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Published on 05.04.06 by Brent Trahan

Internet Explorer Feeds

Learn how to read and configure feeds in Internet Explorer 7 (IE7).

Internet Explorer 7 comes with the ability to subscribe to and read feeds.  This guide shows you how to use Internet Explorer 7’s feed reader.

What is a Feed?

Wikipedia defines a feed as a document (often XML-based) which contains content items, often summaries of stories or weblog posts with web links to longer versions.

My definition of a feed is a document that is stripped of the graphics, most ads, and formatting and is often just a summary of the newest content of a website or blog that is readable by feed readers.

Most people use feeds to quickly scan lots of websites for content they are interested in instead of visiting each site.  An example of a feed in Internet Explorer 7 is shown below.

Subscribing to Feeds

When you subscribe to a feed you save it like you would save a favorite website in your favorites.  You can subscribe to feeds two ways.

The first way to subscribe to a feed is by clicking the feed icon (shown below) that is located next to the home button on the top right of the Internet Explorer 7 window.

If the feed icon is grayed out that means that website doesn’t have a feed or that website doesn’t have a line of code in it that tells Internet Explorer 7 it has a feed.

Some sites have multiple versions or multiple feeds.  Click on the down arrow to the right of the feed icon to select which one you want to view.

The second way to subscribe to a feed is to click a link to a feed on a website.  Most websites feed link is a feed icon (shown above) or the website might have a link that says RSS, syndication, or XML.

When you click the link to the websites feed Internet Explorer 7 automatically opens the feed in its feed reader.

When you view a feed in one of the example above you can subscribe to it so that you can easily check it out later by clicking subscribe to this feed in the yellow box at the top of the feed.

When you click subscribe to this feed a window similar to the one below will pop up.

Give your feed a name in the name box.  Decide where you want to save the feed within your feeds box (located in the favorites section) and select that location next to create in.  If you don’t change the create in location the feed will appear in the root of the feeds window.  If you have folders that organize your feeds in your feeds window you can select the folder you want that feed to be placed in there.

Click subscribe when you are finished.

Organizing Feeds

In the feed subscriptions window (next to your favorites) you can organize your feeds.  For more information on organizing your feed subscriptions check out my organizing favorites section in this guide.

Reading Feeds

To read your feeds click the favorites star on the top left of internet explorer and click the feeds icon.

Feeds that have content you’ve not seen yet will be bold.  Feeds that don’t have any new material since the last time you viewed them will not be bold.

If you click a feed you’ll see a window similar to the one below.

You’ll see the articles or posts in the body of the feed window.  The length of each article or post is decided by the website.  If you click on the header of an article or post you’ll be taken directly to that article or post.  If you click on the website name at the top of the feed you’ll be taken to that website.  Sometimes feeds have a logo that shows up on the right.  You are usually taken to that website if you click on the logo.

On the right of the window is the displaying box that conveniently stays at the top of the page when you scroll down. 

To search for something within that feed type what you want to search for in the box at the top of the displaying box.  As you type articles or posts that don’t contain what you’re looking for will disappear.

You can select to view all the articles or posts or only ones you haven’t read yet by clicking all or unread just under the search box.

Some feed’s articles or posts are split into categories.  You can select to view only articles or post in a certain category by clicking the category under filter by category.

Global Feed Properties

You can change a few global feed settings in Internet Explorer 7.  Click on tools (located on the top right of Internet Explorer 7} then select internet options.  Once you are in the internet options window, click the content tab.  Click settings near feeds.  You’ll see a window similar to the one below.

You can set a schedule for Internet Explorer to check if feeds have been updated under default schedule.  Check off automatically check feeds for updates and select the frequency you want to use if you want Internet Explorer to automatically check for feed updates.

Under general you can specify if you want a sound to play when Internet Explorer finds an updated feed.  You can also turn off the Internet Explorer feed reader by checking off turn off feed reading view.

Single Feed Properties

You can set individual settings for each feed by clicking view feed properties under the displaying box within a feed.  You’ll see a window similar to the one below.

By default the feed is updated by the settings you give the global feed settings (talked about above).  You can change that setting by selecting use custom schedule and changing the frequency for that feed is updated.  You can also change whether files are automatically downloaded or not.  Automatically downloading files will make the feed load in your browser much faster when you view it.

Under archives you can tell Internet Explorer 7 how many articles or posts to keep.  The default is 200 and the most is 2500.

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