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Screenshot of Gnash 0.8.0 GTK+ GUI with test SWF file
Developer(s) Rob Savoye, Sandro Santilli, Bastiaan Jacques, Benjamin Wolsey, Zou Lunkai, Tomas Groth, Udo Giacomozzi, Hannes Mayr, John Gilmore, Markus Gothe.
Stable release 0.8.6 [1] / September 15, 2009; 407069621 ago
Written in C++, GTK+ / Qt
Operating system Cross-platform
Type Interpreter, Media player
License GNU General Public License

Gnash is the GNU SWF movie player, which can be run standalone on a computer or an embedded device, as well as a plugin for several browsers.[2] It is a part of the GNU Project that aims to create a free software player and browser plugin for the Adobe Flash file format. It developed from the GPLFlash project.

Gnash was first announced in late 2005[3] by software developer John Gilmore. The current maintainer is Rob Savoye.



Writing a free software Flash player has been a priority of the GNU Project for some time.[4] Prior to the launch of Gnash, the GNU Project had asked for people to assist the GPLFlash project. The majority of the previous GPLFlash developers have now moved to the Gnash project and the existing GPLFlash codebase will be refocused towards supporting embedded systems.[5]

The primary distribution terms for Gnash are those of the GNU GPL. However since Gnash was started using the codebase of the GameSWF project, which is in the public domain, code developed by the Gnash project which might be useful in GameSWF is placed in the public domain.[6]

Technical details

Adobe provides an official player for GNU/Linux on x86 in a binary-only form,[7] as well as an alpha player for x86-64 in a binary-only form.[8] Gnash, however, can be compiled and executed on many architectures, including x86, AMD64, MIPS/IRIX, and PowerPC. It also supports BSD-based operating systems. An early port for RISC OS, which has never had Macromedia/Adobe Flash support beyond Flash 3,[9] does exist, as well as an early port for BeOS, where Flash support terminated at Version 4.[10] Development of a port to AmigaOS 4.1 has also recently begun.[11] A port to the Haiku Operating System also exists.[12]

Currently, Gnash can play SWF files up to version 7, as well as some features of the new version 8,9 and 10 files. Gnash supports playback of FLV videos and allows playing some FLV files from YouTube, MySpace, ShowMeDo and other similar websites (older files with sound – newer files without playing sound). FLV support requires FFmpeg or GStreamer to be installed on the system.[13]

Some other free-software programs, such as MPlayer,[14] VLC media player[15] or players for Windows based on the ffdshow DirectShow codecs can play back the FLV format if the file is specially downloaded or piped to it.

The goal of the Gnash developers is to be as compatible as possible with the proprietary player (including behavior on bad ActionScript code). However, Gnash offers some special features not available in the Adobe player, such as the possibility to extend the ActionScript classes via shared libraries: sample extensions include MySQL support, file system access and more. For security reasons the extension mechanism must be compiled-in explicitly and enabled via configuration files.

Gnash requires one of AGG, Cairo, or OpenGL for rendering. In contrast to most GNU projects, which are typically written in C, Gnash is written in the C++ programming language because of its GameSWF heritage.[16]

See also


  4. "High Priority Free Software Projects". Retrieved 2008-08-05. 
  5. "GPLFlash homepage". Retrieved 2007-04-17. 
  6. Gilmore, John (20 December 2005). "Welcome to the Gnash project!". Gnash mailing list. Retrieved 2006-12-28. 
  7. "Adobe TechNote: Flash Player support on 64-bit operating systems". Adobe. Retrieved 2007-04-22. 
  8. "Adobe Labs". Adobe. Retrieved 2009-08-05. 
  9. "RISC OS To Get Flash, Word Support". Thom Holwerda, Retrieved 2007-04-22. 
  10. "Gnash for BeOS (Take 2)". DaaT, Retrieved 2007-04-22. 
  11. "Gnash - The GNU SWF movie player". Retrieved 2009-06-15. 
  12. "Gnash 0.8.6". Retrieved 2009-11-28. 
  13. "Task #5930 on GNU Gnash Savannah Site". Gnash Developers. Retrieved 2007-04-22. 
  14. "FFmpeg Documentation - Supported Video Formats". MPlayer Developers. Retrieved 2007-04-22. 
  15. "VideoLAN Client Features List". VideoLAN Developers. Retrieved 2007-04-22. 
  16. "Why do you use C++ and not C? FAQ entry". Gnash Project. Retrieved 2008-07-14. 

External links


ca:Gnash cs:Gnash de:Gnash es:Gnash fr:Gnash it:Gnash nl:Gnash ja:Gnash pl:Gnash pt:Gnash ru:Gnash sq:Gnash sv:Gnash vi:Gnash zh:Gnash

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