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#24731 - 01/08/13 10:20 PM Re: Internet privacy bonanza? [Re: dkmarsh]
artie505 Online


Registered: 08/04/09
Originally Posted By: dkmarsh
Quote:
...I'm still wondering whether those tracking caches are actually blocked from reporting back to the entity that placed them...

If I'm reconstructing the sequence of events correctly, your flushing of the DNS cache preceded your discovery of the distinction between www.-prepended and non-www.-prepended URLs in the hosts file, so unless you've flushed the DNS cache again, it might be premature to assess the success or failure of the venture.

I discovered the difference between www.-prepended and non-www.-prepended URLs in the hosts file as reported in post #24711, and I've now flushed it the DNS cache multiple times.

As far as judging the success or failure of the venture goes though, I don't see any way to make a judgement... I know Safari can't reach any of the Web sites listed in the hosts file via its address bar, but since I've got less that zero idea how the cached tracking items work I've got no way of knowing whether their communication with their masters has been halted. (I know that tacit places the obsidian fields.com cache, so I'm going to resurrect an old post thread and see whether he'll explain its workings for us.)

Edit: Maybe I've got the answer on my own... I added (tacit's) obsidianfields.com to my hosts file, and a cache (Edit: and cookie) still appeared in Safari > Prefs > Privacy > Cookies... > Details, but tacit's avatar was blocked and a website-unavailable.com cookie turned up.

I'm going to extrapolate from that one instance and guess that all the caches that turn up from blocked Web sites are similarly "tongue-tied."

Edit: Cookies, too, I hope.
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#24736 - 01/09/13 12:11 PM Re: Internet privacy bonanza? [Re: artie505]
tacit Offline


Registered: 08/03/09
Loc: Portland, Oregon, USA
Originally Posted By: artie505
As far as judging the success or failure of the venture goes though, I don't see any way to make a judgement... I know Safari can't reach any of the Web sites listed in the hosts file via its address bar, but since I've got less that zero idea how the cached tracking items work I've got no way of knowing whether their communication with their masters has been halted. (I know that tacit places the obsidian fields.com cache, so I'm going to resurrect an old post thread and see whether he'll explain its workings for us.)

Edit: Maybe I've got the answer on my own... I added (tacit's) obsidianfields.com to my hosts file, and a cache (Edit: and cookie) still appeared in Safari > Prefs > Privacy > Cookies... > Details, but tacit's avatar was blocked and a website-unavailable.com cookie turned up.

I'm going to extrapolate from that one instance and guess that all the caches that turn up from blocked Web sites are similarly "tongue-tied."

Edit: Cookies, too, I hope.


Yep.

When you put something into your Hosts file, it's not just blocking that site from Safari. The Hosts file tells your computer "Do not query the name servers for the IP address to this site. Use this value instead."

Functionally, that means that site ceases to exist for your computer. *Any* attempt to reach that site by any software or process on your computer will fail. In addition to not being able to reach it in Safari, you can't ping it, you can't tracert to it...you can't get to it by any means at all.

Even if a reference to it turns up in the HTML of a code that you can reach (for example, if a reference to doubleclick.net shows up in a cookie domain of a site you're browsing), as soon as your computer attempts to resolve the reference, it will fail.
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#24776 - 01/12/13 10:30 PM Re: Internet privacy bonanza? [Re: tacit]
artie505 Online


Registered: 08/04/09
Many thanks for that post, which fully and finally clarifies the matter (for me, anyhow).

I was confused by the caches and cookies from presumably unreachable Web sites that I always find in Safari > Prefs > Privacy > Cookies... > Details, but between your explanation and the very helpful object lesson of your avatar's not loading I'm now satisfied that I've got a viable "don't track me" system, even if it's not a panacea, in place.
_________________________
The new Great Equalizer is the SEND button.

In Memory Of Harv: Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities. ~Voltaire

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