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The one missing link in most users transition to a new browser (from Firefox) is their reliability on extensions. I know I have a few extensions that I really don’t like to live without. I bet you do as well. One of such addon is AdBlock Plus. So, if these new browsers don’t have an extension architecture (yet), how can I block ads? You can use your /etc/hosts file.

Everytime your browser is told to display an ad it’ll need to look up the address. The /etc/hosts file is checked first before DNS, which then tells it to ask the local machine. The local machine, of course, does not have that information to display and therefore nothing is displayed. Bingo! No more ads.

This not only applies to blocking ads, but also banners, 3rd party cookies, 3rd party page counters, web bugs, and even most hijackers. You’re not only blocking advertisements, you’re outright blocking thousands of known problematic and malicious websites. And all this without requiring a single Firefox extension. It works in ANY browser.

But how can you add so many ads to your /etc/hosts file one may ask. Well, someone already though of that and added over 15,000 lines in an /etc/hosts file which you can use by typing this in a terminal:
sudo mv /etc/hosts /etc/hosts.orig

sudo wget -c http://zelut.org/projects/misc/hosts.txt -O /etc/hosts
These commands will move your original file as a backup and then pull the file from the web, putting it directly where it needs to go. You should be ready-set-protected after completion of the second command. Pull up a browser (hopefully you’ll try something other than Firefox), and give it a try.

If you want do add or edit the file, simply open it with a text editor.

[via ubuntu-tutorials.com & zelut.org]