Adobe fixes Flash Player for Firefox to stop crashes

Mozilla and Adobe pointed fingers, but eventually fixed multiple crash bugs

Adobe yesterday updated Flash Player to solve a weeks-long problem for users of Mozilla's Firefox browser.

The update, Flash Player 11.3.300.262, was released Thursday and applies only to Firefox on Windows.

Since Adobe shipped an update to Flash Player to 11.3 two weeks ago, users of Firefox, including older editions as well as the current Firefox 13, had reported crashes when trying to access Flash content.

Initial suspicions at Mozilla pointed to Flash Player 11.3's new sandboxed plug-in for Firefox, but yesterday Adobe claimed that there were "different causes" for the crashes, which seemed to be concentrated on Windows Vista and Windows 7 machines.

There was some finger-pointing on Adobe's part as well. In its own bug-tracking database, Adobe said it could not reproduce the crash, with contributors there chastising Mozilla for blaming Adobe. "This is on Mozilla's end, even though they completely blamed Adobe for it," wrote someone identified as "Squall_Leonhart69r" on the Adobe bug database.

For its part, Mozilla had spun up a quick update to Firefox, version 13.0.1, and began pushing it to users on June 15. Around the same time, Mozilla also "blacklisted" the RealPlayer plug-in, which was contributing to the crashes.

Mozilla has the ability to disable troublesome extensions or plug-ins by adding them to the Firefox add-on blocklist. Firefox installations automatically query the list and notify users before disabling the targeted add-ons.

The open-source developer has used its blacklist sparingly, most recently in April, when it disabled older versions of Java during the Flashback malware campaign.

"We continue to work closely with Mozilla to further improve pre-release testing to more reliably catch issues like these," said Adobe in a Thursday blog.

Flash Player 11.3.300.262 can be downloaded from Adobe's website. Firefox users can also wait for Flash's silent updater to automatically download and install the new plug-in.

Flash installer
The newest Flash Player plug-in update applies only to Windows, and patches a bug that caused crashes in Mozilla's Firefox.

Gregg Keizer covers Microsoft, security issues, Apple, Web browsers and general technology breaking news for Computerworld. Follow Gregg on Twitter at @gkeizer, on Google+ or subscribe to Gregg's RSS feed . His email address is

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