Opera, Flash and Ubuntu (Feisty Fawn, Gutsy Gibbon and Hardy Heron also)

Note 08/01/08: There have been issues after the original plugin has been updated. See Ubuntu Forum, Bug description (workaround or fixed deb for firefox only which is version 9.0.115!) or comments below for more. Components have been removed that also opera needs! Yet another example why closed source is bad… Hence you might want to give gnash a go, i.e. open source flash. The new Flash version is meant to work with opera version > 9.50 Beta, though (see bottom note). Anyway, here it goes for Flash version \leq

Note 2008/04/19: Before you get all frustrated about Flash and Opera you might enjoy operas’ ads.

Here we go

To install Adobe Flash Player after you installed Opera in Ubuntu, I found the best way is to, once again, use the debian way:

sudo aptitude install flashplugin-nonfree

After the install routine is done you need to add the path to plugins options in opera. Alternatively you could link there. To find where the new binaries are located do:

dpkg -S flashplugin-nonfree
app-install-data: /usr/share/app-install/desktop/flashplugin-nonfree.desktop
flashplugin-nonfree: /usr/lib/flashplugin-nonfree
flashplugin-nonfree: /var/cache/flashplugin-nonfree
flashplugin-nonfree: /usr/share/lintian/overrides/flashplugin-nonfree
flashplugin-nonfree: /usr/share/doc/flashplugin-nonfree
flashplugin-nonfree: /usr/share/doc/flashplugin-nonfree/changelog.gz
flashplugin-nonfree: /usr/share/doc/flashplugin-nonfree/copyright

Update 2008/04/16: The correct “list flag” for dpkg would be -L instead of -S:

dpkg -L flashplugin-nonfree | grep -i 'lib'


Alternatively you could link the lib’s binary to Opera’s plugin directory:

sudo ln /usr/lib/flashplugin-nonfree/libflashplayer.so /usr/lib/opera/plugins/

Some say you may need to restart opera in order for plugins to actually work. Fortunally, for me it work right away. In opera’s address field type opera:plugins to see what opera knows about flash.Update: See this blog on bleeding edge info on plugin’s development status if interested.


Update: This works for 7.04, a.k.a. Feisty Fawn, and 7.10, a.k.a. Gutsy Gibbon.

Update 2008/04/16: On a side note: There is the option reinstall for aptitude if one wants to make sure the newest files are all in the right places.

Update 2008/04/19:I stumbled upon the close to be release of Opera 9.5 which is currently in beta state (and has even more great features once again before Firefox has them 😉 ). Supposingly the Debian package should get flash working. I tried the i386 version for Gutsy and it did work for me.

Update 2008/06/28: Here are some command line parameters you can start Opera with. Especially useful would be -debugplugin. To use it you have to open a terminal to see the additional information:

opera -debugplugin [Enter/Return Key]


  1. Friday, 25th Jul 2008 at 08:04

    […] Then I reinstalled just the flashplugin-nonfree package using aptitude instead of apt-get. I found this page was helpful in learning what to try. Here is a list of commands if you are having similar problems […]

  2. sysblog said,

    Saturday, 28th Jun 2008 at 02:20

    Sorry to hear that I couldn’t help you, neither. But I wouldn’t point my finger at Opera since, at least from my experience, they are one of the very few closed source companies that have a high priority on usability and variety/cross-platform. Flash support in Ubuntu is not the best even for Firefox, you know.

    I wish you that you’ll find a solution; sometimes solutions come around the corner where you would never have expected them when you stopped trying to hard 🙂

  3. john said,

    Friday, 27th Jun 2008 at 06:38

    This is another solution that doesn’t work for me. I don’t know how many hours i’ve spent trying to get flash to work in unbuntu. I really like opera for a lot of reasons but I don’t like the attitude of the opera organization toward ubuntu linux users. Their attitude is “f___ you, ubuntu users.” This is really stupid on their part because ubuntu users are probably more open to trying new software than any other group of users. There are a few other opera-ubuntu issues but the flash issue is the deal-breaker as far as I’m concerned. I’ve deleted opera from my system so I won’t be tempted to waste any more time on this problem.

  4. Dakkar said,

    Tuesday, 24th Jun 2008 at 07:19

    thanks a lot!!! I finally got my opera ready! I dunno why it likes me much more than firefox in ubuntu

  5. sysblog said,

    Monday, 12th May 2008 at 09:22

    Iain, if installing the (fairly stable) beta version 9.50 is an option to you, it seams to find the right files to show flash content, as puptentacle described.

    I haven’t had the time to test it myself and, thus, come up with more detail.

    By the way, I’m working on putting together a small screencast/video to show the steps, but that will take some more time. Stay tuned if you wish (you might what to consider Bloglines with this RSS link or all comments to my blog).

  6. sysblog said,

    Monday, 12th May 2008 at 09:18

    puptentacle, I assume you mean the link to Opera 9.5 Beta? Let me add that in the meantime Beta 2 has been released. Stay updated on that matter (or via RSS Feed).

    I’m glad I could help you find a solution!

  7. puptentacle said,

    Monday, 12th May 2008 at 07:10

    AT LAST!!! Opera and flash working OUT OF THE BOX in Ubuntu!!! The “close to be released” version in the link in your article of the greatest browser in the world WORKS without a lot of useless manouevering in Hardy Heron!!! THANK YOU SO MUCH for pointing it out!

  8. sysblog said,

    Saturday, 10th May 2008 at 02:32

    Hi, Iain. Just on my why to bed, so no on-the-fly walk through right now 😉 But I will see what I can do hopefully soon.

    Let me speak out respects for your adventure in trying to solve this. You must really love Opera (good on ya!). 🙂

    See ya soon. Good night and good luck!

  9. Iain said,

    Saturday, 10th May 2008 at 01:18

    hi sysblog. Hope you can help me here. I am trying to install the flash player for opera and hardy heron. I’m not used to tech speak, I can’t even navigate in the terminal even though I’ve tried countless times the ‘cd desktop’ instruction that i’m given on launchpad. It’s getting quite frustrating. Nor do I understand the instruction you give for the Debian way of doing things as the screen shots you have look nothing like the terminal screen so I have nothing to reference the information you give to what I actually see on screen. Do you have a step by step idiots guide for complete beginners to installing flash for opera in the hardy heron? It’s driving me nuts as i can’t make head nor tail of it. Hope all is well with you and that you can help.
    Be Blessed

  10. Thursday, 8th May 2008 at 19:23

    […] Ubuntu, Opera, Flash and Feisty Fawn — Moved This Post has been updated and, hence, a new address. […]

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