Question on cookies in the PureOS Gnome Web browser

Hi, just a bit of a strange question. I have a new librem 14 laptop, and tried to use it to log into this forum (actually to ask a totally seperate question! :slightly_smiling_face:) but got message that “Your browser seems to have cookies disabled. You might not be able to log in without enabling them first”.

ok so trying to investigate it a bit, going to the ‘Preferences’ option in the Web app, and choosing the ‘Privacy’ tab, there is an option at the top there for ‘Website Data Storage’ with an ON or OFF button. Ok so putting it to the ON setting, did then enable me to log on to this forum.

However it occurs to me that it would be better to selectively allow websites to deposit unwanted cookies onto my machine, rather than just a general on or off button for all websites. So at top right hand corner, under the preferences option, is a ‘Help’ option. Choosing that, and then under the ‘Your privacy’ heading, selecting the ‘set cookie preference’ link, there is some information there.

Ok this is where it gets confusing, because that Help article there, in that link, states:

" 1. Open Web ▸ Preferences ▸ Privacy.
2. Select whether you want to accept cookies from all websites, accept cookies only from websites which you have visited or to not accept any cookies.
You should normally use Only from sites you visit because this option allows you to log into your accounts on most websites while preventing websites that you have not visited from leaving cookies.
If you choose to Always accept cookies, then websites that you have not visited will be able to leave third party cookies. Third party cookies are often used by advertisers and social media websites to track your activity across websites and offer targeted content. Note that some websites, such as, use third party cookies to monitor whether you are logged in."

ok so my confusion, and perhaps I am missing the forest for the trees, or just need more coffee to wake my brain up a bit more, but as far as I can see at the moment, there is no way to do what it says in that Help section - ie specifically the statement that: " 1. Select whether you want to accept cookies from all websites, accept cookies only from websites which you have visited or to not accept any cookies" - because as I said before, I only see one ON/OFF button for the ‘Website Data Storage’ option in Preferences - Privacy tab. I do not see anything about being able to selectively enable cookies for specific websites, as the Help text claims.

Ok so am I going mad? (quite possible, haa haa), or am I just missing something here??

  • So really, I would like to be able to do what they are claiming in the Help text, and to selectively enable cookies, but I am not seeing how to do this, as I only see one on/off switch, which does not enable selective, by website, discrete individual website cookie enabling.

Appreciate any guidance, so that I know I am not actually going mad!!

Thanks guys!

Presume there is also a setting to clear your cookies (and other things) when you exit the browser.

Something to be said for single purpose browsing.


That’s the low effort approach that I take. Rather than fight individual web sites, I accept that for the duration of the browser session, I may be tracked by cookies - but at least that resets every time I exit the browser. (I also use network-wide DNS poisoning to disable some trackers.)

The downside is that no state information is ever remembered by a web site (if using cookies for that purpose), so some web sites exhibit slightly annoying behaviour each time I visit.

I also use multiple browsers in order to separate different types of usage, at least a little bit.

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If I remember well I read somewhere on this forum that Gnome web sandboxes every website so we can use fully functional webpages without be stressed by privacy risks.
Is it correct? Remember I well?