Adobe Flash Player 10.1 Beta For Linux
Written by Michael Larabel in Proprietary Software on 17 November 2009 at 09:35 AM EST. 29 Comments
Last night Adobe pushed out their first beta release for Adobe Flash Player 10.1. Alongside the Windows and Mac OS X beta releases was a 32-bit Linux build, but the 64-bit build isn't yet available so those users will need to be use the earlier 64-bit beta. One of the main features for Flash Player 10.1 is H.264 hardware video acceleration support, which is sadly missing from the Linux version.

On the Windows version Adobe is accelerating H.264 with UVD2 for ATI Radeon graphics hardware, NVIDIA hardware with PureVideo, Intel GMA 4-Series acceleration support, and even Broadcom video acceleration support via their Crystal HD Enhanced Video Accelerator. Adobe didn't provide any Linux video acceleration support at this time because Linux "lacks a developed standard API that supports H.264 hardware video decoding."

NVIDIA's VDPAU is rather developed on Linux and well adopted and does a rather grand job at accelerating a variety of different formats. Previously it also looked like Adobe was going to use VDPAU. There is also VA-API as another nice alternative or as a secondary choice. Hopefully Adobe engineers will bring VDPAU and/or VA-API support to a later Flash Player release. The free software Gnash Flash Player even supports VA-API with patches.

Besides the H.264 video acceleration work, Flash Player 10.1 features the first runtime release of the Open Screen Project, mobility optimizations (should be more CPU and battery efficient), accelerometer support, and new features for Flash/SWF developers too.

The latest Adobe Flash Player 10.1 Beta release can be found at Adobe Labs.

There is also the first beta release for Adobe AIR 2, which includes 32-bit Linux support but the 64-bit support is held up by waiting on a 64-bit Flash Player 10.1 build. Details and downloads for Adobe AIR 2 Beta can be found at this Adobe blog entry.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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