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Palomar Streaming Video and Chrome

Users of Google’s Chrome browser who are trying to play back videos from Palomar’s streaming video system are in for a treat… and by treat I mean an error message indicating that Silverlight is not installed. Diligent users go load up the newest version of Silverlight, only to be told that Silverlight is not installed.

Starting with version 42 of Chrome, older plugins (those using NPAPI architecture, should that mean something to you) default to being disabled. So what should be done to get those videos playing in Silverlight? Use another web browser; my recommendation would be Firefox, on either Windows or OS X computers.

It is true that Google has left an option in Chrome to re-enable NPAPI plugins, but that loophole will be closed with the release of Chrome version 45. (And if Chrome versions continue to drop at the rate I’ve become accustomed to, version 45 may be out very soon.) Those that wish to make that configuration change may point their Chrome browser to “chrome://flags/#enable-npapi” (without the quotes, obviously). Bear in mind that Google does NOT recommend doing this.

And for those wondering “why has Google suddenly done this?” Google announced to developers this change was coming back in 2013, so “sudden” this change is not. And, just to put the age of this plugin architecture in perspective, bear in mind that the “N” in “NPAPI” stands for Netscape, so “old” is a good description. Google is apparently just plugging up some security vulnerabilities, and Palomar’s streaming video system is one of many no longer supported in Chrome.