Internet Explorer 8 installation failure

I have a Windows XP sp3 installation attached to a domain. The user tried to install Internet Explorer 8 via Windows update. Previous to this, IE6 was installed.

The installation seems to complete without error. No error messages pop up and everything works as it would if the installation were a success. The setup asks for a restart, but after a restart it is like IE8 was never installed. The only difference is that now all of the shortcuts to IE are gone and it is like IE is not even installed on the system. Links no longer open with IE. The association just seems broken.

The "c:\program files\internet explorer" folder is still intact, but contains all of the old IE6 files.

I have tried the following:
1. Removing the IE program files folder, rerunning setup. No change.
2. Resetting the local security policy of the local computer. Rerunning  setup, no change.
3. Removed the  IE program files folder with IE6 contents, replaced with program files folder from other installation with IE8 installed. Reran setup, no change.

Any ideas?
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Can you try to install under the local administrative account?
tvaccAuthor Commented:
I logged on with the local administrator account. Still no change.
Try this: Download IE8.MSI from here:

Save it on the desktop.

Now completely remove Internet explorer from the add/remove menu -> Add/remove windows components. After a restart launch the IE8 installer to install IE8.
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tvaccAuthor Commented:
Followed those instructions. It completes without error, but all that is created in the "c:\program files\internet explorer" folder is a "custom" folder. Inside there are various xml and inf files.
how about scrapping IE8, and using an alternative browser.  I have had issues with Internet Explorer before and decided to never use it again.

Mozilla Firefox is great.  I've also found Wyzo, a Mozilla Firefox based Web browser, which I've found to be somewhat better.  

The links below will take you to the download page.
Mozilla Firefox -

Wyzo -  (I highly recommend this browser)
Two questions:
What account did you run the steps under?
Is the computer part of a domain?
I'm not sure why IE8 is so important to everyone... OK - the version entitled IE8 for Windows XP, for Windows Vista, and for Windows 7 are each different. The versions for Win7 and for Vista run well. I cannot begin to tell you how many systems I've cleared of IE8 because it hoses the system or suddenly the Internet will simply not run properly.

Would recommend a complete uninstall of IE8 (it appears in Add/Remove Programs as "Windows Internet Explorer 8"); and, yes, you should do this from an administrative account. Do not be afraid of the truly awesome list of items which Microsoft then tells you will not run once you've uninstalled IE8. (I was DONE worrying when it listed Mozilla Firefox as a program which would not run once IE8 was uninstalled - how's that again?)

Windows Update will first attempt to offer the program to you again. Choose "Custom" when the update is offered (as opposed to "Express") and remove the check mark from IE8. Remember to also choose "do not offer this update to me again" (paraphrased).

The next IE update offered will be version 7. Accept that. It will run well and give you none of the headache of IE8. Let us know how the system responds and we'll look at other steps. IE8 does need to be removed from the equation to properly troubleshoot the issue.

Having said that: I also use Mozilla Firefox as my browser of choice. IE is used on my system for windows updates and as an alternative when there are issues of some kind. It is always a good idea to have two or more browsers present so that when you have to troubleshoot an issue you can determine if it is or is not a browser issue.
tvaccAuthor Commented:
Here is  an update: her computer ended up crashing and she bought a new one. I never fixed the IE8 problem. I tried everything except the last suggestion to try installing version 7.

I realize that there are other broswers, but she has specific site needs (activex stuff) that require IE.

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