This happened to me starting aroun 2011-07-20: many websites would not completely load in either Firefox 3.6.18 or 5.0 (I tried only these) on Ubuntu 10.10. This also happened with a complete fresh install of Firefox 5.0 on Ubuntu 11.04, after removing all configuration files. So it is clearly no Firefox config issue.

Symptoms. Mostly, the page header elements would load, including header imagery etc., but no actual article content. The status bar would show “waiting for” and the “page is loading indicator” (the little wheel in FF 5) will be constantly on. This does not happen on all pages with a tweet button, but on some. Checking the same pages with the konqueror browser shows that the pages load fine, after a while.

Diagnosis. I do not have a confirmed diagnosis of this, but I think that this server ( is simply overloaded at times. And Firefox seems to be implemented so that it will wait forever on content that gets integrated from external domains, stopping page rendering altogether. Combined, this is a bad thing (to say the least) because it takes half of the Internet down. Or nearly down, because there is something you can do.

Solution for Firefox. Use an ad blocker to block content from How to do this for Firefox:

  1. Install the AdBlock Plus for Firefox extension.Restart Firefox afterwardsif it tells you to.
  2. Go to the “Tools → AdBlock Plus Preferences” menu entry in Firefox.
  3. In the AdBlock Plus preferences window, go to “Filters → Add Filter …” and type “||^” (without the quotation marks).
  4. You can close that preferences window now.
  5. Reload the problematic page. Issue solved. On all pages.

Solution for Chrome and Chromium.

First alternative is the equivalent to the Firefox solution, as per Jaycephus’ comment below:

  1. Install AdBlock Plus for Chrome. (It works the same with AdBlock for Chrome as per Jaycephus’ comment.)
  2. Open the menu (with the monkey wrench icon), then go to “Tools → Extensions”.
  3. Click “Options” for the AdBlock Plus entry in this extension list.
  4. Click tab “Add your own filters”.
  5. Enter “||” (without the quotation marks) into the text line and click “Add filter”. No caret character here as in the Firefox solution, as it is not accepted here (and even in the Firefox solution it’s unnecessary).
  6. Close the options tabs and reload the problematic page. The issue should be solved immediately.

Second alternative, as proposed by yura in the comments below, uses built-in features but might not work for some:

  1. In Chrome or Chromium, open the menu (with the monkey wrench icon), then go to “Settings → Under the Hood → Privacy → Content settings → Plug-ins → Manage exceptions …”.
  2. as hostname pattern and choose “Block” for behavior.
  3. You can close the settings tab.
  4. Reload the problematic page. The issue should be solved immediately.

This second alternative is normally meant to only block media plugins like Java and Flash from running on some sites. So if it works, I cannot imagine why it does.

Solution for Internet Explorer. No ready-made instructions yet – add them below if you know a solution. Basically, you have to find a configurable ad blocker for Internet Explorer, then install and instruct it to block all content from

30 thoughts on “How to fix a browser blocked by “waiting for”?

  1. Awesome! I LOVE this advice. I’ve been dealing with this issue for at least two months, and now it’s solved. Thank you!!!

  2. Worked perfectly!!!!

    … and in the process of finding this, I stumbled across a firefox “tweak” that speeds up the browser!!!!

  3. I had to search Google for this answer. Thanks for the tip! It worked like a charm for FF.

  4. Diagnosis:

    I think it’s webmasters using a twitter sidebar or floating footer scripts on there websites. For some reason I never did like those things. It seems more of a distraction. If you ever had paid visitors to your site using Vista Boost, they wouldn’t recommend it. As you can see it does something to the visitation.

  5. Lynn: Your advice doesn’t work for all of us. I live in China, where the t-word is on the blocked URL list. This ad-blocker solution works great. Thank you very much for the tip.

  6. for chrome users:
    go to Option->Under the Hood->Privacy->Content settings->Plug-ins->Manage exceptions
    add as Hostname Pattern and choose Block for Behavior.
    worked for me

  7. Anyone have a chrome fix?

    Yura’s tip didn’t work for me.

  8. I use Chrome, and this was happening on the ‘random’ website from time to time. This time it was platform.twitter, so a search led me here. THANK YOU!!!

    I added your rule text to AdBlock, which I use in Chrome, and it appeared to instantly solve the issue.

    It appears to be increasingly common issue, and appears to be happening with ad servers a lot for me. When it happens again with a different server, I’ll try this trick again and report back if it solves the issue.

  9. Thanks it helped a lot .
    was having this issue for a week or so .. thought there is some issue with the site ..

  10. Thanks for posting this. It works like a champ. I know it is just knowledge on how to use ABP, but it was the first thing that I found when searching and it was even easier than typing this thank you note out. You’re awesome and you should feel awesome.

  11. @NawTqT It should work with any advertisement blocker extension where you can configure the URLs to block. So just find one for IE9 I’d propose – it does not have to be named AdBlock Plus.

  12. I also have had this problem for a while and just lived with it. Some Firefox pages were failing to load completely – only the header. The whole operation was slow. Your procedure works like a champ. Pages now load without incident. Thanks.

  13. Tanx for these advice. I use`d for ff and work like a charm. Very annoying waiting procedure take a lot of precious time.

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  15. Thank You, Thank You, Really Thank You, It just helped me, I think its because of isp problems and they block dns’, so the only way to get rid of that, was your advice
    Thank You 🙂

  16. Whee! The internet is my playroom again. Thanks for the excellent tip.

  17. Thank you so much. It worked on Opera with Flash Block Plus.

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