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December 15, 2016

Microsoft joins Flash killing bandwagon

The company will give users the option to block Adobe Flash content in its Edge browser.

By CBR Staff Writer

Software giant Microsoft is joining the likes of Google and Apple in the crackdown on Adobe Flash, in a move to improve the performance and security of websites.

Microsoft Edge’s development team announced that Adobe Flash content will now be blocked automatically on Windows 10.

The next release of Microsoft Edge will now default to HTML5 content if available. Flash will be a click-to-play option in future builds, enabling users to turn it off completely if they wish to.flashux

The update is due to roll out to the upcoming Windows Insiders preview builds, with Microsoft planning to have the feature in a stable form for the release of the Windows 10 Creator’s Update in 2017.

Sites that support HTML5 will default to a clean HTML5 experience. Flash will not be loaded in those cases, resulting in improved performance, battery life, and security.

In a blogpost, Microsoft said: “For sites that still depend on Flash, users will have the opportunity to decide whether they want Flash to load and run, and this preference can be remembered for subsequent visits.”

Initially, the changes will not affect the most popular sites that currently depend on Flash.

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Flash consumption in Microsoft Edge will be monitored in the coming months to reduce the list of automatic exceptions.

Web developers have been advised to migrate to standardised content delivery mechanisms such as JavaScript and HTML5 Encrypted Media Extensions, Media Source Extensions, Canvas, Web Audio, and RTC in the coming months.

Earlier this year, Google set out plans to end Flash Adobe Player support on its Chrome browsing platform.

Adobe Flash has been deemed as a security threat and Facebook’s chief information security officer Alex Stamos has even called for it to be killed off once and for all.

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