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Google starts sandboxing Flash in Chromium; Chrome soon

updated 09:30 am EST, Thu December 2, 2010

Google sandboxes Flash in Chrome for Windows first

Google late Wednesday revealed that it has acted on its longstanding promise to sandbox Flash in its web browser. Starting with the open-source Chromium version for Windows, Adobe's plugin will block off access to certain vital parts of the browser code to prevent some if not most security exploits. Although not mentioned, it should also reduce the likelihood of Flash crashing the browser by preventing it from affecting more vital parts of the app.

The search firm didn't say when it would port the sandboxing to the Mac or to Chrome. Builds of Chromium are often used as testbeds for developers shortly before they reach semi- and fully stable versions of Chrome.

Other browsers have already been sandboxing Flash both for security and stability reasons. Apple was one of the first, starting with Safari, but has since been followed by newer versions of Firefox. The plugin has been preinstalled in Chrome for months, although the need to isolate it has been somewhat reduced since Chrome was already running each browser tab as a separate process and sandboxing both certain HTML and JavaScript, limiting the effect of a Flash security hole compared to other platforms.

By Electronista Staff


  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001



    Shouldn't that be done for all plugins, not just flash?

  1. leamanc

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 2003


    Re: um

    No, only for Flash, because nothing sucks like Flash does. Unless it's another plugin for an Adobe product. Make plans to start sandboxing that PDF plugin, browser makers...

  1. andrewbw

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jan 2001



    The quicktime plugin is particularly buggy as well, and combined with Internet Exploder on Windows, accounts for more exploits than Flash.

    Oops, wait, this is MacNN -- gotta tow the party line.


  1. beb

    Mac Elite

    Joined: Jan 2002


    Chrome for iOS

    Can we have Chrome for iOS then? Chrome is based on Webkit anyway. I have both Macs and Windows boxes and I use it for both. It just plain works well. If Google is going to take on the extra work of sandboxing Flash anyway, having it for my iPad would be awesome.

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