Most users of the Google Chrome web browser know that Google has integrated Adobe's Flash Player in cooperation with Adobe into the web browser. The core advantage here is that Google can update the Flash plugin in the browser for its users. That's a stark contrast to other web browsers like Internet Explorer, Firefox or Opera, where the user has to make sure that Flash updates are installed in a timely manner to protect the computer system from possible exploits and attacks.
If you look at the plugin listing in the Chrome web browser you may notice that the Flash listing says something like Flash (3 files) or Flash (2 files). You need to click on Details on the page to see what's going on there.
You may notice that multiple Flash plugins are loaded in the Chrome web browser instead of just the native plugin. You can click on the Disable or Enable links to disable or enable specific Flash versions in the browser. This can be handy for Flash developers who need to test their applications in a different version of Flash, and for end users who do not want multiple running plugins in the owser.
Multiple enabled Flash plugin versions in the browser are not a problem according to Google.
It's normal to see two Flash files in about:plugins. When both are listed as enabled, Google Chrome uses the built-in version by default, so you shouldn't have to specify which one to use unless you specifically want Chrome to use the system version instead (has 'NPSWF32.dll' in the location field). Keep in mind that if you use the system version, you're responsible for keeping Flash updated while the built-in version will update automatically via Chrome's auto-update mechanism.
If multiple Flash plugins are enabled and the native plugin is one of them, then that plugin is used to display Flash contents in the Google Chrome web browser. This does not explain why a second Flash plugin is enabled in the browser, as it does not make sense if the native Flash plugin is always used if active.
My suggestion would be to disable the non-native Flash plugin in Chrome to be on the safe side.Advertisement
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.