Disable Internet Explorer Script Debugging messages

Dennis Faas's picture

A few days ago I received a question which pertains to Internet Explorer Script Debugging messages. I get asked this question a lot, so I thought it would be worth mentioning in the newsletter.

Infopackets Reader 'Grumble' asks:

" I'm running Windows XP with a high-speed Cable Internet connection. When I sign on to AIM [AOL Instant Messenger], I keep getting an error message from Internet Explorer: Internet Explorer Script Error Line 77 Char: 1 Error: Library not registered Code: 0. Do you want to continue running scripts on this page? I have been running aim for several months and this has just started a few days ago. Any ideas? "

That's an interesting situation! I have one suggestion that will get rid of those annoying messages within IE (directly below). My second thought is about why Grumble is receiving those error messages in the first place.

How to Disable Script Debugging messages in Internet Explorer

  • Load Internet Explorer
  • Click Tools -> Internet Options
  • Go to the Advanced Tab
  • Under the Browsing heading, make sure there is a check-mark beside "Disable Script Debugging"

The Disable Script Debugging option applies to any situation which may cause an error window to appear, not just for AIM users. I use PopUp Stopper Pro by PanicWare and had to disable script debugging or I'd keep getting the annoying messages every time a popup was blocked.

OK -- so why did Grumble get error messages in IE whenever AIM is loaded?

My first thoughts were: If AIM is anything like ICQ (another popular messaging client), it would run in a Window that is separate from the Internet Explorer Browser, right? I don't use AIM -- and wasn't about to install it on my machine -- but I had a few theories:

  • Theory #1: Internet Explorer is automatically loaded whenever AIM is loaded. AIM is set as the Internet Explorer Home Page, or is the default page whenever AIM is initiated. A harmless debugging error message is appearing on the page (for whatever reason) whenever the AIM homepage is visited. That sounds very possible.
  • Theory #2: AIM may have a Spyware component present in Internet Explorer and is attempting to call home; at the same time, it is producing an error message. Yikes!

Well, I was a bit intrigued with Theory #2, so I decided to do some research on Google.

Google's results referred me to a many web sites where there was much discussion about an AIM security patch which contained a Spyware component. I read more up on the topic and found out that in early January of 2002, someone by the name of Robbie Saunders wrote a temporary security vulnerability "patch" for AOL Instant Messenger. The gist was that this "patch" hijacked web browsers and pointed users to some not-so-nice web sites so that Robbie Saunders could benefit from financially:

" At the time, Robbie Saunders' AIM Filter seemed like a nice temporary solution. Unfortunately, it instead produces cash-paid click-through over time intervals and contains backdoor code combined with basic obfuscation to divulge system information and launch several web browsers to [triple-x] sites. " (Source: securiteam.com)

Anyway, this is old news -- and I couldn't find any more information on Spyware contained in AIM, other than the one already mentioned above. I'm only bringing this to your attention now since many of you may have followed the same path as I took. Might as well clear the air now!

Rate this article: 
No votes yet