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You are here: MacNN Forums > Software - Troubleshooting and Discussion > Applications > Pop-unders in Firefox

Pop-unders in Firefox
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Junior Member
Join Date: Feb 2004
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Mar 26, 2005, 02:10 PM

I'm having trouble with ever-increasing numbers of pop-under ads in Firefox.

I know people around here, and elsewhere, have insinuated that there's a more virulent form of pop-unders being written, one that evades the pop-up blockers of Firefox and Safari, but this isn't that, I don't think; I'm getting the ads on sites that I know do not have any sort of advertising associated with them. (In some cases, I know this because I designed them.) What's more, Safari doesn't have the ads, ever.

Can anyone tell me what's going on? Do I have some sort of adware extension chewing on my Firefox?

System stats: Mac OS X 10.3.8 / Firefox 1.0
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Posting Junkie
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Mar 26, 2005, 02:19 PM
There are new pop-unders that can get around both Safari and FireFox's blockers. I have to put up with these every day, and it drives me nuts. I'm wondering how long it's going to take for someone to figure out how to break these new pop-ups and pop-unders.

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Mar 26, 2005, 02:46 PM
Omniweb appears unaffected. Or perhaps I just don't visit such sites.
Mike S.
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Mar 26, 2005, 03:59 PM
I've read that one of the ways these new pop-unders work is that they exploit the Flash plug-in's ability to call windows which is something browsers don't block.

I've not noticed this issue anywhere using OmniWeb presumably because I have it set to block all flash content unless I activate it with a click.

You can get an extension called FlashBlock for Mozilla/FireFox and Camino (requires manual installation but it works) that will do the same thing.

There may be other ways they're calling these windows but Flash is one of them.

On the issue of sites that you've never seen them on before; that's what makes pop-unders so vile, they're designed to get called when you leave a site making it look like the next site is the one that has them.
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Mar 26, 2005, 04:48 PM
I run Flashblock and still get the popunders, so it doesn't stop them. It just makes the flash popunders have a play button. ;p
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Mar 26, 2005, 05:27 PM
Maybe I lead a sheltered life, but I don't think I've seen any pop-unders since I started using Firefox, either on a Mac or a PC. Where are you going that you get these?

Glenn -----OTR/L, MOT, Tx
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Mar 26, 2005, 07:28 PM
If you haven't already tried this...

This is something I grabbed from somewhere. (Can't remember where. google for "privacy.popups.disable_from_plugins" if you don't trust me ;-) I too was seeing the occasional pop under, but not a single one since implementing this a month or so ago.

This applies to FireFox 1.0 and beyond, if I recall. You have to add a new preference. There is no GUI for it right now aside from about:config.

- type about:config in address box
- right-click in the window and select New/Integer preference
- make a pref called "privacy.popups.disable_from_plugins"
- set the value to 2

If you set "privacy.popups.disable_from_plugins" to 2 you'll block all
popups from plugins, set it to 1 and you'll allow plugins to open windows, but they'll be treated as popups (and limited in the allowed number etc), and set it to 0 and they're unconditionally allowed.
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Mar 27, 2005, 07:29 AM
I've yet to come across working popups or popunders in Firefox, but I've heard that turning off some of the allowed JavaScript behaviors (allow moving/resizing of existing windows) can block these new ones.
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Mar 27, 2005, 09:48 AM
Since installing Pith Helmet, the pop-unders as well as all pop-ups have ceased. At least that seems to be the case with Safari.

Does that compute or is just a coincidence that since installing Pith Helmet, the pop-unders have disappeared?

Iím just wondering, if it is true that Pith Helmet works with Safari, then perhaps it will work with Firefox???
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