The Internet is an overwhelming source of information, but it also has many equally overwhelming distractions. Staying focused on the web is far from easy, so the desire or outright need to block websites is quite common.
Besides the distractions, there are safety reasons. There’s a ton of disturbing content, and maybe you’re a concerned parent. Whatever the case, there are ways to block access to unwanted sites in Chrome and Firefox. However, blocking all but one website is completely different, so we are going to discuss why and how to do it.
A specific purpose
Blocking all but one website creates a single site browser that has a very specific purpose. Just the fact that you will be using it to access a single website is enough. So why should you do it?
The answer is quite simple: protect your account and information. By blocking access to all other sites, you are completely protected from attacks like clickjacking and cross-site scripting. That is why this approach is so important when it comes to websites with sensitive personal information, such as medical-related sites, financial sites, email accounts, etc.
By blocking all other websites, you are blocking all connections except the one to the website that you have explicitly allowed. If they originate from a non-whitelisted domain, third-party scripts will not load. Of course, you won’t be able to open those third-party sites in your manually chosen browser either.
–Host rules parameter for Chrome
To block all domain connections, except the one you whitelisted, as a Chrome user, you can use the –host-rules parameter. This is what a general parameter should look like:
–Host-rules = “MAP * 127.0.0.1, EXCLUDE * .techjunie.com”
Using this parameter will redirect all other connection attempts to localhost, while connections to world-geek.com and its subdomains will remain available. If you want more than one exception, you can easily add them like this:
–Host-rules = ”MAP * 127.0.0.1, EXCLUDE *. techjunie.com «,» MAP * 127.0.0.1, EXCLUDE * .microsoft.com «
Adding this parameter to Chrome only requires a few simple steps. You need to right-click on the Chrome shortcut on your desktop, taskbar, or Start menu, then select Properties. After that, add the parameter to the end of the written Target list, with space in between.
Now apply the settings by clicking OK.
If you want to be able to visit other sites in Chrome, you can create a new shortcut for this purpose, keeping the first one intact.
When it comes to Mozilla Firefox users, they will first need to install a browser extension called Simple Blocker. It offers two types of filter modes, Black List and White List.
All URLs that match the regex will appear in the Black List, while all those that do not match will appear in the White List. Here is the example:
A: https ?: // (?! (Techjunie.com | microsoft.com | gmail.com))
This command would allow access to the mentioned sites while blocking all other connection attempts. Of course, you can always enter just one to create a single site browser. Since you can create a new shortcut for Chrome, you can create a new Firefox profile, which is extremely easy with Firefox Profile Manager.
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Simple distraction removal
Now that we’ve shown you how to block all but one website, it’s time to ask yourself if it’s really necessary. If you don’t have personal accounts with sensitive information and your goal is to get rid of distractions, it probably isn’t necessary.
If you only want to block some distracting sites, such as Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, you can manually block them within a browser using BlockSite, a plug-in that is available for both Chrome and Firefox. Of course, you can also manually unblock sites at any time.
Here’s how to block a site. After installing the plugin, right-click on the page, select Block site, and then Block this site.
It is not the only blocking extension for Chrome and Firefox, but it is incredibly easy and works very well.
After the installation in Firefox, you will need to restart the browser to enable the plugin, and blocking the site requires a little more than a right-click. You will have to add it to the Blacklist by selecting Tools and then Plugins from the menu bar. Under the BlockSite plugin, click Preferences, select Blacklist and then click Add.
After adding the website, save by clicking OK.
Blocking all but one website is possible in both Chrome and Firefox, and it’s pretty easy. But if you don’t have a real need for a single site browser and are just looking for a way to stay focused on the web, a simple plugin is enough to remove distracting sites.
Of course, not all solutions work the same for everyone. If you know of an easier solution for concentrating online, feel free to share it in the comments.