How to remove advertising from Viber Desktop

ViberViber is a very popular free messaging app/software. Viber users can send text, pictures, making regular call or video call, all for free! Viber is a great social chatting app. I use Viber on both my phones and computers for work and personal. I don’t have any problem with the Viber app for phone, but Viber software for Windows comes with ads. Small / regular ads are ok for me, sometimes Viber on PC show very huge annoying ads that covers most of contact list. In this article I will show you how to remove advertising from Viber Desktop on Microsoft Windows 7 and 10.

I didn’t capture any huge annoying ads image, what you are seeing below is their normal ads which is ok for me. When any large size ads come up, it will cover 1/3 or sometimes even 1/2 of the contact screen. That is not acceptable for me. I understand software companies provide free software, they must have some sort of income to support themselves .  But taking too much screen’s screen real estate is very annoying.

Viber Desktop's advertising
Viber Desktop’s advertising

Let’s start to remove advertising from Viber Desktop

To remove advertising from Viber Desktop, you will need administrator privileges on your computer. Because you will have to edit and save Window’s hosts file.

Windows’s hosts file is used to map hostnames (domain names) to IP addresses. You can map any IP address to any given domain name that you want to. The way we remove advertising from Viber Desktop is to map localhost IP (unrouteable) to all Viber Desktop’s advertising domains.

Run text editor as Administrator.

You can use any text editor to edit Window’s hosts file. I normally have Notepad++ installed on all of my PCs, but Microsoft Windows comes with one simple yet functional text editor is  Notepad. For this article, to keep things simple we are going to use Microsoft’s Windows Notepad.

To run Notepad as Administrator, we will have to locate Notepad’s shortcut on your Start menu.

For Windows 10 and 8, Click on Start logo on the bottom left corner (4 squares logo) / Windows Accessories / Notepad, then right-click on Notepad icon, click on “More”, and “Run as administrator”.

Windows 10 run Notepad as administrator
Windows 10 run Notepad as administrator

For Windows 7 and Vista, Click on Start logo on the bottom left corner (4 squares logo) / Accessories / Notepad, then right-click on Notepad icon, then “Run as administrator”.

Windows 7 run Notepad as administrator
Windows 7 run Notepad as administrator

For Windows XP, 2000, and NT, Click on Start logo on the bottom left corner (4 squares logo) / Accessories / Notepad, then left click on Notepad icon. You don’t need to “Run as administrator” for Windows XP and older.

Open hosts file using NotePad

After you have NotePad running as administrator,  click on “File / Open” at the top left corner of NotePad. Then browse (copy & paste) to this folder C:\Windows\System32\Drivers\etc\. At the “file type” box, make sure you select “All files”. As you as you can see all the files as the images below, select the “hosts” file. You can either double-click on the file , or highlight the “hosts” file, and click on Open button.

Windows 10 opening hosts file
Windows 10 opening hosts file
Windows 7 opening hosts file
Windows 7 opening hosts file

Edit Windows hosts file

For Windows XP, 2000, Vista, 7, and 10, the hosts file should look the same with the same default contain

# Copyright (c) 1993-2009 Microsoft Corp.
#
# This is a sample HOSTS file used by Microsoft TCP/IP for Windows.
#
# This file contains the mappings of IP addresses to host names. Each
# entry should be kept on an individual line. The IP address should
# be placed in the first column followed by the corresponding host name.
# The IP address and the host name should be separated by at least one
# space.
#
# Additionally, comments (such as these) may be inserted on individual
# lines or following the machine name denoted by a '#' symbol.
#
# For example:
#
#      102.54.94.97     rhino.acme.com          # source server
#       38.25.63.10     x.acme.com              # x client host

# localhost name resolution is handled within DNS itself.
#  127.0.0.1       localhost
#  ::1             localhost

Add these three lines at the end of the hosts file without “#” sign (You can copy and paste by highlighting the three lines from this website, copy then paste to your hosts file.

127.0.0.1 ads.viber.com
127.0.0.1 ads.aws.viber.com
127.0.0.1 ads-d.viber.com
127.0.0.1 images.taboola.com
127.0.0.1 api.taboola.com
127.0.0.1 s-bid.rmp.rakuten.com
127.0.0.1 s-imp.rmp.rakuten.com
127.0.0.1 api.mixpanel.com

Your hosts file after added the three extra lines should look like

# Copyright (c) 1993-2009 Microsoft Corp.
#
# This is a sample HOSTS file used by Microsoft TCP/IP for Windows.
#
# This file contains the mappings of IP addresses to host names. Each
# entry should be kept on an individual line. The IP address should
# be placed in the first column followed by the corresponding host name.
# The IP address and the host name should be separated by at least one
# space.
#
# Additionally, comments (such as these) may be inserted on individual
# lines or following the machine name denoted by a '#' symbol.
#
# For example:
#
#      102.54.94.97     rhino.acme.com          # source server
#       38.25.63.10     x.acme.com              # x client host

# localhost name resolution is handled within DNS itself.
#  127.0.0.1       localhost
#  ::1             localhost

127.0.0.1 ads.viber.com
127.0.0.1 ads.aws.viber.com
127.0.0.1 ads-d.viber.com
127.0.0.1 images.taboola.com
127.0.0.1 api.taboola.com
127.0.0.1 s-bid.rmp.rakuten.com
127.0.0.1 s-imp.rmp.rakuten.com
127.0.0.1 api.mixpanel.com

By now, you can save your hosts file by pressing “Ctrl + S” on your keyboard, or on Notepad, go to File / Save.

Close NotePad after you saved the hosts file. Normally from what I have seen, the ads will be gone right away. If you still see advertising on Viber Desktop after saving hosts file, restart your computer.

10 thoughts on “How to remove advertising from Viber Desktop”

  1. From what I’ve read of user input at their own site, this app is a dysfunctional nightmare. I think a bit of malware would be less invasive, further easier to eradicate…

  2. The Aug 2019 Viber update had made changes to the ads popup. The listed domains no longer works.
    127.0.0.1 ads.viber.com
    127.0.0.1 ads.aws.viber.com
    127.0.0.1 ads-d.viber.com

    • Interesting, How often do you see ads on Viber desktop? On my work desktop I only have one line 127.0.0.1 ads.viber.com and I have never see any ads. I removed the 127.0.0.1 ads.viber.com line, then uninstall Viber and reinstall it again but I dont see ads. I also check my colleague’s desktop and she does not have any extra line to block ads for Viber desktop, but I’m surprised I don’t see any ads on her station either.

      Both her station and mine are running 11.4.0 version (should be the newest by the time I’m writing this).

      • I let viber ran for few hours at my work desktop without ads blocking in hosts file, no ads show up (how weird). During those hour, I ran DNS Query Sniffer, Viber did attempt two times to connect to one of their ads server, but I don’t see any ads on my end.

        ==================================================
        Host Name : s-bid.rmp.rakuten.com
        Port Number : 57084
        Query ID : 19CE
        Request Type : A
        Request Time : 9/2/2019 2:54:53 PM.519
        Response Time : 9/2/2019 2:54:53 PM.542
        Duration : 23 ms
        Response Code : Ok
        Records Count : 1
        A : 34.95.80.122
        CNAME :
        AAAA :
        NS :
        MX :
        SOA :
        PTR :
        SRV :
        TEXT :
        Source Address : 10.10.10.10
        Destination Address: 1.1.1.1
        IP Country :

        ==================================================
        Host Name : s-bid.rmp.rakuten.com
        Port Number : 49455
        Query ID : 900B
        Request Type : A
        Request Time : 9/2/2019 3:55:53 PM.517
        Response Time : 9/2/2019 3:55:53 PM.532
        Duration : 15 ms
        Response Code : Ok
        Records Count : 1
        A : 34.95.80.122
        CNAME :
        AAAA :
        NS :
        MX :
        SOA :
        PTR :
        SRV :
        TEXT :
        Source Address : 10.10.10.10
        Destination Address: 1.1.1.1
        IP Country :

    • According to: https://superuser.com/questions/1477874/remove-ads-in-viber-for-pc/1477905#1477905
      You can try to add two more lines to your hosts file

      127.0.0.1 images.taboola.com
      127.0.0.1 api.taboola.com

      and

      127.0.0.1 s-bid.rmp.rakuten.com
      127.0.0.1 s-imp.rmp.rakuten.com
      127.0.0.1 api.mixpanel.com

      I don’t remember correctly but last time I tried to add so many of theirs ads servers to hosts file, it broke (sort of) viber and made the viber software half functional. I’m not so sure why you are seeing ads and some users from superuser.com, but for some reasons ads don’t show on my workstation nor my colleague’s station (I mange the network and we do not have any dns filter nor ads block at router/network level) without blocking any of viber’s ads servers.

      On my laptop before if I don’t block their ads servers, ads eats up most of viber’s screen.

      • Something has changed since the last update of Viber. My work pc has viber installed and I started to noticed the ads popping up. I had the usual domains added to hosts. However, my home pc, I run pihole for ad blocking and I do not see ads nor do I see the usual ads.viber.com comes up on the list when I tail pihole. A day later on my home pc, the ads started popping up. I have since added the below domains, but still see ads. I will wait a day or so because I also have squid installed. It seems Viber had made it tougher to sniff out the ads domain. The other ones you have listed, I had them blocked in the past as well.

        s-imp.rmp.rakuten.com
        s-bid.rmp.rakuten.com

        • s-imp.rmp.rakuten.com
          s-bid.rmp.rakuten.com

          I left viber ran for two days with that two lines in my hosts file, ads still show. I also found the domain *.taboola.com and tried to add that domain into the list but I didn’t help.

          api.taboola.com
          images.taboola.com

      • I think this domain is the ONE. The ad popped away right before my eyes when this domain came up.
        s-bid.rmp.rakuten.com

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