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Old 09-29-2018, 10:44 AM   #1
enorbet
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Help Me Discover the Source of Unwanted Recent Firefox Popups


Greetings and thank yous for checking out my frustrated concern with recent Firefox behavior. I'm actually trying to migrate to Palemoon for similar reasons but it or I am not quite there yet. The reason is that I prefer to use ALSA only and not even install Pulseaudio. That's a whole other issue but it is my choice for what I consider important reasons and I only mention it because I can't use a binary blob of Firefox since it now requires Pulseaudio. I can't compile my own largely because of the current state of RUST on Slackware and I don't want to alter my system with a bunch of RUST requirements just to have a decent browser.

So, instead, I have been using version 58.0 Nightly from here - --- FireFox - Fuck PA --- . I'd just update perhaps to v61 but I want to solve this issue first.

I have popups disabled first through preferences and finally through "about:config" yet I still get these little popup windows with what appears to be some news flash with an "Activate" radio button at the bottom. I don't do Facebook or any common and personal social media but I do have one what I hope is a minor amenity enabled associated with Google which is "Pocket" seen here if you're unfamiliar with it

https://help.getpocket.com/article/1...mendations-faq

I have the most minimal permissions assigned to Pocket and I have found it quite useful at finding things and alerting me to new things that do interest me and though I'd rather not give it up, I mention it because it is newly acquired by Mozilla and is a possible candidate for the source of this popup window. I wish I could provide a snapshot of the annoying popup but I elect not to ever hit the "Activate" (or any unidentified) radio button and when not activated it disappears in short order.

So I don't know if it is Pocket doing this but it is certainly possible. I just want to find a way to discover exactly what is allowing this popup when at base level they are all disallowed yet this one seems to have the ability to override.

FWIW I've tried launching Nightly from a console to get a look at what's going on "behind the curtain" but so far I've been unsuccessful at filtering out all but popup related data and there's quite a lot to wade through without some working filter. Can I send the data via something like STDOUT to a log where such a filter can be employed?.... or has anyone already dealt with this issue and knows already what it is?
 
Old 09-29-2018, 02:04 PM   #2
fatmac
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Do you use an ad blocker, if not try ublock origin
 
Old 09-29-2018, 04:14 PM   #3
enorbet
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fatmac View Post
Do you use an ad blocker, if not try ublock origin
Thanks for replying, fatmac, butI have several ad blockers including ublock origin and in general they are a real pita or rather some sites are that complain or even won't let you in until you disable ad blockers but so far none I have enabled have stopped these annoying popups.
 
Old 09-30-2018, 04:53 AM   #4
ondoho
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can you show us one of these popups?
i really haven't got a very clear idea of what you're talking about.
does it happen only on this "fuckpa" browser?
have you tried the usual things, disabling all addons, starting with a new profile etc.?
can you reproduce this when you visit certain sites, or is it "random"?
etc.
 
Old 10-01-2018, 12:27 PM   #5
enorbet
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Hey Ondoho. Thanks for asking. As I said it never lasts long enough to get a snapshot, they are random, always news oriented (probably benign but I don't like anything, especially browser related, that I don't initiate) and yes, it only happens on this Nightly version of Firefox. I strongly suspect Pocket since the popups are always news oriented and I only have Pocket enabled on the Nightly browser but if that's so it is a change I didn't cause directly since I've had Pocket for around a year and these little popups (about 2 inches tall, 3-4 inches wide) have only been occurring for a little over a month.

Another reason I think they are relatively benign is the nomenclature. I mean if it was some con hack I imagine the radio button would be labelled something more inviting like "View" instead of "Activate" since to me "Activate" implies some ongoing permission instead of some one time peek. Because of your response I looked harder at my addons which I have previously dismissed because I only have ten total between both Plugins and Extensions and they seem unrelated but I did have one, Wordpress Toolbar, enabled so just now I disabled it to see if that has any effect. While the Profile change seems a good idea to me if I just wanted it to stop but I would rather know what it is and what "Activate" does and I'm not at all ready to try it to see. I'd rather look before I leap.
 
Old 10-01-2018, 01:07 PM   #6
Myk267
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enorbet View Post
Hey Ondoho. Thanks for asking. As I said it never lasts long enough to get a snapshot, they are random, always news oriented (probably benign but I don't like anything, especially browser related, that I don't initiate) and yes, it only happens on this Nightly version of Firefox. I strongly suspect Pocket since the popups are always news oriented and I only have Pocket enabled on the Nightly browser but if that's so it is a change I didn't cause directly since I've had Pocket for around a year and these little popups (about 2 inches tall, 3-4 inches wide) have only been occurring for a little over a month.

Another reason I think they are relatively benign is the nomenclature. I mean if it was some con hack I imagine the radio button would be labelled something more inviting like "View" instead of "Activate" since to me "Activate" implies some ongoing permission instead of some one time peek. Because of your response I looked harder at my addons which I have previously dismissed because I only have ten total between both Plugins and Extensions and they seem unrelated but I did have one, Wordpress Toolbar, enabled so just now I disabled it to see if that has any effect. While the Profile change seems a good idea to me if I just wanted it to stop but I would rather know what it is and what "Activate" does and I'm not at all ready to try it to see. I'd rather look before I leap.
I use Nightly and I've never seen anything asking me to "Activate" anything.

Check your plugins to see if any are set as "Ask to Activate".
 
Old 10-01-2018, 08:00 PM   #7
frankbell
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I use Firefox for news sites (primarily newspaper sites) and haven't seen anything like this either. I am using noscript and I block third-party cookies.

What I am seeing lately as the newest achievement in annoyance are videos that autoplay (most of them are muted) and, when you scroll down, drop to the bottom right corner of the browser window.
 
Old 10-02-2018, 12:23 AM   #8
ondoho
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^ with javascript disabled? unlikely.

enorbet, sorry, i do not use Pocket at all.
switch off all addons - symptoms gone?
then switch them on again one by one, until you see those popups again?
 
Old 10-07-2018, 01:30 PM   #9
enorbet
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FINALLY SOMETHING I CAN REPRODUCE -

A few months ago I changed my default search engine to Duck Duck Go from Google. Last night I typed "Google.com" into tyhe address bar as Iwanted to see different results. Thae page loaded fine ... BUT... as soon as I initiated a search, any search, the results page would flash briefly and then the little "Activate" window popped up after the page went blank saying in essence "You tried to be redirected to Bing and you have it blocked - Activate Now".

Yes I do have Bing blocked but why and how is a google search being redirected to Bing? This may well be the source, or very close to it, for the whole Popup thing that prompted this thread.

Any comments appreciated.

** NOTE - FWIW I searched through about:config settings for "Bing" and the only entry it reveals is the one I altered to block it.

Last edited by enorbet; 10-07-2018 at 01:48 PM.
 
Old 10-07-2018, 01:36 PM   #10
dugan
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Remove all your addons/extensions. All of them.
 
Old 10-08-2018, 12:08 AM   #11
ondoho
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i can only repeat what i already posted.
i don't think behavior like tyhis is normal from a simple search engine or a browser without any addons.
provided you clean out the cruft everytime you close it.
 
  


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