The term “about:blank” (a.k.a. About Blank) refers to an empty page displayed on any browser tab, including Firefox, Chrome, Edge, Safari, and even Internet Explorer. The page appears with the label “about:blank” in the address bar and the tab’s page title. It’s common to see an empty page appear when you click a link or open one in a new tab or window.
So, what does “about:blank” mean? Is it malware, a bad Internet connection, or even a faulty link? How can I stop it? There are many reasons why “about:blank” appears on your screen. The blank pages are generally not a problem. The following are answers to the most common questions about “about:blank” web pages.
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What Does about:blank Mean?
The “about:blank” scheme is used by browsers to interpret internal commands via the “about:URL” scheme. Most browsers support a variety of ‘about’ commands, including “about:about,” “about:cache,” and “about:plugins.”
“about:blank” is not intended to load any webpage and does not contain a URL to load. These windows, however, are more than just blank pages; they are blank pages that contain hidden functions. The bottom line is that “about:blank” is what it sounds like-a blank page that is not a URL; it’s a built-in command.
What Is about:blank Used For?
People often wonder why they want to use a blank page. While it may seem strange, it does serve a purpose. In most cases, a home user instructs the web browser to launch a blank page when it is launched-or to open a new tab or window.
When you open their executable files, browsers like Chrome and Firefox like to take over. They start doing all sorts of tasks behind the scenes that consume bandwidth and resources.
While it is difficult to stop the “invisible madness,” some elements can be controlled, such as what opens on launch.
Browsers are often launched to a blank page for a number of reasons, including:
- Keeping the browser from opening multiple tabs and windows from the previous session
- Ensuring privacy upon launch
- Having them start their session in a browser tab other than the internet is an effective way to control bandwidth
- Making the homepage blank
- Regulating processes on an older PC
Common Causes of about:blank Pages
“About:blank” pages can appear for various reasons and in different ways.
The most common causes for blank pages include the following:
- You click a download link that opens in a second window or tab, and the browser gets forced to display a blank page to initiate the download.
- If you type the wrong address, you get the wrong page causing viruses or malware security problems, or if the browser fails to understand what to display, you get an about:blank page.
- The browser does not know what to do with the information it receives. A browser can display a blank page if there is a discrepancy in HTML, Java or another code.
Is about:blank a Virus or Even Malware?
The “about:blank” message is often perceived as a virus stealing personal information from a computer. This isn’t the case. When a browser finds itself in a situation where it is required to display an empty page, it displays an “about:blank” scenario. Your computer isn’t harmed as the page isn’t rendered from an external source. Malware, however, CAN cause a browser to open a blank page.
How to Stop Those about Blank Popups
If about:blank pages are displayed for whatever reason, we should stop them in the first place. You will need to go back into the browser settings and undo what you have done to open blank pages if you have previously changed the settings.
It is recommended, then, to first stop malware and viruses from corrupting the browser, then uninstall and reinstall Chrome, Firefox, Safari, etc. It’s possible to lose files and settings within your browser after removing malware from your PC, since they weren’t repaired/replaced.
The about:blank functionality should probably not be used in other scenarios than those described above. Today, anti-virus and anti-malware programs use blank pages to prevent dangerous URLs from executing code or tricking you into doing something.
How to Fix an about:blank Home Page
If you changed your home page to a blank one, go to settings and set your homepage to whatever you wish. You can make browsing easier by choosing past or pre-included options in most browsers. If you uninstalled and reinstalled your browser, type a new URL into the box or section.
Try disabling any extensions you have, closing the browser, and then reopening it if the blank page problem persists. You may be able to resolve problems by disabling Chrome extensions and add-ons. To restore your system settings, click Reset Settings. Despite the extreme nature of this option, try it if none of the other options work.
Why Is about:blank Useful?
Many people use about:blank as their home page. This results in a blank page every time they open their browser.
If you’d like to accomplish this, simply go into your browser’s settings and set it to open with “about:blank” rather than another web page.
If you launch a web browser and it doesn’t know what else to display, it will open the blank about:blank page. Regardless of its purpose, browsers must always display something, and about:blank allows this to happen.
Is It a Virus or Malware?
The about:blank page isn’t malware or anything dangerous. To be safe, we recommend that you run your antimalware program if you have any concerns that your computer might be infected with malware.
Malwarebytes is a program we recommend, and we recommend scanning your computer with it. You can scan manually and remove malware with the free version. The paid Premium version adds automatic background scanning. Malwarebytes supports both Windows PCs and Macs.