Fix the Chrome Shockwave Flash Plugin Problem

Many people use Google's Chrome web browser for surfing the Internet because it's fast, stable and generally reliable.  However, quite  a few users have a problem with Adobe's Shockwave Flash plugin for the browser.  It's likely not a Google problem, but an Adobe one.  The software maker has dealt with numerous security issues with Flash, Reader and their other apps.  This isn't a security hole, but simply a problem with the extension crashing and causing Chrome to have problems of unresponsiveness.

Generally a web page or tab will freeze and be followed by a message under the menu bar stating that "Shockwave Flash has crashed".  This can also be followed by a popup from Chrome asking if you want to close "unresponsive tabs".  It's annoying and slows the browser to a crawl.

chrome shockwave flash crash

Fortunately, there is a fix for this common problem that is fairly simple for even a beginner user to handle.  It may not solve all of Adobe's woes, but it should at least stop the plugin crash that ruins so many browsing experiences.

To get started, open Chrome and click in the address bar.  Type "about:plugins" to open a page that will display all of the installed plugins.  Scroll down to find the Flash plugin and pay attention to if there is more than one version installed.  If you notice multiple versions then this is causing your problems.

chrome plugins view

If you find multiple versions of the plugin installed then click the "+" toggle to expand the entries for the plugin.  Now, disable Chrome’s internal Flash installation which is located in Chrome’s AppData folder.  You will need to restart the browser for the change to take effect.

This may not fix every Shockwave Flash problem, and some of you may find only one version installed.  Hopefully, this will fix the issue for the vast majority of users.

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Responses to Fix the Chrome Shockwave Flash Plugin Problem

  1. cpradio September 16, 2012 at 10:16 pm #

    Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you Thank you!
    This has been driving me nuts on Linux, why some Flash games work, others threw an error. Once I disabled PepperFlash (Chrome's built in version), all of the games that failed to work started working again.

  2. Doon September 17, 2012 at 12:14 am #

    Completely agree that only one should be enabled, but I'm surprised by the solution.
    Having the built in Chrome version (pepper flash) as the only one enabled has been completely trouble free for me and is auto updated by Google when Chrome updates. Why are you suggesting disabling that and not the others instead?
    The Firefox flash plugin has been nothing but trouble for months now, and has forced me to abandon Firefox for now as Adobe seem to be incapable of fixing it properly despite several attempts.
    Perhaps my experience is not typical or I have misunderstood??

    • ilev September 17, 2012 at 11:01 am #

      +1

  3. senina September 17, 2012 at 11:05 am #

    I had done that.It works.

  4. moon September 17, 2012 at 4:28 pm #

    if you are using Chrome here are some other tips to fix that error: http://www.pcmech.com/article/problems-with-google-chrome-and-shockwave-flash/

  5. Parker September 18, 2012 at 12:47 am #

    Sweet! This has been a major source of frustration for me and has been so prevalent that I've been toying with switching back to Firefox.

    Granted it has only been a day, but I haven't had the problem since...Knock on wood!

    thanks for the tip!

  6. Joe October 1, 2012 at 1:09 am #

    My work advises that after pressing the details button, the only flash file that should be disabled is the one with the
    'Type: PPAPI (out-of-process)'
    and to leave the file with
    'Type: NPAPI'
    Well alone.

    Seems to work for a while. Although google is rumoured to be bringing out an update for this soon. So it might not be a permanent fix if and when they decide to change it

  7. Joe October 1, 2012 at 1:10 am #

    My work advises that after pressing the details button, the only flash file that should be disabled is the one with the
    'Type: PPAPI (out-of-process)'
    and to leave the file with
    'Type: NPAPI'
    Well alone.

    • Helene October 15, 2012 at 10:20 pm #

      thank you for the advice however when I opened the plug-ins page only one showed up- the same one you wrote should be disabled: PPAPI (out-of-process)

      How do I load the correct one? where do I find it?

  8. Marcus October 9, 2012 at 5:38 pm #

    Thank you so much!

  9. Cindy October 10, 2012 at 2:38 pm #

    Hi Alan, I desperately want to try this fix but I am confused at the first step. How do i "open Chrome"?
    I use Chrome as my browser. Where do I enter the words "about plug ins? In the address bar or the search bar? When I enter it in the address bar, it turns up search results from the Internet, not the status of my own computer. Thank you! Cindy

    • Doon October 10, 2012 at 3:04 pm #

      Cindy,
      Type exactly, or copy and paste, the following into the address bar .

      about:plugins

      and hit enter.

      Hope that helps.

    • Martin Brinkmann October 10, 2012 at 3:05 pm #

      Cindy open Chrome refers to loading Chrome on your system, like you do when you use the browser to access Internet sites. You enter about:plugins in the browser's address bar and hit enter afterwards. This displays all plguins, active or inactive, that the browser has detected. If that, for whatever reason is not working for you, do the following.

      Click on the settings icon at the top right of the screen (the three horizontal bars) and select Settings. Locate show advanced settings and click on it at the bottom of the page. Click on content settings under Privacy and scroll down until you see Plug-ins. Click on disable individual plug-ins there. This takes you to the same page.

  10. Fred Omondi October 20, 2012 at 3:18 pm #

    Thanks a lot ,that's gr8

  11. forad October 25, 2012 at 8:58 am #

    the discussions are helpful. I cud solve my prob of shockwave crash too. thank u guys

  12. Rose October 30, 2012 at 5:41 am #

    I only have one version enabled and it still crashes many times a day. Any other suggestions?

  13. Shirls November 7, 2012 at 3:19 pm #

    Sweet it works now!! ive been trying to work this out all evening and found this, it helped out a lot.

  14. tim martynewycz November 23, 2012 at 2:01 pm #

    the shockwave crash occured yesterday when i looked up Coles

  15. Doreen Stewart December 1, 2012 at 9:12 pm #

    My shockwave crashes or will not respond and make my computer slow. I you can help i would love it. Thank you very much.

  16. anita December 3, 2012 at 5:47 am #

    I only have one type of Flash installed also, but it's crashing on Facebook games. Would like to see a possible solution. Thx.

  17. Anonymous December 5, 2012 at 8:10 am #

    After disabling it says Adobe Flash Player was blocked because it was out of date
    What should I do????
    It says
    -Update Plugin
    -Run this time

    If I select run this time it again asks the same question each time i open a new tab
    Help please....

  18. AndyOCZ December 8, 2012 at 1:07 am #

    Did the "disabling" approach fail for you? Me too. This worked:
    Uninstall Flash. Chrome will still run Flash for you. Search for Flash Uninstaller or try this link:
    http://helpx.adobe.com/flash-player/kb/uninstall-flash-player-windows.html#main_Download_the_Adobe_Flash_Player_uninstaller

    What is ironic is that a Search for Flash Uninstaller takes you to an Adobe page that requires Flash!

  19. Jay December 10, 2012 at 4:37 am #

    I have "Shockwave flash" crashing and/or not responding but the only flash plugin is:

    Adobe Flash Player - Version: 11.5.31.2
    Shockwave Flash 11.5 r31
    Name: Shockwave Flash
    Description: Shockwave Flash 11.5 r31
    Version: 11.5.31.2
    Location: C:\Program Files (x86)\Google\Chrome\Application\23.0.1271.95\PepperFlash\pepflashplayer.dll
    Type: PPAPI (out-of-process)
    Disable
    MIME types:
    MIME type Description File extensions
    application/x-shockwave-flash Shockwave Flash
    .swf
    application/futuresplash FutureSplash Player
    .spl

    • Krys February 21, 2013 at 5:47 am #

      Same problem. Just one plugin installed, nothing to disable, still crashes...

  20. Anthony December 28, 2012 at 3:15 am #

    Hey flash wont come up in my plugins menu

  21. ami December 28, 2012 at 6:38 am #

    well good for all it worked, but to me it says No access to this web page.,wehn I type about: plugins ...so yea,still dealing with that Shock Wave

  22. Gertjan December 30, 2012 at 5:53 pm #

    @ami: there is a space in there it's either: about:plugins or chrome:plugins no spaces.

    For me there is no flash option showing, I may have funked it up myself whith installing chrome besides firefox on edubuntu 12.04LTS and then uninstalling the adobe flash plugin..

    Iĺl let you know when i find out what is wrong with this.

  23. Anonymous January 1, 2013 at 7:15 pm #

    My plug in info look like below. i don't see the file 2 and i still have the issue how do i fix this?

    Adobe Flash Player - Version: 11.3.31.520
    Shockwave Flash 11.3 r31
    Name: Shockwave Flash
    Description: Shockwave Flash 11.3 r31
    Version: 11.3.31.520
    Location: /opt/google/chrome/pepper/libpepflashplayer.so
    Type: PPAPI (out-of-process)
    Disable
    MIME types:
    MIME type Description File extensions
    application/x-shockwave-flash Shockwave Flash
    .swf
    application/futuresplash FutureSplash Player
    .spl
    Disable Always allowed

    • Martin Brinkmann January 1, 2013 at 7:30 pm #

      The version looks out of date. If you only have one listed, you may want to try and install the latest version of Adobe Flash to your computer and disable the Chrome version instead. Before you do that I'd check if there is an update for Chrome available. Which version of the browser are you running?

  24. George iweze January 4, 2013 at 3:40 pm #

    hello mine has no 2 flash version , problem still persists
    Adobe Flash Player - Version: 11.5.31.5
    Shockwave Flash 11.5 r31
    Name: Shockwave Flash
    Description: Shockwave Flash 11.5 r31
    Version: 11.5.31.5
    Location: C:\Program Files (x86)\Google\Chrome\Application\23.0.1271.97\PepperFlash\pepflashplayer.dll
    Type: PPAPI (out-of-process)
    Disable
    MIME types:
    MIME type Description File extensions
    application/x-shockwave-flash Shockwave Flash
    .swf
    application/futuresplash FutureSplash Player
    .spl
    Disable Always allowed

  25. George iweze January 5, 2013 at 9:37 am #

    for anonymous
    I had the same problem but i have resolved it, just go to adobe flash page and update your adobe flash. thats all

  26. Taunya January 5, 2013 at 5:11 pm #

    about: plugins doesn't work. I get the following message:

    This webpage is not available
    The webpage at chrome://%20plugins/ might be temporarily down or it may have moved permanently to a new web address.
    Error 300 (net::ERR_INVALID_URL): Unknown error.

  27. thunderbolt January 27, 2013 at 4:40 pm #

    Did not help. I have 1 version only (Version: 11.5.31.137). Now what?

  28. Dirk January 30, 2013 at 12:06 am #

    Problem of shockwave flash crashes, only 1 flash player plugin.
    But it dissapeared immediately after installing an adblocker in Chrome
    I have no explanation. Give it a try...

    Adobe Flash Player - Versie: 11.5.31.137
    Shockwave Flash 11.5 r31
    Shockwave Flash
    Shockwave Flash 11.5 r31
    11.5.31.137
    C:\Program Files\Google\Chrome\Application\24.0.1312.56\PepperFlash\pepflashplayer.dll
    PPAPI (out-of-process)
    MIME-type
    Bestandsextensies
    application/x-shockwave-flash Shockwave Flash
    .swf
    application/futuresplash FutureSplash Player
    .spl

  29. anita January 30, 2013 at 2:22 am #

    Dirk,

    Which adblocker did you install?

    • Dirk January 31, 2013 at 12:58 am #

      adblock plus.
      I installed it because I noticed that, just before the crash occured, in the lower left corner of chrome the status indicated that the browser kept on waiting for some advertising stuff.
      I guess you could install any other adblocker, but adblock plus is not really insisting for a donation :-)

      • Anita February 20, 2013 at 2:37 pm #

        Thanks, Dirk, I tried the adblocker, but that didn't help anything. The original fix helped when I still had Windows Vista, but since I have a new laptop with Windows 8, seems like nothing helps the constant crashing. :(

  30. Cindy January 31, 2013 at 6:24 am #

    Ok I need some help please I have tried to figure this out for myself but as of now no luck. Been having yellow bar pop across that say something to the effect of the shockwave flash plugin is not working I need HELP on fixing this. I went into chrome by typing about:chrome it shows that I have 13 plugins.

  31. thunderbolt February 3, 2013 at 3:06 pm #

    If you are using Chrome, you can make Shockwave Flash work (for a while at least) if you delete the Cache and Delete Cookies from "the beginning of time." You may have to do this several times, whenever Shockwave Flash stops working.

  32. RSN February 5, 2013 at 1:34 pm #

    It works. If I disable the plugin I can see youtube videos, but. If I restart Chrome, the plugin is enabled again. I have to do it every time I start Chrome. Any way to save this settings?

  33. Annomouse February 9, 2013 at 10:32 pm #

    Click on always allowed and that will save it

    • Richard February 11, 2013 at 3:30 am #

      That still did not work.

  34. Richard February 11, 2013 at 3:25 am #

    I used this method a while back and it worked great, but now when I disable Chrome’s internal Flash installation and restart my browser it's re-enabled automatically when I have another installation enabled. It's driving me insane! Anyone else having this problem?

    I'm using the latest Google Crome, Windows 7 64 bit.

  35. Neal February 17, 2013 at 11:18 am #

    I've tried this fix but it hasn't helped. Disabling the internal Flash version doesn't take; when I re-start Chrome both Flash installations are enabled again. Is this due to some anti-hijack feature?

    Windows 7 Ultimate (64)
    Avast!
    Tuneup Utilities

    • Richard February 17, 2013 at 10:12 pm #

      I don't know.

      Right now I just keep uninstalling chrome and re-installing. It seems to last a little longer for me that way, but eventually it goes back to hell. One thing to note is that I always have tabs open with AOL mail and Pandora. Those two are usually the first to crash. Google Chrome from a year and a half ago worked for me without a hitch and I always had about 20 tabs open at once..

  36. Dan February 18, 2013 at 3:46 pm #

    I disable the PPAPI (out-of-process) Shockwave, restart Chrome and the PPAPI (out-of-process) Shockwave becomes enabled again. Is this suppose to be permanent?

  37. Janet February 21, 2013 at 1:33 pm #

    2013 and your fix still works perfectly. I was about to give up on Chrome all-together. It used to be my browser of choice. Thank you!

  38. Howard April 13, 2013 at 10:59 pm #

    Where do I find this: Chrome’s AppData folder.

    I am at a loss. I have noticed only for the past two days and ONLY using AOL.com, I am getting the plugin not working or shockwave not working. Meanwhile, I am prevented from accessing any other sites via a Tab while the AOL.com site (via Chrome's browser) is spinning. And then I am getting another error message asking if I wish to continue or kill the loading page.

    Since I have no problem using Safari to access AOL.com, it seems to me that it is only a Chrome issue affecting ONLY AOL.com's website.

    Just like when you use Chrome to PRINT anything on the NYTIMES website, the printer-friendly view incorporates a box of "an upcoming and related article you might wish to read"---which covers about a square inch of 3 or 4 sentences at the right side of the printer-friendly document, once you print it. So I again must use Safari to print from the NYT because the "box" is not covering up several sentences on the doc I print.

    Thanks. I am really frustrated with both AOL.com and Chrome right now.

  39. Luker May 1, 2013 at 3:59 pm #

    Thank you very much! I'm a little surprised that the problem still exists in full after about 8 months of you publishing this.

  40. Esi January 6, 2014 at 12:05 pm #

    +1...many thanks

  41. BLake February 21, 2014 at 8:37 am #

    Doesn't fix anything!

  42. Just Me August 26, 2014 at 7:02 am #

    Folks, I've had the same frustrating problem with Firefox -- the shockwave crash popup and the computer freezing.

    Roaming the internet, I must have tried everything suggested at least once and nothing worked.

    Finally, I downloaded the free wise program uninstaller. It pulls up a hefty list of "stuff" on the computer. I deleted the Adobe Flash player, restarted the computer then went to a music video on youtube.

    Right away a popup came up that said I had to download Adobe Flash Player -- BUT the audio and video on the youtube played just fine without the Adobe download, so I just didn't download it.

    It appears that Adobe Flash Player is now in the internet parcel (somehow) and we don't have to download it now. If we do download it or have a downloaded version in the computer, it freezes up the computer. (Adobe Flash Player was only listed once on the uninstaller and that's what I removed).

    Anyway, that's what worked for me. No more freezes and no more popups. Oh and I have Firefox, google.

    Hope this helps.

  43. Just Me August 26, 2014 at 7:27 am #

    Folks,
    This is an update to my previous posting about removing Adobe Flash Player.
    I'm still getting popups saying to download Adobe Flash but it is absolutely not needed. I've now roamed all over the internet, my email, and everything that was freezing, and my computer is fine now, no problems whatsoever with the freezing. The "download" or "update" Adobe Flash popup is still coming up but I just x out of the popup.

  44. Chad October 20, 2014 at 11:45 pm #

    Thank you it Fixed the Chrome Shockwave Flash Plugin Problem

  45. Dennis September 28, 2016 at 9:34 pm #

    Try this:
    Simple solution for Windows 7 to fix Shockwave Flash in Google Chrome.
    All I had to do was open Google Chrome and type in the URL: chrome://plugins
    In Adobe Flash Player I disabled Shockwave Flash. Problem solved.
    I already had Adobe Flash Player installed in Internet Explorer, so that seems to eliminate the conflict.
    You're Welcome.

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