I run Debian wheezy with Iceweasel as browser and have installed the Flash plugin similar to this description. Today I read that not only Flash on Windows and Mac also Adobe Flash Player and earlier versions for Linux are vulnerable to exploitation. When checking my version in Iceweasel > Tools > Add-ons I was surprised to see that it is an older version, even though I did all upgrades with apt-get.

Does Debian provide updates for the Iceweasel plugin Flash at all? Are they not automatically provided? Do I always have to manually update the plugin?


The simpliest method I've found : re-run the installer which downloads automaticaly the latest version :

# apt-get install --reinstall flashplugin-nonfree

then restart your browser

  • Surprisingly this seems to work!
    – installero
    Oct 22 '15 at 12:35
  • not that surprising while the debconf script automatically downloads itself the latest plugin :)
    – s4mdf0o1
    Nov 20 '15 at 16:58

On Debian, you often have to update the Chrome and Mozilla flash plugins separately. The commmands to do so are:

# update-pepperflashplugin-nonfree --install    # chrome
# update-flashplugin-nonfree --install          # mozilla

The Mozilla one is still given .350, though. It only will download versions verified by it's maintainer (Bart Martens), which can take a few days.

You can ask for unverified ones for chrome with the --unverified option, but the Mozilla one doesn't have that option, unfortunately.


Does Debian provide updates for the Iceweasel plugin Flash at all? Are they not automatically provided?

The issue with Debian is when.

You can download the latest Shockwave version, from here. Choose the .tar.gz format.

Create an empty directory, move the downloaded .tar.gz file into it and unpack:

tar -xzf install_flash_player_11_linux.x86_64.tar.gz

Which should leave you a directory tree starting with usr/, a readme.txt and a libflashplayer.so. The latter is what you are really after.

Find your current version, possibly:

find ~/.mozilla libflashplayer.so

You want to replace that with the one from the tarball. If it is not found, there should be a ~/.mozilla/plugins/ directory. Shut down Iceweasel and copy libflashplayer.so into that directory. Start it up and check the version again, you should be using the newest one.

You can keep the .tar.gz file but delete the rest of the stuff unpacked from within it; it is not needed.

Chrome uses its own version of the flash player that is supposedly updated with Chrome, but there doesn't seem to be another way, and my version is still here (which is also vulnerable, the chrome "pepperplayer" versions are different). However, Chrome on Linux will pick up the ~/.mozilla/plugins one and if you navigate to chrome://plugins you'll see two under "Adobe Flash Player". The first one will probably be "Version:" and in an /opt/google/chrome directory, you can disable that and fall back on the ~/.mozilla one until it is upgraded.

  • First of all, thank you! My problem now: I do not find any libflashplayer.so file in my /home directory. Also I don't have have a plugins directory in my .mozilla directory. However I found a /usr/lib/flashplugin-nonfree/libflashplayer.so. Should I replace this one instead?
    – aldorado
    Apr 29 '14 at 16:03
  • Note that if you do this, you'll have multiple versions of the plugin installed—the Debian-installed versions in the system directories, and your local versions in $HOME.
    – derobert
    Apr 29 '14 at 16:39
  • Don't replace the system one. Create the .mozilla/plugins directory, put it in there, and see if that works on restart -- the one in $HOME should take precedence, and you don't want to be replacing the distro one unless you absolutely have to. See "Plug-ins directory" here: wiki.debian.org/Mozilla Note that once you do that, it will continue to take precedence when the system one is updated, and it will not be updated automatically itself.
    – goldilocks
    Apr 29 '14 at 16:47

On Debian, you should place libflashplayer.so in /usr/lib/mozilla/plugins/ This should do it. Placing it under ~/.mozilla will not upgrade the library, nor any update procedure via apt-get.

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