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When watching a video on YouTube it is so slow. When I download the same video locally and watch with the default video player it plays smoothly.

I'm 99% sure that it's video output API related becuase if I set the video player output to X11 it lags exactly like when I watch online with flash player.

I read some docs that stated the flash plugin just can't use XV. Why? Is this still the case? The article is very old and may be things have changed since then.

I tried to play with Enable/Disable hardware acceleration in flash settings - no results.

My video card is not powerful (old hardware).

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One can't for the official adobe flash player. –  ewanm89 Aug 20 '11 at 11:08

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up vote 3 down vote accepted

Not possible.

This is why people have been decrying Flash and it's closed source nature for years. Adobe simply has not programmed support for many things particularly on the Unix side of things and as a proprietary format you are pretty much limited to whatever they happened to program into their player.

You can try open source alternative players like Gnash or Lightspark. They have some incompatibilities with flash source files but are usually more compatible with the host system and might have better performance on older systems.

Otherwise your only chance is to get run an X video driver that supports the kind of acceleration the Adobe Flash Player expects.

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from here: blogs.adobe.com/penguinswf/2008/05/flash_uses_the_gpu.html FAQ regarding hardware acceleration: Why doesn’t the Flash Player on Linux user the X video extension (Xv)? Answer: Because Xv scales YUV data. Flash Player operates on RGB data. –  bakytn Aug 22 '11 at 6:07

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