The new Internet Explorer 9 Beta includes many new features, including a Popular Sites page that presents a nice looking list of your most frequently visited sites when you open a new tab.  Here’s how you can customize or remove the Popular Sites page from IE 9.

By default in Internet Explorer 9, you’ll see a list of your most popular sites when you open a new tab.  These sites will be listed by how frequently you visit them, and let you quickly access the sites you already access most.

The new tab is an easy way to access and interact with your favorite sites.  Simply click one of the links to open that site.  Or, if you want to pin one of the sites to your Windows 7 taskbar or your Vista Quick Launch bar, simply click and drag one of the links to add it without even visiting the site.

If you’d like to remove one site from your popular sites list, click the red x button that appears in the top right of the site box when you hover over it.  Another site you visit regularly will replace the site you removed

Or, if you’d rather not see your most frequently visited sites at all, click the Hide sites link on the top right of the New Tab page.

Now you’ll see blank squares instead of your most popular sites whenever you open a new tab.  You can always show the sites again by clicking the Show sites button in the top right corner of the page.

Change the New Tab Page

If you’d rather change the New Tab page entirely, click the gear button on the far right of the window and select Internet Options.

Click the Settings button under the Tabs section of the front tab on the Options dialog.

Click the drop-down menu under When a new tab is opened, and select what you want to open when you create a new tab.  You can choose for IE 9 to show a blank tab, your home page, or the new tab page as before.  Click Ok to save your changes, and you’ll see your new settings in action the next time you open a new tab in IE 9.

Then if you decide you’d like to quickly access your popular sites again, just enter about:tabs in the address bar to open it even if you changed the New Tab page.

Want more info about Internet Explorer 9?  Here’s some recent How-to Geek article you might find interesting:

Internet Explorer 9 Screenshot Tour

Add Google As Your Search Provider in IE 9

Integrate IE9 With Windows Vista

Use Aero Snap with IE 9 Tabs in Windows 7

Matthew Guay
Matthew Guay is a veteran app reviewer and technology tip writer. His work has appeared on Zapier's blog, AppStorm, Envato Tuts+, and his own blog, Techinch.
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