Microsoft Is Cutting the Adobe Flash Cord in July

Illustration for article titled Microsoft Is Cutting the Adobe Flash Cord in July

Image: Sam Rutherford

Adobe Flash officially reached end of life at the end of 2020, and now Microsoft is removing Flash from Windows 10 this summer.

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While Microsoft had already started to remove support for Flash from a number of its apps, including its Edge browser, there is still some native support for Adobe’s Flash Player built into Windows 10 itself, which Microsoft is now planning to remove via Windows Update KB4577586: “Update for Removal of Adobe Flash Player.”

In a recent update to a previous blog post on the matter, Microsoft said it will begin sending out the patch to remove Adobe Flash from Windows 10 starting in June, first to users who are part of Microsoft’s Preview program before the patch becomes a mandatory update in July. Microsoft says that going forward, all systems running Windows 10 version 21H1 or later will have Flash removed by default.

In addition to removing native Flash support from Windows 10, Microsoft is also planning on removing Flash from older versions of Windows as well, including Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012, and Windows Embedded 8 Standard. And in case you don’t want to wait for June, you can also remove Flash from Windows 10 manually by downloading and installing the KB4577586 update from the Microsoft Update Catalog here.

Adobe Flash has been on its way out for the past several years, so it makes sense for Microsoft to do a final pass and remove native support for Flash from Windows 10, thereby eliminating all the security issues often associated with Adobe’s outdated multimedia format.

However, for those feeling nostalgic about Flash games from days gone by, you can still play a number of titles using the Internet Archive. And if you don’t find the specific game you’re looking for, you can also try apps like BlueMaxima’s Flashpoint, which is essentially a multi-platform Flash emulator for Windows, macOS, and Linux PCs.

Depending on which install you choose and what OS you’re on, Flashpoint even comes with a library of more than 38,000 old Flash games (the total file size for Flashpoint Ultimate 9.0 is a whopping 532GB), providing you with a wealth of content from a previous generation of the internet.

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Flash is dead; long live Flash.

Latest Windows 10 Update Is Causing Some Printers to Crash PCs

Illustration for article titled Latest Windows 10 Update Is Causing Some Printers to Crash PCs

Screenshot: MitrandirLK /Wikipedia (Other)

The latest Windows 10 update isn’t playing nice with some printers.

According to Digital Trends, the issue is affecting printers from Kyocera, Ricoh, and Zebra. When a user sends a file to print, instead of actually printing, the entire PC will crash, showing the dreaded Blue Screen of Death along with the error code “APC_INDEX_MISMATCH for win32kfull.sys.”

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This type of message usually appears when there’s incompatible hardware or drivers, and in this case it’s the latter. The KB5000802 update is causing Windows 10 to think those printer drivers aren’t installed or linked to the actual devices. So if someone tries to print from Word, Notepad, or another program, the PC immediately crashes to a BSOD.

The issue has been affecting multiple versions of Windows 10, both on the client side and server side, including: Windows 10 version 20H2, 2004, 1909, 1809, 1803, and Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC 2019 and Windows Server 2019.

Microsoft is aware of the problem, but has not provided a permanent fix at this time, as the company only recently became aware of the issue.

“We are presently investigating and will provide an update when more information is available,” the company said on its support page.

A Microsoft employee has posted a temporary fix on the sysadmin subreddit, which involves enabling direct printing and applying a fix with the Application Compatibility Toolkit.

Another option is to completely roll back the Windows 10 March 2021 update, but doing so could also put your PC’s security at risk, because the KB5000802 cumulative update came with some security fixes. However, one Reddit user pointed out that KB5000802 seems to have been removed. I checked this on my own PC and that seems to be the case, but cumulative update KB5000808 is still available for Windows 10 version 1909, which can also cause similar issues with the same brands of printers.

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If you do want to uninstall any of these updates, type Windows Update into the search bar, click on View Update History, and then Uninstall Updates at the top. A new window will pop up, and you should see the update listed as Security Update for Microsoft Windows KB5000802 or KB5000808.