Google Chrome Flash debugger not connecting to Flex/Flash Builder?

If your Flex/Flash Builder has suddenly problems connecting to your Flash debugger, you might be using Google Chrome.

It seems like Google started bundling the Flash Player together with Chrome, which has an automatic updating engine (in the background) and thus you probably didn’t notice the update. This integrated version of Flash Player is the standard version of the plug-in and not the debugger version. Hence, whenever you view Flash content through Google Chrome, the used runtime is not the one you installed on your local operating system.

Currently, there are two workarounds for this:

  1. Manually replace the Chrome Flash player with the debugger version (Thanks to Josh for the how-to).
  2. Use a different browser for testing your Flash applications in.

Workaround #1

Follow these steps:

  1. Go to chrome://plugins
  2. (For Google Chrome version 6.x and higher only: Click the “details” link in the top right corner.)
  3. Find the entries that say “Flash”.
  4. On Windows 7, deactivate the entry, which has the following path:


    On MacOS X, the path is:

    /Applications/Google Player Plugin for Chrome.plugin

    This will disable the integrated Flash Player bundled with Google Chrome. Watch out not to disable your operating system’s default Flash Player (debugger). You can see the difference in the installation path: The global Flash Player is not installed into a directory associated with Chrome.

workaround #2

In Flex/Flash Builder (or Eclipse), simply go to Preferences -> General -> Web Browser and hit “Use external Web Browser“. Then pick Safari, Firefox or whatever you prefer. This choice will then be your “development test browser”, while you can use Chrome for your daily surfing needs.

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45 thoughts on “Google Chrome Flash debugger not connecting to Flex/Flash Builder?

  1. Just having the same problems and couldn’t figure out what was wrong. Thanks for your post! I’ve found a third option which should be maintained across updates…

    If you go to chrome://plugins/ and disable the C:\Users\[Your Name]\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\Application\5.0.375.3\gcswf32.dll version of the Shockwave Flash it then seems to use the debug version of the plugin if you have it installed.

    Hope that helps someone!

  2. Thank you! I was frustrated after re-installing debug version and this still not working

  3. No prob, you guys are welcome ;-)
    Chrome’s updating engine really can be a bit nasty sometimes.

  4. Bless you! I had just upgraded my OS and installed everything again and couldn’t figure out what was wrong. Thanks so much!

  5. same problem with flashbuilder but no google chrome installed :((((
    Windows 7 with CS5 (Flashbuilder 4)and FlashPlayer 10. Always breaks up at 57% when starting debugging….nothing helps (everthing completly new installed)….flash player cant connect to debugger….using firefox :(

  6. Thanks for the help.
    I disbled the ‘gcswf32.dll’ line and debugger option is working :-)

  7. Grazie! Grazie! Grazie!
    Il tuo post mi ha ripagato delle ore di frustrazine spese per trovare una soluzione! :)

  8. Oh dear lord, thank you so much. I was having one of those domino-effect problems and the fact that the debugger wasn’t working was just the top problem on my stack of issues.



    I was searching for solutions in other webpages and some said to change the compiler comand, others said to change some config files…I mean come on! Is there anything easier than this.

    Thank YOU VERY MUCH :)

  10. Hi Timo,

    Thanks alot. I can now run my flex code in Chrome after diabling chrome’s flash player.

    But when i distribute this flex code to my client i can not ask them to do the same.
    How will this work correctly for release versions..
    Thanks alot

  11. Hi Timo, Thanks alot for replying.
    I deployed my application on the server, then i didnt face any issue in chrome.
    I didnt know that if you run flex code locally it runs in debug version on flash.

    Thanks for the information.

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