Linux/Flash Feud

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Linux/Flash Feud

Postby evansste » December 2nd, 2015, 12:52 pm

I've consistently been using Linux for the past few months, and am glad that I made the switch from Windows. However, there's one thing, for which, I still often use a Windows machine... watching videos online. This is because of the seeming, long-lasting feud between Adobe and the Linux community. No one had to tell me about this disharmony. It's something you learn, on your own, if you're migrating to Linux.

On my Linux journey, I've had to learn how to set everything up in order to end up with a machine that behaves the way I like. I've dealt with finding the best distribution for my hardware, making it so that I can copy files to whichever directory I want, and even figuring out how to keep the monitor from turning off, on its own. In order to learn these things, I found answers on the web, and have used forums, like this one. But the most troubling problem, which I still haven't been able to solve, is making it so that I can watch any online video that I happen to encounter.

There are a lot of links out there that claim they can make it so that you can watch videos online with Linux. They talk about how Adobe has chosen to no longer offer a flash player that works with Linux. They then offer solutions. Unfortunately, a lot of those links are old and give tips that don't work.

Amazon also isn't Linux-friendly. I ended up harming my system by trying the techniques that one site proposed. I wanted to watch videos on Amazon prime, and ultimately ended up not being able to use my browser without it consistently crashing.

So I now turn to this forum for possible solutions. Have any of you gotten your Linux machine to reliably play online/flash videos?

I'm using Lubuntu 14.04.3 LTS. Some sites, like youtube, work by default. However, if I try to watch videos on a site like, the browser crashes. On the TV network sites, Like, I'm reminded that I have to install Adobe Flash in order to watch videos.

An Adobe Flash program exists in the Lubuntu software center, but I've learned not to install it since it's outdated and just causes my browser to crash. As a result, I've been using a different machine that runs Windows.

Does anyone else have this problem with Linux, or is it just me? If you've found a solution, that works for you,then I'd love to hear about it.

Thanks for your time.
Posts: 103
Joined: October 8th, 2014, 8:19 am

Re: Linux/Flash Feud

Postby asheets » December 2nd, 2015, 4:37 pm

My personal solution is a Fedora 21 box with 3rd part software installed, and the complete avoidance of any "video" site which hasn't migrated to HTML5 yet. Not totally feasible for work purposes, as many of the iDRACs and LiveStreams we use still rely on Flash and/or Citrix.

Therefore, for sites that Fedora and Firefox just can't handle cleanly (there aren't that many that I really care about or can't find an alternative to), I run a copy of Oracle VirtualBox (type II hypervisor) on my main linux machine, and have a really stripped down XP virtual machine loaded with just MSIE, Firefox, Chrome, Citrix, and Flash on it. I have the client machine templated, so that if I even suspect the running image to be corrupted, I just wipe and load up a clean copy.
Posts: 310
Joined: February 17th, 2011, 4:30 pm

Re: Linux/Flash Feud

Postby evansste » December 3rd, 2015, 9:50 am

Thanks so much, asheets, for your excellent suggestion. I hadn't heard of Oracle VirtualBox, so this information is very useful.

It's funny that you mention keeping an image of your client machine. I made use of an image of one of my hard drives yesterday when the drive suddenly failed. I had just made a copy of it days before it happened. I was surprised at just how fast the backup was restored. It took less than three minutes. Without the backup file, it would have taken me a good portion of the day to re-create what would have been lost.

Thanks again for your suggestion.
Posts: 103
Joined: October 8th, 2014, 8:19 am

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