Title photo
frugal technology, simple living and guerrilla large-appliance repair

Regular blog here, 'microblog' there

Many of my traditional blog post live on this site, but a great majority of my social-style posts can be found on my much-busier microbloging site at updates.passthejoe.net. It's busier because my BlogPoster "microblogging" script generates short, Twitter-style posts from the Linux or Windows (or anywhere you can run Ruby with too many Gems) command line, uploads them to the web server and send them out on my Twitter and Mastodon feeds.

I used to post to this blog via scripts and Unix/Linux utilities (curl and Unison) that helped me mirror the files locally and on the server. Since this site recently moved hosts, none of that is set up. I'm just using SFTP and SSH to write posts and manage the site.

Disqus comments are not live just yet because I'm not sure about what I'm going to do for the domain on this site. I'll probably restore the old domain at first just to have some continuity, but for now I like using the "free" domain from this site's new host, NearlyFreeSpeech.net.

Thu, 15 Dec 2011

The flashplugin-nonfree package won't update itself in Debian Squeeze -- here's how to do it

I've never seen this kind of thing before: I noticed that the Flash plugin that Debian installs from the flashplugin-nonfree package hasn't updated in quite some time. I've been stuck at Adobe Flash 10.2 for a long while.

I wouldn't have noticed except that Google Chrome is complaining about out-of-date Flash (and Java, too -- but that's too complicated in my case to take care of so quickly).

(Note: This could have something to do with the vagaries of 64-bit Linux support for the Flash player from Adobe. For all I know, this isn't a problem in 32-bit Debian Squeeze. All I know is that I run 64-bit and it's a problem for me.)

I checked Debian's package repository, and my flashplugin-nonfree is indeed up to date. But my actual Flash binary from Adobe is not.


A minute or so in Google led me to this extremely helpful exchange from the Debian User Forums.

It turns out that updating your Flash Player is easy. Open a terminal and either su to root, or use sudo (my preferred method for just about anything rootly):

$ sudo update-flashplugin-nonfree --install

or (with su to root):

# update-flashplugin-nonfree --install

Your system will go to Adobe, download a new Flash plugin for Linux, then install it on your system. That's it!