At the end of 2020 Adobe officially ended support of Adobe Flash, they will no longer support Flash Player with no future updates and will begin blocking Flash content from running on the player beginning on January 12, 2021.
Flash was released in 1996 and was once one of the most popular ways for people to stream videos and play games online, it brought rich animations and interactivity to the early web. But it was plagued with security problems and failed to transition to the smartphone era. When the iPhone launched, it didn’t support Flash and so sites like YouTube moved to HTML5 for video streaming and soon everyone followed suit. It was also a popular tool for writing whole websites and web application in, although most of these have now transitioned away so that they too are compatible on mobile devices, but there remain many holdouts who have only recently started to play catch-up.
It’s estimated that only 17% of users see a piece of Flash content every day, so you probably won’t notice a big difference in your day-to-day browsing, as this could be a tiny ad somewhere. Most sites have now already been updated to use modern standards like HTML5, WebGL, or Unity, and any sites that wants to continue offering their content after 2020 will need to make sure they do this as well. If there’s any Flash content you’re especially attached to, now is the time to make sure it sticks around.
HELP I still need Flash!
You might be using a service that for some reason or another still hasn’t been updated to use more modern technology. For example, we use Trustwave to carry out PCI scans on our websites and although they have a new platform that doesn’t use Flash, many of their users are still to be migrated across. So if Adobe is blocking Flash from working how do we get around this?
Accessing any remaining Flash content on the Web will still be possible, but you’ll need to do some work first. Most browser auto-update themselves and you sometimes can’t even disable this without doing a series of terminal commands. Truly desperate Flash fans could use an older version of a browser, block it from auto-updating, and use it only for Flash content.
Of course, there are security concerns, so do this at your own risk and take precautions like running it in a sandbox and only visiting sites you trust.
If you’re into Flash games and animations, the last and best option you’ll probably find for accessing this stuff is Flashpoint, which is an ongoing project to archive and distribute the Web’s Flash content. Thousands of games and animations have now been catalogued and are available for you to download and play as you like.
We work in macOS and as of today, Chrome updated to 87.0.4280.141 and now we are unable to get Flash content to load.
Clicking “Run this time” no longer works, it just like to and Adobe post, so we can’t access this service until our account is migrated to the new platform – whenever that may happen. In Safari we just get a blank page. In Edge we just get the error “we couldn’t download” the plugin. In Firefox and Opera we just get a link to download the plugin which then redirected to the above Adobe post. So now where tdo we go?
I tried to load an older version of Chrome (74.0.3729.169) from May 2019, but this too won’t let me “Run this time”. I also tried to install Firefox 68 from July 2019 – the last version to include Flash player – and that didn’t work. I also tried versions from 5 years ago and they didn’t work either.
So it doesn’t look like there is a way around this issue, it looks like we just need to wait now for these sites that have dragged their feet to play catchup. Hopefully, this won’t mean we have to wait to long.