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How to block sites in Firefox

Internet users have quite a few options at their disposal when it comes to blocking sites on the web. They can use the hosts file for example which blocks them on a system-wide level, configure firewall rules for the same effect, use a DNS provider that allows the filtering, or block specific urls or sites in a program directly.

The last option is not overly effective, especially when it comes to blocking sites so that others, children for instance, cannot access them.

It is easy enough to bypass browser-specific blocks, for instance by using a different browser or a different profile in the same browser.

Blocking sites in the browser can however be an excellent option when it comes to restricting yourself. If you don't want to visit specific sites directly or indirectly, then you can use these type of add-ons to prevent the sites from being loaded.

It is obviously pretty easy to bypass the block by disabling the add-on for the time being which makes these solutions ideal for self-restriction and less than ideal for anything else.

Minimal Site Block is a lightweight extension for Firefox that has received some low ratings even though that is not justified anymore.

The extension adds a single option to the add-on preferences that you can make use of to block sites. It supports the following filters:

  1. http://www.example.com/ - Blocks the url only.
  2. http://www.example.com/* - Blocks all pages under the specified url.
  3. *.example.com - Blocks all pages that match the pattern.
  4. file://* - Block file requests.
  5. resource://* - Block resource requests.

When you visit a blocked site in Firefox, you receive the message that the site has been blocked. It won't load in the browser unless you disable the extension, uninstall it or remove the url pattern from the options page.

block site firefox

There are plenty of ways to bypass the protection including the use of a proxy server.

The extension supports different protocols. You can block https websites for example but need to specify the protocol to do so. The pattern *.facebook.com blocks access to the social networking sites regardless of the protocol that is being used.

It is interesting to note that it seems to block page requests to resources from blocked urls as well. If you block Facebook you will notice that social media buttons and information are not displayed on third-party sites.

Closing Words

Minimal Site Block is a handy extension for Firefox users to restrict access to specific resources on the Internet or a local network.

The blocking works fine and since it is also blocking requests on third-party sites, it is excellent to block access to certain resources completely.

This article was first seen on ComTek's "TekBits" Technology News

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