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Issue #842: September 10-16, 2023

Q: I am more often than not getting “Wait or Exit Page” popups especially on Amazon and some other sites. It happens on both of my computers which one of which is under a year old. I’ve deleted browser extensions and cookies. Speed test shows 13ms ping and at least 250 mbps. Malware Bytes and McAfee are not reporting any problems.

– Dwight F.
Fort Walton Beach, Florida

A:  What you cited is only a part of a message, Dwight.  When read in its complete form, the message that’s most likely a match to your description reads “The following page(s) have become unresponsive.  You can wait for them to become responsive, or kill them.”  The message means what it says – the browser is expecting, but not receiving a response from a website to which it’s trying to connect.  And naturally, without providing any information of substance to assist in making a decision, it turns to the human behind the keyboard and asks what to do.  I truly dislike software that does this, as it seems to expect every user out there to have a computer science degree, and skill in diagnosing and/or fixing problems.  As advanced as we have become, technology-wise, I expect more out of my experiences on the Internet.  But, I digress…

A casual read of your submission makes it seem like you’re fully focused on your computer or your network as the source of the trouble you’re having, Dwight.  But if you step back for a moment and look at things objectively, even your own trouble description says “especially on Amazon and some other sites.”  That would seem to indicate that the problem lies with the site itself, or the interconnection of computers between your PC and the site, meaning there might be little or nothing you can do to fix the problem on your end.

There are, however, a couple of things you can try.  Taking my statements above into account, you’ll understand when I say I can’t promise a fix doing this.  But it won’t harm your computer either, and I believe it’s worth a try.


So, first of all, you need to clean out your browser’s cache, and your temporary Internet files.  These are repositories that browsers typically build on your PC for various reasons, including security and continuity between browsing sessions, and reducing the time it takes to retrieve full pages and graphics from the Internet.  The problem is, the browsers don’t always seem to be very good at balancing the stuff they store locally, vs. the stuff they get online.  It’s possible for a browser to display a stale web page from the cache rather than retrieve a fresh copy, or for other problems to occur, including what you described, where it stops even trying to get a fresh copy, then complains that the site stopped responding.

You can use software such as CCleaner or other tools to do the clean-up for you, or you can perform the job yourself.  In Google Chrome, for example, you can clean temporary Internet files by clicking the 3-dots menu in the top-right corner of the browser.  Select Settings, then Privacy and Security. Now click Clear browsing data.  Set the Time range drop-down at the top to “All Time” to make sure you get everything that might be clogging your system.  Check all three boxes and then click Clear Data.  Take note that this will clear any cookies that contain site passwords and will basically close-out any previous browsing sessions that you had in progress, including stuff like shopping carts from sites where you haven’t finished checking out, or open sessions at banks, credit card companies, etc.  It’s best to simply finish all open business before you try this to avoid surprises.

If clearing out your browser doesn’t have the desired effect, and you still believe the problem is on your PC, rather than at the distant end, you can try resetting the browser, which is a radical move that will cause you to lose the defined startup page, search engine, pinned tabs, etc.  As a final resort, you can remove and reinstall the browser, which is the nuclear option and should be saved as an absolute last resort.  I sincerely hope it doesn’t come to that!  Good luck.

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