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I have a client on the phone who unfortunately does not know his Windows and Internet Explorer version. I'm trying to debug an issue they're seeing, but in order to reproduce it I will have to find out what version of IE they run.

What would be the easiest way to have him get me the information, via phone?

Note that I cannot send him any URL that he could click, and he can't create screenshots for me. And I, as I have a Mac and no Windows installation, cannot even test out all the various possibilities…

This is somewhat related to finding out the Windows version, but that's secondary to my problem.

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testing for most of the various possibilities modern.ie/en-us –  albert Jul 23 '13 at 21:13
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4 Answers

up vote 8 down vote accepted
  1. You can press Alt+L, A to open the About dialog.
    However, note that this might only work properly in the English version of Internet Explorer. For other languages, either determine the correct hotkey, guide the user manually or resort to another method.

  2. You can use the website Which version of Internet Explorer am I using? or ieversion.com.

  3. You can navigate to javascript:alert(navigator.userAgent) or visit http://ifconfig.me/ua to display the user agent string.

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I really wouldn't rely on 3. –  AnonymousLurker Jul 23 '13 at 15:15
    
@AnonymousLurker: Why? –  Oliver Salzburg Jul 23 '13 at 15:49
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@OliverSalzburg, dont know about IE, but most browsers let you change your user agent string. >help>about should work well though. –  David X Jul 23 '13 at 16:46
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If the user on the phone doesn't know their IE version, it's unlikely they'd know how to change their user agent string. –  KeithS Jul 23 '13 at 22:27
    
However, clicking on the URL to see my own, from Chrome, tells me I'm using Mozilla, AppleWebKit, Chrome and Safari. –  KeithS Jul 23 '13 at 22:30
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  1. Press left Alt.
  2. Click Help.
  3. Click About Internet Explorer.
  4. A window with IE version appears.

Newer versions of Internet Explorer hide menubar by default, but left Alt will show it on IE7+ or activate it on IE6, so it's consistent on all versions.

You can also ask your client for his Windows version, it's easier to find out (always visible on the login screen) and will give you a clue what his IE version may be. No Windows version lets you install older IE version than the one included on installation.

Minimum IE versions for different Windows versions:

  • Windows XP - IE 6
  • Windows Vista - IE 7
  • Windows 7 - IE 8
  • Windows 8 - IE 10
  • Windows 8.1 - IE 11
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Don't rely on this. There is a "IE6 on newer Windows versions" installer floating around that some lazy programmers run as part of their setup to "repair" their broken application on a newer Windows version. It breaks everything else on the PC. (But hey... Their app works now.) Usually format C: is the only remedy in such a case. (And making sure that software vendor is blacklisted for any future purchase.) –  Tonny Jul 23 '13 at 15:37
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in IE click on Help and then click "About Internet Explorer" and it should give you the details. In some versions the help button could look like a blue circle with a question mark in it at the upper right corner. In IE 10 its under Settings in the upper right corner.

To see the windows version right click on "My Computer" on the desktop or "Computer" in the start menu and click on properties. the version of windows will be shown under the "Windows edition" section

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The client says there's no "Help" button and nothing with a question mark either. So that's probably IE 10 then. –  slhck Jul 23 '13 at 14:42
    
sounds like you have your hands full. Press alt + H to open the help dialog and then click "About internet explorer". Assuming he has IE is up on the screen. Make sure he isnt trying this on his desktop or some other program/folder/document etc etc –  Kevlar Jul 23 '13 at 14:44
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According to this site, it can be determined by searching the registry for the key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer. The version number will be shown there. Seems to work up to IE6, not sure about later though.

As a note, there was a -v option from the command line before when running IE, but its obsolete and Microsoft no longer provides a description of what it did

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