Editorial: Adobe's Flash Updater is Bloated and Shady

By Julio Franco ยท 58 replies
Dec 7, 2012
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  1. Divvet

    Divvet TS Member Posts: 57   +19

    Yet another flash bashing post, just install Google Chrome and get over it already. When your using Internet Explorer what do you expect? Also please stop spouting the HTML5 to replace Flash crap already. Flash ins't going to disappear anytime soon, so quit complaining.
    Jfin likes this.
  2. Great article!
    thanx for the PDF-XChange CViewer
    An_Old_Girl likes this.
  3. This does seem like a bit of a "Waaaaaaaaaahmbulance" story. And in what way is the updater "shady"? Does it only conduct it's business down dark secluded alleyways in the middle of the night? I get you may not like the way it works, but there's nothing mysterious about it. And if you don't want the bloatware, uncheck the boxes which install it. Isn't really hard. Obviously would be nice if they weren't selected by default but it's not the end of the world.
  4. misor

    misor TS Evangelist Posts: 1,283   +242

    If flash updater is so much pain in the ***, then why bother with using automatic updates?

    I have installed the free update notifier from filehippo.

    and the title is "adobe flash" but contains rants against adobe flash player, adobe reader, the toolbar bundled with adobe flash player download, the bloated size of winzip 17 versus the competition, even the point of praising sim2000 running fine.
    maybe for uniformity sake, the article should have inluded the bloatware that was/is vista/7/8.

    if the story was told by somebody not from the techspot staff, I could swallow it but since it was, then here's my two thumbs down.

    editorial is meant to be a mouthpiece at something specific, a personal bias against something.

  5. From a technician's standpoint, working with non-tech savvy end users, I can agree. It would make my life a whole lot easier if they fixed the issues you speak of.
    An_Old_Girl, psycros and hammer2085 like this.
  6. avioza

    avioza TS Booster Posts: 120   +54

    We have been experiencing the issue of end users installing crome and unwanted software on our network. We will have to disable the updater at this point or block the web traffic it generates.

    It appears we will have to handle any flash upgrades with in house software distribution.
    psycros likes this.
  7. Divvet

    Divvet TS Member Posts: 57   +19

    Simple solution, remove flash, install Chrome. Tada, no more updater, no more unwanted software + a very secure browser.
  8. avioza

    avioza TS Booster Posts: 120   +54

    We have several in-house apps have been built on IE, one the culmination of 3+ years of 20+ programmers work interfacing with a couple different IBM mainframes and Imaging applications. Chrome is not really an option.
    psycros likes this.
  9. Per Hansson

    Per Hansson TS Server Guru Posts: 1,957   +214

    Divvet I don't use IE, I use Opera. The point was that whatever default browser you use is what will get updated in the point releases, not your other browser.
    And even Adobe seem intent on allowing HTML5 to take over if you saw the link at the end of my editorial, so maybe this is why they don't seem to put any effort into making the Flash updater work properly.

    Guest1: You're welcome :)

    Guest2: In my defense the title wasn't my doing :)
    The question is why an updater brings up a download page in the first place, there is no logical reason for it. It just means the updater is not even used at all.

    misor I want to use the updater because it would make my life easier, this coming from someone both managing computers in large networks but also helping out friends and family.
    The point with doing comparisons to other software was that you have a choice in those cases.
    You can install the bloated version if you so like, or select one of the others.
    But with Flash you don't have a choice, it's either use Adobe's version or bust...
    psycros likes this.
  10. Divvet
    I dont want o be give all my data to Google. That what Chrome browser does. Read Google's privacy policy and how they can use your data. when you dealing with internet and nothing is secure.
    Since there is not much alternate to flash (at least for now)Adobe should be more careful about less technical users and bloatware. somebody should remind them what happened Real player.
    psycros likes this.
  11. gamoniac

    gamoniac TS Guru Posts: 306   +73

    Good article. I noticed the download page, too. It is time for Adobe to step up.

    You can't be serious to advise switching corporate browser choice just because of a plug-in. BTW, Chrome does not make it to more than a handful of big companies who have invested a lot in their web-based applications, simply because Chrome have new releases every three months. Those corporate apps need to be thoroughly tested and it is time-consuming. Each browser version update is a big undertaking. You can blame it on the developers/programmers/proprietory code, but that is what's taking place in big (and slow-moving) corporations.

    For the record, I used to use Chrome exclusively but Opera is way cooler to use even on my Android tablet. Not going back to the lousy Chrome. Not sure what the big fuss is with Chrome; it sucks.
    psycros likes this.
  12. I had same problem and my solution was to use Secunia CSI. I disabled all softwares' auto-update and allow Secunia CSI to take care of it.

    At home, I use Secunia PSI in all computers.
  13. spencer

    spencer TS Addict Posts: 202   +22

    I agree with this article, I prefer html5 over flash any day. And the author makes some very good points say what you want but flash has been a weakness for a very long time.
    psycros likes this.
  14. Thanks for the article, didn't know adobe installed two different versions (?) on the same install (different processes as well?, and I assume different registry entries) they seem determined to loose what market they have left between this kind of thing, what you describe in the article, of course the security risk, and the difficulty of administration.
    Tired of hearing about google and chrome as well b/c tired of being the product (iron anyone?) and having little alternative to flash. Bring on html5 asap. For pdfs, I like sumatra, as it comes with a portable version at 2.4mb - so does iron, but I've never gotten the portable version, windows only, to work.
  15. tomkaten

    tomkaten TS Maniac Posts: 222   +143

    Adobe is crap and has been for years. I never install their stupid Flash from their site.

    Filehippo.com rules for that, they even allowed for clean, offline installations of YM when Yahoo's online downloader would bundle it with lots of crapware.

    So... Always download Flash from http://www.filehippo.com , x32 or x64, both the activeX and the plugin versions, install, select "never search for updates" when asked and you should be fine.

    And btw, a Pentium 486 doesn't exist, different generations. :)
    psycros and misor like this.
  16. Kneep

    Kneep TS Enthusiast Posts: 44

    I just use ninite to update the adobe crap :)
  17. Per Hansson

    Per Hansson TS Server Guru Posts: 1,957   +214

    We do offer the "corporate" installers for Flash here on Techspot, do note that the current installers contain both the x86 & x64 version of Flash nowdays, so it's only 2 EXE files to install and not 4 like before :)
    So all you need to do is install the ActiveX version for IE and plugin version for Firefox / Opera
    Oops, honest mistake there :)
    Yes, they are split between IE & Opera/Firefox however it is not a process per se, it is a plugin for the browser.
    For example Chrome Sandboxes it, and Firefox does too via their "plugin-container.exe" process.
    Opera tried this too but they actually reverted the change because it caused more browser crashes...
  18. EEatGDL

    EEatGDL TS Evangelist Posts: 568   +241

    Totally agree with the article, nothing to add. And no, I won't install more bloatware that looks for updates of programs I have installed.
  19. lipe123

    lipe123 TS Evangelist Posts: 718   +236

    Best way to deal with this: http://ninite.com/

    Check Flash and flash (ie) and download the little exe. Each time things need updating just double click and its done.
  20. LOL Flash. Best way to support viruses and other unhealthy stuff. Same as Java RE.

    Also, since 11.3, Flash acts differently in FF too (some kind of protective method called Incubator).
  21. ReederOnTheRun

    ReederOnTheRun TS Booster Posts: 304   +62

    Glad I have chrome, so I don't have to deal with this stuff. But good call with PDF-XChange Viewer. I've used it for a long time, and it always gets the job done nicely.
  22. Flash is one of the Internet's most pernicious apps and Adobe is its evil progenitor, as this article clearly illustrates.
  23. Polaco

    Polaco TS Rookie Posts: 46   +8

    This is another dumb *****ic Flash bashing article. I have never ever had any issue with Flash nor with Java.
    This line tells me everything:
    " I have to wonder if qualms such as these played a role in Steven Sinofsky's departure, but that's another discussion."
    Thinking that is so dumb and mindless that tells me the rest of the article is a bunch of crap.
    Associating an issue with an updater with an entire technology let me see your lack of sight.
    I wonder why you, the author of this article, are not developing amazing apps with your brillant mind instead of writing crap.

    Flash is awesome, for years and years you would have had plain dead web if wasn't thanks to Flash that allowed to create amazing stuff, no video no nothing.
    So plain and simple screw you...
    You remember me to the author of semmiacurate news, a poor guy that talks about everything and does nothing.
  24. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 12,976   +2,527

    I think you missed the point completely. Chrome IS, (or should be), the unwanted Software. Well that, and Google update.exe, Google analytics, et al.

    Chrome is fast though, isn't it? The head gamers behind user interfaces know that makes you feel very important.

    Julio: Adobe Flash isn't the problem. It's the pervasive and invasive tactics of Google as they attempt to ram Chrome down the throat of everyone on the planet. One could easily speculate that Google has become powerful enough to strong arm Adobe into including their browser with the Flash installer.

    However, Adobe and Google are on the same page trying to foist off software available by subscription only on unsuspecting users.
    psycros likes this.

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