I am using chromium browser with pepperflashplugin on Debian Wheezy.

I want to disable flash plugin completely for one user on my machine, but allow it for another user (thus I don't want to uninstall flash plugin completely).

When I go to chrome://plugins and disable Adobe Flash Player ad restart chromium, I can still see with ps that chromium is running with flash activated:

$ ps | grep flash
/usr/lib/chromium/chromium --ppapi-flash-path=/usr/lib/pepperflashplugin-nonfree/libpepflashplayer.so --ppapi-flash-version=

It seems to me, chrome://plugins does not really disable it, but rather "hides" it.

How can I start chromium without flash plugin?

I would like chromium to behave as if flash plugin was not installed at all. One idea was to chown and chmod the binary /usr/lib/pepperflashplugin-nonfree/libpepflashplayer.so so that only root and the one user can read it (640). But that seems like a dirty hack. Is there a better way?

1 Answer 1


You can use CHROMIUM_USER_FLAGS to change what arguments chromium will be launched with. The default are in /etc/chromium/default. That's where it's getting those flash-related flags.

On the command line, the following will start chromium with no flags:


You can set the variable in ~/.profile for the user who shouldn't use Flash, for example.

Two things, though: it's easily avoidable by unsetting the variable, and if you've got another "regular" Flash plugin elsewhere, Chromium will pick this one instead.

  • in my /etc/chromium/default there are CHROMIUM_FLAGS defined, but not CHROMIUM_USER_FLAGS. Presumably, the latter are user-specific flags. Do CHROMIUM_USER_FLAGS override CHROMIUM_FLAGS, or do they add? Commented Mar 2, 2015 at 21:13
  • also, I don't understand what you mean by: if you've got another "regular" Flash plugin elsewhere, Chromium will pick this one instead. Could you please explain what you meant ? Commented Mar 2, 2015 at 21:13
  • Yes, CHROMIUM_USER_FLAGS overrides CHROMIUM_FLAGS. If you look at /usr/bin/chromium you'll see the following line: # Prefer user defined CHROMIUM_USER_FLAGS (fron env) over system. By regular Flash plugin, I mean the non-Pepper version, used by Firefox and most other browsers. If Chromium can't find the Pepper version, it will use that instead. If you're not using any other browser, you probably don't have any other Flash plugin installed, though. Commented Mar 3, 2015 at 11:33
  • Can I tell Chromium not to look for another Flash version, (ie non-Pepper) ? Where is the code that looks for the other flash? Is it also in /usr/bin/chromium ? Commented Mar 3, 2015 at 12:12
  • You can stop Chromium from looking for Mozilla plugins with the --disable-plugins-discovery flag. Or you can use the --disable-plugins flag, which will disable all plugins. Commented Mar 3, 2015 at 13:45

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