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Are there any third party (preferably FOSS) Flash players that aren't as invasive as Adobe's Flash? I'm getting really sick of Adobe doing way more than it should with respect to its programs and am doing my best to avoid installs of either a PDF reader or a Flash player. I've found a decent third party PDF reader, but haven't found a Flash player.

Can anyone point me in the right direction?

Edit: I should specify platform: I'm interested in Windows based Flash players.

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I would like to use alternative to play youtube videos in firefox. Adobe flash frequently crashes. Sometimes it freezes whole browser (not only active tab) for tens of seconds. Downloading of new version is not possible, because Adobe web page navigates me in vicious circle (Page 1 -> Page 2 -> Page 1 -> Page 2 -> and so on indefinitely). Beside that are minimum configuration options for advanced users which irritates me (for example setting network buffer size or temporary storage options).

for which OS ? Windows ? –  Sathya Dec 28 '09 at 19:12
Sorry, yes, I should have specified: Windows –  Randolpho Dec 28 '09 at 19:20
I think one of HTML5 team goals was to solve Flash Player problem (people are forced to use it). –  Kamil yesterday

8 Answers 8

No, not really. There are Flash Player alternatives that work up to version 7-8 but not beyond that.

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There's the Gnash project, but it doesn't really do much of what Flash does sadly.

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You can always download the flash movie and play it in MPC, SMPlayer, VLC, GOM, etc. A variety of players support flash (and using far less resources).

However, if you want to view flash live in a web browser, there is no way around Adobe's Flashplayer plugin.

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Sorry for not responding sooner, I had a little trouble with my openid account. I shall try this at home; it may be the most acceptable option for me. –  Randolpho Mar 25 '10 at 15:02

For watching YouTube, have you tried switching to the HTML5 player?

Here's the link to switch to that player if your browser can handle it.

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No, not ones that support modern Flash Player features.

However, there are many ways to mitigate the effects:

  1. Use Google Chrome. It has a Flash Player built in, and it's upgraded with the browser, not as a separate application. It doesn't use the ActiveX architecture (like Internet Explorer) or the old Netscape plugin (NPAPI) architecture (like Firefox, Opera, and others). It uses something completely new called Pepper plugins (PPAPI), and it's generally considered to be more secure.

  2. Use HTML5 video wherever possible. For a lot people, the only reason they need a Flash Player is for watching videos. HTML5 is built into modern browsers and supported by YouTube, Vimeo, and others.

  3. Use click to play in Firefox and Chrome. Instead of the Flash Player plugin running automatically, it requires you to click on the content in order for the plugin to load. In Firefox, go to Tools > Add-ons > Plugins > Shockwave Flash: Ask to Activate. In Chrome, go to Settings > Show advanced settings > Content settings > Click to play.

  4. Change privacy settings in the Flash Player Settings Manager. Go to Start > Control Panel > type flash > Flash Player. There are a number of privacy settings you can change as you see fit.

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Here are some alternatives I know of but have never tried :

Unity Web Player (commercial, but free plugin for Firefox)
Lightspark (version 0.7.2 is from 2013-03-16)

In general, new versions of Flash are not very well documented, so there might not be too many credible alternatives.

You might possibly be better off trying to find out why Flash is aborting on your computer, as I have zero problems on mine, including no problem with downloading a new version from Adobe.

I suggest first trying Firefox with all other add-ons and extensions disabled, in case one is conflicting with Flash.

A workaround that sometimes works, is to right-click the Flash video, choose Settings and disable Hardware Acceleration by unticking it :


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Try Ifranview, I have used it before and its pretty good

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There's a VLC plugin that can replace the flash plugin.
I've used it for a while, but only with firefox.
The plugin is installed along with the player.

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