If you are a fan of Low End Mac, chances are you are using at least one PowerPC Mac, so you are in the same boat as other PPC Mac users with software support dropping very fast – even though your hardware is still very capable. If you are reading this article, then I bet the title grabbed you.
I recently wrote TenFourFox and Flash: The Future of PowerPC Macs on the Web. TenFourFox, an unofficial port of Firefox, is the last remaining browser being maintained for PPC Mac, but with Adobe’s recent decision to stop any further development of Flash for PowerPC, we are wondering where this will leave us. Already there are sites that require the latest version, Flash 11, and our older Macs choke, as they are stuck with Flash 10.
All is not lost. There is a hack floating around the Net that tricks your Flash 10 plugin into reporting it is Flash 11. There is a YouTube video explaining how to implement it (yes, you do need Flash 11 to view it…), and it is very easy. I must point out that this is not my video or download, I am just sharing it with you.
You can download the files here.
To install it, download the file to your desktop and unzip it. Navigate to your main/Library/Internet Plug-Ins folder (not the user Library) and replace the current Flash Player plugin with the one you just downloaded. Just restart your browser, and everything should work.
One example of this working is Facebook. YouTube videos embedded in Facebook will not play with Flash 10, even though they will work on the YouTube site. It says “you need to upgrade” – which, of course, we can’t. However, YouTube embedded videos work fine with the Flash hack.
How long this hack will work and on what sites is anyone’s guess. Adobe must have some new codecs or code in Flash 11 that separates it from Flash 10, and at some point there will be Flash content that does not work with this hack, with who knows what consequences.
I have been using this hack for a few weeks with TenFourFox – you have to enable plugins as these are disabled by default – and it works great. Other browsers should work fine too.
For now this one nail removed from the PowerPC coffin.
I would love to hear reports of which sites didn’t work before this hack but do with it. A friend of mine reported that he can now use Adobe Kuler on his eMac running OS X 10.4 Tiger, which he couldn’t before.*
I have been emailing and chatting with many Mac fans, hoping someone can help back-port Flash 11 (and hopefully future versions) to the PowerPC platform so we can keep this platform alive. If you would like to help, please contact me.
* Publisher’s note: I just visited Adobe Kuler using TenFourFox on my MDD Power Mac G4 running OS X 10.4 Tiger, and it works just fine. Your results may vary depending on your hardware, OS version, and Flash version. dk