Disable the installation of Ask Toolbar by Java

I absolutely deplore companies that bundle toolbars with their products in an attempt to monetize them.  I can’t tell you how many times I will be asked to help someone with their computer and I’ll find a browser that has 4 or 5 toolbars installed on it.

I’ll tolerate this behavior from little companies that are maybe trying to get their foot in the door and survive while giving their products away. But when large companies, like Adobe bundle McAfee with Flash or Oracle bundle the Ask toolbar with Java I just find it absolutely disgusting.

For a long time, Mac users were spared this garbage by Oracle but they’ve recently decided that we’ve had it too good for too long so as of Java 8 Update 40 the ask toolbar has come to Mac too.  Check out more coverage over at Zdnet which is where I originally saw the story.

Disable Sponsored Offers via Terminal

If you want to prevent this from happening run these two Terminal Commands prior to updating to Java 8 Update 40.

defaults write com.oracle.javadeployment.plist "/com/oracle/javadeployment/" -dict-add install.disable.sponsor.offers true
defaults write ~/Library/Application\ Support/JREInstaller/ThirdParty SPONSORS -string "0"

This should prevent the update, and all future updates, from installing the toolbar.  Remember to always check those installation prompts and options just in case.

Disable via Java Control Panel

If you’ve already installed Java 8 Update 40 they expose the option in the Java Control Panel, which is accessible Under System Preferences. Java


The option is exposed under the Advanced tab and is all the way at the bottom.

Disable Java Sponsor Offers Ask Toolbar

A screen shot demonstrating how to suppress sponsor offers

If you’d like similar directions for windows check out this post over at How-to Geek.

This post was updated to add an additional command.

2 thoughts on “Disable the installation of Ask Toolbar by Java

  1. None

    So if you use the following to modify both files sed -i "" 's/install.disable.sponsor.offers.*/install.disable.sponsor.offers=true/g' ~/Library/Application\ Support/Oracle/Java/Deployment/deployment.properties and
    defaults write com.oracle.javadeployment.plist "/com/oracle/javadeployment/" -dict-add install.disable.sponsor.offers true Every time you open the “Java Control Panel” the settings in both files revert back to false instead of true. Also using the deployment option as seen here (There Mac documentation and examples are horrible since they are all windows)
    does not propagate the setting install.disable.sponsor.offers=true over and still will keep the setting install.disable.sponsor.offers=false. This is bugging the fsck out me since I’ve been trying to find the file that the console is referencing Uggggggg. Wonder is you had any other insight?

  2. Devin Ronge

    Hi Thanks for the comment.

    I’m seeing the exact behavior you are, it appears what happens for me is whenever you close the Java control panel, it’s overwriting the javadeployment.plist file with whatever setting you have in the control panel. Even more frustrating, is I chmod -w it to remove write capability from myself and it managed to override that.


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