How to Fix: Disable Firefox Website Notifications (Properly)

Dennis Faas's picture

Infopackets Reader Richard L. writes:

" Dear Dennis,

Thanks for your ongoing articles on Thunderbird. I have a question about Firefox. Lately when I visit websites, I get a popup asking me: 'Would you like to receive notifications from this website?' with the default option 'Always receive notifications'. In sheer frustration I've tried to select 'Never receive notifications' but accidentally clicked on 'Always receive notifications' and now I'm getting a barrage of website spam! Whoever thought of this 'notification' idea should be shot! I should not have to keep clicking on 'NO!' I don't want to receive notifications every time I visit a site. For what it's worth, I have gone inside of the Options menu and then Content tab, then selected 'Do not disturb me' under the 'Notifications' header, but it does absolutely nothing! What can I do to make this madness stop? "

My response:

I have also gone through this exact same process - and you are correct, the "Do not disturb me" does nothing at all to stop these website notifications from popping up. For the record, these notifications are called website push notifications, and they are meant to keep you in touch with your favorite site - kind of like an instant message, even if you aren't on the website. However, as you have pointed out, this new feature is being adopted by more and more sites, which then results in constant popups asking "Would you like to receive notifications from this website?"

How to Fix: Disable Firefox Website Notifications (Properly)

Since the "Do not disturb me" feature does absolutely nothing to stop these popups from appearing (and yes, I have tested this myself), there is a way around fixing this issue - but it involves modifying the Firefox configuration file manually. This is not a deal breaker, but it isn't the most convenient way to disable these annoying website push notifications.

To do so:

  1. Launch Firefox and open a new tab.
  2. Inside the new tab, type in: "about:config" (no quotes), then press Enter on the keyboard.
  3. Use your mouse to highlight the text below:

  4. Right click over top of the highlighted text above, then select Copy from the dialogue menu. Go back to the "about:config" tab, then right click over top of the Search field input box (where you would normally type something in) and select Paste from the dialogue menu. The text you copied in Step #3 should now be output into the Search field input box.
  5. Under the "Preference Name" column (below the Search field box) you should now see "dom.webnotifications.enabled" in the list. If you look under the "Value" column, it will say "True" - this is the default value. Next, double click on the "dom.webnotifications.enabled" word - the entire row will turn bold; under the "Value" column, it will now say "False".

    Note: while researching this issue, some websites suggested that the option to change is "dom.webnotifications.serviceworker.enabled". This is NOT correct - I also tested this myself. The correct value to change is "dom.webnotifications.enabled". Please don't make the same mistake. The instructions on this page are in fact correct.
  6. Close Firefox and restart it. The problem should now be fixed.

I hope that helps.

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About the author: Dennis Faas is the owner and operator of With over 30 years of computing experience, Dennis' areas of expertise are a broad range and include PC hardware, Microsoft Windows, Linux, network administration, and virtualization. Dennis holds a Bachelors degree in Computer Science (1999) and has authored 6 books on the topics of MS Windows and PC Security. If you like the advice you received on this page, please up-vote / Like this page and share it with friends. For technical support inquiries, Dennis can be reached via Live chat online this site using the Zopim Chat service (currently located at the bottom left of the screen); optionally, you can contact Dennis through the website contact form.

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dan_2160's picture

Even though dom.webnotifications.enabled was set to True on my Firefox, I canont remember ever receiving one of these "push" offers. I must be visiting the wrong sites.

Still, thanks for the tip. I did change the setting to false as instructed.