One of the main problems with flash cookies, or local shared objects (LSOs), is that they are harder to clean than regular cookies. For regular cookies the browser offers all the means to edit and delete them. That's supported by all major browsers for a very long time. Local Shared Objects on the other hand are out of reach which means that it is not that easy to delete them. The second problem associated with them is that many users do not even know that they exist. And if they do, they need to find out how they can be deleted. That's a usability nightmare for users who are inexperienced or not that tech-savvy.
You can get more information about Flash Cookies in a guide we have posted a few years ago. Adobe has now announced that they have plans to "LSO management with the browser UI" which would mean that users would be able to delete those cookies just like they are able to delete regular cookies.
Most recently, we’ve been collaborating with browser vendors to integrate LSO management with the browser UI. The first capability, one that we believe will have the greatest immediate impact, is to allow users to clear LSOs (and any local storage, such as that of HTML5 and other plugin technologies) from the browser settings interface—similar to how users can clear their browser cookies today. Representatives from several key companies, including Adobe, Mozilla and Google have been working together to define a new browser API (NPAPI ClearSiteData) for clearing local data, which was approved for implementation on January 5, 2011. Any browser that implements the API will be able to clear local storage for any plugin that also implements the API.
Adobe basically has created a new browser api which can be used by the browser to clear the local storage. This throws the ball to the browser developers who now need to evaluate if and how they can implement this new option in their browser.
Another interesting change is that Adobe wants to integrate Flash Player Settings Manager directly "Control Panels or System Preferences on Windows, Mac and Linux". While that's hopefully optional it will give users a direct easier way of accessing those settings.
The first browser to roll out with the new feature will be Google Chrome dev which may offer the feature in a few weeks.
Interested users find the full blog post over at the Adobe Blog.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.