Uh, Thanks for the Linux Support

by chromatic

Adobe released a prerelease version of the Flash 9 Player, supposedly for "Linux". I run Linux, but it doesn't work for me. Hm.


2006-10-19 17:09:29
First, dude, chill! It's prerelease. Quite possibly they just haven't bothered with all the other platforms yet.
Second, it's semantics. 32-bit x86 Linux support IS Linux support. It just isn't 100% Linux support.
Third, I'd suspect if there's enough demand for the other platforms, they'll obtain the hardware, invest the engineering and create the build for other platforms. Welcome to niche computing! If you're in a niche, you're mostly on your own! You most likely chose that niche so stop whining.
2006-10-19 17:17:12
Thanks for the comment, q.

Is it really whining, though, to ask for accuracy in labeling? I suspect you'd be a little upset if the binary were only for Cell processors and still promised "Linux" support.

2006-10-19 19:02:46
According to this wiki page, 64-bit versions are coming. Don't know if that helps you out or not.
Matthew Sporleder
2006-10-19 19:02:59
What is Linux support, anyway? Which distro? Which kernel versions? Which versions of forked mozilla (debian insanity) to support? Why don't 32bit applications work on your 64bit platform?

What a great advantage of mach-o file formats. ;)

Aristotle Pagaltzis
2006-10-19 19:50:32
I am disappointed, chromatic. I know you're smarter than the average Slashdotter.

First, it's a beta. Second, there's no 64-bit support at all, whether it be under Linux or Windows.

Right now, there are exactly two supported architectures: 32-bit x86 and PPC. They decided to limit the number of supported platforms so they'd have a chance push a beta in a finite amount of time. As a software engineer, you should be able to appreciate that sort of thinking.

They've not yet decided what platforms the final version will support. If and when they decide to forego x86-64 entirely I shall sympathise with your plight - but criticism prior to the release is premature.

2006-10-20 11:33:26
There never has been 64-bit support for Flash, so why should they push it for a beta release? In any case, if you're that desperate to use Flash you can use a 32-bit version of your browser (Firefox has firefox-bin) and run it using 32-bit emulation that all good 64-bit distributions should have.
2006-10-20 12:58:28
Again, I'm not criticizing them for choosing which platforms to support and when. I'm criticizing them for being unclear about which platforms they support. Saying they support "Linux" implies something that's not true.

All I'm asking for is truth in labeling -- put a disclaimer on the download page that, to Adobe, "Linux" means only 32-bit x86 Linux. Then everyone else will know not to waste our time.

Aristotle Pagaltzis
2006-10-20 19:16:44
OK, point granted.
Carla Schroder
2006-10-20 20:33:19
Adobe can go pee up ropes. Such short memories- this is the company that put Dmitri Sklyarov in jail for several months for talking about how to circumvent their (pitifully weak and incompetent) access-restriction "technology" for traditional protected fair-use applications. The entire company should go down in flames, and their management team put in the stocks for a week or two for some proper re-education.
M. David Peterson
2006-10-20 23:44:24
>> All I'm asking for is truth in labeling -- put a disclaimer on the download page that, to Adobe, "Linux" means only 32-bit x86 Linux. Then everyone else will know not to waste our time. <<

Why not just do what everyone else does -- provide a sub-titled listing of the architecture i.e. --

32bit x86 Architecture

No need for a disclaimer, just a simple label that explains which processor this particular instance supports just like everybody else does.

2006-10-21 02:07:37
1) Flash doesn't support ANY 64-bit platform
2) They have announced that 64-bit is their next target AFTER linux support
3) You CAN run 32-bit plugins in 64-bit browsers using nspluginwrapper (http://www.gibix.net/projects/nspluginwrapper/), no messy chroot required.


Hari Sundararajan
2006-10-21 05:53:59
Learn to relax, seriously.

First of all the number of linux users is merely a handful. Among that the number of 64 bit users is perhaps countable on fingers.

And you complain?

2006-10-21 19:34:00
What about advocating they make Flash an open standard? I think the best is to run after them for that. Flash is making content vendor dependent, from a vendor that is known to not port its software in reasonable time, taking their customers as hostage.

Note that Acrobat Reader 7 for Linux is in the same situation. Does it matter? No. Evince and KPdf both kick it to the curb.

The real problem is not that Adobe Flash plugin is i386 only, but that Flash is a proprietary technology that Adobe make sure they hold for themselves.

Aristotle Pagaltzis
2006-10-22 00:31:37
Heh - Adobe's Mr. Flash On Linux himself took notice of your post, and expounds.
2006-10-22 04:23:55
Unfortunately there is no truth in labelling for home consumer products unless this is enforced by law.

If there weren't strict rules about listing ingredients on food products, vendors would just put "healthy" on it, or whatever the current nutrition buzzword would be.

Labelling on software products is at least vaguely correct and if it's just for the reason of reducing the number of support request when people try to install the wrong thing.

Ogla Sungutay
2006-10-22 05:12:24
According to Mike, blogs.adobe.com/penguin.swf/, chromatic laments... I, being a part of this SWF world, personally agree with chromatic, and dislike Mike and friends' remarks as compiling FP9 with 64 bit support is very very difficult, for assembly this, assembly that...

From a business point of view, these are wrong statements, and degrading Adobe, a multi-multi-billion dollar company.

If possible I request chromatic's remarks about this.

By the way, most 64 bit folks are quickly adopting. We're simply installing 32 bit Firefox and problem solved... But it's not the point.

Marcelo Andrade Jr.
2006-10-22 14:08:47
Well, if it's "not true" that they support Linux, then it's also not true that they support Windows, since it also doesn't have a 64bit version available. Would you say the Flash Player is Mac only then?
2006-10-22 20:54:15
So you mean they should label their support as something like:

"32bit x86 GNU/Linux" or "RedHat 32bit x86 GNU/Linux" or "LFS 6.2 32bit x86 Lignux" or ...

However, you are correct in saying Linux runs on multiple platforms and that 32-bit x86 is just one of them. I would guess though that the number is small of people using Linux on Sparc (or whatever) as a desktop machine.

Also, as pointed out you CAN run 32bit apps on a 64bit distro. So it will run and therefore one could see how you have not been left totally Flash 9less... regardless of the labeling.

Regards, NoOneReally

Carla Schroder
2006-10-23 08:07:53
This is a test. The new spamfilter appears to be over-aggressive and is marking everything as spam. Hello, is this thing on? Why don't we have a spammer season instead of an elk or grouse season?
2006-10-24 17:01:25
Yeah, I know... I run Xubuntu on my old G4 PowerMac.
I think it's a great choice for us trying to squeeze some more life out of aging Apple hardware, but I do get annoyed by the missing plug-in messages!
2006-10-24 23:14:12
Hah. You're berating Adobe, a commercial company? I think the problem lies much closer at hand - I use Linux on PowerPC, and guess what, I can't find a binary of Firefox 2.0 that will run on my box. Yes, it's open source so I could try to compile it myself, but lets face it - non x86 users are always second class citizens.

2006-11-03 08:04:00
"It's not as if Adobe somehow failed to produce PPC and x86 versions of the player for Mac OS X, for example."

:: cough :: Soundbooth :: cough ::

2006-11-04 16:09:34
* Firstly, Linux isn't a "niche"! which plannet are you on?

* Secondly, Adobe/Macromedia have a history of poor support, buggy releases, and only supporting a few legacy architectures (see how they are still stuck on 32 bit!)

* Finally, Adobe being Pants is actually better for the marketplace and Linux, because now everyone will use an open replacement. KPDF, GIMP, Scribus and Web2.0 tech all replace Adobe "Legacy" offerings -- it's their loss, not ours ;)

Keep up the good work Adobe, your poor performance is doing us a world of good!

2006-11-21 03:46:16
Well, this is a beta release, and it is still quite a while untill the final release, so maybe there will be 64-bit support, PPC support, etc soon.
2006-11-21 03:51:44
Many programmers I've spoken to say that writing code for both PPC and x86 versions of Mac is much easier than supporting several platforms on other operating systems. Mathematica, a program consisting of over a million lines of code took less than a weekend to port to x86, and thanks to apples developing tools, they can easily build the program from one source code into one binary.

Also theres the fact that Adobe sells quite a few copies of Flash for the Mac, and not supporting the platform fully would be a rather silly move.

Linux on the other hand, they don't produce development software for this market, and I believe it will be at least another 5 or so years before they do (I do think the time will come though) and so I guess Linux users aren't much or a priority.

2006-11-21 03:58:07
Jon, When compared to the Likes of windows, Linux is a niche. Being a Linux user, I'd rather not admit it, but thats the truth.
2006-11-21 13:38:23
Aleks, one of the complications for this product is that it includes a JIT. That's not very portable across architectures. There are ways to make it more portable, but I'm not aware of any approach that lets you just recompile to a different target architecture without doing some manual translation of assembly targets. Yet PPC assembly for Mac OS X is fairly similar to PPC assembly on Linux, especially with the GNU compiler collection....
2006-12-20 07:58:31
Jesus I aggree with you I had tried (and failed) to install flash because of this same reason there are too many types of linux to be so damn generic. They should label better period.
2007-01-03 15:30:54

Yeah, it would help to label the download page and the readme file with "Supported Architecture" information.

Kinda pissed that I could have avoided wasting an afternoon trying to download and install the plugin on an 333mhz iMac Edubuntu install. It's a friends daughter's computer, the older PowerPC hardware runs perfectly with Linux (plus she thinks it's "cute").

But the problem is apparently a lot of kids websites use tons of Flash content.

Save someone else some time and just label the download properly Adobe. Please. Thanks.

2008-01-26 17:59:04
OpenStreetMap (OSM) has completed the bulk import of comprehensive street and highway data for the United States, months ahead of the project's original estimates. The massive data set originated with the US Census Bureau's public domain map database, and importing it required a dedicated upload process running around the clock since August 2007. The imported data will still require human editing and error-correction, but the completed task is a major milestone for the OSM project.
2008-01-31 15:53:15
I agree fully and whole-heartedly! Not only should Adobe label their products correctly, but if they're going to make a product for one Linux platform, why not make it for all of them? I may sound paranoid, or like a conspiracy theorist (and so what if I am?), but I think that all these big companies have an agreement with each other, the PC makers only sell them with Microsoft stuff installed, and perhaps even so far as to only allow Windows to run (my dad never was able to get Linux to run on his HP dv9000t), while major Linux distros make an agreement not to write for their hardware. I dunno. I'm working on my own Linux OS that will have long-term support for PPC. I'm currently building the default LFS system with no changes to anything. After I'm done with that, I'll see what I need to change and change it and rebuild it. www.dustbunnyosd.tk