PiHole is a network-level advertisement and tracker blocker that runs on Linux servers. It blocks ads network-wide on all devices via DNS. It has a default blocklist that is limited to certain domains and sometimes misses ads to block. To avoid this and block all annoying ads, use these 7 best PiHole blocklists that also block YouTube ads.
What is a PiHole Blocklist
A blacklist is a list of thousands or millions of flagged domains that allows PiHole and other site administrators to block traffic from certain websites or IP addresses. Particularly these are the ones that are used to send spam and other malicious content or advertisements in our case. For those who are new and don’t know the blacklist carries domains, IP addresses and email addresses.
Having one means that you can prevent advertisements that are being targeted and waste your bandwidth. It will make your internet browsing experience much faster as your browser won’t be loading the ads anymore.
6 Benefits of using a PiHole Blocklist
- Don’t get tracked anymore by internet giants such as Facebook.
- Keep your online activities private.
- You’re a parent and want to block malware and adult-content-related domains network-wide as you don’t want your children to visit such websites.
- Do not have the time to waste watching ads that are not helpful or add value. Time is money and you are saving it now!
- Constant requests because of device cookie requests are slowing down the network are minimized.
- Block intrusive ads as you are tired and frustrated of seeing them again and again.
This is not to say that you need to have certain reasons to block through PiHole but still, you need to know what you have blocked and why. You shall want it to be efficient and provide benefits both for you and your network.
Moreover, you can also take things like basic function into account, you shall also find out that just “blocking” everything is at times not feasible. It can cause websites and apps to not function properly.
How many devices are connected to the Wifi? What kinds of devices? Smart devices might connect to your home network.
Like you might want to block Windows 11 or Windows 10 from sending out information to Microsoft, keep in mind that it may not be beneficial for you to block each request which is related to Microsoft domains like microsoft.com or things that are served with their cloud platform, Azure.
Doing this can affect the function of the device like receiving critical updates to crucial services or updating the OS itself.
Like if you go as far as blocking things that are related to its Azure cloud platform, then you can go as far as breaking down some sites which rely on Azure for devices present on your network.
The process of un-breaking everything can be somehow frustrating and time-consuming for most of the users. frankly speaking, finding out where things went wrong is not at all fun or conducive for those who want something that just works.
Now, when you consider your devices you also need to consider some of the services that are used on them. You should consider home monitoring, CCTV or IoT devices.
Now if you are a console gamer you may want to blacklist all the domains which are associated with Microsoft, Sony, or even Nintendo else your console my not properly function in certain areas like online gaming or recording achievements.
7 Most Effective PiHole Blocklists for 2022
- YouTube Ads Blocklist
- PiHole Default Blocklist
- Community-filtered Blocklist
- Basic Blocklist
- NSFW Blocklist
- Full Blocklist
- RegEx Blocklist
YouTube Ads Blocklist
We all know how annoying some adverts can get on YouTube. No one has the time to watch 5 or 25-second ads or even more! The worst ones are those you cannot skip watching your favorite video. The below Blocklist is automatically updated with the latest URLs to block which may show advertisements on YouTube videos in the browser, app, or your Smart TV.
This is also available to be installed as a script so you do not have to worry about updating it in PiHole manually.
Here is how to do it:
Step 1: Use git clone and make a copy of the script locally. If you have multiple branches in Git, you can ready git branch changing guide to better manage those.
[email protected]:~# git clone https://github.com/kboghdady/youTube_ads_4_pi-hole.git
Step 2: The repository directory needs to be changed, such as below /home/paulstuff/.
[email protected]:~# repoDir='/home/paulstuff/youTube_ads_4_pi-hole'
Step 3: Give proper permissions to the .sh file on your server to run it:
[email protected]:~# sudo chmod +x youtube-blocklist.sh
Step 4: Run the script with the below command and that is it!
[email protected]:~# ./youtube-blocklist.sh
Alternatively, you can just download the whole PiHole YouTube Ads blocklist files from the below link at GitHub:
PiHole Default Blocklist
The default PiHole blocklist comes already installed and loaded. You do not have to do anything to load it! The benefit of having the default blocklist over others is that it causes fewer connectivity issues. Yes, it is true that community-filtered lists are much larger and frequently updated but they do seem to cause various issues such as broken layouts and forms not working.
Tip: Press Ctrl + A and copy the whole list instead of scrolling to the end.
At first, you need to utilize the filtered domains list which has been gathered by the community. There are various dedicated online users like you and me that are constantly updating the lists with fresh advertisement network domains they find on the web.
filterlists.com carries primary main elements for helping you to block the following:
- Trackers and spyware.
- Malware spreading websites.
- Blocking sites that are low quality and not trustworthy.
To use the Filterlist.com list follow the below steps:
- Right-click on the filter you want and click on the “View option“.
- Now choose the preferred “link location”.
- Now, from there you need to open the terminal and then paste /etc/pihole/adlists.list.
With the Basic blocklist, you can block only Advertisements. You won’t get much protection from tracker cookies with this.
List size: 1.3 MB
File type: .txt
NSFW blocklist domains that are very well known to host adult content that is not limited to known streaming or downloading sites.
This results in putting a lot of trust in just a single party. Moreover, you also cannot assign different lists which means the negates feature of group management. It has the ability to apply different blocking rules to different user-defined groups.
List size: 4.6 MB
File type: .txt
If you run the full blocklist from Oisd it has all of the above combined. The downside of running this is that it may be too restrictive for your liking. However, if you are happy to whitelist domains manually when needed then go for it.
List size: 26.4 MB
File type: .txt
This is able to create even more complex filter rules for the entire setup of PiHole. It is described as advanced functions but anyone can take their time and learn how to write its entries properly.
These are being used in different apps, and its main purpose or function is not filtering most notably while performing searches. The search function (CTRL + F) in your browser is a great example.
Now you might have a question; how does RegEx apply to Pi-Hole specifically? Well, it is being used to filter domains that hit on rules of RegEx which can either be blocked or whitelisted. Its entries function alongside your lists.
The key to using this is not to be too general or broad with its specificity is the key. In an ideal situation, you shall be using a recommended list of RegEx versus creating one all from scratch, but feel free to edit as your threat model calls for it.
How To Add Blocklist to PiHole (Simple Way)
The above blocklists are useless to you if you don’t know how to add them to your PiHole. Below is a step-by-step process on how you can simply add more blocklists to make your PiHole catch advertisements better and block them from your network:
- Login to your “PiHole Dashboard“.
- Go To “Settings“.
- Now on the top tab, click on “Adlists” and go to the “Group management pages” link.
- Add the location/address of your blocklist and add a “comment” e.g. RegEx common. You can use Firebog.net URLs to add in the “address” field.
- Now click on “Update” and done!
- You have now successfully added a blocklist to your PiHole.
Keep Your PiHole Blocklist clean, relevant and accurate
Don’t mix the blocklists please:
There are various blocklists available for services such as Adblock Pro. However, they should not be mixed with PiHole blocklists. This is because the syntax and format can be different and it may break functionality causing a lot of DNS issues.
We know that the resources which have been linked here have many blocking lists. We know that some of these are quite huge. You might be tempted to use every list which is found here or anywhere else, but we suggest you not do that.
See, many of these lists borrow from one another. Due to this if you intend to use all of them you will find yourself with much overlap and needless redundancy.
For those who do not know redundancy reduces efficiency and wastes resources. Moreover, the more lists you use the more you get into false positives, which to be honest can be a big pain to deal with.
In a few cases, you might find that the block list fits your needs which is perfectly fine, but keep in mind that more is not always better. As the saying goes, quality matters more than quantity.
Whitelist when needed:
Now if you want to set an aggressive blocklist then you don’t need to be afraid to whitelist some domains.
Keep in mind that the more aggressive you are with blocking then the more legitimate sites or services are to break. This can also increase false positive frequency.
This does not mean that you need to be less aggressive in blocking especially if your threat model is calling for it or you don’t in dealing with breakage. Now to main functionality you might want to take care by whitelisting the domains which break down things when blocked.
When this is done you can now continue to run aggressive block lists very easily. However, you shall be framed that you will need to stay on top of updating your list as these domains can change readily.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can PiHole Blocklists block viruses and malware?
PiHole blocklists are there to prevent certain sites and IP addresses from being reached from your network. It can help reduce the surface of any malicious sites you may end up visiting accidentally but it won't block them from you getting malware on your devices.
Can I add multiple blocklists to PiHole?
Yes, there is currently no limit on the number of blocklists you can add.
Are PiHole Blocklists safe to use?
Yes, PiHole blocklists are only .txt files that contain thousands of domain names to block and are totally safe to use.
I am having connectivity and browsing issues with PiHole, what can I do?
Most users experience connectivity and browsing issues such as broken frameworks and layouts due to using unverified blocklists from unknown sources. You should only download from sources such as Firebog, filterlists.com and the default list from GitHub.
Other articles you may like:
- 6 Useful RoboCopy GUI Software for Windows 10/11.
- 7 Free HEIC Viewers for Windows 11 (Download).
- Find Public IP Addresses of Open FTP Servers around the world.
These were the most useful and accurate PiHole Blocklists 2022 that you can find this year. If you are having any issues with connectivity, the PiHole Default Blocklist is also provided that solves most of these due to less number of domains. You should now also have no problem blocking advertisements while watching videos with PiHole YouTube Ads Blocklist. Do let us know in the below comments how you have adapted your PiHole and if you had any issues with websites and apps. Cheers!