When using the Web, I occasionally stumble on various (rather reasonable) DoS protection features used by the server administrators. Most commonly this happens when using Zotero which tends to mercilessly pound the remote servers, such as Google Scholar.

Is there a way to setup a Firefox profile, so that the rate of HTTP requests is limited? Perhaps a hidden setting in about:config or a separate add-on?

I have found some tips for the following approaches, but none matches exactly what I need:

  • Limit the number of concurrent connections in the Firefox settings and disable request pipelining: this does not help at all - if the local network pipe is anything beyond a dial-up line, the user could still hit the DoS restrictions.

  • Limit the rate of HTTP connections using a firewall rule: useless - any modern browser will reuse a connection for multiple requests - and really cumbesome.

  • Limit the bandwidth available to the browser: This one might help a bit, if it is set low enough, but to avoid irritating e.g. Google Scholar, it'd have to be set so low that other problems would appear.

Is there a more reasonable way that would allow me to rate limit HTTP requests at a level of e.g. 2 requests per minute?

PS: I use Firefox 6+ on Linux/x86-64.

  • onsite caching? I do not understand how you can restrict access and have access at the same time. how you can limit activity and have actitivy, without reducing the users demand. With Slow you have more connection slowly getting the data. with Fast they are in and out. But with fast they will also increase the use of, because acceess is not limited. If Slow ever did anything, it restricted access, and people found better things to do :-) like yelling at how slow it is. getting a real life, getting the information from old books.
    – Psycogeek
    Oct 7, 2011 at 12:35

1 Answer 1


I hope, we think about the same thing

In about:config find the option that is named network.http.max-persistent-connections-per-server and decrease as needed (with my 6 I didn't get any problem yet)

  • I tried this one, as well as all other network.http.* settings. I managed to slow down things a bit, without using external tools, but not nearly enough - and this is not what I asked for either.
    – thkala
    Oct 10, 2011 at 16:37

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