Flash Player performance – we need your input

Flash Player performance seems to be a popular topic on the Web these days. Although it’s been awhile since I’ve written here, I thought it would be a good time to check in and provide you some info from the source. I also want to remind folks of the resources that are available to you if you are having issues with Flash Player, and — maybe most importantly — where to report the issues to us.

A NY Times writer posted a blog about how the Flash videos he was watching got “slower and jerkier” the longer he watched them. According to the post, in a very short conversation the writer had with us, we confirmed there was a Flash Player memory leak. I wasn’t on the call so I can’t say exactly how the conversation went, but I do know that although a memory leak is a possibility we couldn’t say we knew for certain until we were able to reproduce the issue and make that determination. When people report a problem to us, we ask for the usual list of information we need to determine what type of issue exists: what browser is it working in; what operating system is the user on; what version of Flash Player is being used, what site is being accessed that causes the potential issue, what other software might be running, etc. Once we have this kind of information, the Flash Player team can “reconstruct” or reproduce the situation where the potential issue occurred and we see if we can make it happen again. If we can reproduce the problem in house, we are better able to diagnose the issue and create a fix.

At this time, we don’t know of a specific memory leak in Flash Player or what is causing the writer’s issue, but we are looking into it. We are also constantly looking into Flash Player performance and other issues and this is how you can help:
– If you are an end user having issues with Flash Player, and you’re not super technical or aren’t sure about filing an official bug, the first place to go is the forums. Although it isn’t an official support channel, many great community users and Adobe employees troll the boards to help people out (Bentley and Darren on our support team do their best to help here in their free time), plus you can search and see if there is a fix there for your particular issue.
– If you can’t find your issue/fix on the forums, you can also search our public bugbase to see if it is a known issue or tell us your story by joining our team of bug reporters. Go here to learn all about it. If you think there may be a bug and you just want to peruse the list we’re working on without signing up first, go here to learn how. Then if you don’t see the bug listed, please sign up. Don’t forget to include as much info as possible when discussing your issue. This is one case where ‘less’ isn’t more!

As a side note, we’re in the process of re-doing our blogging system and this summer we’ll be launching the Flash Platform blog. This new blog will unite all the Flash Platform conversations into one easy-to-read/search blog. More people will be writing, more updates, more info. Stay tuned…

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