Guide: How to force specific sites to always run in Compatibility View using Group Policy

posted in: Blog | 15

If you have specific sites which do not work in newer versions of Internet Explorer, you can force them to always run in Compatibility View, meaning that they will run as if they were run in Internet Explorer 7. There are GPO settings to force specific IE Zones to always run in Compatibility View, but here’s how you set it for specific sites.

Open Group Policy Management

Group Policy Management GPMC

Create or edit the GPO that will be used to force the new setting.

To create a new GPO right-click the container Group Policy Objects and select New.

New GPO object


New GPO object

To edit an existing GPO, select it, right-click and press Edit.

Edit GPO

Browse to User Configuration -> Policies -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> Internet Explorer -> Compatibility View and select the setting “Use Policy List of Internet Explorer 7 sites”

Edit Group Policy  (GPO) Setting

Enable the setting and then press show

Enable Group Policy setting - GPO

Add the site that you want to force to run in Compatibility View, in this case

Add a site to Group Policy setting - Compatibility view GPO

The new policy should now work after the user has either logged off and logged in again or if the command gpupdate /force is entered in CMD.


15 Responses

  1. Hi.
    I want to force my site to be viewed in Compititible mode to all the intranet client machines from the server. how can i do that?
    Hope i get the solution..

  2. Hi, do you want to force all client machines in your intranet to run a specific site in compatibility mode? Or just from a specific server?

  3. Hi,
    Any reason this wouldn’t work? I have Windows 7 & Windows XP machines, have set this GP setting, run GPUPDATE, but when visiting the sites, they are not showing in compatability mode, and when you look at the compatability setting, the specified sites do not appear. However looking in the registry at the Policy key, the sites are in there, IE just doesn’t seem to be picking up the settings!

  4. Hi,

    Which version of IE are you running?

  5. Deepakm


    I get the same problem. The GP is applying, I see it in registry. But I do not see in IE under Compatibility Settings.

    We have Win 7 Pro 32 bit and IE 9 (w/ all patches)

  6. Deepakm

    Solution found…

    The sites applied via GP will not display in IE. See this comment from Microsoft Tech Support:

    Thanks for posting in Microsoft
    TechNet forums.

    You are configuring the correct Group Policies. The websites configured in Group Policy will automatically open in Internet Explorer Compatibility mode, but they won’t display in Compatibility View Settings list in order to prevent users from removing the entries you specify.

  7. I am in this scenario as well. Win 7 (64) w/ IE 9. I have the Use Policy List of Internet Explorer 7 Sites GPO configured with sites added. My clients have these URLs now in the registry so I know the GPO was applied. But when I open IE 9 and access that URL, the compatibility view is not activated and the site remains non-functional. If I manually hit the compatibility view button, all is well but that defeats the whole purpose of the GPO.

  8. hi, for those having problem you should try the to put only the last top tier of the website

    so if you want to see in compatibility mode, you should only add in the compatibilty list of site in your group policy (and then yes, even the site will be displayed in compatibility too.


  9. This works very nicely if you leave out the http:// in the front.
    Thanks for guiding me in the right direction.

  10. What if i have sites like http://aaaa1

    Anyone managed to figure that out?

  11. What if I have (internal) domains like http://aaaa01.

    Anyone managed to figure that out?

  12. When it comes to subdomains, the compatibility view list has a special rule to mind. If you have a site then adding to the compatibility view list will cover all of If, in addition, you are aslo trying to put into compatibility mode then you would additionally need an entry in the list for as ddd is not directly beneath bbb.

  13. noah jeffries

    for over a year we’ve used this policy to add a website to the compatibility list on our end user machines, the site was recently updated and now no longer runs correctly in compatibility mode.

    How can we “remove” the site from the compatibility list on our end user machines with Group Policy?

  14. Great post, thank you.

  15. Great post !

    On the same subject but with a different problem : I’ve got in place the policy instructing IE 10 to run in compatibility view for all intranet sites. That’s fine except for one intranet site that has to run in IE 10 native mode.

    I could use the “Policy List of Internet Explorer 7 sites” setting to enumerate all the intranet sites that have to run in compatibility view but there are so many and I may miss some of them (I work in a 3k employees company with lots of depts and services creating new sites on a regular basis). Long story short : How could I define an exception to the “Use compatibility view for intranet site” rule ?


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