What options are there for blocking Flash and animated GIF ads while keeping static image and text-only ads?

I'm interested in solutions for Firefox on Windows/Linux and Safari on OS X.


FlashBlock will replace any Flash content on any website with a placeholder and play button (Firefox Addon).

SafariStand for Mac OS X will block Flash content in Safari similar to FlashBlock for Firefox.

NirSoft's TurnFlash allows you to easily disable and enable the Flash component in Internet Explorer.

TurnFlash is freeware and "standalone", and it doesn't require installation.

How to Stop GIF Image Animations from Playing in IE or Firefox

This also explains how to permanently block GIF animations in your browser:

In Firefox - Type about:config and change the value of string image.animation_mode from normal to none.

In Internet Explorer - Tools -> Options -> Advanced. Uncheck the box in Multimedia group that says "Play animations in web pages"

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  • i <3 FlashBlock. it will block all flash by default, but you can whitelist sites, or just click the placeholder to play animations when you want. – quack quixote Oct 2 '09 at 16:46

Alternatively to blocking animated images you can simply disable animation. Open about:config in Firefox and set image.animation_mode to once or none

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  • Note that this just prevents the animation (and is firefox only) and will just prevent the animation, while keeping the image/ad static. – Will Eddins Oct 2 '09 at 15:55
  • +1 no installation. thanks, i've wondered about this. – quack quixote Oct 2 '09 at 16:44

AdBlock plus can block all Flash animation, but as far as I know it can't distinguish between animated and static gifs.

The filter to block Flash would be http://ad.uk.doubleclick.net/*.swf (for example). You'll need to train AdBlock for all the different ad sites.

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  • I done want to block all flash, just flash ads. Can adblock be configured to block *.swf from add sites? – sal Oct 2 '09 at 16:00
  • @sal - sorry - just prefix the filter with the URL of the ad site. You'll have to train it though. – ChrisF Oct 2 '09 at 16:17
  • @sal, Adblock+ was meant to block only ads and not all flash, actually it's not that easy to make it block all flash things. As for training it, there are a few rather extensive subscriptions that will get you going. – Eran Oct 2 '09 at 19:17

As regards the Safari/OS X part of the question, take a look at ClickToFlash.

It's generic Flash blocker, so doesn't only block ads (but given the state of Flash on OS X that's not really a bad thing). It's got a whitelist, so you can add in sites where you're happy for Flash to load.

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  • +1 Never heard of ClickToFlash but this looks pretty cool. – sal Oct 2 '09 at 20:17

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