Nice one, Adobe!

I find it interesting that, though I'm actually sincere, the title sounds like sarcasm.

I'm sure you've already heard because it was big news today: Adobe released an alpha 64-bit Flash player today, for Linux (amd64 only), and Solaris (amd64 and sparc). Here's my "added value": I was stupid enough to try it, and can tell you how I got on.

It works.

I'm watching some of the low-quality video crap that clogs up the intertubes in another window right now, even as I write this low-quality text crap which I'll bung into those very same tubes shortly.

I needed to "sudo apt-get autoremove gnash" before Adobe's player would work (the symptom being that I'd click on FlashBlock's icon, and the space reserved for the embedded Flash player would shrink to nothing), but that's fair enough. Thanks to the sheer number of non-functional Flash players I'd tried in earlier attempts, it was quite a hassle to find and remove them all, but that's not Adobe's fault.

I've never had Flash work on 64-bit Linux before. And not for want of trying. I know people who claim they have had working Flash on 64-bit Linux, but I know more who've had as little success as me, and even the "successful" ones will admit to unreliability.

Installation is as simple as a "tar zxf", a "mkdir ~/.mozilla/plugins", and a "mv" of the former file to the latter directory. If you're a Mac or Windows user, this might sound awful, and in a way it is, but the usual instructions for getting Flash working on 64-bit Linux (a) involve sacrifices of rare animals and (b) don't actually work. And you have to realize that if they'd tried anything more fancy, the users of some Linux distribution you've never even heard of would be complaining that there's no package suitable for their homebrew package manager.

As a sign of my gratitude, next time I'm strolling past their headquarters, and the missus goads me by saying "Adobe" out loud, I'll refrain from my usual response of "wankers that they are, cranking out shite".

Provided, that is, I don't encounter Acrobat Reader or any of their installers in the meantime...

Update: it's perhaps worth mentioning that, despite never having had trouble with Linux audio before, I now sometimes have to quit Firefox before RhythmBox can play music. Alternatively, if I use RhythmBox before Firefox, I get no audio in Flash movies.