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Hello all!

I did a handful of searches for this issue and nothing came up and the search engine got mad ridiculously based on multiple searches.  Although the number of issues is therefore expanding, I will stay focused on the one I originally came for.

I want MB to stop talking to me until I address it.  That's it.  If it will not do that, I am fine with polluting connecting networks, et al as installing this software and anti-viral suites is kind of a public service.  But I am tired of hitting X on a hundred stupid pop-ups and the setting for stopping them seems like some cryptic hidden information, if it exists, and I spent the requisite 20 seconds looking that would have yielded success with any meaningfully intuitive software.  

So, if someone would share with me a way to tell the install to keep it's admittedly wonderful actions to itself, I'd be very happy!

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I really do not care what it considers important.  I will review its actions/recommendations at my leisure.  What is not acceptable is it doing something to protect me and tooting its own horn like every single time.  There are some sites that are not well protected and you can rely on MB to get you through them, but, dismissing 15 popups per navigation is unacceptable.  I just want it to DO IT and be quiet.  

Upgrades are another thing I prefer to initiate on my own and that setting is fine. 

I do not understand how the one thing I am asking for is related ONLY to an upgrade notification.  Maybe it is and I will see as I use it from here on.  Hopefully, that got it.  Thank you!

Edited by series0
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Not sure what the OP is on about with this. I don't get any pop ups with MB premium? The only time I get any kind of "pop up" is when it concludes the daily scheduled scan, and if MB actually blocks a dangerous website for me.

 

If you're seeing pop ups all the time in your browser you might be infected with something.

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Yeah, it's not a pop-up, it's just a browser redirect to the block page which explains what happened/why the page was blocked.  The alternative would be for the browser to just display an error/cannot connect message/page.  Malwarebytes does this redirect instead so that users have an explanation as to what's going on and why the connection/page was blocked, including links to more detailed info on the category of the block and why Malwarebytes blocks that sort of content (i.e. malware, PUPs etc.).

It's the same as when MS IE Smartscreen blocks something or when Google blocks something due to it being a scam or because it contains malware (Safesearch etc.).

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Some of these comments are ridiculous.  

 

I want the MB to do its job and shut up.  It's like an automobile giving me a commercial every time its technology does something.  'Tires experienced bump where none was expected, and a screen pops up blocking my driving.'  No, wrong, bad form.

Assume I will address these issues at my discretion, not yours speaking with you being MB.  DO NOT TELL ME!  Just actually do the job.  Right now its essentially botherware or selfadvertware, kind of like musicians that feel compelled to mention their names in their songs.  Bleh!  

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While I understand and at least partially agree with some of your sentiments, I don't see anything wrong with a browser page redirect to a block page.  It's pretty standard stuff and I know for a fact that if Malwarebytes didn't do it, that there would be tons of users complaining because they mysteriously can't connect to some website when Malwarebytes is installed.  I know this because that's exactly what happened before the block page redirect feature was added to Malwarebytes during the 1.x days.  This way they get an actual explanation as to what's going on.

With regards to the actual pop-up tray notifications, that's where I agree with you.  They can get excessive and my preference with regards to security apps is that they protect me quietly unless I explicitly configure them not to (i.e. only alert me when there is some additional action I need to take such as requiring a reboot or something).  The rest of the time I just want them to be quiet and do their job so I'm free to continue using my system for the actual tasks that I purchased it for (none of which was to constantly interact with any security application's notifications).

Edited by exile360
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Thanks for your insight @DasDonster. I understand where you're coming from as the majority of things Malwarebytes does, it does in the background and you can disable being notified about it (for example, you can have it detect an infection and remove it without bothering you about it). When it comes to web browsing though, it's a bit harder. For example, what should happen if you navigate to a blocked website? Should Malwarebytes just close the tab? What if it's the last tab, does that mean we close your whole browser? How do you go back if you maybe clicked a bad link?

I'd be really curious to hear your thoughts on how to be less-intrusive here.

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Just for reference, I did a quick search to see if I could find some examples.  I did an image search for the term "antivirus website block" and here is what came up.  As you can see, Malwarebytes isn't the only product that handles things this way.  I'm not saying that this justifies it, but it does indicate at least that it's not any more intrusive/obtrusive than other security products.

I think the tray notifications are more an issue personally, especially since they can interrupt fullscreen applications like 3D video games and movies, but I'm OK with the block redirect page as it is.  Also, I think there might be some misconception here about what this block/redirect page actually is and how it works.  It is not something that Malwarebytes pops-up in your browser.  Malwarebytes isn't opening a new page.  What happens when you see the block page is that you attempted to access a website that is blocked by Malwarebytes, and rather than going to the site that was blocked, Malwarebytes redirects the browser to the block information page.  Either way there has to be something there in the browser, be it the redirect or the browser error dialog stating something like "Cannot connect to website.  Please check your internet settings." etc.  Either way something will be there, but this way you know what happened and why because the Malwarebytes redirect page explains why the site is being blocked.  If Malwarebytes blocks something like a script or advertisement embedded in the website you're visiting, no redirect page will be displayed, it will just be blocked silently (if tray notifications are disabled, of course) or it will only show the standard tray notification/pop-up (again, if notifications are enabled).  It won't open a new browser window or tab to inform you about anything blocked that was embedded in the website, however if what is being blocked is a malicious pop-up advertisement, then the scripting on the website is what's triggering the new tab/pop-up, not Malwarebytes; Malwarebytes is only redirecting the connection to the redirect block page rather than displaying the pop-up's original content.

If pop-ups like what I describe are what's bothering you then I would recommend using an ad and/or pop-up blocker or turning up the settings on your browser's built-in pop-up blocker so that they are not allowed to be displayed and Malwarebytes will not override this and you won't get the pop-ups.  This occurs because Malwarebytes is not a pop-up blocker, it only blocks the connections to malicious websites, it does not block the scripting built into webpages that generate pop-up ads so all Malwarebytes can do is block the connection, not the new tab or browser window from being created.

Edited by exile360
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I ran ADWCleaner as suggested by exile360. It did find two entries:

PUP.Optional.Legacy             Ask
PUP.Optional.Legacy             AOL

So I had ADWCleaner go ahead and clean these two entries. I did a system reboot and ran it again. Found no more issues. What is strange is that she doesn't have the Ask toolbar or are we using or have ever used AOL.

So I will give this fix a try. Since the issue only appeared every so often, not everytime the browser was opened, I will have to play the waiting game.

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Yes, everything MB does should be logged and of course it is right?  So then stop telling me about it, just do it.  If people are too incompetent to go look up the logs then that is their problem.  Do not make useless verbosity the problem of competent people.  This is a multi-tab world.  If the original tab remains, then do NOTHING but log.  If the original tab is gone and there is nothing left, of course opening a new tab to show is fine.  These are not difficult scenarios to figure out.  The minimum action is the best action.  Let the user choose to act on their own time.  This is also the thing about updates.  Do them when I am NOT using the pc.  Ask for confirm and then WAIT until the pc is idle by pattern and observation.

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I don't think you understand how it works and what's actually happening which is what's causing the disconnect here.

Malwarebytes is not generating any pop-ups in your browser because it doesn't work that way (Malwarebytes never creates or blocks any pop-ups or browser pages at all).  Malwarebytes is only blocking the content of the pop-up that the site is showing because the page the pop-up comes from happens to be a blocked site in Malwarebytes block list.  Even if Malwarebytes showed no information/redirect page and only logged, you'd still have to deal with the pop-ups, only their content would be different.  You would see something like this instead, but it would still be there and would still show up just as frequently:

Blocked.png.b857c4246f44fad9d4d276d2c0c748d2.png

So as I said, if what is bothering you is the browser pop-ups, then you need to use a pop-up blocker because even if the content of the pop-up is from Malwarebytes, it is only because the connection is being redirected.  Malwarebytes is not generating the pop-ups themselves because it doesn't do that.  For example, if an embedded ad within a webpage is blocked by Malwarebytes, then you won't see a pop-up at all even though Malwarebytes blocked it.  It will still be logged just the same but no new browser window or tab will be shown because Malwarebytes does not and never has created any new tabs or browser windows/pop-ups because that isn't how it works.

Edited by exile360
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Thanks exile360!  That does help as an explanation.  But then, yes, I would want MB to close that browser tab and not pop-up.  The thing is for every action we or the community take there is a reaction from the botherware folks.  If you do something they can track you make it easy for them to bother you.  So, the thing is there are many 'infected' sites and I do not need a discussion on not going there because I do minimize my exposure but that is not an option.  These sites pop up or redirect ALL THE TIME and I want the malware detector to minimize my workload, which translates to DIGESTING the negative action and PREVENTING all further action from me.  That is USEFUL software.  That means, yes, in such a case, log it, and close the tab.

If I use a software that is JUST a pop-up blocker that can be tested for.  Nowadays we have EVIL sites like The Washington Post (not making a political statement here) that inform you that your policy of using an ad blocker is something they think they have a right to judge.  They do not.  I put in an ad blocker because I want one.  It's like they are telling me I can't clip my own newspaper.  That should be illegal and I am not joking.   To say use a pop-up blocker is then in the same space of a too specific software.  It's likely that MB is generic enough to avoid being called out in such a way for a while longer.

Edited by series0
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The problem is Malwarebytes doesn't actually function inside the browser.  It redirects the connection itself which is through the network stack (similar to how a firewall functions) so it isn't aware that there even is a pop-up or additional tab being opened.  When the connection is redirected to the Malwarebytes block page, it's the same thing that happens for any blocked connection, you simply only see the message/info if it occurred while loading a webpage in a tab or pop-up so there is no way for Malwarebytes to know when a site is generating undesirable pop-ups.

What you need to use for that purpose is a good pop-up blocker, either via a third party add-on or by changing the settings in the built in pop-up blocker in your web browser to prevent them from being displayed.  Either way it's a function that must take place within the browser and isn't something that Malwarebytes can currently do through its web blocking technology.

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You can also potentially address the situation by modifying your pop-up blocker settings in Chrome and/or installing a good pop-up/ad-blocking solution.  I've provided information on each solution in the links below:

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Thanks exile 360.  Well I had hoped it was something to address in MB, but i understand your explanation.  

How long before the sites all move to 'It's not you, it's your Ad blocker and pop-up blocker!' ?

Sadly as well, I had pop-ups blocked in Chrome already, so I suppose its not working?  Quelle suprise!

Edited by series0
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Yeah, unfortunately these advertisers figure out how to code their pop-ups to get around pop-up blockers as much as possible, so it isn't always successful.  Honestly, I've used Firefox, Chrome and Internet Explorer and I've personally found that by far the most effective pop-up blocker is the one built into IE11 when turned up to max settings.  It prevents pop-ups that show up on the same sites with Chrome and Firefox, even with several ad and pop-up blocking add-ons.

The trouble with trying to block pop-ups using third party software (if for example Malwarebytes wanted to do this) is that it can only do so from within the browser, meaning it would need to install an add-on, plugin or extension that could detect and block the pop-ups.  In fact, Malwarebytes does have a browser extension currently in beta for Firefox and Chrome that is designed to behaviorally block tech support scam sites, phishing sites, malicious ads as well as many tracking servers.  Its main focus isn't so much to act as a pop-up blocker, but it does block some of them because of their contents so it might help the situation.

For the specific site(s) you're visiting where you're seeing these pop-ups, you might give Internet Explorer a try after maxing out its pop-up blocking setting by configuring it to High: Block all pop-ups where you only get pop-ups from sites where you explicitly allow them (another benefit is that you can allow pop-ups if needed, like if they are required on a safe site or you need to allow them to display whatever content you happen to be viewing on a site as is sometimes the case).  You can also further secure things by setting IE to prompt you to allow ActiveX controls (like Flash Player etc.) to run on each website; another beneficial setting if you're dealing with sites that might not be super safe where you may selectively enable each ActiveX control as needed to view specific content you wish to see and leave it blocked everywhere else.

The Malwarebytes extension for Chrome can be found here.  Just remember that its primary purpose isn't really as a pop-up blocker, but it likely will help with a lot of the stuff you're encountering.  It extends the capabilities of the web blocking in Malwarebytes 3 also, so that's another benefit, though it doesn't require Malwarebytes 3 to use it.

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