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Old 09-30-2011, 03:46 PM   #1
Registered: Dec 2010
Posts: 277

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Flash Video :: FlashXX And Streaming

A few things. First I have a question...
The majority of Flash videos that I watch, YouTube and the like, save a file to my computer FlashXX* which I can save to my hard drive, or load into the video player I wish. This feature is fantastic due the times when the streaming player plays back the video poorly, I can just open up in my video player and everything is perfect. My question is this:

Why is it that some streaming players do not save a FlashXX, or other noticeable file to my computer?
For instance:,,
The playback in these players is horrible for my little machine and wireless 3G, and I would like to play them in VLC instead.

Do these video players save the file to some other file name? Through some other process than firefox's plugin container
They definitely use Flash... the only difference I see is these players only buffer to one minute's worth... is this the issue? Is it a client`side versus server`side issue? Is there a way to watch these videos streaming through my VLC?

I've tried the documentation...

Now, as for sites that do save their Flash video to /tmp/ I have written a script to find and use these files.

If you want to know which video files are being currently saved to your computer, type `ffxx`.
Want to watch one in VLC? Type `ffxx -vlc FILE_NAME(ish)`.
Want to copy it to your computer so you can watch it offline? `ffxx -cp FILE_NAME(ish) YOUR_COPY_NAME`.
...(ish) meaning you can really just type whatever makes that filename unique disregarding caps.
...if you want to use a different media player, just change the necessary code.

ffxx () {
file /proc/*/fd/* 2>/dev/null | grep FlashXX | cut -f1 -d:
file /tmp/* 2>/dev/null | grep FlashXX | cut -f1 -d:
helper () { echo -e "usage: `basename $0` finds and manipulates Flash files on your computer\nusage: running `basename $0` without any options will display all available Flash video\nusage: `basename $0` [options] FILE\n -cp : copies the file specified by the second parameter to current directory\n -vlc : plays the file specified by the second parameter in VLC\n -h : displays this help dialogue\n    EXAMPLE:  ./ffxx -cp 17 FILE_NAME.flv"
if [ $# -eq 0 ]; then
	if [ $# -eq 2 ]; then
		case "$1" in
			"-vlc") vlc `ffxx | grep -i $2`;;
			"-h") heler;;
			*) helper;;
	elif [ $# -eq 3 ]; then
		case "$1" in
			"-cp") cp `ffxx | grep -i $2` $3;;
			*) helper;;

# ls

# ffxx
# ffxx -cp 17
# ls
...if you have an older Flash plug-in it will save in /tmp/. As of version, September 30 2011, you will find your file as a symbolic link to the (deleted) file because Flash deletes the original file utilising the fact that while the plugin process is using the stream's file the system does not delete the inode storing its information. can rename the file as you so please, or add an extra parameter to do it for you. These files load into VLC without extensions, but to see them in the Open prompt you will have to click All Files(*), or give them the proper extension .flv, or be a bit tricky and give them a false extension of a known video type, like .avi. All works fine.

Last edited by cin_; 10-15-2011 at 09:17 AM. Reason: gramm`err
Old 09-30-2011, 05:14 PM   #2
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Video DownloadHelper :: Add-ons for Firefox -

FlashVideoReplacer :: Add-ons for Firefox -
Old 09-30-2011, 05:58 PM   #3
Registered: Dec 2010
Posts: 277

Original Poster
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Thanks craigevil for the reply, but these add-ons also do not seem to work for the sites I mentioned. Have any suggestions on use? I managed to get it to download a video from the site, and it turned out to be the commercial break between segments...

Last edited by cin_; 09-30-2011 at 06:07 PM. Reason: gramm`err
Old 09-30-2011, 08:06 PM   #4
Registered: Dec 2010
Posts: 277

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 24

Still having lingering questions as to where the video file I am watching en stream is. I ran a test using lsof().

I sanitised my system of any unnecessary processes and then running as root logged the lsof() to a file. Then I opened Firefox. Went to and the most recent episode. I ran the episode and while watching I again piped the lsof() to a different file. Next I waited for the minute buffer to fill and then ran lsof() once again and saved it to file. Finally, I went to YouTube, a service where I can track the stream on my computer, ran a video and did one last lsof().

I ran diff() on all of the files in pairs.
Here is the YouTube and diff()`ed... piped through grep() to only show things pertaining to the running process...

# diff OFInitial.DS.PLAY OFInitial.DS.28553.28 | grep 28553
> plugin-co 28553       root  DEL       REG        0,4             7274501 /SYSV00000000
> plugin-co 28553       root  mem       REG        8,2   133088     755416 /usr/share/fonts/TTF/LiberationSans-Regular.ttf
< plugin-co 28553       root  mem       REG        8,2   133088     755416 /usr/share/fonts/TTF/LiberationSans-Regular.ttf
< plugin-co 28553       root   18u     IPv4     137403      0t0        TCP [IPHidden]->[IPHidden]:https (ESTABLISHED)
< plugin-co 28553       root   19u     IPv4     137396      0t0        TCP [IPHidden]->[IPHidden]:https (ESTABLISHED)
< plugin-co 28553       root   20u     IPv4     137387      0t0        TCP [IPHidden]->[IPHidden] (ESTABLISHED)
> plugin-co 28553       root   18u     sock        0,6      0t0     137403 can't identify protocol
> plugin-co 28553       root   19u     sock        0,6      0t0     137396 can't identify protocol
> plugin-co 28553       root   20u     sock        0,6      0t0     137387 can't identify protocol
< plugin-co 28553       root   22u     IPv4     137399      0t0        TCP [IPHidden]->[IPHidden] (ESTABLISHED)
> plugin-co 28553       root   22u     sock        0,6      0t0     137399 can't identify protocol
> plugin-co 28553       root   28u      REG        8,2  7257143    1087484 /tmp/FlashXXQwSdtY (deleted)
> lsof      29380       root    1w      REG        8,2        0     286434 /root/OFInitial.DS.28553.28
...the second to last one is the YouTube video... FlashXXQwSdtY, but still the video is nowhere to be found. Anyone see anything I can't?

Last edited by cin_; 10-15-2011 at 09:21 AM. Reason: gramm`err


firefox, flash, stream

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