Missing tabs in Internet Explorer 7 - cause and fix
A common cause of missing tabs is third party add-ins. Please run IE7 in no add-ins mode if you have this problem. If it goes away, you need to work out which add-in is causing your problem. Please add a comment to this blog advising which add-in is causing your problem.
If using IE7 Beta 2.... we saw a series of posts in the Internet Explorer newsgroups from people reporting that IE7 was not displaying Windows tabs despite that option being enabled (yes, you can turn tabs off in IE7 if you so wish).
The IE team have tracked down the cause and blogged about it:
In short, instead of using the installation package, some users have been extracting the files and running update.exe manually. Why were they doing that? Well, some of us are geeks and like to play with things - we like to control what happens, and when. But, it also seems some were trying to get around the Windows Genuine Advantage check <sigh>.
As the IE team said: "It [bypassing the installation package] is unsupported. Don't do it. It's bad. If you do it and something breaks, it is unsupported because it isn't a valid scenario. As the problems people have had doing it show, it doesn't always work right."
The next public build will *not* allow update.exe to be run directly.
This isn't the first time people have broken their installs by trying tweaks and workarounds - some people broke their machines a while back by running an IE6-IE7 side by side hack:
Its all well and good to experiment and play but please, don't start yelling if you break things ;o)