Odd WMP plug-in behaviour in Firefox

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by Daveski17, Sep 11, 2011.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Posts:
    8,030
    Location:
    Lloegyr
    Recently I re-installed Firefox & today I tried to open a video link with WMP on this (sadly topical) BBC page for the first time since the new install.

    Instead of opening in WMP on default (as usual) I kept getting a pop-up informing me to install a RealPlayer plug-in. At one stage I even got a firewall prompt. I have never seen this RealPlayer plug-in prompt before, even when I actually used RealPlayer nearly three years ago. I checked the extensions folder to see if the np-mswmp.dll file was installed (it was). I discovered that I could run the link normally in SeaMonkey & the Portable Apps Firefox (or any other browser).

    I even tried re-installing Firefox 6.0.1 (I still had the installer) but the problem persisted. Eventually I cured the problem with a completely fresh install & everything seems to be working fine now.

    I have no explanation for this. Has anyone had anything similar happen? o_O
     
  2. ABee

    ABee Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    Posts:
    330
    The explanation appears to be a simple one.
    When I went to your link and clicked to play the video on the page, this was the next page I was directed to:

    bbc-1.png

    So I'm assuming Real Player was the default for you, and you simply failed to switch to the WMP option.

    As far as a firewall prompt-- was that from 'plugin-container.exe'? If so, nothing unusual about that either, when accessing media.

    Also, why don't you install Firefox 6.0.2? 6.0.1 has the 'bad' Google certificates.
     
  3. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Posts:
    8,030
    Location:
    Lloegyr
    Thanks for the reply, but that's the strange thing. WMP is my default & I don't have RealPlayer installed, there is a BBC version of RealPlayer specifically for the UK/EU but I don't have that installed either. That WMP/RealPlayer plug-in choice comes up after a clean/new install on that page usually anyway. What I thought was odd was that I was just being given this RealPlayer plug-in prompt. The screen shot you have provided above is the usual choice. This prompt was something different.

    It didn't even give me that RealPlayer/WMP choice until I made the most recent clean install today. I have done this before several times & even when I have to paste the np-mswmp.dll into the Portable Apps Firefox extension files to run WMP (a trick I learned from SeaMonkey installs) that choice is still given. Also, I've never managed to get these BBC links to open in VLC either.

    The mystery is why it wasn't offered on the previous clean install a few days ago. This clean install today was just as you experienced.

    I've never seen it before when setting up this page for WMP.

    Sorry, I probably wasn't clear about this, I had 6.0.2 installed (originally a clean install from a few days ago) when I noticed the problem today & as an experiment, as I still had the 6.0.1 installer, I thought I would reinstall 6.0.1 just to see how the link would run; it didn't. The present clean install (today) is 6.0.2.

    Maybe the original (previous to today) clean install download was corrupted in some way?
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2011
  4. CloneRanger

    CloneRanger Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2006
    Posts:
    4,833
    Re - VLC & the stupid BBC

    Even with Scripts/Cookis etc & my ff options set like this

    ff.gif

    The stupid BBC www's will NOT play videos, unless you Actually have WMP or RM installed, in my experiences. Don't know if Any alternative RM media players work, as i havn't tried them !

    help.gif

    bbc1.gif

    See the above so called "Help" for more info

    I emailed them a while back asking why they only support those 2 formats, & it's about time they should make their www's more accessable to more people with other preferences, such as the Widely used VLC. I never recieved a reply :thumbd:
     
  5. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2007
    Posts:
    5,543
    You sure it's not just the player? What about proprietary codec issues?
     
  6. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Posts:
    8,030
    Location:
    Lloegyr
    You may not be surprised to know that it isn't just the stupidity of Auntie Beeb, but others such as RTÉ (Raidió Teilifís Éireann) who also only seem to have WMP or RealPlayer as an option. I don't mind WMP, it works fairly well (although it won't run 3gp files like VLC & QuickTime can) but RealPlayer shouldn't be used by anyone ... ever!
     
  7. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Posts:
    8,030
    Location:
    Lloegyr
    Yeah, proprietary codec issues are a good bet. As I said earlier, VLC (& even QuickTime) can play 3gp files (often used as the video files on mobile/cellular phones) yet WMP won't. This has to be some sort of proprietary codec issue IMHO.
     
  8. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2007
    Posts:
    5,543
    The way I have it figured, is if a website only wants to code for a certain browser or requires a certain player, they don't need my business. The VLC plugin works damn near everywhere, and where it doesn't, Flash is usually involved. The "codec fight" of the 90s/early 2000s' is over..someone forgot to tell the BBC.
     
  9. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Posts:
    8,030
    Location:
    Lloegyr
    I have no choice but to fund the Beeb though, if I refuse I will end up having my collar felt by the Old Bill & may be detained in one of Her Majesty's Prisons. :eek:

    The BBC is worth the money though, I think.

    Hmmm ... maybe it is part of the RealPlayer contract.
     
  10. dw426

    dw426 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2007
    Posts:
    5,543
    231 dollars per year, right? Just to watch broadcast TV, I feel for you. I also feel for you that even the U.K has fallen victim to the "reality tv" disease. Anyway, veering back onto the topic, it might be the contract. It's a shame, out of all media choices, RealPlayer would be my very last, desperate pick.
     
  11. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Posts:
    8,030
    Location:
    Lloegyr
    Well, it's worth it just for the radio (plus no commercial breaks). ;)

    We probably invented it. If we did, it's not one of our better exports. I can't believe they have resurrected 'Big Brother', thank god for Freeview & endless re-runs of 'The Sweeney' I say. For god's sake, whatever you do, don't watch the Jeremy Kyle show! :eek:

    Auntie Beeb should have read the small print. As for RealPlayer; if it wasn't for the fact that it is unreliable, crash-happy, insecure & a bit crap, it would probably be OK. LOL

    I've actually tried the BBC version of RealPlayer, it is lighter & probably better than the standard (freeware) version. It has a white interface as opposed to black, but apart from that I am not totally sure what the differences are. I don't know whether it available outside of the UK or EU.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2011
  12. ABee

    ABee Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    Posts:
    330
    You can use the 'Real Alternative' codecs. That gives you the browser plugin, and there are several players that will then use those codecs to render Real media files. KMPlayer and MPC are two of them. I don't know about VLC, offhand.
     
  13. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Posts:
    8,030
    Location:
    Lloegyr
    OK, I assume you mean here.

    Yes, it was unfortunate that Real Alternative was discontinued.

    "Real Alternative is a discontinued software bundle that allows users to play RealMedia files without installing RealPlayer.[63][64] The last version, 2.02, was released on February 19, 2010. It included Media Player Classic.[65][66]

    Beginning in 2010, RealNetworks sued Hilbrand Edskes, a 26-year old Dutch webmaster for having inserted hyperlinks to Real Alternative on his website www.codecpack.nl. RealNetworks alleges that Real Alternative is a reverse engineered package.[67] Meanwhile, Download.com[64] and FileHippo[63] continue to host the software product, unchallenged." ~ Wikipedia
     
  14. ABee

    ABee Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    Posts:
    330
    Being 'discontinued' doesn't mean it can't be had (as you pointed out) or that it doesn't work.
     
  15. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Posts:
    8,030
    Location:
    Lloegyr
    Maybe, but I would worry about the security implications for old software. I believe that you can still download the Mosaic browser, but I would not think that it was particularly secure.

    Of course, you could just download the Mosaic theme if you wanted to do some 'retro' surfing. ;)
     
  16. ABee

    ABee Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    Posts:
    330
    You can downoad the Miss America browser, too: http://missamericakids.com/
    So what?

    I use Real Alternative-- that is, if "use" could truly be applied to the situation.
    I can't even remember the last time I needed the plugin to watch something online, and those times when I download something 'Real' to watch on my computer are so few and far-between that they're barely worth mentioning.

    As far as any security concerns due to the codecs being from a year and a half ago-- none here.
    If my current security setup and measures are such that using a Real codec or viewing a Real media file in the browser are going to cause my system to become rife with malware, then the setup and measures I'm currently using will have been proven worthless to me.

    You may have a different opinion or concerns regarding your own security setup and measures.
    Or, you may just mistrust anything 'Real', or simply look askance at any software that's beyond a certain period of 'updatedness'.
    To each their own.
     
  17. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Posts:
    8,030
    Location:
    Lloegyr
    What, no Miss Bridgend? ;)

    Which does kind of beg the question of why you keep an outdated media player. Between VLC & WMP I can watch anything I need or want to (I think). Both are up to date.

    It's difficult to say, as I don't know exactly what security measures you are utilising. If it's all working well you should be OK. I doubt that Real Alternative is that much of a security risk. There again, I thought surfing a Russian newspaper online would be relatively safe; it wasn't & I contracted a trojan. Thanks for SUPERAntiSpyware I say!

    Well, I'm no security expert, but I would be reluctant to run out of date software. From what I can recall RealPlayer itself had security issues even when it was up to date.
     
  18. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2006
    Posts:
    2,677
    Location:
    George, S.Africa
    Works fine in Linux, Firefox 3.6.22 currently running on Scientific Linux 6.1 - but the quality is poor. Also no problems launching seperately i.e. 'Open with VLC' or in standalone player.

    Not working in Opera 11.51 - would need to check.

    BBC.jpg
     
  19. vasa1

    vasa1 Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2010
    Posts:
    4,152
    It worked for me with Fx 6.02 in Ubuntu as well but as Ocky noted, the quality was poor. In my case, the player was Totem when I chose to launch separately.
     
  20. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Posts:
    8,030
    Location:
    Lloegyr
    It looks pretty good though, quality withstanding. I'm impressed.
     
  21. Daveski17

    Daveski17 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2008
    Posts:
    8,030
    Location:
    Lloegyr
    There's hope for Ubuntu yet then! :thumb:
     
  22. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2006
    Posts:
    2,677
    Location:
    George, S.Africa
    You should really switch to Linux - it's so much better (and easier) .. :p :D

    Here it is playing in VLC..

    British Broadcasting Corporation - VLC media player.png

    PS. Checked - does work in Opera as well.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2011
  23. vasa1

    vasa1 Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2010
    Posts:
    4,152
  24. Ocky

    Ocky Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2006
    Posts:
    2,677
    Location:
    George, S.Africa
    Yes, vasa1 !

    It will. I am sure Daveski 17 is now itching to try one of the mainstream distros.
    Have sent your link to sister-in-law who has promised to try Linux for 3 years now - this may
    get her in gear so to speak. :argh:
     
  25. ABee

    ABee Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    Posts:
    330
    'Real Alternative' is not a media player. It's a set of codecs.
    The installer includes MPC as a player for optional install-- MPC being one of those players that will render Real media files if Real codecs are installed on the machine.

    I use build 23 of the SUPER media encoder. It's from 2007. Works great, and updating SUPER can be such a chore (and for other reasons) I decided I was better off just keeping that version installed and using it. I have no complaints, and I long ago dealt with the security issues that any installation of SUPER tends to bring along with it.

    I use version 2.9.3.1428 of the KMPlayer. That one is also quite old, yet I like it fine. It plays anything I ask it to, which includes Real media files, since I have Real Alternative installed.
    2.9.3.1428 was the final version of that player prior to it being bought out by a company with somewhat of a history of doing things like adding adware to their software-- though to my knowledge the releases of KMPlayer continue to be straightforward and without any such issue.

    Point being: I'm from the 'if it ain't broke, maybe it doesn't need fixing' (or updating) school of thought, and I find KMPlayer build 2.9.3.1428, SUPER build 23, and the Real Alternative codecs to be 'not broke'.

    Plenty of other softwares do get broke, updated due to security flaws, overall efficiency improvements, and things of that nature, and those softwares I update as I see fit.

    Were a newer version of Real Alternative to be released, I'd most likely update to that version. But it hasn't, and I have no qualms in using the version that's currently the most recent.
     
Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.