Since Microsoft burned IE deep into the OS if you ripped all of IE out you would find the OS to fail in many areas. Let me clarify. The OS would be fine. It's all the controls and apps that would be trouble such as add/remove programs, printing and more. The OS would still run. Remember my definition of an OS does not include the USER or APPs.
Do all anti-virus programs depend on Internet explorer? I have had so many problems with IE that I chose Chrome and love it. Current McAfee is so IE-driven that touch screen technology is now inherent in its user interface, making it unusable for older systems.
I would switch to another A/V if it isn't on that chain-gang route. Or are all A/V programs dumping previous UI to leap on the Microsoft wagon?
Admit I cling to XP Pro, SP3, backward-installed into dual core, 2 GB RAM, 230 GB storage; machine not that old. But my needs/wants are simple -- lean and mean!
May have to turn to Apple after 40 some Windows years.