The exhausting, continuous patching of software will, hopefully, some day come to an end.
I seriously doubt it will be because of flawless code, but the possibility of having this process executed promptly and automatically seems very likely, especially now that Adobe and Google announced a partnership that will see Google’s Chrome browser installing and automatically updating Adobe’s Flash Player.
Flash fixes will be dispensed through the Chrome’s auto-updater without any notification and without asking the user for consent. When the users download Chrome, with it they will also receive the latest version of the Flash Player, which will then be installed alongside the browser during the same installation process. After that, users will be able to simply forget about Flash or Chrome updates – both will be updated automatically.
Is this really the answer to the updating/patching question? When Google rolled out Chrome, the auto-updating feature was criticized by many, but it stayed and now the unfavorable mentions are few and far in between. Will the automatic updating of Flash Player get the same treatment?
On one thing we must surely all agree – this is a smart move on Adobe’s part. They have issued 10 security fixes already, and it’s barely the beginning of April. This constancy is laudable, but can be extremely annoying. And what about those users that don’t even know what patching means? This automatic update is definitely a positive development for them.
This Flash integration will initially be reserved for the development channel of Chrome, but Google plans to integrating it in the “beta” and “stable” channels as soon as possible.
Google is also planning – as additional protection – to extend the browser’s “sandbox” to cover web pages with Flash. Clearly, they are of the opinion that the chain is only as strong as its weakest link, and aim at hardening it.