Mozilla's Plugin Check Now Available for Other Browsers
Article by George Norman
On 13 May 2010
To ensure Firefox users are not running outdated or potentially dangerous plugins, the Mozilla foundation rolled out the Plugin Check website. At first the site only checked to see if the Adobe Flash Player plugin is up-to-date. Then, in the autumn of 2009, Mozilla announced that the functionality of Plugin Check has been extended to cover a big bunch of other plugins as well.

The reasoning behind the decision was quite simple: old plugins can cause the browser to crash, can make the browser become unstable, and pose a security risk as they can be exploited by people with malicious intent. If the user knows which plugins are outdated, he can update them.

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This was great functionality for the Firefox user as he could easily visit the site and see if the plugins are up-to-date. It wasn’t that great for users running other browsers. So Mozilla decided to address this situation and extend the functionality provided by Plugin Check to cover additional browsers. To be more precise, Plugin Check now covers Opera, Safari, Chrome, and Internet Explorer.

“We believe that plugin safety is an issue for the web as a whole, so while our initial efforts focused on building a page that would work for Firefox users, the team has since expanded plugin check coverage to work with Safari 4, Chrome 4, and Opera 10.5. We have added support for Internet Explorer 7 and 8 for the most popular plugins, as well, but since IE requires specific code to be written for each plugin it will take us a little longer to get to full coverage,” explained Director of Firefox Development, Johnathan Nightingale.

If you’re using Firefox, Safari 4, Chrome 4, Opera 10.5, IE7 or IE8 and would like to check if your plugins are up-to-date, you can visit Mozilla’s Plugin Check webpage here.



Tags: Mozilla, Plugin Check, Security
About the author: George Norman
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