Block distracting websites in Firefox with Impulse Blocker

Nov 1, 2020
Firefox, Firefox add-ons

Want to get things done, but find yourself distracted by social networks or other websites? We have all been there.

Block distracting websites in Firefox with Impulse Blocker

There are some add-ons which you help you become more productive. ImPulse Blocker is an extension that can block websites temporarily. The add-on is easy to use and to the point, and makes you more productive provided that you keep a certain level of self-discipline as there are ways around its blocks.

A "block" icon appears on the toolbar after you have installed the add-on. To start using it, access a website that you wish to block. Once the webpage has loaded, click on the Impulse Blocker icon and select "block website". For e.g. If you wanted to block Twitter, the button would read "Block".

Impulse Blocker firefox extension

When you have blocked the page, reload it and a message will say " Impulse Blocker. Your impulse to visit is successfully blocked!".

Basically, the extension redirects the blocked website to its own local URL and prevents it from loading. There is no other option on the "blocked" page that you can interact with.

If you want to enable/disable Impulse Blocker, click on the extension's toolbar icon and select the On or Off buttons. You may optionally pause the blocking behavior by using the time settings that appear in the extension's pop-up GUI, it has the following pause options: 5/10/15 or 30 minutes, or 1 Hour or 3 hours.

Impulse Blocker cancel pause

What if you blocked a website by mistake? That's easy to fix. Click the add-on's button and hit the gears icon in the top right corner of the pop-up. This takes you to Impulse Blocker's settings page. It has a large banner that indicates whether the blocker is on or off, click the button to its right side to toggle the switch.

Impulse Blocker settings

The list of websites that you have blocked are displayed on this page. If you want to remove a site from the list, click on the Delete button next to it.

The text box in the top right corner of the Settings page can be used to add websites that you want to block. This is handy if you don't want to visit the website in question, but wish to restrict access to it. Enter the name of the site and the add-on will automatically block the entire website including the top level domain and all its sub-domains. You don't have to include http, https or www while adding a website manually, e.g. adding to Impulse Blocker will block,, etc.

Note: The add-on's official guide says that we can skip the .com domain too, but I couldn't get it working and had to enter the suffix as well.

There are two options on Impulse Blocker's settings page, and these allow you to disable the On/Off buttons and the Pause buttons in the pop-up. Enabling these will provide you with an additional obstacle that prevents you from accessing the blocked webpages.

Impulse Blocker is an open source add-on. It is a Firefox recommended extension.

If you're looking for a parental control solution or a way to permanently block websites, this is not it. But if you want to stop yourself from cute cat videos and concentrate on work/studies, Impulse Blocker may help you. if you don't fall into the trap of unblocking sites or using a different browser just to access sites.

Note: If you unblock a website and still can't access it, close the tab and open the site in a new tab.

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Impulse Blocker
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  1. Software tester said on November 5, 2020 at 10:35 am

    Much better is “URL Disabler” It is a portable Freeware and supports Firefox, Google chrome and Microsoft EDGE.
    Ä°t has block download , whitelist and much more features

  2. Some Random Person said on November 3, 2020 at 9:20 pm

    I’d like something similar to this but a scaled down version. For example, I might want to watch one youtube video someone shares, or see an image on a sharing site, or read an article someone shows me….but the related videos/images/article links on the side of the page not show. The only thing I can think of would be a filter list, but I’m not aware of any that exist made for this purpose.

  3. dmacleo said on November 2, 2020 at 7:51 pm

    only children should have this issue. adults should not.

  4. Anonymous said on November 1, 2020 at 8:12 pm

    A browser extension to block distracting site is practically useless.. one can easily disable/uninstall the extension in a couple of clicks.

    As a master procrastinator I have this issue, which has been exacerbated after I started working from home due to COVID-19..
    The best tool I found to block distracting sites is FocalFilter, it’s a hosts based blocking tool, which adds an extra layer of complexity to the blocking method..

  5. Gerard said on November 1, 2020 at 12:55 pm

    Add “distracting websites” to the hosts file or e.g. uBlock Origin’s filter list and “you become more productive”, because they won’t distract you anymore. Unless of course, you are addicted to “social” media etc. and they keep whispering in your ears: “visit me!, visit me!”. In that case, go and see a doctor.

  6. Pedro said on November 1, 2020 at 12:08 pm

    I prefer to use a dedicated program that allows me to establish rules to block a number of websites.
    Cold Turkey is great: it has extensions for Chromium based browsers and Firefox. But it blocks any browser that you have installed if there´s no extension for it.

  7. Yuliya said on November 1, 2020 at 12:03 pm

    this is nonsense.

    1. ha said on November 2, 2020 at 4:43 pm

      nonsense +1.

    2. Tiago Lopes said on November 2, 2020 at 11:49 am

      Well… I’m one of the users that this use case fits. It really helped me to reduce distractions and to open websites by impulse. Very happy with it

    3. Anonymous said on November 1, 2020 at 3:48 pm

      Yep, it’s embarrassing that people feel the need for such an extension.

      “Want to get things done, but find yourself distracted by social networks or other websites? We have all been there.”

      No we haven’t.

  8. Sen Gourab said on November 1, 2020 at 10:58 am

    Time to block ghacks.. :/

    1. Why blocking? said on November 1, 2020 at 2:12 pm

      It is not time to block ghacks. Sometimes I see NoScript XSS warning and I have reported to Martin. This is only site I don’t use adblocker.

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