ActiveX was introduced by Microsoft in 1996. It is commonly used by applications that run within Windows operating systems. ActiveX are actually reusable software components that provide additional functionality. In fact, one can compose different software applications using these said components. Software applications such as Internet Explorer, Windows Media Player, Microsoft Visual Studio, and Microsoft office use ActiveX controls.
These aforementioned software applications make use of ActiveX to enhance specific functionalities. ActiveX controls can even be embedded into these applications and on web sites as well. These components are also used to build the different feature sets of Windows applications that utilize them. These components may even be embedded in web pages.
Benefits of ActiveX
You can think of them as additional parts that you can add to a car. The car works fine but with the addition of these parts the car now has additional features that weren’t there before. You can even take them off when you don’t need them anymore.
The same is true with ActiveX controls and components. Software applications like Internet Explorer don’t need them to perform basic functions. But with the addition of these software components, this web browser is given new capabilities and features.
These components usually work through web browsers and function over the Internet. They perform various tasks and not just add visual display and audio output. Some of the functions that these software components can perform include data gathering, animation display, viewing various file types, and additional user friendly interactive controls.
Install ActiveX in Internet Explorer
The process to install ActiveX in Internet Explorer is fundamentally downloading the said components. When you open a web page that has these components enabled, your browser will prompt you to install the said ActiveX controls. Internet Explorer will immediately recognize the need to install the said controls for certain functions of the web page.
This is true for some online games or web pages that feature certain applications. Open Internet Explorer. Go to Tools>Internet Options>Security and then click “Custom Level”. Select “enable” under “ActiveX controls and Plug-ins”. Click “OK”. Click “Yes” when a warning window pops up. Now click “Apply” and finally click on “OK”.
Remember that it is assumed that sites that require you to install ActiveX only require that you make special settings during the download process. Typically, it is possible to revert back to your previous browser settings once you’re done loading the said software components. In order to revert to your previous settings after you install ActiveX, you should set your browser’s security level to “Medium” and remove the web site in question from your “Trusted Sites” list.