Flash & Reader standalone installer links
As if Adobe Flash and Adobe Reader weren't enough of a security risk by themselves:
- Adobe's automatic updater is next to useless at detecting Flash updates (at least if you don't reboot often).
- They make it hard to check your Flash version unless you've bookmarked the About page. (Even then, you have to manually compare two long numbers in a tiny font to see if you're on the latest version.)
- They require you to update Flash in IE and other browsers separately, and the update checker only seems to notice one of them (so if you don't know & remember to update both then one set of browser is left using the old version with its known security holes).
- They try to trick you into installing some McAfee crap (Firefox), or Google Toolbar crap (Internet Explorer), unless you untick a checkbox every time you update.
- (Seems new in Flash 11.) Whether or not you clear the McAffee/Google-Toolbar checkbox, the installer you get is byte-for-byte identical, just with a different filename. Apparently the unwanted crapware is always included in the installer now and the filename determines whether or not it is installed. (So you can't rename the installers.)
- (Seems to have stopped for Flash 11.) They try to force you to use a pointless Download Manager which itself has had security issues and which is a similar size to the actual thing it is downloading. (The installer itself will download the latest version, and doesn't include the code itself, so there is still a download manager in a way, but it's not something that plugs into your web browser for no reason, and it makes sense to ensure you're installing the latest version even if the installer itself is older.)
- They do provide standalone installers/updaters but they keep moving around the links (and sometimes the files themselves) in an ever-changing maze of web documents.
If Adobe won't keep direct links to the standalone Flash installers/updaters in a sensible, easy-to-find place, I will:
- Flash standalone installers for Windows, Linux and OS X:
All links go to Adobe's site. I'm not trying to get you to download some dodgy Flash installer. The real thing is dodgy enough!
Installers include both the 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Flash. So you only need to download one installer (or two if you want to update both Firefox and IE) to
infect update both the 32-bit and 64-bit versions of your browser with Flash.
(Congratulations to the brilliant developers at Adobe for finally working out how to compile a 64-bit binary, other than Photoshop, about four years after 64-bit Windows became mainstream. Well done, guys! Maybe you can now feed some of that advanced expertise into making your PDF and PSD thumbnailers work without third-party fixes, eh?)
Do not rename the installers. The filenames may be significant and decides whether or not extra, unwanted, bundled crap (McAfee, Google Toolbar) is also installed. (I am not sure if it affects the current standalone installers, but I wouldn't risk renaming them, just in case.)
Bonus: Direct link to Adobe Reader installers (via this thread):
If a link stops working, please let me know.