6 Replies Latest reply on Jul 28, 2017 1:28 PM by Rich_A Branched to a new discussion.

    Problem with Flash Player and Comcast

    Rich_A Level 1

      My system has been working fine for years.  Flash player has always worked in many video playing environments.  However recently (a few weeks ago) Xfinity / Comcast made a change to their PC application allowing me to use their portal on a computer to watch and manage my TV shows and recording.   It seems to be broken now when I get to the point during or after the application is "checking for Devices" and possibly accessing Flash Player.  While troubleshooting this problem I had occasion to install and test several browsers.  Edge, IE Explorer, Chrome and Firefox.  I had only been using Chrome but decided to install and set up the other browsers.

       

      All of the browsers had problems with Flash Player.   In FireFox I had the "common"? problem where the browser said that my flash player was not installed or activated.  I confirmed that Flash Player WAS installed (latest version) AND was activated.  Yet every time I tried to use the Comcast application I would get the error about there being something wrong with flash player.  But only with the Comcast application. 

       

      The problem is not with my hardware.  I've tested the comcast application with Firefox, Chrome IE Explorer and Edge.  When available both 32 and 64 bit versions.  The problem seems to be with the Comcast Application which I believe was changed a few weeks ago.  This is when my problem started.

       

      Flash Player works fine in any other application that uses Flash Player.   Just not with Comcast's PC application.  I've confirmed that the problem is specific to how I have Windows 10 configured.  I can replace the hard drive with a newly formatted one, and install windows 10 Pro 64-bit with all the updates and with that new installation (using my existing hardware) the Comcast application works with flash player.  In fact I actually tested (with my PC and it's hardware) Win 10 Pro 32 bit and 64 bit, and Win 10 Home 32 bit and 64 bit.  And with any freshly installed and set up Op system results in the Comcast application working fine.

       

      So there is something specific to how my computer is configured .. that doesn't like the combination of Xfinity/Comcast and Flash. 

       

      I am not the only one with this problem.  I'm hoping that Adobe might be aware of this incompatibility with Comcast and certain Windows 10 setups.   I'm now going on three weeks with no TV (that I'm paying for) and the last thing Comcast said to me (three weeks ago) was that the problem was on their end and they will get back to me.  

       

      Everything worked fine with this computer and Comcast for the last 18 months.   I could just wipe out my system and re-install windows from scratch .. But I have too many programs and data to have to re-install everything. 

       

      The problem seems to be very much "system specific" where there are other users with the same problem.  I believe however they (and myself) are a small group.  

       

      My question is to the gurus at Adobe .. what would cause such a "software system specific" problem that would render Flash Player unusable with just the Comcast application but work fine with every other app in the system ?     Yeah, I think I know where the problem is .. (Xfinity) but I'm not having any luck with them.   Going back in time or to a prior date doesn't help because the problem exists in the Comcast Web application that I have no control over.   The only way I'm going to get it fixed is for them to fix it, or if I find the "area" in my PC settings that doesn't like the current combination of the new Xfinity App and my Op System's environment.  

       

      Any Ideas ?  

       

      And BTW .. thanks for listening .. I'm really frustrated ..

        • 1. Re: Problem with Flash Player and Comcast
          Rich_A Level 1

          Some additional info:  I also found that Comcast has been converting most of their 1080p HD to Mpeg4 720P

           

          Lot's of really angry customers who are having quality issues with the new format.  New question to the Adobe gurus .. could there be a problem with the Adobe implementation of h.264 now being used by Comcast ? 

          • 2. Re: Problem with Flash Player and Comcast
            jeromiec83223024 Adobe Employee

            Are we talking about an actual standalone desktop application, or are we talking about going to Comcast's website in a browser?

             

            If we're talking about an actual desktop application, if in fact, Flash Player is actually in play (we provide a separate video playback SDK for application developers that's a much better choice than trying to leverage Flash Player in an embedded browser window, which I'm inclined to believe is what Comcast would use in a modern desktop application) then Comcast is probably embedding an Internet Explorer window, and making assumptions about Flash Player that no longer hold true in Windows 8 and above.  On those Windows versions, Flash Player is a built-in component of Internet Explorer, and not an ActiveX plug-in, like in previous versions of Windows.  For developers that built applications on Windows 7 and below that use this kind of embedded browser window technique, they're going to have to come up with better approaches.

             

            If we're actually talking about some Comcast website and a specific browser, then you're probably running into problems as the browser vendors move down the path of forcing all Flash content to be click-to-play.  We'd need to talk in terms of specifics (the exact browser version, a link to a demonstrable example, etc.) to be able to give you any useful advice.


            As you've observed, the problem is specific to Comcast's content and not Flash Player.  It will most likely require a fix on their end.  They're a big customer, and they have access to a lot of analytics about how their videos are working in the field, and they have direct access to engineering support, etc.  If there's a problem on our end, they're really in the best position to discover and report it (and are usually very quick to do so), but I don't work in on the broadcaster-grade video streaming products (Adobe Primetime), so I can't tell you off the top of my head whether or not there's an open issue at the moment; however, if it required changes to Flash Player, it would typically be on my radar.

            • 3. Re: Problem with Flash Player and Comcast
              Rich_A Level 1

              jeromiec83223024  wrote

               

              Are we talking about an actual standalone desktop application, or are we talking about going to Comcast's website in a browser?

               

              We are talking about using Comcast's Web Portal (in the TV area) where I can watch and/or record TV on my PC.  Not a stand alone app. 

               

              If we're talking about an actual desktop application, if in fact,  <snip>

               

              If we're actually talking about some Comcast website and a specific browser, then you're probably running into problems as the browser vendors move down the path of forcing all Flash content to be click-to-play.  We'd need to talk in terms of specifics (the exact browser version, a link to a demonstrable example, etc.) to be able to give you any useful advice.

               

              Any version of any browser does not work worth in the TV area of the Comcast web portal.  This problem is specific to only my existing Windows 10 Pro 64-bit system.  Other computers at my home LAN work okay.  I've tried both 32 and 64-bit versions of Edge, IE Explorer, FireFox, and my preferred browser Chrome.  Mostly I get stuck in the Comcast portal where it say's I need to update or enable my Flash Player (which IS the latest version and is enabled).


              As you've observed, the problem is specific to Comcast's content and not Flash Player.  It will most likely require a fix on their end. 

               

              I was afraid you were going to say that.  I know there is an on-going problem with many people where they have a flash player error saying that Flash Player is not installed or is not enabled in their browser.  In their cases these are when users are using a browser that has Flash Player embedded into the browser.  (Edge, and Chrome).  With those browsers, I do not get the Flash Player error but the application just "stops" at a point.

               

              However with browsers that have do not have that embedded Flash (MS Internet Explorer and Fire Fox) I get the Flash Player error telling me to update FP, or make sure it's enabled.  I have spent days just trying to get rid of that error but nothing I try works. 

               

               

              They're a big customer, and they have access to a lot of analytics about how their videos are working in the field, and they have direct access to engineering support, etc.  If there's a problem on our end, they're really in the best position to discover and report it (and are usually very quick to do so), but I don't work in on the broadcaster-grade video streaming products (Adobe Primetime), so I can't tell you off the top of my head whether or not there's an open issue at the moment; however, if it required changes to Flash Player, it would typically be on my radar.

               

              Well I thank you for the quick response and useful info.  I only came here as a last resort hoping that Adobe might give me some info on what area of my system is causing the problem.  It's been over three weeks since this started and Comcast hasn't gotten back to me yet.  I have been able to plug in a newly formatted drive and have successfully set up Windows 10 Pro 64-bit from scratch which WORKS.  But the computer in question is highly modified for video, audio and photo editing.  I would have to re-install and set up a TON of applications .. one by one until I found the application or setting that was causing this problem.  I built this computer so it could handle DVD authoring etc. and still have a 2nd monitor where I could watch a TV channel while I'm working.  This all worked fine up until Comcast changed something three weeks ago.  Sigh ... I've actually installed test versions of EVERY Windows 10 and 7 op. systems and they all work with a newly installed system on the same hardware.   So the two problematical variables are my current Win 10 Pro 64-bit op sys and Comcast's web portal that stopped working 3 weeks ago.  And I also use a lot of on-line streaming like Netflix, Hulu etc. which always and still works fine.  Just not Comcast.

               

              • 4. Re: Problem with Flash Player and Comcast
                jeromiec83223024 Adobe Employee

                Comcast is showing you that dialog because it can't detect the presence of Flash Player from JavaScript.  If you're having no problems on the same hardware (this wouldn't be a hardware thing anyway), and a clean OS, then it sets all the self-inflicted problem bells off for me.  If your version of Windows 10 on the "clean" installation is an older build than your current machine (same goes for the browsers), that would also be a possible explanation of the difference in behavior.

                 

                Here's how I'm thinking about it:

                 

                1. Make sure that the appropriate Flash Player variant for your browser/OS combination is present on the machine, and is enabled.  Chrome, IE and Edge all have theirs built in.  For Firefox, go to https://get.adobe.com/flashplayer, and download and run the installer.  If you're signed into your Google account from Chrome, it will back up all of your settings to their servers.  This makes uninstalling and reinstalling Chrome pretty painless, and would give you a good read on whether or not a "pristine" Chrome installation helps.  (caveat: Chrome takes a few minutes to download and install Flash Player after the initial installation.  Just reinstall, and then give it 10-15 minutes to pick everything up if you go that route.)

                2. Make sure that recent Click-To-Play restrictions are addressed:


                   3. Disable any plug-ins, extensions or add-ons, particularly of the ad-blocking, anti-javascript or anti-tracking variety.

                 

                   4. Reset one of your browsers to factory settings.

                 

                   5. If you're still not getting anywhere, do you have a third party security package or "internet protection" suite installed?  Maybe a third-party software firewall?  If so, full-on uninstall it and reboot.  Simply disabling it probably won't get the job done.

                 

                If you're still stuck, do you see any interesting error messages in the console tab of the browser's developer tools when you try to access that content?  It might provide some clues.

                • 5. Re: Problem with Flash Player and Comcast
                  Rich_A Level 1

                  Wow .. thanks.. I've already done most of what you are saying but I think at this point I'm going to go over your list and double check everything.  

                   

                  Some points .. All of my test cases regarding Windows 10 were using the most recent version Win 10 Pro 64-bit build 1703.   And they all worked.  The OS that has the problem is the same but of course is not a virgin install.

                   

                  I'll spend the evening tonight going thru your check list .. I see a couple areas that I didn't address while troubleshooting this.  And again .. I am thankful for this help as I know from researching this that the number of people having this specific problem are a minority. 

                  • 6. Re: Problem with Flash Player and Comcast
                    Rich_A Level 1

                    Cookies.JPG

                     

                    I finally found the problem !!    This is what worked for me using Chrome.  There are two options in Chrome, either one can cause the TV problem.   The above image is of the cookies area in chrome.  The other area that is not imaged here is from the same page but under it's Flash player setting.

                     

                    Open Chrome "Settings"

                    Drill down to and open "Advanced" at the bottom of page

                    In the first block of options find "Content Settings" and open that option (small arrow to the right)

                    In the first block of options there find the "Flash" selection.  (To allow sites to run Flash)

                     

                    There I found that some how there were two items that were listed as being blocked.  I never blocked them and I'm sure those items were not there before problem happened.  The two items (being blocked) consisted of an xfinity URL and a Comcast URL.

                     

                    I removed them from the "blocked" list.  And just for good measure ADDED a couple Comcast *.net" URL's to the "Allow" list.  Check your items listed and if you see something referencing Xfinity or Comcast.  Jot it down (in case you have to revert to the original setting) and delete them ... close and open Chrome and see if you can now get your TV viewing okay.

                     

                    If that doesn't work there is another setting to check, under "Content settings".  The first item there is "Cookies".  Open that up and make sure under the "Block" settings there are no comcast or xfinity entries there. If so delete them and close the browser and log back on.

                     

                    Hope this helps ...  For me, with Chrome, all is well again.

                     

                    NOTE!  I only use Chrome but I also installed and tested Firefox and Edge.   Comcast TV still won't work with those browser for me.   I'm only guessing but there may some similar setting in those other browsers that I just haven't found yet.   Someone with a better understanding of those browsers might find similar settings.

                     

                    Generally you want to make sure your browser doesn't have any comcast or xfinity entries in the "blocked cookies" area, if one exists.   Also in the settings area of Flash player, make sure there isn't some option to "block or stop Flash".