Very few websites now use Java – it is mainly reserved for web based games and online calculators. However, because it is installed on the majority of computers (e.g. 80% of our visitors) Java is increasingly the target of virus attack.
Kaspersky say that 2 of the top 10 vulnerabilities on computers today are caused by Java – vulnerabilities that could give the attacker full system access to your computer. We therefore recommend disabling Java in Google Chrome to reduce the risk of attack.
Updated January 2013 – if you want to disable Java in ALL web browsers (but keep using it for offline apps like LibreOffice etc) the latest Java 7 Update 10+ includes a new Security Panel which makes it easy to disable Java content in ALL web browsers.
How To Disable Java In Google Chrome? Java is installed as a plugin – we will show you how to disable Java in Google Chrome:
- In the address bar, type chrome://plugins and press ENTER to open the Plugins configuration tab
- Scroll down the list of plugins to Java – there may be 2 files listed under Java called ‘Java Deployment Toolkit’ and ‘Java Platform’
- Beneath those files (below the long list of application/x-java items) click the ‘Disable’ link to disable both files at the same time – the link changes to Enable and the whole Java plugin is greyed out
- Java is now disabled in Google Chrome – you don’t have to restart Chrome, just close the chrome://plugins tab to continue browsing more safely If you want to re-enable Java, follow the same steps but this time click the ‘Enable’ button below the 2 Java plugin files to enable both of them – Java will now start working again.
Tip: if you want to double check if Java is disabled, visit the Java test page here. If Java is disabled you should see a blank space and a message below ‘If you cannot see your machine info listed above, please check these additional configurations’.
Is There An Automatic Way? We previously reviewed automated ways of doing this in Firefox via add-ons like QuickJava but the only one we found for Chrome is very old – we can’t recommend it for current versions of Chrome.
If you know of any permanent (i.e. not requiring temporary tweaks to about:flags) solutions for automating the process, let us know in the comments below.
Why Not Just Uninstall Java Completely? You could uninstall Java (like any other program) from your computer and have done with it – the problem is that you may find that you need to reinstall it again soon after… For example, the popular LibreOffice program (free alternative to MS Office) requires Java and you may find other offline programs you use do too.
Also, if you do come across a website that requires Java, you would have to close Chrome, reinstall Java, open Chrome and browse to that website again – a lot of hassle! We recommend keeping Java up to date but disabling it in your web browser(s).