Andrew J. Nelson
Published: 4 December 2010
This How To explains installing the Adobe Flash Player plugin for Firefox on Slackware Linux. Because Flash Player is closed source it cannot ship as a default package in an open source distro like Slackware. Right up front I will admit that I am not a big fan of either Adobe or Flash for a variety of reasons. Besides the fact Adobe and their products are closed source, their products, in my opinion, tend to be bloated, buggy, and security risks. However, Flash is such a ubiquitous part of the web that I feel it is a necessary evil to be endured.
It is assumed that the user has Slackware Linux installed and connectivity to the internet. Furthermore, it is assumed the user has at least some familiarity with navigating in a Slackware shell environment. This How To was written using Slackware64 13.1 as the OS, Firefox 3.6.12 for a browser, and the BASH shell environment. Every shell command necessary to completing the objective is provided, however, they are not explained in detail. Doing so is beyond the scope of this tutorial.
WebGnuru takes no responsibility for any loss of data, hardware, time, hair, self esteem, or opportunities that may result from following the instructions in this How To.
Start up Firefox and navigate to http://get.adobe.com/flashplayer/. Select to download the .tar.gz For Linux version. Save it to your ~/Download directory.
Hint: If you are new to Linux, you may not know that
cd ~ will take you to your home directory. The tilde can be used in many other ways for directory navigation. You can check out some good info on it at Linux Knowhow.
To the right is a screenshot example of the download process at Adobe.
Open your shell environment and navigate to where you downloaded the file. Extract the libflashplayer.so from the install_flash_player_10_linux.tar.gz. Then, copy it into the plugin directory of your Firefox install. Detailed code is below, or click here for a screenshot.
A .so file is a shared object library file. In this particular case it is a dynamically loaded shared object library, as opposed to a static one. You can read a lot more about this at yolinux.com.
tar -xzvf install_flash_player_10_linux.tar.gz
cp -v libflashplayer.so /usr/lib/firefox-3.6.12/plugins
The last step is to confirm that the plugin is installed. You can do this two ways. First is to start Firefox, and in the address bar type in
about:plugins. The second way, after starting Firefox, is click on Tools, then Add-Ons, then Plugins. See the screen shot to the left for an example of the first method.
All said and done, this how to demonstrated why Adobe Flash Player is not included by default in Slackware, how to obtain it, and how to install it. Along the way a little extra flavor was added on what type of file we were working with, and perhaps how to better navigate the directory structure.
If you have any questions, concerns, suggestions, or constructive criticism, please email me.