Probably most Mac users have already faced the situation that a pop-up appeared while browsing, telling them that Adobe Flash Player is out of date.
But how to perform a Flash Player Update on Mac?
And, in the first place: Is it necessary to have Adobe Flash Player for Mac? In the following you will find answers to these questions, information about the Flash Player, possible risks during update or installation, and how to run them.
Do I need Adobe Flash Player for Mac?
The answer is: Sometimes and in some cases. Adobe Flash Player is a plug-in and thus a small computer program that adds features to another program, in this case to the web browser.
For websites using the flash format the Flash Player is necessary to view multimedia, stream videos, include gaming functionality, and more. For Mac, there are two Flash Player plug-ins: NPAPI for Safari & Firefox and PPAPI for Chrome & Opera. It is widely spread and for a long time it was necessary for displaying content properly on many websites.
But it has some disadvantages: For example, it has only a weak security and there have been evolving open standards like HTML5, WebGL, and WebAssembly that are even better in performing browser interactivity tasks. Thus Adobe Flash Player will only be supported until the end of 2020 and after this time also its distribution will come to a halt.
However, not all websites do already support the new alternative standards and that’s why it is useful to have the latest version of Adobe Flash Player for Mac to ensure that all websites can be shown in an optimal manner. But before simply clicking on a pop-up to update the Flash Player or downloading it somewhere you should be aware of the risks that might come along with these actions.
2. Risks of Adobe Flash Player updates and downloads on Mac
Over the years, the number of malicious pop-ups and downloads covered as Flash Player updates and installations have increased drastically. Cybercriminals use messages of allegedly necessary Flash Driver updates to implant harmful code like viruses, trojans, spyware, or other into your Mac. More than often these messages even report non-existent problems. That is why as a first step you should definitely check if your Mac is in real need of such an update at all.
Follow these easy steps to find out if you already have Adobe Flash Player for Mac and if you need an update of it:
- In the Apple menu, klick on System Preferences
- Choose Flash Player in the bottom left corner
- Click on the Updates tab
- Click on Check Now
If the window here shows that there are no new updates and Adobe Flash Player is up to date the message you saw was probably harmful and you should not click on it.
You couldn’t find Adobe Flash Player in step 2? Then the message you saw definitely was a deceit. As you obviously don’t have it installed yet you can consider getting it for your Mac. Always download it from the official Adobe Flash Player webpage as not only pop-up messages but also fake downloads may deliver a harmful code to your Mac.
3. How to perform a safe Flash Player update on Mac?
In case it is already installed, you might want to know how to update Flash Player on Mac.
The absolutely safe way to update it is to do the aforementioned check if an update is needed. Then, the system will tell you either that Adobe Flash Player is up to date or that it needs an update. In case of the latter you should follow the prompts shown until the update is completed.
If you can not find the Flash Player in your settings and wish to install Adobe Flash Player for Mac you can follow this guide:
- Navigate to the official Adobe Flash Player webpage.
- Click on “Download Now”.
- The file containing the installer will get downloaded on your Mac. If you are a Safari user you will find it in your “Downloads” folder. Double click on this file.
- A message will appear asking you if you are sure that you want to open the application. Click on “Open”.
- Before clicking the “Install” button you will have to agree to the terms and conditions.
- In the next window, type your username and password.
- Click on “Install Helper” and then on “Allow Adobe to install updates (recommended)”. This will ensure that you will always receive the latest updates for optimal security and functionality without receiving annoying messages.
- Click on the “Done” button.
Now Adobe Flash Player for Mac will be installed. Restart the browser to activate Flash Player.
5. What to do if I have clicked on a possibly harmful link, download, or button?
This is not the end of the world (or your Mac). There is an easy and secure way to get rid of this unwanted download. You can get yourself the best free Mac cleaner software that will find and delete or uninstall this malicious download or application. Isn’t it a great thing? Furthermore the Mac cleaner software will come with many other useful features for cleaning and optimizing your Mac.
Now you know about the risks that might come along with an Adobe Flash Player update for Mac. Make sure to follow the safe path by checking the necessity of such an update in your Mac system preferences and not simply clicking on any pop-up message. Also only use the official Adobe Flash Player webpage to install the Flash Player. And in case you might already have downloaded any malicious code that was in the guise of a Flash Player update you can get a Mac cleaner software that will help you out. Hence, enjoy the optimal functionality of all webpages with your up-to-date Adobe Flash Player!