Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.

When a website can't set cookies to your machine, the first thing to try is clearing the cache. That, along with a few other ideas, should get you up and running.

I run Windows 7 with Microsoft Office 2010. Until about two weeks ago, I had no trouble accessing Facebook. Now, I get a message that I must allow cookies in my IE browser. I've done everything that I know under IE Security and Privacy options to allow Facebook to set a cookie. I even went so far as to add Facebook to my Trusted Sites and reduced security temporarily to minimum on all internet zones except restricted. Nothing seems to work since Facebook still said I had cookies blocked. What am I missing? Any ideas?

In this excerpt from Answercast #40, I look at a computer that cannot log into Facebook because cookies are not being set.

Facebook cookies

I have two things to check for. And I'm hopeful that the first one will actually resolve the issue.

Clearing the cache is one of those things that just sort of fixes a weird variety of things. Sometimes random behavior in the browser can be corrected by clearing the cache - even if it's cookie related.

Another thing (if you want to go that far, of course) would be to go ahead and

To make sure that some pre-existing cookie isn't interfering with Facebook's attempts to put down a new one.

Malware scan

The other direction I'm going to send you off in (of course!) is to:

  • Perform an updated anti-malware scan (both anti-virus and anti-spyware);

  • And then consider also running the free tool from Malwarebytes.org – Malwarebytes anti-malware.

Those three things together should do a relatively good job of scanning your machine for malware that might very well be interfering with your browser's ability to communicate properly with Facebook.

Browser add-ons

Another thing that comes to mind is to:

  • Turn off any browser add-ons, toolbars, and those kinds of things.

Add-ons of various sorts can interfere occasionally with a browser's ability to communicate properly with a site.

Change browser

Finally, you're using Internet Explorer. Another thing to try would be to:

  • Use a different browser.

Go ahead and grab Mozilla Firefox or Google's Chrome. Download and install one of those and see if those are having the same kind of difficulties accessing Facebook as you're experiencing with IE.

My guess is that they're not going to. That doesn't fix IE. It really avoids the problem by using a different browser, but, at least, it would get you to a point where you can visit and use the website that you want to use – even if we can't figure out exactly why IE is behaving the way it is.

So, hopefully, somewhere in those clues, those ideas, you'll have something that will get you to the point where things will start working for you.

Article C5646 - August 1, 2012 « »

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Leo Leo A. Notenboom has been playing with computers since he was required to take a programming class in 1976. An 18 year career as a programmer at Microsoft soon followed. After "retiring" in 2001, Leo started Ask Leo! in 2003 as a place for answers to common computer and technical questions. More about Leo.

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1 Comment
Terry Hollett
August 3, 2012 11:02 AM

I've had similar problems with different websites using the Opera browser. In my case I would just disable cookies and then re-enable them and refresh the page and everything would work fine.

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