Flash player settings panel nightmare

I hate the Flash player settings panel. It drives me mental. I don’t understand the logic behind why you need to access a swf running on an external server to adjust the settings of a plugin that’s running on your computer?

And many are the times that I’ve been stuck without internet access trying desperately to allow a local swf to load files on my computer.

But today, I found that I couldn’t access the settings panel at all! It was just a blank square!

Missing Flash Player settings panel

A closer look in the Activity window in Safari revealed that the security setting had expired for the server hosting the swf. Which believe it or not, is still!

I found a workaround though. I just directly linked to the swf at // and then clicked continue when safari asked if I really wanted to access the swf. Although I don’t see anything at this point, if I then go back to the page with the settings panel on, it now loads.

And while I’m on it, here’s a quick tip. If you don’t want to manually add every single folder on your computer that has swfs you want to run locally, just add “/” as a safe location and you’ll never be troubled again (on OSX).

But in the meantime, I would love it if the settings for the FlashPlayer were not only accessible online. Anyone else agree?

UPDATE Thanks to Seb in the comments (not me!) for providing the solution for PC users :

On windows ive had to put in drive letters and UNC share names, e.g.

And I’ve also found an feature request for this on Jira so please vote for it!

24 replies on “Flash player settings panel nightmare”

This might help someone, OS Flash mailing list from 2007 😐


The location for these “trust” files on OSX are VOLUME/Library/Application Support/Macromedia/FlashPlayerTrust/

I also came across this: //
which is a PC solution to the problem and should be easily extrapolated for other systems with the info above.

As I mentioned in my reply to your initial Tweet, Adobe are long overdue with rewriting the way it handles it’s security policy files.


Excellent post!!

Yes I agree, sometimes I am just playing(I am still leaning) and I just save things to the desktop, and yes I would love just to open the swf or html generated(same issue) locally to test. I am lucky that I have a local ColdFusion server so I can put everything in my webhost, but why should I have to do this anyway! Maybe it is just me, but the only way I can see the swf locally it to test movie in flash, but it would be nice to just open the swf. I made it, I know what is in there, so enough with the security!!

I agree 100%

It is an arcane system, and smacks of laziness on Adobe’s part that it’s not been tackled soon. Maybe now that the security setting has expired for the server it’s sitting on someone might think about looking at the system overall…

But then perhaps they won’t.

Thanks for posting! This helped me fix the flash settings manager blank panel problem.

On windows ive had to put in drive letters and UNC share names, e.g.


That did the trick πŸ˜€

I think this was implemented back in early Flash days in order to keep the size of the Flash plugin low. As back then very kb counted and if they could save an extra few kbs by keeping the settings web based, then it helped getting up Flash penetration numbers.

These days, an extra few kb to bake the settings into the player isn’t important, but at the same time, I imagine making the change is low priority compared to so many other improvements needed to be done to the Flash Player.

Not only that, but the settings manager does not have a concept of states. Instead it goes to a different HTML page which loads a different SWF file every time you navigate to a different tab. ZOMG how 1999!

For me the settings panel always takes an age to load, and usually I get the 15 second timeout warning box appear.

I’ve voted for the entry on Jira. Nice one Seb, it’s long overdue.

Very annoying system especially when the machine does not have internet access. There should at least be an additional setup app that would allow you to change the settings locally. There is nothing more irritating than trying to fix a network card on a machine just to access a webpage to allow a flash piece to run locally.

To apply the setting of the local-trusted (sandbox) to a swf, you need to enable it using the Flash player settings panel. The question is what if I someone to save my site’s swf to access my data on the server side? Since it is local-trusted, crossdomain.xml doesn’t help to prevent such communication. Therefore, I don’t understand what benefit we gain by Flash player settings panel?

it’s one of the most ridiculous things about Flash Player! Horrible concept! Besides how many times did you have to explain the procedure of going through this to clients because their locally tested SWF gave them a security error?!

I’m probably an idiot for asking this but every time my webcam tries to launch on sites I get a Flash Setting dialog box that says “local” is trying to access…. etc.

I can’t select Allow or Remeber and when I click on Close and then Allow it still doesn’t work.

Does anyone have any ideas how I get around this nightmare??


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