<<1) when browsing a popup from internet explorer asks if I want "to allow software ware such as Active X controls and plugins to run?">>
This is a security feature...IMO, a good security feature. If you want to change it, you need to change your settings in IE (Tools/Internet Options/Security tab...click Custom Settings, scroll down to settings for ActiveX and change them to what you want.
I have Malwarebytes installed...I don't have any problem downloading Firefox (just did it). I think your cause/effect interpretation...is mistaken.http://www.mozilla.com/en-US/firefox/ie.html
IMO, Lavasoft's Adware program...is not very good these days, I suggest replacing it with SUPERAntiSpyware.
What version of IE do you have installed?