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Open IE Sessions In New Tab Instead Of New Window

by Dan Schlimme, Steering Committee

Open IE Sessions In New Tab Instead Of New Window

 In my environment, as many of us do, I have published a number of IE applications. 

These publishings were pretty straight forward with simply publishing iexplore.exe then the web address as follows:

Path to the executable file:

%SystemDrive%\Program Files (x86)\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe

Command Line Argument (Optional):

http(s)://website

Working Directory:

%SystemDrive%\Program Files (x86)\Internet Explorer

This worked great for us but for each IE app that was launched, a new IE window was opened which basically forced the users to have multiple windows to keep up with.  In my old environment, we had almost all applications silo’d to their own servers so each app that was launched was launching from a new server.  The main reason for this was that being in healthcare, there are a number of old applications that require old versions of IE/Java/Office/etc and this made life easier to keep each consolidated. 

In the new environment, we have taken the approach of keeping everything current and it is up to the application owner to ensure that their application will run successfully.  Due to that, I consolidated published applications to shared servers if possible.  At this time, I have focused on the IE apps only.

Once I migrated the IE applications, I received a few comments that launching multiple IE apps has been much quicker (due to session sharing) but we still had multiple IE windows.

After a lot of research, I was able to find a way to launch multiple published IE apps but force them to open as new tabs rather than new windows.  This allows quicker launching of multiple apps and made management of the opened sites/tabs much easier for the users.

To start, the command line that was used is as follows:

START /d iexplore.exe “%SystemDrive%\Program Files (x86)\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe” “http(s)://website”

From my understanding of this command is that it simply looks to see if iexplore.exe is already running from the specific location and if it is, it utilizes the same process.

After finding the command that worked properly on my pc/server, the second challenge was how to publish this.  I first thought I would publish as a .bat file, but that is a lot of management and not preferred. 

After a lot of testing I found that I could publish the application as follows which did the trick for me:

 Path to the executable file:

%SystemRoot%\System32\cmd.exe

 Command Line Argument (Optional):

/c START /d iexplore.exe “%SystemDrive%\Program Files (x86)\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe” “http(s)://website”

 Working Directory:

%SystemRoot%\System32

After Implementing this publishing change, all individually published IE apps are now launched within the same IE window but as separate tabs.

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