Programs to block advertisements

Discussion in 'Trading Software' started by fast, Jun 15, 2001.

  1. fast


    Does anyone use a program to block advertisements? On 06/13 the NY Times had an article on these programs. The article stated that blocking ads frees up bandwidth. It occurred to me that this could be useful to traders when every second counts. Does anyone have experience with or thoughts on this?
    Here are the links to the programs mentioned in the article. The article contained no assessment or comparison of the programs.

    Most, if not all, are free to the home user.

  2. fast


    After posting this I realized that most people who use this site probably use the trading platform of a direct access broker and therefore probably do not have to worry about ads. Am I right that use of a direct access broker eliminates or greatly reduces ads on your monitor screen?

    I swing trade (1-5 days) and do not use a direct access broker yet, so ads are becoming a problem for me because I use several sites during the day. In particular, the increasing frequency of pop-up window ads has become a real distraction.

  3. mjt


    Most traders here probably do use direct access platforms, but may have internet windows open at the same time.
  4. One simple thing you can do is "block" the site that supplies the ads by pointing its DNS entry to your local machine. Just right-click on the banner ad, get its properties, and then add that site to your hosts file as localhost. For example, say the banner ad comes from something like Go into your /etc/hosts file (unix) or C:\WINNT\system32\drivers\etc\hosts file (Windows NT) and add a line:

    Then reboot your machine. Now whenever the browser wants to load an image from, it will look at which is your local machine, and wont find it. So you will get a broken image in your browser. One thing to note is that if you are running a website on your machine, it will get all those hits in its log. I think there is also a hosts file for win98, but I cant remember where.. do a search for "hosts."
  5. Baron

    Baron ET Founder


    If I were you, I would go with a direct access firm. There's no advertisements, and most firms give you the software and data feed for free if you average two or three trades per day.

    CaroKann's suggestion only works if the banners are originating from a company other than the one who's site you are visiting. If the site uses their own servers for distributing ads, then you'll block the entire site out.
  6. fast


    Thanks, everyone--it's nice to be able to tap into so much knowledge so fast.
  7. mjt


    If you do decide to go to a direct access firm, there are some out there that will give you free data with as few as 10 trades/mo. There's a platform called Virtual Trader that a lot more brokers are switching to lately, probably because other platforms like Real Tick are too expensive for the less active trader. EXPTrader, for example, gives you free software and level 2 data, charts, tickers, etc. with just 10 trades/mo. If you haven't been to (this is the best daytrading megasite I've seen) go there and click on brokers (sorted by software, not alphabetical). There are about 30-40 brokers that offer Virtual Trader. Some of them will give you free software after only a handful of trades per month, some will require closer to 100.

    It's very good software; not as good as Real Tick IMO, definitely inferior charting. But it's a nice alternative for a swing trader.
  8. fast


    Your information came at just the right time. I have just gotten interested in finding out how many different software programs were used among all the different direct access brokers.
    My interest stems from the fact that I swing trade from charts -- am experienced with and dependent on I also would be interested in using their realtime intraday charts for daytrading and was wondering if a direct access broker provided them. I did not see them listed on the site you gave me.
    I went to the site you suggested and had fun looking at a lot of demo charting windows, but unfortunately most (actually, none among the ones I've checked so far) allowed me to select among their technical studies for demo purposes. But with your help and Baron's encouragement, I am one step closer to moving to a direct access broker.
    Thanks for your assistance.

  9. mjt


    A lot of the brokers that offer Virtual Trader give demos (I'm not sure if it's live; it may be based on yesterdays data) of 1/2 or a full day. If you want to see how their software and charting works, you could try that.

    I don't know how many trades you do per month, but if you do more than 50 you can get Real Tick for free. The charting on Virtual Trader really isn't that good; Real Tick's charting is light years ahead.