It is a fact of Internet life that to experience all the multimedia riches offered by many websites you must have Flash Player and Real Player installed on your computer. This is perfectly fine for anyone who wants to install Real Player but not so good for 64-bit Linux users who want to install 64-bit Flash.
Despite the increasing number of users of 64-bit Linux, Adobe still has not released a non-beta version of the Flash library so 64-bit Linux users are forced to manually download and install the library into whichever folder it is supposed to go. Not particularly difficult you might think except for the fact that the download does not come with instructions.
This guide is with Ubuntu in mind but should easily be adaptable to other Linux distros.
There are two options for installing 64 bit Flash and Real Player into Linux:
- add an appropriate repository for your Linux distro, or
- do it manually.
I have tried both.
Installing Flash and Real Player from a repository will work for some people but doesn’t work for most either because there isn’t a repository for their Linux flavor that provides Real Player and Flash or they have software installed that prevents Real Player and Flash from being installed via their repositories. I fall into both categories: I have Helix player installed and my repository needs to uninstall it before it will install Real Player; and 64 bit Flash isn’t provided by my repository.
These instructions are both command line and GUI based e.g you’ll be copying and pasting text and/or navigating with a file manager like Dolphin.
Installing Real Player
The Repository Method (for Ubuntu users):
- Open a terminal then paste the following lines into it to add the Medibuntu Repositoryand its GPG key:
sudo wget http://www.medibuntu.org/sources.list.d/`lsb_release -cs`.list --output-document=/etc/apt/sources.list.d/medibuntu.list && sudo apt-get -q update && sudo apt-get --yes -q --allow-unauthenticated install medibuntu-keyring && sudo apt-get -q update
- Open your package manager (Synaptic or KPackage etc) then search for and install Real Playeror use a terminal and type
sudo apt-get install realplayer.
The Non-Repository Method (for all users):
- visit the Real Player website and download the version of Real Player that best suits your desktop environment
- Open the downloaded file and follow the installation instructions
You will need to install the correct codecs to enable you to play Windows wav, Real Player and Quicktime formats. More about installing the codecs can be found here at Medibuntu.
If the program cannot be activated through the programs menu, run it through the command line by typing realplay in a terminal. Alternatively, manually add it to your programs menu.
Installing 64 bit Flash for Firefox
Before following the below instructions try to install 64bit Flash using your package manager. Be careful to install the 64 bit version not the 32 bit version.
Follow these instructions if it isn’t available from your repositories:
- Uninstall your present version of wrapped Flash by typing or pasting the following lines into a terminal:
sudo apt-get purge flashplugin-nonfree gnash gnash-common mozilla-plugin-gnash nspluginwrapper swfdec-mozilla
- Visit the Adobe website to download the 64 bit Flash plugin.
- Open a terminal and locate the Firefox directories by typing
In Ubuntu they are
Ignore the bin directory (e.g /usr/bin/firefox/
- Each of the listed directories will have a plugins folder (e.g. /usr/lib/firefox/plugins and /usr/lib64/firefox/plugins). Use your file manager to copy the downloaded plugin file to each of those directories. If the file is compressed (zipped), uncompress it before copying it over. If you have permission errors then start your file manager from a terminal with kdesudo dolphin (for KDE users) or gksu nautilus (for Gnome users) and you those permission errors will quickly vanish.
- Download 64-bit Flash to your documents folder from the above link.
- Open a terminal and type
sudo cp Documents/libflashplayer.so /usr/lib/mozilla/plugins/
- If you use Linux Mint you will also need to type
sudo cp Documents/libflashplayer.so /opt/mint-flashplugin-x64/
sudo cp Documents/libflashplayer.so /usr/lib/flashplugin-installer/
- If you downloaded the file to any other folder just replace “Documents” with the name of that folder.