A bit off-topic here, but I recently got a shiny new 15″ MacBook Pro and my Firefox plugins have been driving me nuts… My workflow relies on the Shubert IT PDF Browser Plugin, and plain old browsing requires things like the Flash plugin. But following the migration from my old PowerBook G4 to my new MacBook Pro (using the Setup Assistant, which is very slick, I might add) these things stopped working.
Clicking on a pdf link spawned the annoying dialog box that asked if/how I wanted to open it, and sites with Flash movies just displayed a blank box instead of the video. While this didn’t affect every FireFox plugin (the Performancing Firefox Plugin, for example, kept humming along). Needless to say, this was driving me nuts. I double-checked that the plugins found their way from my old computer to the new one (they did). I double-checked that they were the newest versions (they were). I deleted and re-installed them just to be sure. Still no joy.
I read far and wide about plugin conflicts, made sure Firefox wasn’t set to use QuickTime for pdfs, etc., etc., etc. Needless to say, this was all very, very frustrating. In the back of my mind I had the feeling that this had something to do with the transition to the Intel architecture. Well, as of about ten minutes ago, I solved my problems with the Schubert IT PDF Browser Plugin. The trick was that Firefox automatically launches in the native Intel environment, whereas the PDF Browser doesn’t work under those circumstances. The solution, then, was to ‘Get Info’ on Firefox and check the box forcing it to open in the Rosetta emulation environment. And just like that, it worked!
Sadly, Flash was still down for the count. However, upon further investigation I found that Adobe has released a Universal Binary of Flash Player 9. While running in Rosetta should have solved the problem, installing the Universal Binary did fix it.
So if you’re having any Firefox weirdness on an Intel-powered Mac, check for a Universal Binary version of any troublesome plugins, or try running Firefox itself in Rosetta.