Beta version of Flash 10

Today Adobe released a beta version of Flash 10, from the realease notes:

“Ubuntu OS Support — Flash Player 10 now supports Ubuntu, one of the most popular flavors of Linux.”

  1. “Ubuntu OS”? :)
  2. Previous versions of Flash already work on Ubuntu
  3. How can you say that you support a .deb-based distro if you only release a .tar.gz and a .rpm?

The bad news is that it crashes both WebKit GTK and QtWebKit. This is a perfect example of why I don’t like closed source software, it isn’t because of political reasons but because interoperability with it is hard: you don’t have any simple way to understand what it’s wrong and it’s impossible to fix it.

14 thoughts on “Beta version of Flash 10

  1. Surely, if as the FSF has been saying for years, Linux is just the kernel and the operating system is built of many other parts as well, the calling a distribution the OS is perfectly acceptable. Ubuntu – the operating system based on the Linux kernel. I have no problems with that.

    Your other points I have nothing to say on 🙂


  2. iain’s right: Ubuntu is the OS, Linux is just the kernel. Linux is not an OS, a distro is an OS.


  3. I have read that maybe this version could fix some crashes related with bad alsa usage + pulseadio. Maybe they are talking about this changes (even when fedora, mandriva, opensuse… also use pulseaudio now)


  4. No 64-bit version, they dropped the ball seriously again. Having to resort to hacks like nspluginwrapper really sucks.


  5. Regarding point 3…hard to say since they don’t say what they mean by Ubuntu support. It’s a bit odd that they don’t provide a .deb though, but I’m gonna give them the benefit of the doubt and assume one will be made available once it’s out of beta.

    Still, this version runs better on my installation than version 9.x did (although only tried in Firefox 3 and Konqueror 4). Now if they could only release it compiled for 64-bit…or even better, open-source the damn thing!


  6. The Haiku project has a similar problem (people calling it Haiku OS), though it might be because their website is, if only because domain trolls have
    To be fair, they mention ‘Ubuntu support has been added.’ first, it’s just referred to as Ubuntu OS later in the sections where maybe people who don’t have a clue, could deduce what it is.


  7. Annoyed that they have not released a 64bit version but I think you are a bit too hard on them. Seeing as its a beta and all maybe you could give them feedback on it saying that it has broken compatibility with webkitgtk and qtwebkit.
    You may get a surprising answer or you may get no answer or even worse a we don’t care answer. In which case you can rant about how annoying they are. But give them the benefit of a doubt and file a bug before you start talking crap about them.
    Even in the open source world its not very productive making rants about software in early stages of development without first trying to contribute and help make it better.
    Of course you cant see the code and contribute in a way which you are used to but thats how it works with proprietary software.


  8. @iain:
    Ubuntu OS? And the 2010 version is going to be called Ubuntu OS X?

    You are completely right, I really expected to find also a 64-bit version of flash 😦

    @John McHugh:
    My intention was not to write a rant against Adobe and we will try to contact them about this problem if it’s not a WebKit bug. The problem is that it will be hard to debug and find the bug without having the source code of Flash.

    I’m happy to hear that because I use opera at the moment. It should not be an xembed problem as both diamondx and Flash 9 work.


  9. One more gem from the same release notes:
    “For Linux, the hardware acceleration feature will not work if you are using a compositing window manager (compits). In this case, Flash Player 10 Beta will always fall back to software. If you would like to test Flash Player 10 Beta on Linux, please disable your compositing window manager.”

    What is that compits are they talking about? 🙂

    Btw, all in all the plugin works nicely, its alsa implementation finally works with pulseaudio fine


  10. This is a perfect example of why I don’t like closed source software, it isn’t because of political reasons but because interoperability with it is hard

    Whose fault is that?

    Not yours, probably, and not mine, probably, but there are very few people whose fault it truly is. Look at what Adobe must contend with: .deb, .rpm, .autopackage, .tar.gz. Certainly none of that mess is Adobe’s fault.

    The only way this will ever get better is if each person with the capability to *do* starts *making* it their fault and making it easier for Adobe to ship their closed software. It’s a Catch-22: if no one makes closed source easier, then *of course* closed source won’t work well enough, but if it’s not easy then closed source won’t exist. You can’t play both ends here: either you make it easier, or you don’t complain when they don’t succeed.

    Two other notes. One, it seems reasonable not to provide support for software which hasn’t even made a release yet (as far as I understand the gtkwebkit situation now). Websites did this in droves with Firefox prior to the 1.0 release. Two, this was a simultaneous release with OS X and Windows. Is it right to complain without recognizing the importance of that first step? I think not. Adobe can do more here, but they also could have done less. Raising the bar without acknowledging the progress that made it possible to do so is no way to win friends and influence people.


  11. @Jeff,

    Isn’t the problem with .deb, .rpm etc what packagekit is supposed to solve or make it less of a problem at least? That’s my understanding of it at least and I hope it succeeds. May even make autopackage redundant and obsolote if it does.


  12. I don’t know for sure. I’ve been running on OS X for about a year now because I can run any OS on it (hopefully by the time I next decide to upgrade Apple will have made OS X not require a special OS version to virtualize it so I can run Fedora again — I’m not paying for a second copy of OS X when it’s theoretically possible I could just run the one that came with the computer inside a VM under Fedora), and I haven’t actually fooled with packagekit yet. Hopefully it is, but I remain pessimistic (realistic?) when I see the recent fuss that the .deb people made over the stdin-handling packagekit does. Who knows? I’d love to be wrong about that.


  13. By Ubuntu support, they mean it works on Ubuntu’s firefox2/3.

    As for “WebKit GTK and QtWebKit” issues, those are really expected. Adobe never claimed webkit support.

    If you would like webkit support to happen, maybe you should contact Adobe. But since this is closed software, contacting Adobe and asking for a feature won’t lead anywhere 😦


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