[tbb-dev] AdBlock Plus in Tails' Tor Browser [Was: TBB in Tails: Release timing in general]

anonym anonym at riseup.net
Thu Oct 23 12:42:02 UTC 2014

23/10/14 11:08, Georg Koppen wrote:
>> [1] https://tails.boum.org/contribute/design/#index40h3
> what does adding Adblock plus have for a benefit wrt to tracking
> avoidance? To put it more precisely: In which cases are the defenses in
> the current Tor Browser not adequate yet Adblock plus fixes this
> situation (I could not find anything on the link you gave above about
> it)? 

In all honesty, it's not very clear to me why we state this. We've been
shipping AdBlock together with the browser since before there was a TBB,
and even before Tails, the Incognito LiveCD did it. I added AdBlock to
Incognito's browser primarily for performance reasons, I think.

Any way, we have a ticket about possibly removing AdBlock in Tails:


As for tracking avoidance, I guess the basic issue is that if I (more or
less) concurrently browse sites X and Y, and both serve ads from Z, then
Z can correlate my presence on X and Y in various ways. The Tor Browser
does stuff to prevent this, like disabling 3rd party cookies and
probably more things I'm unaware of, but I suppose the ad fetches still
may use the same Tor circuit, so AdBlock:ing seems to at least help with
preventing that. Of course, it uses a blacklist approach, and the real
solution is something like Tor bug #3455 [1] I guess.

Do you feel that the above is accurate? If not, please elaborate, so we
can progress on Tails ticket #5649.

For me personally, however, the biggest benefit with AdBlock Plus is
that I can enjoy my browsing experience as ad-free. This may not be a
good argument for its inclusion, though, just a personal anecdote. :)


[1] Tor Browser should set SOCKS username for a request based on first
party domain: https://trac.torproject.org/projects/tor/ticket/3455

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