After updating my debugger version of Adobe Flash Player to I noticed that Mouse Events were no longer working correctly.

There appears to be a bug in the more recent flash player which appears to break the mouse events. It only appears to affect Macs, I am having the problem on both Safari 4.0.3 and FireFox 3.5.3. I made a test app below which adds a few mouse event listeners to the white box and informs you of the events being received. Try it out below and comment on your results.

Get Adobe Flash player

If you do not have a problem, do not upgrade your flash player or you will. This has been reported as a bug to Adobe here and here, more people are starting to notice it, hopefully Adobe will fix it soon.

Update 25/09/09

So far the results of people trying out the above test on a mac have been varied. The problem seems to be occuring in Snow Leopard 1.6, with most people FireFox being the only browser experiencing the bug. I have witnessed someone running Leopard with the same versions of FireFox and Safari as myself with no problems at all. Most people who are running Snow Leopard appear to only experience the bug in FireFox with safari working fine. However, as I mentioned above,  I am having the bug appear both in Safari and FireFox. I don’t know what is so different about my set up, apart from that I have installed the latest debugger version of the Flash Player and that my system is 32-bit only.

If you do try out the test above and want to report your results, please provide as much information as you can, what versions of browser you are using, what is your flash player version, what OS version, 32 or 64-bit etc? Some people think the problem is with FireFox but I am not so sure.

Update 06/10/09

Ok, I am pretty sure now that this problem is not to do with a flash player upgrade, it is to do with Snow Leopard!

Recently my hard disk died, I reinstalled Snow Leopard and then restored my files from a time machine backup, I did not restore my applications.

Upon reinstalling Flex Builder I noticed that my flash player was now at version 9, which gave me an opportunity to test if this bug was still happening and it is, both in Safari and FireFox for Flash Player 9,0,124,0 as well. This almost definitely means the problem is down to the operating system, either Apple needs to fix it or Adobe need to come up with a fix in Flash Player. I can not run my demo test app above using flash 9 as the demo is set to require 10, but in other test apps I am getting the same broken behaviour with mouse events being lost after loading the FileReference browser. Looks like we will need to put a warning for Snow Leopard users on our flash apps.

Update 22/11/09

Adobe Labs have recently released Flash Player 10.1, which has fixed the issue detailed above. I have tried out the new player, but while the problems above have been fixed, many others new problems are present. For example, it appears that key events are duplicated, every keystroke entered appears twice and filtering by file type does not appear to work with FileReference. I realise this is a pre-release version constantly being improved, so hopefully these will be fixed soon. Unfortunately there is no debugger version of the new player, which is quite strange since the people who are going most likely to try out a pre-release are developers who would require the debugging features.

So far it appears I am the only one that has experienced these problems with the latest player, I think this is somehow related to my system being 32 bit only. It appears that most of the development efforts into Flash on the Mac are on 64 bit support, which makes sense since Apple is shifting eveything to 64 bit. If you too try out the new beta flash player and experience other bugs please report them here and on the adobe bug reporting site. This new flash player update proves that an active Flash community can get flash bugs fixed quicker and help improve the flash platform for all. Thanks to all who commented on their issues experienced with the demo.

You can try out the new 10.1 player at the Adobe Labs site.

22 comments so far

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  1. Nice demo. Firefox doesn’t work, but Safari 4.0.3 is fine for me.

  2. […] aufgerufen wurde. Bei The Open Coder habe ich dann einen sehr hilf- und aufschlussreichen Artikel entdeckt, mit dem der Fehler wunderbar anschaulich reproduziert werden kann, sofern man denn Snow […]

  3. Yes, this occurs in Safari but only if you run it in 32-bit mode. You can use the “Run in 32-bit mode” checkbox on Safari’s “Get Info” dialog to see this happen. I noticed it right away because I always run Safari in 32-bit mode… for some reason, Flash’s graphics performance is better by an order of magnitude in 32-bit mode.

    This site makes the performance difference exceedingly clear: http://www.trytostumpthemonkey.com/

  4. Ah, that explains why I always saw the bug, my mac is one of the older core duo models and is 32-bit only. Thanks for the comment and your reply on the Adobe bug reporting site. Let’s hope they fix it soon.

  5. If you click the all windows expose, go to another open application, then return to the firefox browser with the problem the mouse will begin to work. This is a good workaround that I found through presi.

  6. yup running any version of firefox on snow leopard has a problem for me. When i open a file and return to test, nothing responds for about 1 minute but then starts working again…

  7. The workaround that I’ve been using is not very elegant, but it gets the job done:

    if(Capabilities.os.indexOf(“Mac OS 10.6”) != -1){
    ExternalInterface.call(“alert”, “You’re seeing this dialog box because there is a Flash Player error in Mac OS 10.6 that can only be fixed by clicking on another window, so help me out and click OK!”);

    Clicking the Javascript alert() dialog, in my testing, fixes the issue once focus is returned to the browser viewport.

  8. “You’re seeing this dialog box because there is a Flash Player error in Mac OS 10.6 that can only be fixed by clicking on another window, so help me out and click OK!”

    Andy thats hilarious. Thats great! lol

  9. Hey Chris – thanks for posting about this. I’ve been hoping for months now that Apple (or Adobe) will fix this. It may seem like a small problem to some, but for anyone who’s creating serious software in flash, this is a horrible bug!

    So the more attention this gets, the better…

  10. Try it out in Chome: http://www.google.com/chrome

    2.8 Quad Mac Pro, SL 10.6.2, Safari 4.0.4 and FF 3.5.7 both fail miserably. Chrome works… try it out

  11. Flash Player

  12. OSX 10.6.2
    Flash player 10,0,45,2
    Firefox 3.6
    Safari 4.0.4 (6531.21.10)

    I can confirm that Firefox becomes unresponsive to the mouse events after opening the Filereference dialog box as others have reported.

    Also Safari is fine in 64bit mode but fails in 32 bit mode as others have also reported.

    Nothing fixed yet then!

    Glad I found this page as it was driving me nuts.

  13. Thanks for all the information regarding this issue. And special thanks to Andy for the workaround.

  14. Thanks for all the nice comments, good to to be of some help.
    By the way, Adobe have released an update on the new beta flash player which fixes the duplicated keys issue, so you may want to try that one out. It is the beta release of flash player 10.1 so I recommend everyone try it out and reporting any bugs in it to Adobe so there is less chance we experience issues such as this one.

  15. Adobe have release flash player 10.1 beta 3, check here for the bugs that have been fixed: http://onflash.org/ted/2010/02/bugs-fixed-in-fp101b3.php

  16. I also see this bug
    it totally kills slider component and startdrag stopdrag too
    my specs are fash player 10,0,42,3 debug version
    osx 10.6.3
    firefox 3.6.3

  17. If anyone else is still running into this, instead of calling an alert(), try to open a new window with window.open() and then change the focus to that window with .focus() and then call .close() on it. Seems to be working for me. I even added some JS to detect the browser so it only does this workaround for firefox since it seems to be the only one causing issues.

  18. All I can say is THANK YOU! After 8 hours of debugging our internal flex framework and different SDKs for flex I came across this post. Phew. Tested it on the client’s environment and it works.

  19. So I’m not crazy after all. After experiencing this odd behavior I went straight to Google.
    So glad I found this post.

  20. with firefox. The problem seems back again. 🙁

  21. That was with firefox 3.6. With firefox 7 and fp11 it’s working.

  22. That’s good to hear. I’ve been keeping up with the Firefox upgrades so luckily didn’t encounter it.