How to Install Active X

by Meaghan Ellis

ActiveX controls serve as add-on components to better enhance the performance of your Internet browser. They can be installed on all Web browsers for the purposes of flash animation and file extraction. In most cases, the option to install ActiveX controls is displayed, in a menu bar, at the top of the browser window. When you click on this action, you are given the option of installing or cancelling the procedure. But there are other ways this process can be done. You can actually manually install ActiveX. Anyone can complete this little-known process without having to wait for the option to be presented by the Web browser.

Access your computer's Internet Options settings. Open your Internet Explorer browser. Click on the "Tools" tab in the browser menu at the top of the screen. Select the "Internet Options" tab folder at the bottom of the "Tools" drop-down menu.

Go to the Security Settings for your Internet Explorer browser. When the "Internet Options" dialog window opens, click on the "Security" tab at the top of the window. This should be the second tab option listed from the left side of the menu. Click on the Internet globe icon to access your online security settings.

Configure your security settings to allow ActiveX controls' installation. Click on the "Custom Level" option that will be listed for your online security settings. Scroll through the Security settings and locate the "Download Unassigned ActiveX Controls" action. Click on the "Prompt" radio button to allow future ActiveX controls' installations. All of the other ActiveX control settings should be set to "Enable".

Confirm your settings. Click "Apply" at the bottom of the Internet Options dialog window to lock in your installation settings. Click "OK" to close the Security settings.

Download and install the ActiveX controls. (See Resources for link.) Scroll through the list of ActiveX component links to choose the one you desire for your browser. Double-click on the "Download" action to the right of the component's title. Click on "Save" action when the file download window opens. Follow the InstallShield prompts to complete the necessary installation process for your particular Internet browser.

Refresh your Internet browser. Close out of your browser by clicking on the "X" in the upper right corner of the browser screen. Once the browser has closed successfully, click on the browser's icon on your computer's desktop screen. When the browser reopens and loads successfully, your ActiveX controls will be active in the browser.


  • check If you're looking for ShockWave ActiveX control components or any other ActiveX controls, see Resources for downloading information and access.


  • close Be careful when installing ActiveX controls. Some controls are good, and some are bad. The bad ones can cause several problems with your Internet browser, such as programs and toolbars being installed to your computer's hard drive without your consent. Only install ActiveX controls from sites you are familiar with. Make sure your Internet Options' security settings are configured properly before you attempt to download any ActiveX controls. If your settings are not configured properly, the control may not perform up to par in your Internet browser.

About the Author

Meaghan Ellis has been writing short stories, newspaper articles, Web content and product research reports for over 12 years. While double majoring in business management and marketing at Southern University, she runs a home-based graphic design and Web content business.