The add-on manager can be launched via the button "Manage add-ons" on the tab Programs for Internet options.
It gives users an overview of which add-ons are currently installed on your Internet Explorer and allows you to enable and to disable specific ones.
In addition to ActiveX controls, it lists what are called "browser helper objects". These are browser plug-ins that go beyond the display of certain multimedia content on web sites. The Google Toolbar is one example of a browser helper object.
All extensions should be disabled in the add-on manager, and selected add-ons should only be reactivated if something no longer works as desired. You should also take a look at the management area occasionally to make sure that the browser has not caught a contaminant.