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Thursday, July 01, 2010

plugin-container.exe: Mozilla vs Macromedia vs Adobe vs Your Mother

In case you haven't heard yet, there's a pesky little Firefox plugin by the name of plugin-container.exe that has bajillions of former Mozilla fanatics screaming bloody murder! The common complaint is that plugin-container.exe is hogging up massive resources for reasons no one seems to know. It all began with Mozilla's release of Firefox 3.6.4, so many an exasperated victim has sought refuge by rolling back to Mozilla's previous version Firefox 3.6.3 which Mozilla forum mods say does not use the plugin-container.exe file.

But that's a very risky proposition, other afflicted users chime in. They say that Firefox 3.6.4 also contains some security updates which would not only be wiped out by a rollback to 3.6.3, but would never get updated ever again as long as the user remained with 3.6.3, so... what is the solution (see if the second post in this thread works)?

Well, first, just what is this plugin-container.exe supposed to do anyways? Despite the occasional scream that someone's firewall has mysteriously disappeared, the vast majority of Firefox users seem to agree that plugin-container.exe is not malware, so if you've been incapacitated by it, rest easy as far as that goes. What Mozilla support forum moderators have been saying is that plugin-container.exe was meant to isolate certain things which had a history of causing Firefox to crash -- most notably, Flash, Quicktime and Silverlight -- so that if they crashed, they wouldn't take the whole Firefox browser down with them for that session.

Well, it either ain't working, or it's working so damn well that users can't even watch anything anymore that uses those programs. Many users, for example, seem to experience trouble when visiting Youtube (though it's not limited to that).

So, Mozilla continues to say its not their problem and suggests users check with the makers of the plugins. And whilst the problem DID appear with the advent of plugin-container.exe, Mozilla support could be right. There might very well be something in those other programs that had been causing Firefox to crash. And the plugin-container.exe crash protection might just be doing its job so well that something in it might be locking up during Flash play before flash can cause its problem.

And that leads us to the thing that Mozilla's support needs to understand. Even if they are TECHNICALLY not at fault, it appears that whatever problem their plugin-container.exe "solution" was intended to solve was FAR more tolerable BEFORE plugin-container.exe than it has been AFTER.

So, Mozilla, instead of blaming everyone and denying it's your fault, either get rid of plugin-container.exe or make it OPTIONAL so those of us with some hair on our chest and balls can get back to living life on the edge with a couple of youtube-induced browser crashes.

Oh look... here comes one no... (darkness)

Sam Freedom"s Internet Marketing Controversy Blog

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46 comments:

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david sneen said...

Sam,

Fascinating! Proof that you cannot go blindly grabbing everything that might help you blog. A little research is necessary. Thanks for the heads up...I have blacklisted that plugin.
David Sneen
http://earnmorespendmoregroup.com

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There might very well be something in those other programs that had been causing Firefox to crash. And the plugin-container.exe crash protection might just be doing its job so well that something in it might be locking up during Flash play before flash can cause its problem.

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