The most frustrating of these absent plugins undoubtedly being the one required to run flash movies in a 64-bit web browser.
Until recently users have been 'making-do' with a clever system that wraps older 32-bit plugins for use on 64-bit browsers -nspluginwrapper.
NSPluginWrapper works well in general, however some users have reported problems with system crashes caused by high CPU loads whilst running Flash movies using this system.
Even if you do have a system powerful enough to run flash movies fine with NSPluginWrapper don't forget, this is only running the 32-bit Flash 9 plugin, which means that more sophisticated flash movies still won't play at all ! For example I have been unable to view any of the graphs generated in Google Analytics using the 32-bit plugin/nspluginwrapper combo, which has meant having to switch over to a Windows machine to check webstats for my websites every time.
Astra - Flash Player 10 for 64 bit Linux
On the 11th February 2010, Adobe released 'Astro' an alpha refresh of flash player 10, removing the need for 32-bit emulators and wrappers to enable flash in web browsers on Linux computers.
The software is a public pre-release, aimed at both developers and consumers to test and provide feedback/bug reports. The release introduces performance improvements as well as new features such as 3D-effects.
I recently downloaded and installed the plugin for Mozilla Firefox and so far, so good. The installation was extremely simple and painfree and I'm now able, for the first time, to access the graphs in my Google Analytics account without having to switch over to Windows.
How To Install The New Plugin
Important: Installing the Flash Player prerelease means you have accepted the terms of the Adobe Software License Agreement. This is prerelease software, not a final release.
- Important - remove any currently installed Flash Player before installing the prerelease.
- Download the Flash 10 plugin tarball and extract the enclosed libflashplayer.so binary file to your browsers plugin folder:
- Firefox : /usr/lib64/mozilla/plugins