Reducing Network Data



Some computer users have an Internet service that charges them by the amount of incoming data. Such users may use up their alloted Internet service for that time period or be charged extra. Clearly, it is beneficial for such people to find ways to reduce the amount of data that their computer is bringing into the system. Thankfully, there are ways to reduce the amount of requested data. Thus, the user can further enjoy their Internet service.

Ads consume a lot of data. On webpages, JavaScript code typically requests the ads from third-party websites. The ads may be images, videos, or JavaScripts. The graphical ads (images and videos) use some of the bandwidth. If the ad can be prevented from being requested, then some bandwidth is saved. By using AdBlock Plus (, the ads are never loaded to the requesting client (the user's computer). AdBlock Plus is a legal and free addon that supports many browsers (like Firefox, Chrome, etc.).

Avoid unneeded updates. Configure programs to never check for updates. When the user feels that updates are needed, then the user can manually make the program check for updates. On Linux systems, downloading the repository data when checking for updates uses some bandwidth. Only check for updates and apply them when needed. The search-engines on Firefox look for updates, so disable this feature.


Configure the web browsers to cache visited pages. This means visited web-pages are stored on the hard-drive. Then, when a page is re-visited, the web-browser will display the cached web page that is on the local hard-drive. This saves bandwidth by preventing a page from being downloaded a second time.

Visit the mobile version of web sites instead of the standard form. For instance, Wikipedia has all of its pages in desktop ( and mobile ( form. The mobile pages require less data than the desktop editions. Various website have a mobile version as seen at

Block pop-ups. Pop-ups may contain videos or other objects that use data bandwidth. If pop-ups are blocked (a common option in web browsers), then this data bandwidth cannot be lost due to irrelevant information/services.

Disable report submissions like Firefox's crash reports (Preferences > Advanced > Data Choices). Any program (or the OS itself) may send performance and crash reports. Disable all of these to further save bandwidth. On Ubuntu, users can go to "Security and Privacy" to disable crash reports and prevent the dash from searching online sources.



Configure a web browser's plugins to active when clicked or given permission. This prevents many videos and games from activating. Thus, more data is saved. For instance, on Firefox, go to "Add-ons > Plugins" and configure each plugin to activate when asked.


Some web browsers offer the feature to not load images. This may be a helpful feature to enable. Firefox has some addons that can be used to prevent images and Flash content from loading. Such addons include and Alternately, the user can go to "about:config" and search for "permissions.default.image". If the value is set to "2", then all images will not be loaded. A value of "3" only prevents 3rd-party images from loading.

Be sure that spamware and other forms of malware never get on your system. Such malware can waste your Internet bandwidth on spam and other malicious activity.

On Ubuntu, prevent the dash from searching Amazon (which uses Internet bandwidth).


These are just some examples of how users can reduce the incoming and outgoing data usage of their system. Doing so reduces the amount of Internet bandwidth that is used. Thus, the user can save some limited Internet bandwidth and possibly save money.


  • slide.jpg
    62.9 KB · Views: 21,063