Accessing Colony using Windows 10 and Internet Explorer

Those of you wishing to use Ealing Council "Colony" website for management of allotment plots and tenants may have difficulty accessing the site when using Microsoft Windows 10 where the default web browser is usually Microsoft Edge. Silverlight is not available in the Microsoft Edge browser, but is supported in Internet Explorer. If you’re running Windows 10, you already have Internet Explorer 11, so there’s nothing you need to install. This article may help you access Colony by using a couple of simple techniques.

Colony uses Microsoft Silverlight to provide an interface to the application. This allows the user to read and enter data into forms. Silverlight is an application framework for writing and running rich Internet applications, with features and purposes similar to those of Adobe Flash.

When using Firefox or Chrome to access Colony you will see a message or image/icon reading "Install Microsoft Silverlight". Do not waste time attempting this action.


The most recent versions of Firefox (52 or later) and Chrome (45 or later) web browsers for installation on Windows operating system do not support Silverlight. There are techniques to deliver Silverlight in these browsers, but none are officially supported. Mozilla (Firefox) published reasons for change on this page about NPAPI plugins, the Chrome rational is similar.

When using Microsoft Edge to open Colony you may see the image or message to "Install Micorsoft Silverlight".

Select the elipsis dots at top right of Edge browser to get menu, and select "Open with Internet Explorer".


Finding Internet Explorer

In Windows 10 the easiest way to access Colony is using Internet Explorer 11. A recent version of Internet Explorer remains in the operating system and can be accessed and configured to support Silverlight.

Use Windows 10 search or Cortana to search for Internet Explorer, and open the browser from discovered link.

Activate Cortana either by saying "Hey Cortana, open Internet Explorer", or by typing in the box if you're not using voice or have Cortana disabled. Internet Explorer will show up immediately to be opened for use. To avoid doing this every time you want to use Internet Explorer, follow these simple steps.

Type Internet Explorer in the Cortana/Search box. Saying "Hey Cortana, open Internet Explorer" is not useful here. Right click on Internet Explorer in the Cortana/Search window. To add Internet Explorer as a tile on your Start Menu click Pin to Start. To keep it on your taskbar simply click Pin to taskbar.

Now, every time you need to use Internet Explorer it's just a click away. If you don't want to add extra clutter to your taskbar, you can always now find Internet Explorer in the Start Menu under Windows Accessories in the Anniversary Update.

Creating shortcuts for Internet Explorer

An alternate method is to access Internet Explorer directly by navigating the file system to C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe, and double click on iexplore.exe to open it, and paste in the link to Colony.

In 64 bit versions of Windows 10, Internet Explorer also exists in "C:\Program Files (x86)\Internet Explorer" for 32 bit version. Use 64 bit version where available, as shown above.

You can right click on iexplore.exe and create a desktop shortcut.


Alter shortcut to open Colony directly by right click desktop shortcut, select 'Properties' from menu. Then change "Target" from "C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe" to "C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe" ""



Right click on Desktop icon to select "Rename".


If this is first time you are accessing Colony, it is possible you will prompted to download and install Silverlight. Simply follow instructions, accepting defaults, then close and restart Internet Explorer. Once installed the automatic update in Windows will maintain updates for security patches.

Which browser you use is matter for personal preference. In all cases do not allow browser to 'remember password', as other users of your computer may be able to discover and access the resource, accidentally or otherwise.