Browser plugins

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Revision as of 07:04, 17 May 2012 by Pocm (talk | contribs) (Blue tint on videos with Flash and Nvidia: updated to recommend newer patch)
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These plugins work in Firefox, Opera and WebKit derivatives.

Flash Player

Adobe Flash Player

Flash Player is in the official repositories for both i686 and x86_64 architectures: flashplugin


Note that for Epiphany, you have to wrap Adobe Flash Player in the same fashion as described for x86_64. See Epiphany#Flash for more details.


In addition, it may be needed to install ttf-ms-fontsAUR from the AUR in order to properly render text.


To change general plug-in preferences (privacy settings, resource usage, etc.), right click on embedded Flash content and choose preferences from the menu, or go to the Macromedia website. There, a Flash animation will give access to local settings.

You can make your own settings file for Flash, just use the file /etc/adobe/mms.cfg. Example config below:

 # Adobe player settings
 AVHardwareDisable = 0
 FullScreenDisable = 0
 LocalFileReadDisable = 1
 FileDownloadDisable = 1
 FileUploadDisable = 1
 LocalStorageLimit = 1
 ThirdPartyStorage = 1
 AssetCacheSize = 10
 AutoUpdateDisable = 1
 LegacyDomainMatching = 0
 LocalFileLegacyAction = 0
 AllowUserLocalTrust = 0
 # DisableSockets = 1 
 OverrideGPUValidation = 1

You can also refer to the mms.cfg from Gentoo, which is extensively commented.

Disable "Press ESC to exit full screen mode" message

This topic at describes a way to disable that message.

Backup "" in case something messes up.

 # cp /usr/lib/mozilla/plugins/ /usr/lib/mozilla/plugins/ 

Make a copy to your home directory

 # cp /usr/lib/mozilla/plugins/ ~/

Make sure wine is installed. If not, execute the following command

 # pacman -S wine

Download "Flash Fullscreen" from this page, extract and execute with wine.

 $ wget
 $ unzip Flash\ Fullscreen\ 
 $ wine Flash\ Fullscreen\ Patcher.exe

Patch "" in your home dir using the GUI. Copy the patched lib back to the plugins directory

 # cp ~/ /usr/lib/mozilla/plugins/


If you have Abobe Flash installed on an older system and you start playing a video which simply turns black with nothing happeing, it is most likely that your CPU does not support ISSE2. You can simply check out this by looking at your CPU flags with this command:

# cat /proc/cpuinfo | grep flags

If sse2 is not mentioned there, then you need to install an older version of Flash (for example 10.3). Older versions possibly will have vulnerabilities. You should then consider sandboxing Firefox using sandfox (

Older versions of Flash are available here:

Get the tar version and unpack it. You need to copy to the folder /usr/lib/mozilla/plugins/

Restart Firefox and you have working Flash again

PDF viewer


If you want to view PDF files in Firefox without opening a new window, follow this guide:

Adobe Reader

Due to licensing restrictions, Adobe Reader cannot be distributed from any of the official Arch Linux repositories. There are versions available in the AUR. Please note that no matter how many votes it receives, Adobe Reader will never be included in the official repositories. See this comment for an explanation.

Also, there are localizations available in many languages.


32-bit AUR package: acroreadAUR

It installs the Acrobat Reader application as well as the Firefox plugin. Note that hardware-assisted rendering is unavailable under Linux (at least using a Geforce 8600GTS with driver version 185.18.14).


Adobe Reader is a closed-source application, meaning that users desiring a 64-bit binary have no other choice other than to wait for official support. Workarounds to be considered:

  • Follow this guide originally posted in the forums. It involves creating a chrooted environment that could be reused for other 32-bit only applications.
  • Or, simply get the 32-bit binary along with the 32-bit dependencies. Install bin32-acroreadAUR. Also, consider installing the extra font packages suggested by the package. Be advised that the Firefox plugin cannot be used directly with this binary -- it will not load in the 64-bit browser. nspluginwrapper-flashAUR is required to load the plugin. Finally, be sure to run:
$ nspluginwrapper -v -a -i

as a normal user. This checks the plugin directory and links the plugins as needed. Everything should work as expected now.

Note: There seems to also be a nspluginwrapper in the official repositories which may be the new way to go.


See: Citrix

Java (IcedTea)

Provided by icedtea-web-java7 from the official repositories, it also needs Java installed.

Note: If you experience any problems with the Java plug-in, you can try the solution, suggested for the Firefox Flash plug-in. You can also try using non-free version, bundled with Oracle JRE.

Weird symlink

Note: The section below is likely outdated.

But if you want to, since firefox v3.6 does not seem to look in /usr/lib/mozilla/plugins, which is the default location where jreAUR v1.6.0_22 places the Java plugin, just

# ln -s /opt/java/jre/lib/i386/ ~/mozilla/plugins/

and it is safe to

# rm -R /usr/lib/mozilla

unless you use it for something else! Be careful here.

Video Plugins

Gecko Media Player

A good replacement of the now obsolete mplayer-plugin is Gecko Media Player packaged as gecko-mediaplayer. More stable combined with MPlayer 1.0RC2. (No more crashes with Apple Trailers.)

Totem Plugin

The totem-plugin might be the right choice for those seeking a GStreamer-based plugin.

Rosa Media Player Plugin

The rosa-media-player-pluginAUR might be the right choice for those seeking a Mplayer-based plugin written in QT (install it through the AUR).

VLC Plugin

npapi-vlc-gitAUR is the modern VLC Mozilla plugin based on libVLC.



Install mozpluggerAUR through the AUR.


Bad (choppy) sound on 64bit flashplugin

There is a problem with flashplugin 11 64bit and a new memcpy routine in glibc, which makes the sound choppy on mp3 streams (more info here: [1]. Current workarounds are either replacing the memcopy routine like suggested in the mentioned thread or using flashplugin-square [2] from the AUR.

Flash blocks sound and/or delayed playback

If sound is delayed within flash video and/or if Flash stops sound from any other application, then make sure you do not have snd_pcm_oss module loaded:

$ lsmod | grep snd_pcm_oss

You can unload it

# rmmod snd_pcm_oss

and restart the browser to see if it helps.

No sound in Flash

Flash Player outputs its sound only through the default ALSA device, which is number 0. If you have multiple sound devices (a very common example is having a sound card and HDMI output in video card), then your preferred device may have a different number. For example:

$ aplay -l
**** List of PLAYBACK Hardware Devices ****
card 0: Generic [HD-Audio Generic], device 3: HDMI 0 [HDMI 0]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 1: DX [Xonar DX], device 0: Multichannel [Multichannel]
  Subdevices: 0/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0
card 1: DX [Xonar DX], device 1: Digital [Digital]
  Subdevices: 1/1
  Subdevice #0: subdevice #0

In this case, HDMI output is "card 0" and sound card is "card 1". To make it default for ALSA, create a file named ~/.asoundrc with the following content:

pcm.!default {
type hw
card 1

ctl.!default {
type hw
card 1

Flash performance

Adobe's Flash plugin has some serious performance issues, especially when CPU frequency scaling is used. There seems to be a policy not to use the whole CPU workload, so the frequency scaling governor does not clock the CPU any higher. To work around this issue, see: cpufrequtils#Changing the ondemand governor's threshold

Plugins are installed but not working

A common problem is that the plugin path is unset. This typically occurs on a new install, when the user has not re-logged in before running Firefox after the installation. Test if the path is unset:


If unset, then either re-login, or source /etc/profile.d/ and start Firefox from the same shell:

. /etc/profile.d/ && firefox

Gecko Media Player will not play Apple trailers

If Apple Trailers appear to start to play and then fail, try setting the user agent for your browser to:

QuickTime/7.6.2 (qtver=7.6.2;os=Windows NT 5.1Service Pack 3)

Low webcam resolution in Flash

If your webcam has low resolution in Flash (the image looks very pixelated) you can try starting your browser with this:

LD_PRELOAD=/usr/lib/libv4l/ chromium

Black bars in fullscreen video playback on multiheaded desktops

The Flash plugin has a known bug, where the full screen mode does not really work when you have a multi-monitor setup. Apparently it incorrectly determines the fullscreen resolution, so the video fill the correct monitor but gets scaled as if the monitor had the resolution of the total display area.

To fix this, you can use the "hack" described here. Simply download the file linked and follow instructions from the README.

Note that while the author mentions using nvidia twinview, this actually applies regardless.

Blue tint on videos with Flash and Nvidia

An issue with flashplugin versions and causes it to send the U/V panes in the incorrect order resulting in a blue tint on certain videos. There are a few potential fixes for this bug:

  • Install libvdpau-git-flashpatchAUR from AUR
  • Patch [3] with this makepkg.
  • Right click on a video, select 'Settings...' and untick 'Enable hardware acceleration'. Reload the page for it to take affect. Note that this disables GPU acceleration.
  • Downgrade Flash to version at most
  • Use Google Chrome with the new Pepper API.
  • Try one of the few Flash alternatives.

The merits of each are discussed in this thread. To summarize: if you want all flash sites (youtube, vimeo, etc) to work properly in non-Chrome browsers, without feature regressions (such as losing hardware acceleration), without crashes/instability (enabling hardware decoding), without security concerns (multiple CVEs against older flash versions) and without breaking the vdpau tracing library from its intended purpose, the LEAST objectionable is to install libvdpau-git-flashpatchAUR.

Leaking overlay with Flash and Nvidia

This bug is due to the incorrect colour key being used by the flashplugin version [4] and causes the flash content to "leak" into other pages or solid black backgrounds. To avoid this issue simply export VDPAU_NVIDIA_NO_OVERLAY=1 within either your shell profile (E.g. ~/.bash_profile or ~/.zprofile) or ~/.xinitrc