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Use IE8 -nomerge Option To Login Multiple Accounts Of Same Site

NOTE: For those who use the latest IE web browser (e.g. IE10/11), you should consider using two option switches:
-noframemerging -private

For more info, refer to this new post NoFrameMerging + InPrivate = Unique IE10 Browsing Session.

You might be frustrated if you’re using Windows IE8 and accustomed to access the same web service with multiple account credentials simultaneously.

Say for example, there are two IE windows that both access to Google Account login page. When you log in with one of these two windows as Walker, then the other one automatically login with the same account credential as well. If you log out at one of these two windows, the other one follow too.

Apparently, this is not useful (indeed, it’s painful) if there is really a need to login two different Google Account with different IE8 windows simultaneously.

Why IE8 couldn’t login multiple accounts of the same web service provider in different windows as with IE7?

It appears that IE8 is by default sharing “session cookies” among all tabs and windows, regardless you have just open a new browser window by clicking the IE8 shortcut icon (they called this icon “the blue E”) or CTRL+N keyboard shortcut.

According to IEBlog, the IE8 Beta 2 introduced change to reduce the number of processes per browser window for the sake of performance.

Instead of creating frame and tab processes every time a new browser window is launched, the IE8 Beta 2 only create one frame process (the window that contains tabs) on the first time you launch IE. Subsequent launches will only start a new tab process or make a new tab in an existing tab process.

To overwrite this behaviour, which is also retained in the final release or version 8.0.6001.18702, there is this IE8 option switch -nomerge to start a new browser window in a new, unique session.

Essentially, the -nomerge option switch allows you and me to access different accounts of the same web service (e.g. Google Account) with different IE8 window.
Please take note that even with -nomerge option switch, you still have to open new IE8 window (not a new tab in the same browser window) to access different account.

How to run IE8 with -nomerge option switch?

Typing command like a Linux geek

If you’re using Windows Vista and don’t mind to type a little bit of command, just click Vista Orb and start typing iexplore.exe -nomerge in the Start Search text box, followed by ENTER key:

How to run IE8 with -nomerge option switch in order to access different Google Accounts at the same time?

(I’m not sure this will work in Windows Run command dialog box of Windows XP/2003 but Windows 7 Beta should be fine).

Tweak the IE8 shortcut

Regardless how many IE8 shortcut icon there are in your system, just right-click one of the icon that you use most of time to start IE8 browser, select Properties from the pop-up menu, click the Shortcut tab and append -nomerge to the Target text box:

Using IE8 -nomerge option to login multiple Gmail account simultaneously.

If you find IE8 is troublesome, just drop it and switch to Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Opera, Safari….:-)

Custom Search

  1. simon 27-03-09@15:30

    or you can just go to File > New Session

    much easier :-)

    anyone know if this is the same as just ‘iexplore -nomerge’ ?

  2. Walker 27-03-09@22:16

    Hi simon, thank you for sharing this information with me.

    I didn’t realize there is this option in File menu. Yes, it works exactly as -nomerge command option!

  3. Serge 02-04-09@23:12

    You guys are life savers. I thought I was going crazy with this new “feature”

  4. bassie 08-07-09@17:50


  5. Vince 23-12-09@04:43

    Very good info except for that last microsoft basher line of “If you find IE8 is troublesome, just drop it and switch to Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Opera, Safariā€¦.:-)”

    For work I use multiple sessions all the time, and was tremendously frustrated when I upgraded to IE8 and got this ‘feature’. I was pleased to find it was a simple command line tweak to disable it. Then I chuckled when I found out that it was done basically to be like those other browsers, but that in the other browsers you can’t really do the same sort of ‘nomerge’ command (rendering their usage for me pretty much impossible). There are some attempted hacks such as using the /incognito mode for Chrome, but not the same as just giving me back my dang window with a new session!

  6. T.r. Cahuzak 06-01-10@13:23

    You can also apply -nomerge to the Desktop Icon.
    You need to open regedit and do the follow instructions:

    On your right you need to change the variable “C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe” to
    “C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe” -nomerge

    Tested it with Windows XP Service Pack 3. I don’t know if it’s the same for Vista.

  7. santhosh 20-05-10@17:55


    I am working on IE8 version, here i am getting some proble with multiple browaer windows with one application. I want suggetion how to use mutliple brosers without losing the session, i want solution ratherthan -nomerge adding at target path of IE.

    need, help

    thank u advance

  8. Walker 20-05-10@21:12

    That is all I know at this moment.
    Who has found alternatives?

  9. mocax 08-02-11@17:09

    the -nomerge option never worked for me…. :(

    IE8 in XP…

    i was trying to log in to drupal in multiple sessions….

  10. Jasen Webster 27-06-11@23:14

    There is an option that can be changed in the registry to make this permanent for all IE windows that are opened.

    Just change the following registry entry.

    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main]

    Enjoy! :)

  11. Vis 04-01-13@03:59

    I did same steps as mentioned above still it is not working with my IE9 browser. I tried FrameMerging option as well but no luck. anyone have any other idea how to make this work.

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