Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Flash on openSUSE 10.3

For the past few months the flash plugin hasn't been working for me. I didn't miss it much since I have a WinXP VM up all the time and it can play them, just not sound. I hadn't been using it much since the nspluginwrapper processes had a tendency to hang once in a while and consume 100% single-thread CPU. Annoying that. As I use the 'flashblock' plugin, it didn't bite me hard I just didn't click on flash unless I really wanted to view it. Since like 80% of non-text ads are now delivered as flash, this has greatly reduced the advertising I have to sit through and fly-ins like CNN is now doing are transparent.

But. No sound for my YouTube! So, I had to fix that.

Right now I'm running openSUSE 10.3, and using Seamonkey as my primary browser (though Firefox was broken for flash too). It took me close to two hours to figure out what the heck went wrong and how to fix it.

Everything I found said I should run the following command to just make it work:

nspluginwrapper -v -i /usr/lib/browser-plugins/

Except I kept getting this error:

nspluginwrapper: no appropriate viewer found for ./

What ultimately ended up fixing it is the following series of commands:

As root:
  1. zypper rm nspluginwrapper nspluginwrapper-i386. This removed the existing nspluginwrapper install, which I suspect was borked.
  2. zypper in nspluginwrapper nspluginwrapper-i386. This installed both packages. Both packages ARE required for this to work on x86-64 machines. Remember, nspluginwrapper allows you to run 32-bit plugins in a 64-bit browser, so it has to cross the boundaries.
As my primary user:
  1. nspluginwrapper -v -i /usr/lib/browser-plugins/ This gave the following output:
    1. Install plugin /usr/lib/browser-plugins/
      into /home/[user]/.mozilla/plugins/
Also of note, the resulting binary,, is about 90% larger than the old binary it replaced. I know that nspluginwrapper has had some updates since openSUSE 10.3 came out, and I suspect that a lot has changed. So I have high hopes that perhaps the hanging-plugin problem will go away. We shall see.

Also of note, I believe that running the nspluginwrapper -v -i process may have to be done every time nspluginwrapper gets updated. But, it would seem I have to explicitly upgrade it so remembering to do it shouldn't be an issue.


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