...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 ww
w.-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 ww
w.-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.