How to Change the Browser Settings on Your Surface

The Start screen browser, like nearly all apps, lets you tweak its settings to meet your particular needs. And, just as with all apps, opening the settings area begins with a trip to the Charms bar, described in these steps:

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  1. Fetch the Charms bar by sliding your finger inward from the screen’s right edge. Tap the Settings icon.

    The Settings pane appears.

  2. Tap the word Options near the top of the Settings pane.

    The Options pane appears. The Internet Explorer app is built for speed rather than power, so it lets you change only these things:

    • Appearance: Head here, and a toggle switch lets you make the App bar stay put so you can always see the menus. The Zoom option’s sliding bar lets you choose the magnification level to view sites. If you’ve set up the desktop to enlarge the screen by 125 percent, this bar will be set at 125. That’s fine for most websites.

    • Home pages: Tap this section’s Customize button to add your currently viewed site or sites to your Home page tabs. Those tabs will automatically load whenever you open the browser.

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    • Reading view: This lets you customize the browser’s Reading View to show text at your preferred size and font.

    • History: Don’t want anybody to see websites you’ve browsed? Tap this section’s Select button to delete cached images, cookies, browsing history, download history, and other items.

    • Passwords: Normally, the browser remembers your usernames and passwords, sparing you from typing them at every visit. This section lets people with perfect memories turn off that feature, as well as manage previously saved passwords.

    • Phone numbers: This feature lets you detect phone numbers on websites so you can dial them by using your Surface’s built-in Skype program.

    • Fonts and Encoding: Helpful mainly to bilingual Surface owners, this area lets you change how the browser displays sites containing foreign languages.

  3. Tap anywhere on the web page to close the Options pane and return to browsing.

Your changes to the Internet Explorer app’s settings take place immediately.

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