How to block ads on Android, with or without root [Guide]

If you’re an Android user you’re probably very familiar with mobile ads. Advertisements make the Internet go round. Heck, even dotTech relies on ads to make money. However, there is a huge difference between non-intrusive advertisements and ads that are so obnoxious that you can’t even read what you came to read on a website.

That is why we’ve put together this guide to help you block ads on Android smartphones and tablets. Read on to learn more and keep in mind, we have a separate guide on how to block ads on Windows, Mac, and Linux.

Before We Begin

This guide will cover three ways on how to block ads on Android.

The first method requires a rooted device and will block ads globally on your smartphone or tablet; this means, it will block ads for all browsers, apps, games, websites, etc. Once you apple the first method, you don’t need to ever run the ad blocking app again — it is a do-it-once-and-forget-it method. Method #1 works with all Android smartphones and tablets running Android 2.1 and up.

The second method does not required a rooted device and also blocks ads globally. However, it requires you to continually have an app running to block ads — if you close the app, ads will stop being blocked.

Method #1 works with all Android smartphones and tablets running Android 2.1 and up.
The last method blocks ads in Firefox on Android and does not require root nor does it require a separate app to be running.

For the first two methods, you will be required to sideload an app because the apps needed to perform the ad block are not available in Google Play Store. Sideloading apps on Android means download their APK (the installer file) and using a file manager to manually install the app as opposed to download from Play Store. In order to sideload, you need to make sure to enable ‘unknown sources’ on your Android device, which can be found Settings -> Security or Settings -> Applications.

Also note, after performing any of the following three methods to block ads, it is very easy to unblock ads. For the first method, there is an option withing the ad blocking app to remove ad blocking. For the second and third methods, simply uninstall the ad blocker apps to stop blocking ads.

That said, let’s begin…

Method # 1: How to block all ads on Android using AdAway app (root required)

This first method is a global ad blocking solution that blocks ads by modifying the HOSTS file of your Android smartphone or tablet. As such, it requires you to have a rooted device. If you don’t want to root your device, skip down to method #2 or method #3 to block ads.

Once you have a rooted device, blocking ads by modifying the HOSTS file is actually very easy. You need to do the following:

  1. Make sure ‘unknown sources‘ is enabled on your Android device. You can enable it from Settings -> Security or Settings -> Applications. You can disable ‘unknown sources’ after you’ve finished blocking ads. In fact, we recommend disabling ‘unknown sources’ after you are done blocking ads.
  2. Download and install F-Droid on your smartphone or tablet, a third-party app store for Android. You will need to sideload F-Droid onto your Android device. To sideload, download F-Droid’s APK installer file and place it on your smartphone or tablet’s internal storage. Next, open your file manager, find the APK file you downloaded, and tap it to install it.
  3. After you’ve installed F-Droid, run F-Droid on your Android smartphone or tablet, and let it scan your device for compatibility. After it is finished, simply search for AdAway from inside F-Droid. Once you find AdAway, download and install it.
  4. Once AdAway is installed, run it and grant it root access. Once you’ve granted it root access, just press the ‘Download files and apply ad blocking‘ button and wait while AdAway modifies your HOSTS file to block ads. After it is done, restart your device.

Once your Android smartphone or tablet has finished restarting, all ads in all apps and on all website will be blocked. And the best part? You don’t ever have to run AdAway again, unless you want to update your ad blocking filters, because AdAway does not need to be running to block ads.

Also note, after you are done, you can uninstall F-Droid if you like and it is recommend to disable ‘unknown sources’.


Method #2: How to block all ads on Android using Adblock Plus app (root not required)

This second method also blocks ads globally on your Android smartphone or tablet (meaning it blocks ads in all apps, games, websites, browsers, etc.) However, the difference between this second method and the first method is, you need to always have Adblock Plus app — the app used to block ads — running in order to block ads. If you close Adblock Plus, then ads will stop being blocked.

The way Adblock Plus blocks ads is by using a reverse proxy. You don’t need to know what a reverse proxy is or how to use it because Adblock Plus does all the hard work for you. However, because different versions of Android have different support for proxies, you may or may not need root access.

All Android 3.1 and up devices (e.g. Android Ice Cream Sandwich, Jelly Bean, KitKat, etc.) support proxies so you do not need root access to use Adblock Plus. Most manufacturers of devices running less than Android 3.1 (e.g. Android Gingerbread, Froyo, etc.) manually added support for proxies even though earlier versions of Android didn’t support it, so even if your device runs an older version of Android then you likely can use Adblock Plus without root access.

In other words, the majority of people with Android smartphones and tablets will be able to block ads with Adblock Plus without root access. However, if you have one of the few Android devices that don’t support proxies, then you will need root access to use Adblock Plus. And if you are going to root your device, I recommend using method #1 instead of this method anyway.

That said, blocking ads with Adblock Plus is a fairly simple process. To block ads on Android smartphones or tablets using Adblock Plus, do the following:

  1. Make sure ‘unknown sources‘ is enabled on your Android device. You can enable it from Settings -> Security or Settings -> Applications. You can disable ‘unknown sources’ after you’ve finished blocking ads. In fact, we recommend disabling ‘unknown sources’ after you are done blocking ads.
  2. Download and install Adbock Plus on your smartphone or tablet. You will need to sideload Adblock Plus onto your Android device. To sideload, download Adblock Plus’s APK installer file and place it on your smartphone or tablet’s internal storage. Next, open your file manager, find the APK file you downloaded, and tap it to install it.

After you’ve installed Adblock Plus, run Adblock Plus on your Android smartphone or tablet and enable Filtering. For most devices, Adblock Plus will then automatically setup the proxy settings required to allow Adblock Plus to block ads. However, if you have one of those devices for which Adblock Plus is unable to setup the necessary proxy settings, you will need to do it manually (it takes less than five minutes). 

Once Adblock Plus is installed and it has been enabled and properly setup to block ads, you are done — all ads should now be blocked! However, keep in mind, Adblock Plus needs to be running at all times if you want ads blocked. If you disable or close Adblock Plus, it will stop blocking ads.


Method #3: How to block all ads in Firefox on Android using Adblock Plus add-on (root not required)

If both method #1 and method #2 for blocking ads have been unsuccessful for you, you can block ads in Firefox on Android using the Adblock Plus add-on for Firefox. This method will only block ads when you surf the web using Firefox (it won’t block ads in other apps or games or if you use a different browser) but you don’t need root access to use this method and there is no app that you need running at all times to use this — ads are automatically blocked whenever you use Firefox.

That said, blocking ads via the Firefox mobile web browser for Android is probably the simplest way of blocking ads. To do it, do the following:

  1. Download and install Firefox on your Android smartphone or tablet from Google Play Store; you can find it in Play Store by searching.
  2. Once Firefox is installed, launch it and either search for Adblock Plus in Firefox’s add-on section from the Firefox browser on Android. Once you’ve found it, install Adblock Plus for Firefox and ad blocking within the browser will start immediately — no restart is needed.



Android is a wonderful platform but it’s also a platform that can sometimes be swamped with advertisements (as is pretty much the whole web nowadays). Luckily, Android being as versatile as it is, blocking advertisements is a reality. Enjoy!

If you have any queries/feedback, please write it in comments section below OR mail me here : Snehal [at] Techproceed [dot] com

Happy Ads free Android  :-)

How to : Delete an Undeletable or Locked File

Have you ever run into a situation where you wanted to delete a file, but Windows simply wouldn’t allow you to do it? Personally, these things happen to me all the time, especially when I’m at a client’s house trying to get their machine clean of malware. Have you ever tried deleting a locked file using common windows commands? If so, then you’ll know that this is just not possible.

The main reason behind this is that the explorer.exe process locks files that are in use, effectively preventing you from deleting them. Usually, these files should not be touched, but sometimes, situations arise when you really need to erase some troublesome ones.

Fortunately, there are a few easy solutions to delete those files.

Solution #1: Kill explorer.exe

  1. Open a command prompt
  2. Navigate to the location where the locked file is
  3. Press CTRL-ALT-DEL, click on “task manager”, select the Processes tab
  4. Kill the explorer.exe process via the “End Process” button
  5. Go back to the command prompt and delete the file
  6. Bring up the task manager windows again
  7. Select file->new task
  8. Type explorer.exe in the “create new task” field
  9. Press OK.

Solution #2: Use The Windows Recovery Console

Just stick your Windows CD in your CD tray, boot on it, and at the “Welcome to Setup” screen, press “R“. Once the recovery console has started, navigate to the location of your locked file, and delete it. Since WRC does not really start the system, the files will not be in use, and you will be able to delete them. Oh, and for all you Linux geeks out there, yes, we know, doing this via a linux live CD / USB key is also possible.

Solution #3: Use unlocker

Unlocker is a very useful freeware that will allow you to unlock any files that are currently in use by Windows. You’ll know if this is happening if you are getting any of these messages when trying to delete a file:

  • Cannot delete file: Access is denied
  • There has been a sharing violation
  • The source or destination file may be in use
  • The file is in use by another program or user
  • Make sure the disk is not full or write-protected and that the file is not currently in use

Unlocker will make things right again for you.

You’ll notice that right after installing the software, a new option named “unlocker” will appear when right clicking any files or folders in Windows Explorer. To unlock a locked file, just right click it, select unlocker, and the unlocker software will start. Then, click “unlock all” and close the software. Now that your file is unlocked, just delete it in Windows Explorer, as you always do. This is much simpler than solution #1 or #2, isn’t it?

I hope these three solutions will help you get rid of those hard to delete files!

Custom Domain Setup on Blogger with Godaddy

Custom domain setup in is used to create your own blog URL. (for example: to

When you purchase a domain from, they assign an IP address (A record and CNAME record) for the domain. Hence, you need to change those records to point to your blog. This post can help you to change the A and CNAME records of your Godaddy account.

Follow the steps given below:

Login to your Godaddy account and click on the My Account tab.

Under Domains, you will see the list of your domain names. Click on Advance Details of your desired domain. You’ll be directed to the Domain Manager page.

At the bottom of the Domain Manager Page, you will see a section under the heading DNS Manager, where you can edit the DNS configuration of your domain by clicking the Launch link

Under the A(Host) Tab of the DNS manager, enter the 4 IP addresses as below, one-by-one, using the Quick add button, to change the A records.

Click on the Quick Add button in the box labeled CNAME(alias). If you’ve already created a CNAME record for your blog’s address, click the pencil icon next to the existing CNAME record.

After you are done adding records, click on Save Changes to save your edited data.

For the Name, enter only the sub-domain of the address you want to use for your blog. For example, if you picked as your address, enter www here.

Enter as the Host Name. Specify a TTL or use the default setting of 1 hour.

This is how you can change the existing domain IP address that now points to your Blogger IP address. Wait for few hours for the changes to take effect in your IP records. After that you can say bye bye to your old blog URL by changing it with your custom domain name.

FAQs :

Q 1. Domain without www not working, but with www is working

Solution 1 (works for sure) :

You will have to redo it via Google Apps.You will have to enable a redirect.

1. Go to Google Apps and sign in to domain management.

2. Then click on domain settings.

3. Then click on domain Names.

4. Then Click on words highlighted to set a redirect via google apps and you should see it done within 3 hours or MAX 2 DAYS (though it usually does not take more than a day in the rarest case).Just follow the simple english instructions there and you should see it done.

Solution 2 :

Ping the website you are wanting to forward to, in order to get the IP address if you don't know it.

"Run"; CMD; "ping"

Will display ping data and reply from IP address. Note this address.

  1. Login to to manage your account or other domain registry site
  2. Go to DNS Control
  3. Modify/Add "A Host"
  4. Under "Host" enter: @
  5. Under "Points To" Enter the IP Address you obtained earlier.
  6. You are done! Site is forwarded without the www prefix when entered into address bar.

Solution 3 :

A website can have any valid fully qualified domain name. If you own the domain, nothing at all prevents you from running a website called

In practice, though, users expect two things, and if you don't provide them users will be frustrated and not find your site:

1. If your domain is, then your website needs to respond when a user types just in the address bar and presses Enter, because that is convenient.

2. Your website should also respond with the same content when a user types, because the www. prefix is very common and many users will assume they must provide it.

So how do we do this? If you are paying for service from a web hosting company, and works but doesn't, then your hosting company needs to fix that for you right away. Contact technical support and let them know you will be switching hosting companies if they don't fix it promptly. There is no valid reason why they can't make both names work for you. It is a very simple change to the web server's configuration and they ought to be doing it automatically for every new customer anyway.

That's the answer for nearly everyone reading this. However, if you are running the web server yourself -- possibly because you run a web hosting company -- here are the steps you need to follow to do the job:

1. Adjust the DNS settings for Make sure you have address records (type A records) for both and, with the same IP address. This is not hard to do at all with both Windows and Linux DNS servers.

2. If you are using virtual hosting to provide many websites on a single IP address, you will also need to tell your web server about the alternative name for the site. In your web server's configuration, add as an alias for In an Apache server httpd.conf file, this typically looks like:

DocumentRoot /home/www/web

Only the ServerAlias directive is new. the rest is shown to provide context. Your Apache VirtualHost configuration may not be identical.

After the configuration file is edited the Apache web server must be signaled to reload its configuration. On a typical Unix system this can be done with the following command:

service httpd reload

If you have any queries/feedback, please write it in comments section below OR mail me here : Snehal [at] Techproceed [dot] com

Happy Setting up of your own custom domain  :-)

Bitcoin explained in layman's terms

Recently, a friend came up to me and asked "Snehal, how do I obtain bitcoins?"

I stared at him with an empty, blank look. Despite all the recent talks about bitcoins and their growing popularity, even with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) getting involved, I realised that I knew absolutely nothing about the bitcoin except the fact that it was associated with the Silk Road - an illegal online black market that used bitcoins as its defacto virtual currency to enable regular folks to obtain all sorts of illegal items easily and anonymously. I had no idea what bitcoins were.

And so I decided to research and write up a column that would explain, in layman's terms, what Bitcoin is.

What are bitcoins?

Ah, the fundamental question.

First of all, there is a difference between the terms 'Bitcoin' and 'bitcoin'. Bitcoin, where the "b" is capitalised, refers to the entire system itself. It's like learning a language e.g., "I learned Spanish today." On the other hand, bitcoins, where the "b" is not capitalised, refers to the actual currency itself. You could say "I spent 10 bitcoins to purchase this item."

Bitcoins is a form of virtual currency- meaning, if you have bitcoins (we will get to how you obtain bitcoins later), you do not physically purchase goods by handing notes or tokens to the seller. Bitcoins are used for electronic purchases and transfers. You can use bitcoins to pay friends, merchants, etc. Every single purchase is immediately logged digitally (on computers) on a transaction log that tracks the time of purchase and who owns how many bitcoins. Think of this transaction log as an audit trail: it contains every single piece of information of every bitcoin transaction. This digital transaction log is called 'blockchain'.

The Bitcoin IRA

The blockchain records every single transaction - of present and past - and the ownership of every single bitcoin in circulation. The people who are constantly verifying the blockchain, ensuring that all the information is correct and updating it each time a transaction is made, are called 'miners'. One way to think of miners is: they those who confirm transactions. Their job is to ensure that the transaction is secure and processed properly and safely. In return for their services, miners are paid fees by the vendors/merchants of each transaction and are also given physical, minted bitcoins.

Bitcoins are growing in popularity, and although they were largely used by speculators who were looking at it as a way to make money by buying bitcoins at lower prices and selling them at higher prices (much like trading foreign exchange or forex), there is a growing trend of businesses accepting Bitcoin as a form of payment. Many big companies like WordPress,, and Reddit accept Bitcoin, and a growing numbers of brick and mortar stores are starting to accept them internationally as well. More than $1.5 billion worth of bitcoins are currently in circulation around the world, with millions of transactions occurring daily. Needless to say, the popularity and usage of Bitcoin is picking up very quickly as more and more businesses and individuals are becoming aware of its benefits and advantages over traditional currencies.

Featured : Bitcoin explained in 3 minutes and 23 seconds

How are bitcoins priced?

Bitcoins are like any other currency: they fluctuate in value relative to other currencies. Similar to how the rupee's valuation swung wildly against the US dollar this year, bitcoins have had drastic movements in price as well.

The value of a bitcoin is constantly changing, and there is no centralised exchange for it. Think of it this way: each time a bitcoin changes ownership from seller to buyer, the two parties need to agree on its price. There is no 'fixed' price. Usually, it's the seller's responsibility to give a fair price to the buyer based on what rate bitcoins are being traded in elsewhere. The difference between bitcoins and other currencies is that there is no centralised bank that prints the currency and sets relative values. Through transactions, the value of bitcoin fluctuates through supply and demand.

Here's a graph covering few months of the relative value of bitcoins against US dollars; as you can see, there have been wild fluctuations in the value over the past two months.

What's the point of having bitcoins if I can use regular currency for my purchases?

That's a question you're bound to ask yourself at some point in time; after all, the rupee seems to get the job done. Why add complexity to your life with 'virtual currency' that the RBI seems to want to get rid of?

Well, for starters, there are many benefits to bitcoins over traditional currencies. For example, let's assume you need to purchase an item for Rs. 10,000, but the seller doesn't accept credit cards or bitcoins; he only wants cash. You now need to scrounge around for Rs.10,000 and pay the seller in hard cash; the seller, on his side, has to somehow ensure that the money you're giving him is not counterfeit. Just the hassle of having to pay him Rs. 10,000 in cash is what Bitcoin prevents. If you have at least Rs. 10,000 worth of bitcoins (after converting rupees to bitcoins) and the seller accepts bitcoins, the entire transaction is completed in less than 10 minutes - hassle free.

But, you say, the seller is willing to accept credit cards. Well, this is where the seller would much rather want to accept bitcoins versus traditional credit cards. There is usually a 2 - 3 per cent transaction fee for every credit card transaction that the seller needs to pay (to Visa, Mastercard, American Express, etc). With bitcoins, there are little to no fees involved. So the seller has a strong incentive to accept bitcoins.

What it basically comes down to is this: if the buyer and seller agree on a said amount for a good or service, using bitcoins gives them full control and transparency. There are no credit limits imposed by credit card companies, no need to carry cash, no extra fees that the seller can impose upon the buyer without the buyer's full approval. Every single transaction has to be 'agreed' to by both parties before it goes through.

The greatest advantage, however, is that all necessary information is public and transparent. Without revealing the identities of the buyer and seller, the entire bitcoin network is made aware of each and every transaction. This gives a tremendous amount of comfort to both parties of the transaction.

How do I get started?

You can obtain bitcoins in a number of ways, but before we get to that, you'll need to get yourself a 'Bitcoin wallet'.

A Bitcoin wallet is first required to get started with using bitcoins. A wallet can be created easily through different online applications. Your Bitcoin wallet is essentially just like, well, any other wallet.

Think of a Bitcoin wallet like an "app" that you would install on your phone. You can download your wallet on your computer through a software wallet, on your mobile, and also on the web. Once you've got yourself a Bitcoin wallet, you're good to go. It takes just a few minutes to get a wallet; once you have one, you can start accumulating bitcoins.

How do I get bitcoins?

Obtaining bitcoins is a relatively easy process. The three common ways are:
If you are selling a good, you can accept bitcoins as a form of payment.
You can purchase and sell bitcoins through Bitcoin exchanges (this is the most common way. Exchanges are typically found online.)
You can trade bitcoins for traditional currencies of countries.

As written above, obtaining bitcoins through an exchange is the most common and feasible way to get started. There are hundreds of exchanges (mostly online) through which you can obtain bitcoins. You simply register, enter your bank account information, and convert the local currency into bitcoins. 

What do I do with my bitcoins? How do I know that what I'm buying is safe?

Although many brick-and-mortar businesses are starting to accept Bitcoin, the large majority of transactions occur online. You can think of bitcoins as 'cash' for the internet.

Making payments with bitcoins is an incredibly easy process; in fact, you could argue that it is much easier than using credit cards. All you need to do is, using your Bitcoin wallet:
Enter the recipient's address (we will explain what an address is later on in the article).
Enter the amount of bitcoins to be sent.
Press send.

The recipient will then simply receive the request for bitcoins in exchange for what he is offering (goods, services, or perhaps a currency).

Bitcoin works off addresses. There are two components to a Bitcoin address: a public address, and a private address. Each Bitcoin address has its own Bitcoin balance. Every time a transaction is made, the public address of each user is made public to the entire network. Therefore, it is recommended that the sender creates a new address for each transaction.

Here is an example of a Bitcoin transaction:

Snehal owns an online store that accepts bitcoins as a form of payment.
Rajiv wants to purchase a $2500 item. He looks online and sees that the prevailing rate for bitcoins is approximately $500/bitcoin.
Snehal is selling the item for 5 bitcoins on his website.
Rajiv creates a new Bitcoin address through his wallet. He can see Snehal's public Bitcoin address on Snehal's website. 
Just as a seller does not need to know your physical identity if you pay cash, Rajiv never needs to disclose his identity to Snehal and can thus remain completely anonymous.
Rajiv instructs his Bitcoin client (the free Bitcoin software he installed on his computer/mobile) to transfer 5 bitcoins from his wallet to the Snehal's address. This is the transaction message.
Rajiv's bitcoin client will electronically "sign" the transaction request with the private key of the address from where he is transferring his bitcoins. While Rajiv's public key is available to anyone for signature verification, his private key is only known to him.
Rajiv's transaction is broadcast to the Bitcoin network and will be verified in a few minutes by miners. The 5 bitcoins have been successfully transferred from Rajiv's address to the Snehal's address.

Here's an example of what it might look like on Rajiv's software when he sends his bitcoins to Snehal:

A bitcoin user can freely share his public address with everybody. His private address, however, is only for him to know. This is critical in that this is what allows Bitcoin to be a secure payment system.

The Future

As Bitcoin gains popularity, governments are slowly but surely starting to take stances against/for it. For instance, the RBI issued a vague warning last week that Bitcoin usage is unsafe due to potential money laundering and cyber security risks. The government of China took it one step further by barring financial institutions and payment institutions from accepting bitcoins as a form of payment. Governments are cracking down on "black markets" that accept bitcoins as a form of payment.

In India, it's not very easy to convert rupees to other currencies since the Indian currency is not freely convertible. Due to this hindrance, obtaining bitcoins is not as hassle free as it is in other countries. Another problem with obtaining bitcoins in India is that there is electronic method to transfer funds safely; most transfers happen through NEFT. Due to these hindrances, liquidity of bitcoins is relatively scarce in India, but is picking up.

That being said, Bitcoin isn't an institution, organisation, or any sort of centralised entity. In fact, the beauty of Bitcoin is that there is no central authority. It is literally a network of users - known as "peers" - who simply decide to buy and sell goods and services through a mode of virtual currency. It will be difficult for governments to 'shut down' Bitcoin. In fact, there are talks that virtual currencies are the wave of the future to do their inherent associations of being decentralized, transparent, secure and hassle free.

We can only expect Bitcoin's meteoric rise in popularity to continue. Let me know your interesting thoughts on this!