Bedraggled Earlobe Hammer

Before today, I was not really aware of what Digg is. I’m still not entirely sure what it is, but I now know what it’s not: A credible news source. As a countermeasure to recent events, the titles of my blog posts will now be groups of random words that I pull from those spam emails which try to confuse Bayesian filters. I can’t wait to see the Digg posts about Adobe hammering bedraggled earlobes.

Following up on yesterday’s issues, remember that Flash does things that are not strictly multimedia related. All the multimedia stuff — the A/V output, the A/V input — we have that pretty well nailed down, though it does pop back up every so often. The problem that had me stopped was unrelated to audio or video. I’m not going to re-hash the details because it’s extremely tedious and because I have already spent the last 2 days explaining it to anyone who would listen.

I came up with a solution. So I am back in today to implement it, since I basically lost all of yesterday to my main dev box. Yeah, I finally fixed that too, and without having to jump distros.

A word about distribution loyalty: Everyone has their favorite distro, and that’s fine. I believe that all distributions have their place. I’ve been through lots of distributions, including Slackware, Red Hat, Debian, Mandrake, even Linux From Scratch. I’ve settled on Gentoo as it suits my needs and my habits best. And there’s no way I want to take the time to learn the idiosyncrasies of another distro in the middle of this project. That said, we do expect the Linux Flash Player to work reliably on a wide diversity of (x86-based) Linux distributions and plan to test it with that in mind. Further, different team members are using different distros. At the very least we have Gentoo, Fedora Core, and Ubuntu in the mix and even that limited diversity has helped us shake out some bugs.

44 Responses to Bedraggled Earlobe Hammer

  1. Jim says:

    Wow, you are right, those… people… on Digg are complete morons! All the comments were about how Adobe sucks and this and that.For one, I know developement has not stopped. Although I would have liked to have 8 all along, I will settle with 9 and be happy. I commend you and the rest of the development team for working so hard to get us Linux users up-to-par with Windows/Mac in the Flash player relm!

  2. steph says:

    Wohoo.. back on track. You rock!Let the “when is the alpha / beta coming” messages start…

  3. Nelio Diniz Vieira says:

    Yesss. I’m so happy now!The Day is coming, “Mike Melanson saves the Web. Flash Sites for everybody. Flash Returns, staring Mike Melanson as Clark Kent”. I will never forget this day. Keep your good work.See the faces on the crowd, heheheh. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

  4. Nael says:

    I’ve got say, good hearing that you’ve figured out your problem. I can’t wait for the day when I no longer have to use ALSA’s OSS emulation to get Flash sound in sync – get it done soon, dude!

  5. Ben says:

    Glad to hear you got through the zealots. Keep up the good work.

  6. cartman says:

    Waiting… waiting.. :/

  7. Bloody says:

    ROFL. That’s probably one of the funniest things I’ve ever read. I want some begraggled earlobe hammers too. :D***On a more serious note, what about SUSE and LFS?You’ve got most of the old stuff covered with Gentoo (unless you’ve unlocked some unstable packages). … Ah, checking, I see that they’re now defaulting to gcc-3.4 instead of 3.3 and to the most recent glibc (so, finally, no more linuxthreads in gentoo)You also have most Fedora based distros covered with Fedora core 5. Maybe there are some left which are based on some older Fedora distros (or even Redhat 7-8-9) but that should be the minority.Same goes for Debian-sid (probably Etch too) based distros with Ubuntu. Debian-sarge is too old, not worth testing (heck it’s still based off Kernel 2.4).Only major distros not covered are SUSE and Linux From Scratch (also Hardened Linux From Scratch).I did not include Slackware in my list of distros to test since it’s almost as old as Debian-sarge (based off Kernel 2.4.32 while Sarge is based off Kernel 2.4.27).Oh, yeah, if you want to test on a third source-based distro, you might want to test on SourceMage. It’s not as popular as Gentoo or LFS but it has a significant user base.

  8. ultramancool says:

    I’ve got a better idea then continueing development. Give use the source and let us deal with it PROPERLY!

  9. Chuckinator says:

    Just so you know, the article on Digg has been flagged as innacurate πŸ™‚

  10. n3ldan says:

    Digg is a shithole.Everyone should know that.As long as you post here, you will attract idiots who will repeatedly tell you you suck and then demand Flash player 9, and a 64 bit version.Gentoo is a great distro, and as long as you test on severeal distros I see no reason to change developing operatin systems.Keep up the work/posting and give us some decent flash!

  11. TiCL says:

    Take your time! Do not rush, please! I would love to have a stable release than several pre-beta, beta, zeta, etc, as many people are suggesting. Because, a low quality release would only bring bad publicity.

  12. As you may be expecting, you have been posted on Digg once again.You are showing a little immatureness over what a couple of morons wrote. There are a lot of mad people in the Linux community over Flash. I personally LOVE flash, and it’s one of the main reasons I keep a Windows box alive. Now because YOU are having “development difficulties” you announce that you feel like giving up. Don’t try to sweeten the words you said, you basically said you were giving up. I read it yesterday, and I felt sad.I had some respect for you and what you’re doing, and I still do to some degree, but to childishly criticize Digg, a website that you REALLY don’t know what it is? (this are YOUR words by the way) Please, next time before you flame a community, try to learn about it and what it really is.I think you over reacted, and many people from Digg have overreacted too. But you basically told them that they are being left in the dust. I can’t go to YouTube or Google Videos on any on my Linux boxes (without expecting serious lags from Flash 7). Flash 9 for Linux would be highly welcome, but it’s a LONG time now overdue (and promised).I still have some respect for you and your team, please don’t ruin it.–Jon Z |

  13. Bloody says:

    BTW, forget I ever mentioned surviving distros based off Redhat [7-8-9] further up in my paragraph on Fedora. Those distros are probably dead by now (and even if they aren’t, they’re based off kernel 2.4 so they are starting to get old and will likely pose compatibility problems).Only RedHat, aside from Fedora Core, that should be supported, IMHO, is RHEL4 since it’s popular among enterprises. I’ve heard RHEL3 is still popular too but it’s on kernel 2.4 so…Well, to sum it up, my message of the day is : 2.4 kernel users, upgrade.

  14. Just a general comment, Mike. I have to say that, as a Linux user, I am indeed looking forward to the newest version of Flash for Linux but above that, I wanted to let you know that the time you take to post these updates are much appreciated.There is nothing worse for the open source community than being kept in the dark. Thanks for keeping us informed and providing some insight into the struggles that developers face when porting applications to Linux. It’s very important for the open source community to understand these issues.Keep up the fight, Mike!

  15. John Q says:

    @ Jon ZGive him a break. He works for Adobe, it’s not a charity service for Linux zealots. It’s not a charity service for Digg zealots.Don’t critize someone who is at least soliciting help from us. I have no idea why people are so passionate about this.

  16. @John QHey, it’s not like I’m flaming him! I appreciate the support, and I’m sure he got reprimanded by the higher ups in Adobe (sadly, although I hope I’m wrong).Bottom line though is that HE criticized Digg, admitting he’s not entirely sure what “Digg” is. Check Wikipedia for a start!I appreciate the feedback though, I didn’t realize I was being harsh. Thanks for the heads up John Q, and my apologizes to Mike if I seemed harsh! :)– Jon Z |

  17. RQ says:

    Woohoo! Sounds like we have some light in the end of the tunnel. Keep us informed! πŸ™‚

  18. Deus says:

    I’m just waiting for Flash to die, then we can all go back to animated GIF’s. They never fail!

  19. Jim says:

    Mike,Glad to hear you are back to work… Although the article posted on digg was inaccurate in its title and description. I can see how people were able to jump to the conclusion that Adobe was kind of giving up on the Linux version of Flash. As mentioned by someone above the article was ultimately marked as inaccurate by digg users, me being one of those that marked it inaccurate.The backlash you saw yesterday, I think is in part due to the bad wording of the article posted at digg and partially due to the fact that at this point it honestly wouldn’t surprise many Linux users if Adobe suddenly did decided to drop the ball on the Linux version of Flash, because quite honestly Adobe really hasn’t give us much reason to have faith in their commitment to doing this. What you saw were a bunch of already frustrated users jumping to a conclusion that many have come to expect ore believe is highly possible.If you aren’t familiar with digg… I suggest you get familiar with it. It can be your friend or your enemy. A lot of Windows, Mac and Linux users read and/or participate at digg. Even though there are some ignorant people that post on digg just like anywhere else, digg doesn’t have to be your enemy. It can actually be a great ally in getting out accurate information directly from you and Adobe to many more users than you would be able to with just your blog. The most important thing to keep in mind is that any of your blog titles/entries can be posted on digg again to be read and interpreted by the masses, most of whom are not familiar or up to date with your efforts.

  20. Stephen says:

    You made it sound a hell of a lot like you were stopping. The title for one thing. Saying you were going to uninstall Linux for another thing… You only said that you weren’t stopping in an edit a few hours after the initial post.

  21. EmbraceThePenguin says:

    Yeah, keep up the great work. Linux is making strong inroads in the world and it would be a shame for developers to “Miss The Boat.”The Linux community, as strong as it is, will offer what ever help you need; as long as you ask and provide information that you can to assist us…Joe

  22. Jon says:

    Hey Mike, ignore all criticism. I really appreciate your hard work and adobe’s willingness to pay you for it. Flash is a vital web technology and we are all hugely concerned that we will have Flash 9. If you can give us that then you will be a hero and we will rejoice!

  23. Limulus says:

    On June 28, Emmy Huang said:”We are working on [Flash 9 for Linux], and expect to release in early 2007. Which means a beta should be here very soon.” you roughly estimate when “very soon” will be? (are we talking just a few more days from now or more like a few weeks or even a couple months?)

  24. Shish says:

    Mike: “I now know what it’s not: A credible news source.”Jon: “Bottom line though is that HE criticized Digg, admitting he’s not entirely sure what “Digg” is. Check Wikipedia for a start!”Wikipedia: “The site’s reliance on users to submit stories and moderate their prominence has been criticized for spotlighting false, misleading and poorly-written information.”Sounds like Mike was quite right…

  25. Lasse BΓΆckers says:

    I do not understand that some liux newbs are working on the port. It should have been easy for adobe to find better skilled people.The whole situation is absolute inacceptable. My anger is absolutely not directed towards the poor programmer who has to finish this job, but against macromedia’s linux policy. If you keep fooling us – You might get sooner or later competition.

  26. macewan says:

    Must say I’m fairly surprised by your admission of not knowing what digg is. And your comments about the digg community are rather shocking.

  27. carroll says:

    great work man, just hang in there. We all apreciate your hard work!

  28. Rob H. says:

    Intervideo ported their LinDVD application on Red Hat Linux version 7. Red Hat is the most conservative version of Linux out there, and serves as an excellent base platform for most Linux development.Don’t know what Ryan Gordon uses, but Red Hat is still as safe choice, although Ubuntu is a pretty good choice too.Until Novell includes the nVidia drivers in their distro, I’m using Mandriva for right now…

  29. BryBob says:

    Hi, will there eventually be ports to FreeBSD/OpenBSD and other systems after the linux port is complete? πŸ™

  30. Anonymous says:

    Intervideo ported their LinDVD application on Red Hat Linux version 7. Red Hat is the most conservative version of Linux out there, and serves as an excellent base platform for most Linux development.Nope. Redhat is just old and has been discontinued in favor of Fedora. RedHat Enterprise Linux is still alive though and is not conservative (RHEL4 is not the most up-to-date distro but is nonetheless a modern distro).If you want conservative, look at Slackware. Just saw the news that the, not yet released, Slackware 11 will, again, be defaulting to kernel 2.4. If Patrick Volderking keeps being so conservative, I predict a slow and painful death for Slackware as it gets abandoned by it’s users looking for better software support elsewhere.

  31. Bloody says:

    Oops, that was me in the comment on distros just above. Forgot to write my name.

  32. Markus says:

    I don’t know what all this Digg bashing here is supposed to be, except that it makes people here look like morons. There is absolutely nothing wrong about the Digg post you are all referring to. You admitted yourself here in your blog that there are problems and this is what the Digg post is all about.Okay, “No Hope” is an exaggeration, but this is called a figure of speech. It’s like irony or a metaphor or a simile. It’s good style to use figures of speech to reach your aim and in this case the aim was catching people’s attention. Every news paper user this style once a while in their headline, even the most serious one.A Digg post is not telling you the whole story or part of the store for this matter. A Digg post is just a headline to catch people’s attention, a very short description about what the whole thing is all about and a link to the article. And the link to the article is the important thing. People use Digg to find these kind of articles, then they go there and then they read the article. There is nothing wrong about that.People can go to the article and make their own picture about it, it’s not that they just read the headline and the short description and then that’s it. For the Digger that was creating the Digg entry it looked like you said it’s pointless. This might be his incorrect interpretation of your blog entry, okay, but everyone is free to make up his own mind.And regarding the comments, people are free to comment on Digg whatever they like. Free speech, remember? You don’t have to agree with them and you don’t have to like what they say, but you should be defending their right to say it! If people are pissed (and I’d be pissed as a Linux user, I’m a Mac user and I’m actually pissed about the Flash support for Intel Macs), they’ll fight back. And unlike here, where you could censor people as much as you like, they’ll fight back on Digg, as there they have the free speech they want. Listen to them or don’t listen to them. If you don’t listen to them, it will stay the way it is or it will be getting worse. If you listen to them, it might get better.Regarding your headlines: That is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever read on the web for a whole time (and 99% of all web content is useless, so this means a lot). As if anyone would care for this. As if this would make any difference. No Digg user will use your stupid headlines anyway, you miss the whole point about Digg: People make their *own* headlines there.

  33. Phobeus says:

    I just want to notice, that I am currently pretty disappointed about the Flash player for Linux. To long linux users have to wait yet for a working 8er Player… then a 8.5 is announced and cancled… now the rumors start about the 9.0 player. In fact, I think, that a coperation like adobe that is not able to develop a software for linux is worth to be used.So I really hope, that this are just rumors and won’t become true (again). So early 2007 is my date to do my last check, if I can trust in adobe software in the future…

  34. Josh says:

    Phobeus, the Flash Player 8.5 is 9. They used the 8.5 version number for alpha and beta builds.Mike, just ignore those vocal Digg folks that just don’t get it. Most Digg users aren’t so zealous. You other folks getting offended, remember the same thing. There is a vocal minority that drowns out everyone else. Unfortunately, they end up looking like the majority. Live with it, or make your own opinions known.On a related note, and this is something that has bugged me for a while, all public announcements for Flash 9 Player for Linux have said that it will come after Flash 9 for Windows and Mac. It hasn’t even been a month. With a 1-2% marketshare, I’d say that six months later for the final release is reasonable. A beta will appear soon. Be patient folks. I know it can be frustrating, but they’re plowing through. Based on the last post, where Mike said that YouTube had great A/V sync, I’d say that they’re doing rather well. He’s just venting his frustration at how wild Linux development can be. You should be more understanding.

  35. Phobeus says:

    @josh: In fact I am not actually talking about the versiong of the player, but of the cancled schedules. It has been a long while that 8.x is avaible for windows and not for linux and as a linux user, you are getting more and more flashs that seems to require a 8.x version. So the linux community is waiting for a new version much longer than a month. In fact behind java, a old 32bit flashplayer is the biggest problem, I encounter with normal users.This is a offend against adobe and the person, who sit in their chair. It is not meant against the developers of the linux version itself. Most people working in computer business knows the problems of such projects, especially if it’s not in the main spotlight of the company. However, deplaying again one year for a new player, is absolutely inacceptable (and I am even not asking for a 64 bit-version, but one that get rid of absolute OSS). And I am sure, I am not the only person, that thinks so…

  36. Josh says:

    Phobeus, I understand your frustration over the lack of a good, modern, Flash Player on Linux. I wish it were ready now too. I was merely correcting your point.Flash Player 8.5 for Linux was never canceled. Adobe’s public announcements concerning a new player that supports Actionscript 3 has always included a Linux version. The only exception has been that it would be released at a later, undefined date.I know that Flash Player 8 for Linux was canceled. Adobe felt that 9 could be finished faster and better. In other words, if they continued to move forward with 8 (based on the obviously bad 7 codebase), it might be released well after early 2007. That would mean you guys would have to wait even LONGER! I can’t even imagine what the timetable for 9 would be at that point.

  37. EnviroTO says:

    Your list of distros used in the past doesn’t included Suse. Give Suse a try if you haven’t yet. You should be absolutely sure that Flash works on the side of a rotating 3D cube πŸ™‚

  38. Hoover says:

    Freespire has Flash included in the proprietary version, so there’s another option available for Debian distributions.

  39. super carrot says:

    Dont worry about Digg at all. I love Digg, but you have to know what it is. It is a VERY public forum with possibly millions of hits per day. Therefore, the opinions and views will be extreamly varied and disparate. Its a great portal to let people know what you are doing. But dont expect it to be either polite or correct. As long as it links to your site so that people can find out the truth for themselves. By the way, I found out about your site via Digg. I still have a question though, why are you still using V4L api version 1 when it is on its way out?

  40. Chris says:

    re: distro’s and testingsetup a system with xen and install as many distro’s as you have hdd space for. with Xen there’s really no excuse left, there no partitioning madness or rebooting to test different ones. just shut down X and start up the next one.something that’s been VERY quiet, what about handhelds? WinCE hasn’t seen a refresh since Flash6 and linux handheld Flash is only available via special channels (and is also Flash6). Flash 9 on a Nokia 770 would be the end-all, and I’m definatly sure Nokia and Maemo would help you guys out as much as technicaly possible (maybe even send you a 770 to play with)

  41. M says:

    If you are just figuring out what Digg is, might I suggest reddit? is better than Digg, imo. πŸ™‚

  42. Mike says:

    Mike, I couldn’t do a blog like this – not with the comments at least. It’d be too depressing to have the crap beat out of me on every post.

  43. Garry says:

    I see a lot of people bashing Slackware on here. What you people keep forgetting is that Patrick Volkerding releases Slackware. Not a company with a hundred developers and a marketing department, not a company with a thriving business to support the Linux “dabblings” and not a team of two hundred college students across the world, but ONE person. Oh, he has a few people helping him, but nobody gets paid for it, and nobody devotes their full attention to it. So Slackware is by DEFAULT a 2.4 kernel. Did you guys know that the 2.6 kernel was an option at install time with the 10.2 release? WITH SCSI AND SATA SUPPORT? Oh, yeah, you’ve been wrapped up in the hype about Debian and Novell and Red Hat for so long you don’t stop to look at the distributions you are bashing. I also saw people whining about Adobe not supporting the 64-bit processor. You know, I have an athlon 64×2 (dual core) 4000 running Slackware 10.2. I compiled the 2.6.15 kernel for it (haven’t had a chance to upgrade yet because I was working with WebSphere for most of last year) and found that it didn’t even have the option of using the athlon 64 processor when it compiled (the version of GCC is out of date in Slackware so I have to upgrade that, too). My point is this. I use Slackware. I update my system from the base install with those features I intend to use. In other words, if I don’t want to install GStreamer, I shouldn’t HAVE to do so to install Flash. Believe me, after rewriting IBM and Oracle installation scripts to work on non-Red Hat systems (and non-Fedora Core systems as well), anything that makes my life easier is a blessing. If I want to upgrade, fine, but I should not be FORCED to upgrade to install a plugin. If that is the case, I just won’t use the plugin.Incidentally, I don’t have access to MySpace or’s chat, but you know what? I am not sure I am missing anything.

  44. Great comment Garry. I’m sure you are not missing anything. I find nothing but crap there.