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How to Stop Pop Up Ads from Ruining Your Web Browsing Experience

Updated on May 18, 2014
Don't let pop ups reduce you to this
Don't let pop ups reduce you to this

There may be nothing more annoying than doing a web search to find the answer to a question and then having a giant pop up ad fill your screen and prevent you from getting the info you want. Granted, not all pop up ads fill the whole screen; some of them just start playing an audio or video clip in a hidden window and make you search for a way to turn them off and others hide the close button in an attempt to get you to click a link. What they all have in common is their ability to take what should be a simple, enjoyable task and make it a wholly frustrating experience. That's precisely what I want to save you from.

When I started my search for how to stop pop up ads I couldn't find one resource that covered all the different web browsers that I use and virtually no useable information on blocking ads on my android tablet. Most of the information about ad blocking is severely dated. So, after a diligent search, I've come up with the best solutions for blocking pop ups on Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox, Android Devices and iPads and other Safari browsers. So, how do I stop pop ups? Here's how -

Don't Let This Happen to You

How to Stop Pop Ups on Google Chrome

Google is in the business of selling ad space. According to Google's income statement from 2012, 96 percent of Google's revenue comes from advertising. Since they use text-based advertising that is integrated into web pages, it makes sense that they would want to limit pop up ad competition. So, they make it quite easy to block pop ups with their web browser.

  1. Click on the menu button at the top right-hand side of your browser (it's the box with the three horizontal lines).
  2. Highlight the Tools option which will open an extended menu to the right.
  3. Click on the Extensions option.
  4. Click the recycle bin next to every extension you did not install on purpose (if you don't remember installing it, trash it).
  5. Now return to the menu button and select Settings.
  6. Scroll to the bottom of the Settings page and click on "show advanced settings".
  7. Click on the "Content Settings" tab (it will open a new window).
  8. Scroll down the menu to the Pop Up section and select "Do not allow any site to show pop-ups".

That's it. No more pop up windows to invade your Chrome experience. Another solution is to install Adblock software as Hubpages guru Sleepincot suggests.

What is Your Browser of Choice

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the ladies of the internet
the ladies of the internet

How to Stop Pop Ups on Internet Explorer

It's no secret that people don't like pop ups. It's also no secret that most Internet users haven't figured out how to avoid them, so advertisers keep using them. If you use Internet Explorer, you don't have to deal with those pesky pop ups anymore. Here's how to swat them like the annoying flies they are.

  1. Open your browser and select the Tools drop-down menu (the gear icon in the upper-right corner).
  2. Select "Internet options" from the menu. This will bring up a new menu.
  3. Choose the "Privacy" tab at the top of the new window (third in from the left).
  4. Check the box next to "Turn on Pop-up Blocker".
  5. Click the "Settings" button next to the Pop-up Blocker text. This will bring up an options menu.
  6. At the bottom of the menu is the "Blocking level" option. Pull down the drop-down menu and select "High: Block all pop-ups (Ctrl+Alt to override)."
  7. Click the "Close" button to return to the Privacy menu.
  8. Select "Apply" at the bottom of the menu to turn on the High level pop up blocker.

If there are sites that you want to allow pop up windows from, these can be entered in the exceptions area of the in step 5.

Adblock Tutorial

How to Stop Pop Ups on Firefox

There are two ways to disable pop up ads in Firefox. The first one (which is the easiest) is to use the Firefox browser add on.

  1. Open your Firefox browser and click on the orange drop-down menu in the upper left corner.
  2. In the right column, choose the "Add ons" option (there is a puzzle piece next to it). This will open the Add ons interface.
  3. Type "Adblock Plus" into the search bar in the upper-right portion of the screen.
  4. Choose the latest version of Adblock Plus to install (version 2.4 at the time of writing).
  5. Close Firefox and restart to enable the Add on.

PRO TIP

By entering the add on screen and clicking the puzzle piece icon in the left menu you can access a list of currently running extension. Adblock Plus offers running options by clicking on the options button to the right of the service name. Scroll to the bottom of the screen to choose your filter preferences.

The second way to block pop ups in Firefox is to do it manually.

  1. Open your Firefox browser and click on the orange drop-down menu in the upper left corner.
  2. Choose the "Options" selection from the right side of the drop-down menu.
  3. Again, click "Options" to open a new menu.
  4. Choose the "Content" tab from the top menu (third from the left).
  5. Check the box for Block pop-up windows. You can also add exceptions by clicking the "exception" buttons.
  6. Click "Ok" to finish the process.

Firefox is my go-to browser because it seems to work with almost every web service I use. Google Chrome tends to lag on Microsoft sites and Internet Explorer crashes at the most inopportune times.

How to Stop Pop Ups on iPad (Safari)

Stopping pop ups on the iPad is super simple. In fact, Apple takes the cake when it comes to ease of use here.

  1. Open the iPad Settings menu by tapping on the "Settings" icon.
  2. Choose "Safari" from the menu on the left side of the screen.
  3. In the Safari menu, browse down to the Security heading and look for "Block Pop-ups.
  4. Move the slider from "off" position to "on" position. The bar will now be blue and ad blocking enabled.

The method is exactly the same for your iPod Touch or iPhone.

Stop pop up ads on your android device
Stop pop up ads on your android device

How to Stop Pop Ups on the Android Browser

Android browsers usually come with the pop up blocker turned on. If yours has been disabled for any reason, here's how to get it up and running again.

  1. Select the "Apps" button from your home screen (this is the icon with the six little dots).
  2. Choose the Menu button and select "Settings."
  3. From the left hand menu, choose "Advanced"
  4. Scroll down to the "Page Content" section and check the "Block pop-ups" option.

Again, super simple. It seems like the mobile OS operators hate pop ups as much as we do!

There are plenty of free pop up ad blockers on the Internet, but do you really need to add another program to your system when all the tools are already in your current inventory? I don't think so. Hopefully, you think that way to. Let me know if you have any other hints, tips or updates to this list.

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