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My wife has a couple of flash based games that are from a disc bought at some random store almost two decades ago. The disc is long gone. The games are in a folder in /home, and are played using wine. These games have "moved" from various editions of Ubuntu, starting at 8.04 (previously on her Windows machine). She has never had an issue playing them.

My question is - with everyone dropping flash by the end of this year, can those games still be played when I upgrade her computer to 20.04? Or the next LTS 22.04? Or will these games never be playable in the future?

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One doesn't really need wine or "in browser flash" to run flash (.swf) files.

A project named FlashPlayerStandalone allows us to run flash files directly using flashplayer binary.

To run any swf file, you just have to run ./flashplayer mygame.swf in terminal.

You can download the binary from here.

Direct link: https://fpdownload.macromedia.com/pub/flashplayer/updaters/32/flash_player_sa_linux.x86_64.tar.gz

You can keep backup of binaries locally or on cloud in case they are discontinued and removed in future.

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  • But at some point the binary may stop working on future versions of Ubuntu (or any other OS) due to changes to libs it’s dependent on or other things. – Darren Jul 16 at 3:25
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    @Darren All the code and dependencies needed is contained within the package itself. That's why project is named "standalone". – kashish Jul 16 at 4:06
  • And what about using deprecated functions in whatever language it’s written in? There is no way you can guarantee a binary written now will work in the OS of the day in five, ten years or beyond. Even something like the CPU architecture could change (cf. the move from 32 to 64 bit broke old 16 bit applications in Windows). What if we are all running on Arm processors in a few years? – Darren Jul 16 at 4:11
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    The "Direct link" I have mentioned in answer has a standalone binary that does not even depend upon libraries, so no issue of "deprecated functions" :) and yes, anything can happen in future, but one can solve problems of present only. – kashish Jul 16 at 5:24
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    In the worst of case, you can go the retro route: VM. If it stop working for whatever reason, install whatever version of Ubuntu was the last one working, put the files on it, start the VM to play. – DrakaSAN Jul 16 at 8:15

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