linux-flashplugin-7.0 freezes firefox - weird fix included

Markus Hoenicka markus.hoenicka at
Mon Apr 7 22:52:20 UTC 2008


I hardly dare to report this problem as it, let alone the fix, seems
quite ridiculous to me. Before filing a bug report I'd like to ask if
anyone can reproduce the problem (I see it on two computers running
FreeBSD) or tell me what I'm doing wrong. Nevertheless the problem
seems reproducible, so here goes.

System information:
FreeBSD yeti.mininet 6.1-RELEASE FreeBSD 6.1-RELEASE #1: Mon Aug 28 22:24:48 CEST 2006     markus at yeti.mininet:/usr/src/sys/i386/compile/YETI  i386

All packages were rebuilt from the ports about a week ago due to an
upgrade of xorg from 6.9 to 7.3 (however, the problem was present
before the upgrade as well). The relevant port versions are:


The browser plugins directory looks like this after upgrading:

markus at yeti:~# ls -al /usr/local/lib/browser_plugins
total 2202
drwxr-xr-x   2 root  wheel      512 Apr  7 23:09 .
drwxr-xr-x  86 root  wheel    40960 Apr  7 22:53 ..
-rw-r--r--   1 root  wheel        0 Mar 15 12:20 .firefox.keep
-rw-r--r--   1 root  wheel        0 Mar 15 12:58 .mozilla.keep
lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  wheel       54 Apr  7 22:55 flashplayer.xpt -> /usr/local/lib/npapi/linux-flashplugin/flashplayer.xpt
lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  wheel       56 Apr  7 23:16 -> /usr/local/lib/npapi/linux-flashplugin/
lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  wheel       60 Mar 15 12:20 -> /usr/local/jdk1.5.0/jre/plugin/i386/ns7/
lrwxr-xr-x   1 root  wheel       59 Aug 27  2006 -> /usr/X11R6/Adobe/Acrobat7.0/ENU/Browser/intellinux/

There is one particular site (, a German computer
news site) which causes firefox to freeze with this
setup. Unfortunately the problem appears to be caused by ads that they
run, so depending on what ads are scheduled you may not be able to
reproduce the bug immediately (try again a day or two later). I haven't
found a site yet which consistently shows this bug.

Freezing can be suppressed by any of the following manipulations:

1) switch off JavaScript support in the browser settings

2) remove the link in the plugins directory

3) and finally the weird one: replace the link with
the shared object that the link points to, which makes the
browser_plugins entry look like this:

-rw-r--r-- 1 root wheel 2181284 Apr 7 23:09

I was under the impression that symbolic links are handled
transparently by the OS, but there seems to be something weird going
on here. Any clues?


Markus Hoenicka
markus.hoenicka at
(Spam-protected email: replace the quadrupeds with "mhoenicka")

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