Troubleshooting the AdBlock for Safari Mac app

If you're seeing ads or a web page isn't working, here are the most common reasons and what to do about them.

  1. In the AdBlock app, go to the Ad Blocking tab and under "Change what AdBlock shows and hides" make sure the "Allow some non-intrusive ads" option is toggled OFF.
  2. In Safari, go to Safari > Settings > Websites > Content Blockers and make sure the option "When visiting other websites" is set to ON.
  3. In Safari, go to Safari > Settings > Extensions and make sure the AdBlock Engine is set to ON.


I'm seeing ads on every site I visit

Is AdBlock paused?

Click the AdBlock icon in the Safari toolbar. If you see a blue play button, it means AdBlock is paused. Click the blue pay button to unpause. Refresh any pages where you were seeing ads.

Are the sites in a language other than English?
Currently the AdBlock app only blocks ads well on English-language websites. The filter lists that block and hide ads must be converted to Apple's content blocking syntax for use with the new generation of Safari content blockers. Converting the filter lists is complicated. So far, we have been able to convert only EasyList, the list that blocks and hides ads on English-language sites.
We hope add filter lists for more languages in the future. In the meantime, you may want to visit non-English sites in Chrome, Firefox, or Edge, where AdBlock includes filter lists for non-English languages.


I'm only seeing ads on one site

Is the site in a language other than English?
Is the site on your allowlist? 

The site may be allowlisted (that is, you have turned off ad-blocking on that site). There are two place you can allowlist websites: in AdBlock and in Safari itself.

Unlike in other browsers, the AdBlock icon in the Safari toolbar doesn't change when the website you're visiting is allowlisted, regardless of where it was allowlisted. The only way to tell is by looking at the AdBlock menu in Safari and at Safari's settings for individual sites.

1. Start by clicking the AdBlock icon in the Safari toolbar. If the site was allowlisted in AdBlock, you will see the "Site" or "Page" button in blue. Deselect it. Reload the page.

2. If the ads are still there, check that content blocking is turned on for the site in Safari's settings. Right-click the address bar and select Settings for This Website. If Enable content blockers is not selected, select it. Reload the page.

3. If the ads are still there, there is one more place to check. Close the page in Safari. Select Safari > Settings > Websites > Content Blockers. Select the site, then click Remove.

Is the site using aggressive ad tech?

If the site isn't allowlisted in either AdBlock or Safari, then it may be using an aggressive form of ad technology that's particularly difficult to block. We see this used most often on free video and audio streaming sites and news sites. For some suggestions, see this article.

If nothing else has helped, you're welcome to open a support ticket. Please include a link to a page where you're seeing ads, a screenshot of the ads (please capture the entire screen including the URL/address bar), and what troubleshooting steps you've already tried.


A web page isn't working or doesn't look right

First try pausing AdBlock. If that fixes the problem, the culprit is most likely an overzealous filter list blocking something it shouldn't. Go ahead and do what you need to do while AdBlock is paused, and remember to unpause when you're done. (If you want to be a good web citizen, you can also report the issue to the filter list authors so that it can be fixed for everyone.)

If pausing AdBlock doesn't change anything, then something else is breaking the site. For more suggestions, see this article.


A site is telling me to disable AdBlock

Don't actually disable AdBlock. The better solution is to pause it. If you don't want to see ads, you may be able to get to the content in another way. See this article for some suggestions.


I need help with something else

Feel free to open a support ticket. If applicable, please include a link to a page where you're seeing the issue, a screenshot of the issue if possible (please capture the entire screen), and what troubleshooting steps, if any, you've already tried.


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