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Published on 05.30.06 by Brent Trahan

Internet Explorer Content Advisor

Take control of what websites your kids or workers visit with Internet Explorers Content Advisor feature. This guide shows you everything you need to configure the content advisor in Internet Explorer 7.

Take control of what websites your kids or workers visit with Internet Explorers Content Advisor feature.  This guide shows you everything you need to configure the content advisor in Internet Explorer 7.

What is the content advisor?

The content advisor feature of Internet Explorer 7 helps keep people off websites you don’t want them to see.

The content adviser is powered by the ICRA or Internet Content Rating Association.  Websites register with the ICRA and when you visit the site with the content rating feature enabled Internet Explorer will verify the type of content on the site and let you in if it’s appropriate according to your settings.

Please note: Websites are not required to register with the ICRA.  Using the content advisor feature could block “good” sites that are not registered with the ICRA.  The content advisor could also let “bad” sites pass.  Using the content advisor is better than not having anything at all if you want to protect your kids.

Configure the Content Advisor

By default the content advisor feature of Internet Explorer 7 is turned off.  To open the content advisor window click tools located at the top right of Internet Explorer 7’s window and select Internet Options.  Click the content tab.  Click enable under content advisor.  You should see a window similar to the screen shot below.

The ratings tab is where you control the amount of access users will be able to have on various topics.

In the box towards the top of the window is a list of various topics.  You can adjust the amount of access to each topic by selecting the topic and sliding the bar just below the box right or left.

There are three levels of access you can set.  By default every topic’s access is blocked to the max.  If you move the bar to the middle it will bring the access to that topic to about a PG13 level.  Moving the bar all the way to the right turns the filtering off for that topic.

In the approved sites tab you can allow or block individual website for viewing.

To allow a website to be viewed type the URL of the site (ex. www.thesite.com) in the box under allow this website and click always.  To block a website do the same but click never.

There are a few important settings in the general tab.

By default sites that don’t have a rating will be allowed to be viewed.  If you are setting up this feature for a small kid’s computer I recommend turning this setting off by checking off users can see websites that have no rating.

You can bypass the content advisor with a password by leaving supervisor can type a password… checked.

You need to create a supervisor’s password by clicking the create password button.  Make sure you don’t forget the password or you’ll be out of luck.  Once you create a password you won’t be able to view blocked sites or change any settings in the content advisor without it.  This will stop the people you are trying to protect from bypassing the content advisor.

Click OK and you’re done!  This feature is not perfect, but it’s better than nothing at all.

Locking Down the Content Advisor

Kids are smarter than you might think these days.  Below I’ll show you how to make sure there is no way they can bypass the content advisor by removing it from the internet explorer options box.  If they can’t see it, they can’t fool with it.

Please note: What I’m about to show you is a tool meant for computer professionals.  Use this tool at your own risk.  If you don’t know what you are doing you can cause a lot of trouble with your computer.  If you follow my directions exactly you’ll be fine.

Click start, click run.  In the run box, type gpedit.msc and press enter on your keyboard.  You need administrative privileges to use this tool.

Below is an example of the window you’ll see.

What you are looking at is the group policy window.  You can change pretty much every setting imaginable in group policy.  Now we need to navigate to an area of group policy where we can remove the content tab from the internet explorer options.

Click the + sign next to Administrative Templates under Computer Configuration.  Be sure to not click the + sign next to Administrative Templates under User Configuration.

Click the + sign next to Windows Components.

Click the + sign next to Internet Explorer.

Click on the Internet Control Panel folder instead of the + sign next to it.

Double-click the disable the content page setting in the main window.

Select Enable and click OK.

You’re done.  You can close group policy and restart Internet Explorer if it’s open.  Try changing settings in the internet options window.  If it didn’t work, restart your computer for the changes to take affect.

If you need to undo this feature to change settings follow the steps above and select Not Configured to turn stop blocking it.

You can take this a step further by removing administrative rights from your child’s computer.  Visit my User Rights Windows XP guide for information on removing administrative rights from people who don’t need them.

Still need help? Ask your computer question now.

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2 Responses to “Internet Explorer Content Advisor”

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  1. Peggy Laskus says:

    I’m accidently locked it and am trying to learn how to UNLOCK it. I want access restored.


  2. Brent Trahan says:

    Set Disable the Content page Properties to Not Configured in Group Policy (gpedit.msc).

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