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How to Make Internet Explorer 6 Crash Instantly

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 38 comments
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It's definitely no Konami code.

Most of you are likely to be running one of the most recent versions of your browser of choice, be it Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, Opera or Safari; so hopefully this little bug won't take your browser down.

It's been discovered and now popularly reported that Internet Explorer 6 can be crashed by simply pointing the browser to:

ms-its:%F0:

Those without IE6 still lingering in their systems can get a demonstration of what happens in the video below.

Internet Explorer 6 Crash

KrebsonSecurity explains that this bug is the result of a pointer overflow in IE6 and the crash does not appear to work in newer versions of the browser.

Interestingly, it seems that this bug was found and reported to Microsoft back in 2004, but has yet to be patched. At the time, Microsoft engineers supposed believed there were no severe security consequences of this bug, leaving it a fix for a service pack – but that fix never arrived.

While the true damage of this flaw isn't severe, it could still cause many annoyances if malware (or a prankster) were to change the default start page to "ms-its:%F0:", rendering the browser unusable without a more advanced IE option tweak.

Discuss
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Top Comments
  • 34 Hide
    Hothr , February 4, 2010 7:14 PM
    Maybe if people post that in enough links and web-pages we can euthanize IE6 and not have to wait for it's slow death.
  • 20 Hide
    Computer_Lots , February 4, 2010 7:54 PM
    Die IE6, DIE!!!
    My company FINALLY "upgraded" to IE7 a couple of months ago, after IE8 came out. I don't get it. IE8 is faster, more stable and more secure than IE7. Why would we upgrade to that??? Another one of the joys of working for a large company.
  • 16 Hide
    nukemaster , February 4, 2010 8:45 PM
    Marcus YamWhile the true damage of this flaw isn't severe, it could still cause many annoyances if malware (or a prankster) were to change the default start page to "ms-its:%F0:", rendering the browser unusable without a more advanced registry tweak.

    Can one not just go to control panel then hit Network and Internet Settings then click Internet Options to get to the IE options without the browser and fix it without any of this regedit stuff?
Other Comments
  • 34 Hide
    Hothr , February 4, 2010 7:14 PM
    Maybe if people post that in enough links and web-pages we can euthanize IE6 and not have to wait for it's slow death.
  • 4 Hide
    itadakimasu , February 4, 2010 7:50 PM
    so everybody can put links to this on their sites.
  • 20 Hide
    Computer_Lots , February 4, 2010 7:54 PM
    Die IE6, DIE!!!
    My company FINALLY "upgraded" to IE7 a couple of months ago, after IE8 came out. I don't get it. IE8 is faster, more stable and more secure than IE7. Why would we upgrade to that??? Another one of the joys of working for a large company.
  • 11 Hide
    NapoleonDK , February 4, 2010 8:09 PM
    In related news: IE6 is lame.

    Move along folks, nothing to see here.

    (On another note, does anyone actually hit the "Send error report" button?
  • 11 Hide
    amasen , February 4, 2010 8:16 PM
    He's spreading the word...
    Make sure to put in redirects for IE6 only...
    Let the death of IE 6 be a universal effort.
  • 0 Hide
    ljbade , February 4, 2010 8:17 PM
    I think those websites that use Javascript to detect IE6 and display a message because they no longer support it, should instead change it to crash IE6. Much stronger message if you don't care about cutting off your IE6 audience.
  • 0 Hide
    Tomtompiper , February 4, 2010 8:19 PM
    Quote:
    On another note, does anyone actually hit the "Send error report" button?


    Are you trying to give us all RSI?


    All joking aside I don't, on my current system I don't get very many crashes. And when I do it displays a log which I copy and paste then e-mail in.
  • 2 Hide
    mayne92 , February 4, 2010 8:22 PM
    stoppostingcrapnewsWhy did you this crap article?This is so damn old and there's really no point posting this article.Everybody knows IE6 is crap so why bother?

    QQ loser
  • 5 Hide
    deadlockedworld , February 4, 2010 8:23 PM
    This sounds like a perfect homepage to set on a co-workers computer!
  • -5 Hide
    CrashOverride90 , February 4, 2010 8:39 PM
    IE6 is old, old, old, old, old, old, old, old, old, old, old, old, and old.

    Oh and did I mention its Old? I forget easily

    Seriously people need to dumb the old IE6
  • 0 Hide
    megamanx00 , February 4, 2010 8:40 PM
    Mua ha ha ha
  • 6 Hide
    greenmachineiijh , February 4, 2010 8:43 PM
    Not only did you publicly expose an IE flaw with potential, but you also suggested to malware or other bad peeps how to block IE6 users from running and the user from being able to access the internet to get a fix for the malware or virus that installed it's self... Nice...

    You do know viruses and malware can search for browser versions to target, right?
  • 16 Hide
    nukemaster , February 4, 2010 8:45 PM
    Marcus YamWhile the true damage of this flaw isn't severe, it could still cause many annoyances if malware (or a prankster) were to change the default start page to "ms-its:%F0:", rendering the browser unusable without a more advanced registry tweak.

    Can one not just go to control panel then hit Network and Internet Settings then click Internet Options to get to the IE options without the browser and fix it without any of this regedit stuff?
  • 9 Hide
    cekasone , February 4, 2010 8:51 PM
    This is going to be one hell of an office prank.
  • 0 Hide
    phnguyen89 , February 4, 2010 8:54 PM
    What's your point?

    If you run v8 benchmarks on any IE, they'll crash.
  • 5 Hide
    830hobbes , February 4, 2010 8:58 PM
    HothrMaybe if people post that in enough links and web-pages we can euthanize IE6 and not have to wait for it's slow death.


    Brilliant Idea!!!
  • 5 Hide
    Zinosys , February 4, 2010 8:59 PM
    Hehe, office pranks... Let's make this some poor fool's IE6 homepage. :) 
  • 3 Hide
    doopydoo22 , February 4, 2010 9:19 PM
    Get on the wire, tell them how to bring those sons of bitches down.
  • -1 Hide
    nforce4max , February 4, 2010 9:21 PM
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yGPjYbNAgzk
  • 5 Hide
    TwoDigital , February 4, 2010 9:42 PM
    nukemasterCan one not just go to control panel then hit Network and Internet Settings then click Internet Options to get to the IE options without the browser and fix it without any of this regedit stuff?

    Actually it's even easier to get around than THAT. In the start menu type http://google.com and your browser will launch to the URL you've just entered instead of your home page. Problem avoided and you can change your homepage from inside IE6.
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