The Power of Personal Preferences in Web Browsing

Some web browsers provide pop-up blocking protection built in. Pop-up blockers are helpful, because they cut down on the amount of junk advertising that can appear when you surf to commercial websites. Some of Hampshire College's Intranet pages, however, also use the same technology as commercial advertising popups, so you could discover that some pages will not load. You might even see a message telling you that popup blocking may be preventing the page from displaying. This is an easy feature to control.


  1. Go to: Firefox > Preferences (Mac) or Tools > Options (PC).
  2. Select the World icon labeled as "Content" (Mac) or "Web Features" (PC).
  3. Note whether Popup Blocking is enabled. (It is if it is checked.) If so, click on the "Allowed Sites" button.
  4. In the "Allowed Sites" window, if you do not already see "*" in the site list, type that into the "Address of web site:" box, and click on the "Allow" button.
  5. Click OK (PC) or the red dot (Mac) to close that window, and again to save the preference change.

While you are in the Preferences window, you might check out some of the other features that you can control. A common one in the General options is to set your home page, the page that Firefox first opens when started up. In Privacy, you will find that you can turn off the Save passwords and Forms options. This is more secure, especially if you ever purchase anything online and use your credit card on a computer that is shared by others. You will also find an option to clear the cache, which is sometimes necessary to see an updated version of a page.


  1. Go to the Safari menu, and notice whether the option to "Block Popup Windows" is checked.
  2. If so, click on the option to uncheck it while navigating the Intranet. You can reactivate it when you are browsing to other websites if popup advertising at those sites bothers you. There is no option to allow certain sites, while blocking others.

Internet Explorer (PC)

  1. Go to Tools > Options.
  2. Find Popup blocking under Privacy.

Save your eyesight!
One handy browser feature under all browsers allows you to adjust the text size displayed on web pages. Find under the View menu.