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Article ID: 298618 - Last Review: October 27, 2009 - Revision: 7.0

This article was previously published under Q298618


When you attempt to download a file from the Internet by using Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) in Microsoft Internet Explorer, you may find that the download does not complete. As a result, you cannot download the file.


This behavior can occur if you try to download a file that is larger than 2 gigabytes (GB) in Internet Explorer 6 or is larger than 4 GB in Internet Explorer 7.

Note This download limit has been removed in Internet Explorer 8. Therefore, you should not experience this behavior in Internet Explorer 8.


To work around this problem, you can configure a Web site that is dedicated to downloading large files. To do this, disable the HTTP Keep-Alives Enabled option for a Web site that Internet Information Services (IIS) hosts. To disable this option, follow these steps:
  1. Open Internet Information Services Manager.
  2. Right-click the Web site that requires the change, and then click Properties.
  3. Clear the HTTP Keep-Alives Enabled check box that is located on the Web Site tab, and then click OK.
  • The HTTP Keep-Alives Enabled option enables a client that connects to the Web server to reuse the current TCP/IP session when it downloads all content from the Web server. When you disable this option, an Internet Explorer client can then download files of up to 4 GB. However, it also forces the client to establish a new TCP/IP session with the Web server for every content object that is downloaded from the Web page. Additionally, it creates extra TCP/IP overhead for both the server and the client which will adversely affect page load times
  • Windows Internet Explorer 7 can reliably download files up to 4 GB in size without the previously described change to the server. There is no workaround to enable Internet Explorer 7 to download files larger than 4 GB in size. Windows Internet Explorer 8 can reliably download files over 4 GB in size without the previously described change to the server.


Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed in the "Applies to" section.


For more information about Internet Explorer, visit the following Microsoft Web site: (

  • Windows Internet Explorer 8
  • Windows Internet Explorer 7
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0, when used with:
    • Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server
    • Microsoft Windows 2000 Datacenter Server
    • Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional Edition
    • Microsoft Windows 2000 Server
    • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Standard Edition
    • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0, Terminal Server Edition
    • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 4.0 Developer Edition
    • Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition
    • Microsoft Windows 98 Second Edition
    • Microsoft Windows 98 Standard Edition
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