for almost any pdf link on the internet, when I click the link I can view it in chromium browser, but when I click on the pdf to save it (ie, right click and "save link as"), I get this error:

Failed - Blocked

for example: https://www.orimi.com/pdf-test.pdf

I am using Chromium 83 on Debian 10. This problem started only recently, and I am not aware that I changed anything. I have uMatrix and ublock Origin extensions, but again, I am not aware that I changed anything there either.

Please help me, this is driving me crazy.

  • 2
    Could you try to disable umatrix? Feb 25, 2022 at 16:13
  • @mashuptwice - when I open the pdf link in incognito window (ie without umatrix), then everything works fine Feb 25, 2022 at 17:42

1 Answer 1


Unfortunately there is no real fix for your issue, as this seems to be expected behavior of uMatrix. This is because the PDF's are mostly on a different domain than the site you are currently on and would be downloaded without the domain being open in a tab.

There are a few issues on github regarding this issue, you can find them here and here.

While there is not a real "fix" to this behavior, there are a few workarounds which I will list here to make it easy for you to pick one which fits your workflow.


1. Changing default action for PDF's

You can change the behavior of chromium to download PDF's on left-click instead of opening them in the browser. This is by far the most comfortable of the workarounds, but may be annoying if you often look at PDF's directly in the browser.

  1. Open the chromium settings
  2. Click on Privacy and Security

Click on Privacy and Security

  1. Click on Site Settings

Click on Site Settings

  1. expand Aditional Content Settings

expand Aditional Content Settings

  1. click PDF-Documents

click PDF-Documents

  1. Select Download PDF's instead of open PDF's in Chromium

download pdf

While my chromiums menu is in german, the symbols and placement, as well as my english translation should give enought clues to find the buttons with ease.

2. download PDF via button in chromiums PDF viewer

You could download the files via a button in the integrated PDF viewer:

download button

If you don't want to disrupt the progress of the site you are currently browsing, you can simply open the link in a new tab with your middle mouse button, or Ctrl + left-click.

3. change uMatrix settings for "Others"

I suspect that most people won't download PDF's from mostly the same sites, therefore this solution could be the most timeconsuming solution.

Depending on the link, it could also be annoying to find the domain the PDF is hosted on.

  1. Click on the uMatrix Plugin in the top right corner of chromium's menubar
  2. For the PDF's domain, select allow in "Others" tab on the right side

umatrix others

  1. right-click on the link and select save as

Note that these instructions are tested and worked on my system with Arch and Chromium 98.0.4758.102

  • thank you. When I use workaround 1, and change default action for pdf documents, it does not open the pdf when I click on the link, but instead saves it to my default download location. Why does it not open in my default pdf reader? Feb 26, 2022 at 5:41
  • 1
    Well, because you've set it to download them. AFAIK there is no option in chromium to use an external PDF reader. After downloading you could click on the PDF in the bottom download bar to open it with your systems default PDF reader. Feb 26, 2022 at 10:03

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