Some commenters have expressed dismay that Adobe has apparently allocated so few resources to the Linux Flash Player effort, namely, just me. I just wanted to assure you all that there are more people officially allocated to the Linux effort in various capacities. I was just chosen to present this blog since I have the most experience, ah, facilitating communication with Linux end users.

Further, it’s interesting to note that when I started at Adobe, I found out that there is a shadow cabal of engineers that very much want to see the current Flash Player run on Linux, and would even try their hand with the current codebase from time to time. But there are only so many hacking hours in the day which is why more dedicated resources were enlisted to devote to the Linux task.

I am presently unaware of any shadow cabal of FreeBSD enthusiasts in the Flash organization.

53 Responses to Resource(s)

  1. robt says:


  2. James C says:

    I appreciate the work you are doing for getting this to linux; I just hope we don’t have the same issue we’ve had with flash 8 since it was released now that 9 has been released…:Lots of people started making pages that require 8 to view properly, it’s only going to get worse with 9 and we still have no option to go with.It seems like Adobe was talking about releasing a Linux version for a long time (Dec 05), but you’ve only been brought onboard recently… was there anyone else working on the project before now?That’s kindof upsetting to think about.Anyway, good hunting Mike!

  3. Peter S says:

    Mike – I have to agree with robt. Why not let the community assist?? There are plenty of licensing vehicles that could be used.Also – what’s the target hardware type for the Linux Player? I don’t suppose an embedded/Lite version is in the works? πŸ˜‰

  4. AR says:

    Forget the blog, tell us the date of the flash player 9 for Linux πŸ™‚

  5. Mike, congratulations on the new position. I was previously speaking with Kevin Lynch and he said that there was going to be more support for Linux.We’ve been developing GUI’s using the standalone flash player on Linux for about 4 years now. Our main POS system is being deployed to over 122 stores in the next 3 months.We’ve recently been forced to develop our own standalone player using xulrunner(mozilla base) to run the plugin.My question is: When are we going to see another Standalone Flash Player on Linux? Is it not important enough for Adobe to provide a stable, updated player to deploy Flash applications on Linux? (We develop in Windows, I’m only talking about being able to deploy on Linux)

  6. GuZ says:

    We also want a Flash Player for FreeBSD 6 πŸ™‚

  7. Mike says:

    Where is the Linux Flash Player 9? The Windows and Mac one have been released.

  8. Sterling Christensen says:

    That’s comforting. Thank you for keeping the blog alive and for everything you’re doing.

  9. Max says:

    Hey Mike,I think the Linux community is happy that Adobe is doing just SOMETHING about supporting Flash on Linux. But what Adobe does is just not enough. Why should Linux users wait for an up-to-date version of Flash Player just a bit less than ONE YEAR?With Linux evolving into an enterprise desktop Adobe should really get some more focus onto Linux.Best thing would be to open the source of the Flash Player. What harm would that do to Adobe?Max

  10. Dennis J. says:

    It’s not that easy. Take video as an example: Flash 8 uses the On2 VP6 video codec for its video streaming. Adobe cannot just go and give that code away without On2s agreement so open-sourcing a product isn’t that easy.What I hope though is that the upcoming releases are better modularized and have the core engine seperated from the platform dependent bits. That way it should be a lot easier to keep the linux version in sync with what’s happening on Windows. NVidia seems to have this down quite well so that they now release the linux version of their drivers at the same time as the Windows counterpart.Reading this blog it looks like Adobe will do a better job in that department compared to Macromedia. Keep it on!Dennis

  11. Limulus says:

    “when I started at Adobe, I found out that there is a shadow cabal of engineers that very much want to see the current Flash Player run on Linux, and would even try their hand with the current codebase from time to time”This is not hugely surprising; apparently “The expected development targets for developers–from an independent survey–will be 50% for Linux and 50% of Windows by the end of 2006. That rate is not static, mind you. The percentage of Linux developers has been growing steadily for seven years in a row. If it continues to grow, Handy believes that by this time next year, we will be seeing more Linux developers than Windows developers.”Source: BSD, even if Adobe doesn’t support it officially, it would be nice if they added that OS to their license such that BSD users could use the Linux version legally πŸ™‚

  12. Limulus, regarding the BSD licensing conflict, check out this blog post by Emmy the Flash product manager: users should now find the EULA terms more amenable.

  13. TreviΓ±o says:

    Flash player 9 for Windows is out… What about Linux? Do you have now more exact informations about release date (beta included)…Many thanks for your work!

  14. Jim says:

    Good luck Mike, I really hope that Adobe provides you with all the resources necessary to accomplish this.It’s really in Adobe’s best interest to get Flash working well across the board A.S.A.P, before Microsoft starts pushing their own alternative to Flash when Vista is released and using their monopoly to crush Flash.

  15. I for one would love to see some sort of official date for the release of Flash 9 for Linux. Hell even a month will do, if not the actual date. Something concrete.I think it’s pretty sucky how Linux users have been kept waiting for this long without even knowing when it will come out.

  16. Jamie says:

    As the FreeBSD maintainer of the linux-flashplugin port I am also hoping for a native FreeBSD version – whilst FreeBSD has a linux compatibility layer, it doesn’t work too well with plugins that are launched from a native FreeBSD binary.How hard could it be to port the Linux version to FreeBSD ? They both use the same x11 system, and libaries!Nvidia release their updated graphics card drivers for windows, linux AND FreeBSD at the same time!Please.. Us FreeBSD users are generally considered “Linux users” by beancounters and some IT press that should know better.We *ARE* in the shadows, but we *ARE* there – remember the FreeBSD feedback you got when the linux-flashplayer7 was withdrawn for a while ? And that issue only affected those who keep their system synced.. All those who just installed off the CD would have been nagging you a few months later when they eventually updated and found the ability to install flash missing!You’ll also find the FreeBSD crowd much more forgiving when it comes to using closed-source binaries :-)C’mon.. Get that Linux version out, and get a FreeBSD version out too.. Help get that penetration closer to 100% !Cheers,Jamie

  17. Mike says:

    This is the situation of Adobe players on linux:- no 64 bit support- flash player stuck to version 7 and not using current linux features (like ALSA)- no shockwave playerAdobe, please stop telling bullshit like you support Linux: that’s simply untrue.Either Adobe is stupid or is getting money from MS for not port their applications to linux.

  18. Freggy says:

    As long as flash does not become an open specification, this is simply useless. Even when there’s an up to date plug-in for Linux/x86, there won’t probably be versions for other architectures such as Linux/PowerPC, Linux/x86-64, Linux/Sparc let alone for OSes like *BSD. I have given up any hope for Flash. Even free implementations such as Gnash will always be running behind. Instead, I choose to make people aware of the fact that Flash is a closed, proprietary format, and that because of this, part of their potential visitors never won’t have access to the content. When webmasters become aware of the fact that they are loosing potential visitors, they quickly understand that Flash may not become an essential element of the site.

  19. Davide says:

    Let’s put Flash in the trash and start using SVG: it’s integrated in both Firefox and Opera and it’s an open standard.

  20. Bernaard says:

    I would really like Flashplayer to be distributed in a way which made most Linux distros dare to include it by default (although I see the problems). A slight change in the licence… πŸ˜‰ I do not jump up and down screaming fanatically for GPL. It would just be fine to save some minutes of precious time…

  21. Andre says:

    As long as versions for other OS’s are released long after that for Windows, those OS’s will always be locked out of a lot of websites which require the latest version. Flash 9 for Linux won’t solve the problem – when Flash 10 comes out for Windows, it happens all over again. The problem will never go away unless the releases are simultaneous. Are there any plans for this to eventually be the case?

  22. Sterling Christensen says:

    32 bit x86 Gentoo Linux user here.Please don’t be discouraged by all the negativity Mr Melanson – I’d hate for your efforts to be slowed down by everybody pulling you in different directions at once.Just release for whatever platforms you’re planning to asap, please. I for one don’t care if it’s closed source. I’m just tired of running Firefox on wine for sites with Flash video.

  23. Anton Bondar says:

    if people just stop using so much flash to begin with, the problem would eliminate your eyes people.

  24. Victor Rossetti says:

    Hi Mike!I see that Adobe has started communicating with the linux users base, and that is planning a new Flash Player version for the Linux platform.I’ve been using Linux on my desktop for about 4 years, I’m not a developer, I’m not in the IT industry, but I liked all the philosophy behind Linux.As a user, I would like to share with you some concerns about Adobe’s project.1.- The usability of a system it’s not on the OS itself, it’s all about the APPS that work on top of it. Linux it’s a diamond solid OS, it has all that a good OS needs to succeed in the desktop area. BUT it needs support from the software industry.A native Flash Player is one of those pieces of software that Linux users need in THE DESKTOP. Open it, let it be Free, even the code. You could just keep selling Acrobat for developing content, and EVERYONE would have the player.2.- As you may have been noticing, a lot of people will want you to share more than toughts, they would like you to SHARE the CODE of the project to the community, doing so would improve the code and speed up the development process in a way you could not imagine. Just take a look to community projects like Mozilla/Firefox or or Helix Player (Real Player 10).Also take a look at all the projects on I think that Linux Flash Player is just the great chance Adobe to seriously start interacting with the developer and user community, and could take the Flash technology to the extents of our immaginationMy best RegardsVictor Rossetti, M.D.Caracas, Venezuela

  25. n3ldan says:

    Simultaneous releases too much to ask?Out of curiosity, do you work for Adobe and use The GIMP? That would make me chuckle.

  26. cem ozturk says:

    Why you grow too fast if you can not reach all of your customers.We have to USE this plugin to surf the net these days because we believed in macromedia/adobe and created .swf pages for years.What kind of responsibility conception is it?I’m ashamed of publishing .swf pages while i was a windows kiddie past years..

  27. James says:

    I’m overjoyed to discover this blog. I thought we’d been dumped.Is there an (un)official release date set? Or is it just one of those e17 type things?

  28. Chris Brainard says:

    Give me a break, they just started development, so you won’t see version 9 until version 10 comes out for PC and Mac. What a load of bullshit.

  29. n3ldan: Don’t tell my Adobe masters, but as a matter of fact, when I need to edit a photo, I do fire up the GIMP.

  30. james Randall says:

    The move from Flash 7 to Flash 8 (which does not work on Linux) has been great for me, pushing me further and further away from Flash, period. Now instead of wasting time with companies that decide they dont want me as a customer, I can easily move on to sites where they DO want me as a customer.

  31. Steve says:

    I’m glad adobe is getting serious about supporting flash player in linux. I heard rumors before the merger that there was talk of porting flash in its entirety to linux. I have used flash a little bit, and I would definately go buy a version that ran natively on linux. I know that there are quite a few graphics artists, and web designers using linux these days, I’m wondering if you could maybe push for a full fledged flash development environment for linux. I would be one of the first in line to buy flash that ran on linux.

  32. Jeff says:

    While you’re busy “devoting resources” to flash for linux, we’re still stuck with flash v7 for 32 bit only, and we’re working on open source alternatives to flash.SVG is coming nicely along, the SVG editor inkscape rivals editors from Adobe, gnash will help as well.Remind your bosses that when they didn’t release photoshop for linux, we created gimp. Gimp, by the way, takes away your market share.The same is happening now, you have a choice. Either devote resources that can do the job or suffer in the future when everyone adopts OpenSourceFlashScript or whatever we’ll call it.

  33. Fox says:

    (quote) I was just chosen to present this blog since I have the most experienceMy god… when I see the questions you ask about webcams and sound architectures I think to myself that I don’t want to know what “experience” others developpers have…

  34. It looks like the reason not to open source the Flash Player is third-party codecs (On2, Sorenson, etc).I’d like to shoot in the air. Maybe I’ll catch a bird.I guess Flash Player does not re-implement those codecs but uses it as an external library. Therefore, a possible solution would be:1. Adobe releases the Flash Player source code that belongs to Adobe, not the third-party libraries. How is this going to benefit Adobe and Flash Player in general? A lot more people would hack in the Flash Player source, improving it.2. Adobe defines the API to access and use these third-party libraries or even a general API for codec access. Nobody modifies those source files because if someone breaks that API, Flash would not work with third-party codecs3. Flash Player may be compiled without those third-party libraries. Whenever Flash Player tries to play a Flash movie that needs codec X, it searches the local computer for the codec. If codec X is not installed, Flash Player downloads it from Adobe as a binary. Something like what the Microsoft Windows Media Player does. How is this going to benefit Adobe and Flash Player in general? Whenever Adobe decides On2 VP6 is old and wants to use On2 VP7, no new version of Flash Player is needed: just download the new codec. Using a little part of wine/darwine (just like mplayer does), this method would work in every platform.In short, what I’m proposing is a limited-capability, full open source Flash Player and third party codecs being downloaded from Adobe as needed. After a couple of movies, everybody would have the codecs they need (unless they choose not to install them, but that’s their option).

  35. Avi Flax says:

    Reading Emmy Huang, the Product Manager for the Flash Player at Adobe, I came across this:

    Q. Wasn’t there supposed to be a simultaneous release of the Linux version of Flash Player 9?A. Not exactly. We never said it would sim ship. We did say that we were skipping the v8 port to get a start on porting v9 (formerly known as v8.5). We are working on it, and expect to release in early 2007. Which means a beta should be here very soon. For progress and updates, check Mike’s Penguin.SWF blog.

  36. Dudley C. says:

    I was very disapointed after installing Fedora 5 on my quad AMD64 box to find out there was no way I could view Flash-enabled sites… including my own.Adobe really needs to do something about this or risk alienating an ever-growing large number of users switching to Linux as a desktop OS.As sites lose viewers and discover that their use of Flash is the cause, they will stop using it… not a good thing for anyone.

  37. At the very least, please release a beta, or even an alpha for Flash 9 ASAP, as well as a 64bit version. Thanks for all your hard work!

  38. Charles says:

    I wish there were a Flash Player 9 for PC-BSD/FreeBSD. There are more users they people think. And there are desktop-focused systems based on FreeBSD such as PC-BSD or DesktopBSD… Many people left aside πŸ™

  39. Andrei Kolu says:

    PC-BSD community (FreeBSD based OS) would be very grateful if Linux version of Flash works without crashing or there would be native FreeBSD version of Flash Player available. Windows is losing marketshare every day and all *NIX based systems is crawling up hill with outstanding security features. This is a shame that all future operating systems is ignored by market leaders.

  40. TerryP says:

    “I am presently unaware of any shadow cabal of FreeBSD enthusiasts in the Flash organization.”Well thats because your company has it’s eyes in it’s pockets.Many, many people use Linux, FreeBSD, and other systems. Allot of people dual boot, and many do not.My primary work platform runs PCBSD 1.11a (FreeBSD), Windows XP was erased from that machine for business. For My personal system I also run PCBSD on with Windows for gaming as PCBSD is what I enjoy.This ammounts to the fact that I cannot use flash, weather for web development or surfing.Often people have asked me to follow links to things which I know “flash” is on the other end of.What I say (from my WindowsXP)?”I will not knowingly use flash player untill they offer native FreeBSD binaries.”___Come on for petes sake, if you can’t write portable code you have no business in the software industry.When you install a new browser on Windows, it’s like bing Plugin needed – thank you. Install a new browser on BSD, plugin need – we don’t care about you so go screw your self.That is not what I call a company worth using their products. Because by using a companies products you support that company – and I will not and cannot do that when my livlyhood is ignored by said company.As long as adobe makes it harder for BSD to become easy enough for some grandpa & grandma to use. I will continue to refuse to use any flashplayer enabled sites.Among PCBSD alone I’m sure you’ve had a few 1000 feature request/bug report forms filed.”Yee who hords power shall fall.”You know what, I think I’m going to get rid of my Adobe PDF Viewers, Image software, and browser plugins.Theres more then enough software out their that can do what I need it to do that supports both Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, and FreeBSDThose companies can have my & my networks business while we wait on you to get off your buttocks.

  41. This has already been requested in some of the previous comments, but can Adobe please make a native version of Flash for FreeBSD / PC-BSD. I know, there’s a (out of date) Linux Flash version, but it’s very unstable on FreeBSD.

  42. Brandon Cash says:

    I, too, must reiterate how poor Flash support is on FreeBSD. And judging by the numerous comments, I’m sure that you’re realising just how many of us there are that want Flash on FreeBSD.

  43. Limulus says:

    Mike Melanson: thanks for the update regarding BSD; I hadn’t looked closely enough at that post apparently! πŸ™‚

  44. Ajay says:

    the least you can do now is to announce the date for shipping the linux version,aren’t there enough linux users now to waarant a simultaneous release?

  45. James Susanka says:

    thanks you are making my decision easier when I recommend to people what they should code their sites in. guess what flash isn’t on that list any people really have some nerve to try to get your losey money grabbing technology on the internet but yet only support two platforms. you should be writing for every platform that exists – NATIVELY!! – that is what the web is about – viewing pages no matter what os you use – you don’t support linux no matter what you say – actions talk louder than words.I know I won’t miss all those annoying adds in my browser.good-bye flash – it was real but not fun.

  46. bill says:

    Please release a Linux version soon. I really don’t care about supporting all linux distros, but just support one natively. There are many people like myself running Linux and would be interested in looking at your Flex2 framework if you atleast just supported Linux. It’s not too much to ask. Why are you bowing to the commercial interests?

  47. Chris says:

    “if people just stop using so much flash to begin with, the problem would eliminate itself..”That is incredibly ignorant. It is now quite feasable to build zero-install web applications using Flash as the runtime. If the players had better cross-platform support, you could run your applications on ANY operating system.We are developing an application with OpenLaszlo (which generates SWF binaries) which would benefit greatly from simultaneous releases across all platforms because we could compile our SWFs for the latest runtime without worrying about compatibility with people who don’t have Windows.I actually work about 50% in Windows and 50% in Linux. Linux Flash Player functionality on par with the Windows version is very important to me (and others).We’re not talking about the little Flash adds and visual garbage that people use Flash for. We need current versions of the Flash player for real applications (YouTube, Yahoo Maps Beta, and a slew of other REAL APPLICATIONS). Next time you have some half-cocked opinion, keep it to yourself.

  48. LB says:

    You currently have as much credibility as Bill Hilf. Adobe is an enemy of Linux users. I will not be using Adobe products and assure you that I will work against any Adobe purchases for my organization. I will also let commercial websites know that Flash doesn’t work on my system. If you want to promote Microsoft’s operating system, first remember that they are your competitor, about to bury you. How dumb do you think we are? In 2012 you will release Flash 8 for Linux. Get real. One other thing. Linux has larger market share than Mac, so don’t go babbling about priorities!

  49. Riggz says:

    Face it: Adobe has no interest in fully supporting the linux operating system anytime soon. They put their resources towards the largest demand which is Windows (90% market share?) and Mac (where I imagine more websites are designed upon than Linux).Once Linux becomes a significant part of the desktop landscape with regards to website viewing or design, it will warrant more resources from Adobe. Until then, or until they have significantly more people/money, as a business, they have to divert resources to their biggest “customers”.

  50. T.Monkey says:

    I am just appalled at the state of flash for linux. I have been running linux since ’97 and have really no need for flash other than the ocasional website video. But, now ….. it seems like everyones using flash for everything and there is no escaping it. I propose that because there is no flash version for linux that is up to date, we email the sites that we cannot access that use flash 8 and above and ask them to make one in html that everyone can see, and we all post on our web sites personal or business a banner that says ” Flash Free Site”, ” Made in Linux without Flash” or “This is a flash free website because Adobe does not support Linux”.When people start seeing that maybe then we will have a flash player for our chosen OS.

  51. Nicolas says:

    No news… I really hate Adobe, that company is of the same kind than Micro$oft!I continue to send emails to those websites which use Flash 8. Some webmasters were not aware of the problem…

  52. drake says:

    Adobe is another monopoly … so it behaves like monopoly … we should piss off flash, but nobody would make first move becouse it anouces there will be flash 9 for linux (after one Russian year :-P)

  53. Ted Bullock says:

    I agree with the poster Riggz above.The continued absence of the updated flash player for linux just convinces me ever the more about a need to drop this technology.SixFlags uses flash 8 for their online ticket purchasing store these days. My girlfriend and I (who both use suse linux exclusively these days) were unable to complete the ticket order that we placed on their website due to a lack of FLASH 8 for linux.If the site had been built entirely with html, then all would have been fine. Instead we were forced to hunt down a windows pc on our vacation (several of which had a guest accounts unable to install flash 8)I blame this both on sixflags for being stupid and building a site with flash to begin with and Macromedia/Adobe for not supporting their customers with a usable product.Good one guys… You guys sure are real winners.