, no-one’s going to read this and implement it, save for the mothers of 14 year olds, afraid that their snowflake is going to see the old roast beef sammich down below.

    Reply

  3. December 20, 2008 at 3:46 am, Crusin said:

    If you have Home basic / premium gpedit.msc is Not available.

    Reply

  4. January 01, 2009 at 12:27 pm, Rohan said:

    Never knew there is this type of prevention in vista.
    but ccleaner will do the job anyhow.
    guess it was not gonna use for a company employer!

    Reply

  5. January 05, 2009 at 1:24 am, DP said:

    Well, in fairness, any employer that is going to implement this type of policy is going to do so through Group Policy, rather than Local Policy. And while using Group Policy, they’d also lock out the use of unwanted executables — like ccleaner.exe.

    Reply

  6. January 10, 2009 at 10:45 pm, karri said:

    im trying to do this and it says gpedit.msc not found … can any pne hlep
    ?

    Reply

  7. February 02, 2009 at 1:04 am, Diana said:

    Hi,
    I would like to figure out how to do this with Vista Home Premium…. any help??

    Reply

  8. May 11, 2009 at 4:30 pm, Marianne said:

    when I type gpedit.msc, the search says no results.

    Reply

    • February 28, 2011 at 9:00 am, Boobamboo said:

      did you ever find out how to block the delete history for windows vista

      Reply

  9. June 06, 2009 at 10:25 pm, Stacy said:

    i have windows vista and gpedit.msc doesnt come up.. What do i do?

    Reply

  10. April 05, 2011 at 12:46 am, Brittany said:

    I did this and then went to try to delete history and a text box came up and I could click what I wanted to go ahead and delete with no passwork or anything….So it doesnt really work.

    Reply

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