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Saturday, 21 July 2012

Google Chrome popping sound in Linux


I was forced to recently upgrade my Google Chrome from Chrome 16.x to Chrome 20.x on account of LastPast simply stopped working one-day with releases < 20.x (Chrome doesn't auto-update on Linux, unless you allow it to, but LastPass forces auto-download of the latest extension each time you launch the application against your will [aside: maybe figuring out the update URL and blocking it on the router or in the Linux routing tables on the machine would prevent this]).

Obviously, the popping sound comes about from the sound card going in and out of on mode.  I noticed it immediately after upgrading, and would be prevalent on sites such as gmail.com which has many hidden flash objects in the background.  Gmail and other sites with oodles of flash were essentially making chrome pop nonstop, as if it were cooking popcorn.

I found this thread: http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=47&t=107339

Google appeared to post a fix.  I don't know why they would post a clearly Windows fix into a clearly Linux thread -- since when do .dll files exist in Linux.  I thought at least the libraries would exist in some form (.so) and the fix may still apply.  But only 1 out of the 3 referenced libraries even exist.

I tried upgrading to the unstable Chrome 22.x version (since someone in the thread posted that the problem appeared to be fixed in 21.x which is against not exactly what Google is saying).  It is still happening for me in Chrome 22.x.

Shockwave Flash will show as the current version 11.3.x.  You need to disable it and leave only 11.0 d1 enabled.

This is what I figured out actually works:
- Type about:plugins in your address bar
- Click Details on the upper right corner
- Locate the entry for libpepflashplayer.so
-- Click Disable
- Locate the entry for libflashplayer.so
-- The entry should already, if not enable it, or you'll lose flash support.

Restart Chrome and you'll be popping-free.  But you will get the annoying "there is an flash update" dialogues.  Better than the popping.

To prevent the flash update dialogues, for your shortcut that you use to start Chrome, append the following --allow-outdated-plugins.  So your shortcut may resemble the following command:
/opt/google/chrome/google-chrome --allow-outdated-plugins

UPDATE 11/20/2012:

Chrome 23+ does not suffer this "popping" issue.  I have migrated to Chrome 23.0.1271.64 on several  32bit and 64bit systems and switched back to the original default settings (to use the more up to date  libpepflashplayer.so).

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