How Can I Stop Annoying Windows from Popping Up on My Screen?

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When you’re browsing the internet, you’ve probably come across the annoying phenomenon known as “pop-ups,” those boxes or windows of text and images that literally pop up over the webpage you’re reading.

Pop-ups can be third-party advertising messages or messages from the website itself. And they behave in one of two ways:

  • Often in the case of ads, you’ll see a notice telling you how many seconds the ad will show before it disappears to reveal your webpage, or before you can click on an X on the top right of the pop-up window to make the ad disappear.
  • Site messages – for example, a newsletter signup invitation – usually will disappear when you click the X in the upper-hand corner of the popup window.

But sometimes you’ll land on a site where no sooner have you clicked a pop-up shut, than another one pops up.



How to Get Rid of Pop-Ups Altogether

All the major Internet browsers, including Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome and Safari, let you block all pop-ups. Here’s how:

In Internet Explorer

1. Click the icon in the upper right-hand corner, then select “internet options,” which will display this window:


2. Click the “privacy” tab, check “Turn on Pop-up Blocker,” then hit “Apply.” Click the X to close the box and you are all set.


In Mozilla Firefox  

1. Select the tab marked tools in your browser toolbar and select “options”


2. In “options” select “content” and check “block pop-up windows,” hit OK and you are all done.



In Google Chrome

1. Click on the icon and select “Settings.”  On the settings page, click on “Show advanced settings” at the very bottom of the page:


2. In the “Privacy Section” click the “Content settings” button

3. In the “Contents Setting Box,” scroll down to Pop Ups and select “Do not allow any site to show pop-ups (recommended)”



Hit OK and you are good to go.

In Safari (Apple’s browser)

Apple makes it easy to stop pop-ups:

1. Go to the  icon in the upper right-hand corner.

2. Then check “Block pop-up windows.”


That does the trick.

After You Block Pop-Ups

Sometimes after you’ve blocked pop-ups, you’ll see a bar in the top right of your browser screen telling you that a pop-up is trying to open. Often, this is because you’ve landed on a webpage where the pop-up is an integral part of the site experience; for example, you might be on a shopping site, and the pop-up might be a detail view of the item you’re looking at.

When the pop-up bar appears, it will give you a choice of allowing the popup; allowing all popups on this site for this and future visits;  or continuing to block popups on this site. Your choice – if you say “yes,” your browsing on other sites will still be pop-up free.

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  • Gwen

    The traditional methods for blocking pop ups is no longer working for the ads that slide in from the sides and bottom of the browser pages. Most of the browsers now offer Add Ons for blocking these type of ads, although it should be noted that they do not always work on a site. The consensus is that the sites are using JavaScript to code the banners. Often, you will need to block the ads for each individual site. Mozilla Firefox users are recommending AdBlockPlus as a general, blocking tool. It should also give you the tools you need to block individual sites.

  • knott reel

    I tried it on explorer. When I go to MSN home page, the slide shows and videos drag down my computer. I thought these were also popups that could be blocked. I need something that could do that.

  • MS Max

    This does not stop the pop ups in the lower right hand corner… they come one right after the other. Sometimes you can’t even click them shut.

  • tami

    why does the icon check your login and password keep coming up in the right hand corner of my tablet? This happens every few minutes every day for the past 2 weeks!

  • Bill


    I have finally uninstalled my Iris Scan Mouse that I received at Christmas. In spite of all my efforts, it continues to send a popup every morning to my screen asking do I want to upload to Twitter. I don’t have a Twitter account and don’t want one. The program has instructions for discontinuing popups, but it involves unchecking a box that is not checked in the first place. I can’t get Windows to stop it and no amount of hacking at the components has succeeded. My communications to scan mouse have been unanswered.
    The issue, of course, is that the popup begins sending material of some nature somewhere; in short, it is a spy program.
    Please pass the word about this program.
    William Reeves

  • DaleB


    Several folks have complained about annoying pop-ups. I had them too. All of my web browsers were already set to block pop-ups, but I was still receiving them, even after I deleted the pop-up’s window. Chances are, you have Malware providing you with these pop-up ads. I was able to get eliminate them by downloading, installing, and running MalwareBytes – an Anti-Malware program. There is a free (“lite”) version, and it worked. This program will take a long time to check your hard-drive.

    When ran MalwareBytes showed that my 250 GB HD had approx. 600,00 file/folder items checked. A full scan took just over 5 hours…so you need to be patient. You may want to do it while you are not sleeping, in case a dialog box pops-up asking you a question. This may occur…it is part of the process. I have had a couple of runs where this occurred. MalwareBytes quarantines the “suspicious” files, which you can then delete.

    Here’s the link to their main web page:

    • DaleB

      I made a typo In my previous email.

      The number 600,00 should have been 500,000 – five-hundred thousand. So, you will need a lot of time to allow MalwareBytes to diagnose you hard drive…but it is worth the time spent.

  • Ashley

    I have a really different problem..When I go on a game or something a picture pops up instead of a character!While playing a game I noticed one of the characters had mario’s head on it!It’s really weird and stops me from playing PC games.The thing is I don’t know if you can fix it or not. :(

  • Radioflyer

    I have been having trouble with ads placed on the screen by the site.Because these are ads posted by the site they cannot be “X” out of! And they block the content!
    I have a blog spot. When I go to edit my site,
    the screen is filled with ads blocking what I need to do! And if you click on one ad and X out, another replaces it! This is new! it has not happened before! And your remedy to fix pop ups will not work on Internet Explorer or firefox on ANY thing else! I have tried on 3 windows systems, XP VISTA and WINDOWS 7 with no luck What can I do?
    Radioflyer, Tribe leader

  • Mel Young

    I have already done everything you suggest to block pop ups but the damned things keep sneaking in from the right of screen – one about every 15 seconds! Any suggestions before I kill my p.c.?

    • Radioflyer

      This not the fault of your PC This is coming from the site your going to, and this is new! they want to sell you something even at the cost of you stop going to their site. This new idea really sucks! but there is nothing you can do but write the web site and yell and scream at them about it!

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