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Cloud Media Ubuntu Linux

Native Netflix Support Is Coming To Linux 178

sfcrazy writes: Native support for Netflix is coming to Linux, thanks to their move from Silverlight to HTML5, Mozilla and Google Chrome. Paul Adolph from Netflix proposed a solution to Ubuntu developers: "Netflix will play with Chrome stable in 14.02 if NSS version 3.16.2 or greater is installed. If this version is generally installed across 14.02, Netflix would be able to make a change so users would no longer have to hack their User-Agent to play." The newer version of NSS is set to go out with the next security update.
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Native Netflix Support Is Coming To Linux

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  • Finally! (Score:2, Insightful)

    Netflix is slowly gaining trust again.
    • Re:Finally! (Score:5, Interesting)

      by i kan reed ( 749298 ) on Friday September 19, 2014 @10:30AM (#47945263) Homepage Journal

      It almost seems like an accident, though. They need to move to HTML5 because Microsoft supports its technologies like high school students support their relationships.

      It's just a coincidence that HTML5 also broadens deployment targets a little.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        It still feels weird to call it "HTML5", when the thing it really needs is a proprietary DRM module that isn't part of the HTML5 specs (nope, EME does not specific that part).

        This is also why it doesn't actually work in Firefox. Adobe was developing a DRM module for it, but they're not done yet. The actual HTML5 video stuff (MSE) that is required got added a while ago.

      • Re: (Score:2, Flamebait)

        by westlake ( 615356 )

        It almost seems like an accident, though. They need to move to HTML5 because Microsoft supports its technologies like high school students support their relationships.

        12 years for Win XP.

        What is the difference between mainstream support and extended support?

        Mainstream support --- Microsoft will offer mainstream support for a minimum of 5 years from the date of a product's general availability, or for 2 years after the successor product is released, whichever is longer. For example, if you buy a new version of Windows and five years later another version is released, you will still have two years of support left for the previous version.

        Extended support --- Microsoft will offer extended support for either a minimum of 5 years from the date of a product's general availability, or for 2 years after the second successor product (two versions later) is released, whichever is longer.

        Windows lifecycle fact sheet []

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          It almost seems like an accident, though. They need to move to HTML5 because Microsoft supports its technologies like high school students support their relationships.

          12 years for Win XP.

          However, Silverlight is already out of support. It didn't even make 3 years of support. I think the big thing that did it in was also the same thing that MS tried to show it off with - the Olympics on-line broadcasting in the US. Too many restrictions and it didn't go anywhere. NBC left it behind shortly after; an there has been zero large deployments of it since (at least any where near that scale).

      • Re:Finally! (Score:5, Interesting)

        by NotInHere ( 3654617 ) on Friday September 19, 2014 @02:02PM (#47947817)

        Its also a general issue of browser plugins dying out. Silverlight and Flash had a reason when they were created. The web didn't support the things people wanted to use it for. Browsers were immature, and every browser and every version of a browser rendered different results. In the past decade, the browser vendors and w3c have worked hard to create an unified standardized platform to work on. With this platform, plugins are just obsolete. Even today they are a major cause for browser crashes. With IE11, even microsoft has added a serious contribution.

        • by Art3x ( 973401 )

          Silverlight and Flash had a reason when they were created.

          Flash had a reason when it was created. Silverlight did not.

      • by Alarash ( 746254 )

        Microsoft video streaming technology over HTTP works just fine and is still fully supported and improved upon, last I checked. It's one of the 4 major implementation of Adaptive Bitrate Streaming [] (Apple HLS, MPEG DASH, Adobe Zeri and Microsoft Smooth/HDS). The Silverlight requirement was there because the client needs logic to switch up (or down) in bitrate depending on network conditions - instead of buffering, hence the "adaptive" part. The specification is open and anybody can implement it. The DRM part

    • Netflix is slowly gaining trust again.

      Yes. Unfortunately, as my trust in them goes up, their useful library continues to shrink.

  • by DarkOx ( 621550 ) on Friday September 19, 2014 @10:27AM (#47945229) Journal

    When will it work in Seamonkey and Firefox; that is what I care about, Chrome's interface sucks! and I don't want to run two browsers.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Amusingly, they're relying on NSS, a Mozilla library, to get it working with Chrome. But to answer your question, Firefox support is being actively developed, now that Google have mostly ceased screwing around with the specs for MSE and EME and HTML5 video in general. It's still a few versions away at least, since it's a lot of work, and that's assuming that Netflix supports them. Last I checked the only people willing to write an EME module for Firefox were Adobe, and it's not ready yet either.

    • by rikkards ( 98006 ) on Friday September 19, 2014 @10:42AM (#47945395) Journal

      Screw that when will XBMC have support for it.

      • by Ost99 ( 101831 )

        It already works with XBMC on Linux with pipelight and full screen browser to show he video.

        • by rikkards ( 98006 )

          Sorry let me rephrase that (while I move the goalposts), when will it work on my Pi with Xbian?

          • by Ost99 ( 101831 )

            I don't know of any way to get it to work on a Rpi at the moment.

            If you have a x86/x64 server somewhere in the house you could try to stream the output from the browser running on the server - or something like that. But I'm guessing the DRM will get in your way.

   [] does something like this from a Windows PC to XBMC - but at $70 I would look elsewhere.

      • by SpzToid ( 869795 )

        XBMC supports UPnP just fine, and if you can manage to run a headless Windows server and, then you're golden. UPnP folks. UPnP.

        • Requiring a running server is IMHO against the idea of having a HTPC.

          Does support HD content from Netflix?

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Cajun Hell ( 725246 )

      (I'm not even sure why you'd want to use any web browser at all for this kind of thing. They should just make XBMC, MythTV, etc plugins. No, scratch that: they should publish APIs, and then let those teams write the plugins themselves. But anyway...)

      If a vendor can't use standards well enough to be compatible with what you use, then just pirate. They'll either supply the files that you can use, or someone else will.

      I don't see the problem, unless it's that you feel compelled to fight someone who tells you

      • Really this is the answer. To use Netflix, you need to pay for an account. And it has TV shows and movies. It's not like Youtube where somebody links you it and you just go watch a short clip and go back to your browsing. Things like Netflix don't need to run in a web browser at all. They just need to make full applications (or plugins in the case of XBMC and others) for all the platforms worth supporting.
    • by flu1d ( 664635 ) on Friday September 19, 2014 @10:59AM (#47945583) Homepage
      I'm outraged I can't watch Netflix on my Lynx browser!
    • Mozilla hasn't made any notable public comments I can find since acknowledging that they would support EME (Encrypted Media Extensions) back in May. I do not see anything about the feature having made it to even the trunk yet, so it'll probably be a while.

      Also curious, what difference do you see between Firefox and Chrome as far as UI? I'm on a Windows machine right now so I can't verify if it's the same on Linux but aside from slightly rounder tabs and more blue Firefox 32 looks pretty much the same as C

      • by DarkOx ( 621550 )

        I listed SeaMonkey first for a reason that is the browser I use. First because it comes with a mail client that runs in process, and I need a mail client running most of the time anyway. The IRC client is not great but its useable. Finally the browser UI itself is sane, If you get rid the "home" bar which you can the interface is not cluttered but does put the tools you need for the web at your finger tips; rather than hiding them.

        I don't get the minimalist interface crap, no I don't need fifty bars and

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Except... I just took a look at yesterday to see what was trending, and their movie selection is still shit. There was a time years ago when that list would be full of recognizeable indy and blockbuster movies, at least ones that I recognized and would like to watch. Now I see a few but I have zero desire to reactivate that account. I would have been all over this a couple years ago. I'm writing this while running the latest Linux Mint btw.

    • For $8 a month they offer a pretty good selection. I remember when blockbuster was still around, and they were charging almost as much for a single rental. Renting a single movie on iTunes will set you back around $5. Premiums channels like HBO cost $15+ a month, and you have to already have a cable subscription. Sure Netflix may not have everything, but they have a pretty good selection given the price they are asking. I definitely get my $8 worth every month. I guess it would be nice if their selectio
      • For $8 a month they offer a pretty good selection.

        I agree, assuming that selection includes movies I actually want to see. Now it mostly doesn't, so its value to me is approaching $0, sadly.

      • by DarkOx ( 621550 ) on Friday September 19, 2014 @11:41AM (#47946139) Journal

        I agree I like Netflix a lot. $8 a month is a bargain compared to pretty much every other option.

        I am going to go see the major "Block Buster" titles I am actually interested ( maybe three of four a year ) at the cinema with buddies; those are social events and quite honestly, (/me ducks the incomming flames) movies like Avengers while good are only great out with pals. Take the social component away and try watching the film alone in your living room and its far less compelling.

        Maybe its because I don't generally watch movies for the sake who can show me the most photo real destruction of NYC and the occasional boom mike or obvious cardboard cutout in the shot does not ruin the suspension of disbelief for me; but I find that many of the Indie stuff Netflix offers me is just as entertaining as the AAA stuff Hollywood churns out. In the end that is what I want out of it to relax and be entertained.

        Rating everything definitely helps you get good suggestions and the flat rate all you can eat model makes it safe to take a chance on something. If after 30min you find you are not enjoying a flick switch to something else and you are not out anything more than a little time. Even placing $2 bets on iTunes or something you could easily exceed the cost of Netflix without having had much fun to show for it.

      • I guess it would be nice if their selection were better, or if they had an option for $25 for every movie and every TV show in existence, but that option doesn't exist anywhere.

        Yes it does. It ain't legal, but it exists all over the place. And if the industry would get it's collective heads out of it's collective asses (Or the ass in front of it) it would wake up and realize that people would pay a LOT of money for a legal Pirate Bay. And in actuality, a lot of them are. Secure VPNs and seedboxes ain't free.

    • You can find a selection of pretty good movies they offer here []. I ended up watching Dredd and was blown away - something I wouldn't have done if not for word of mouth. (So you're trying to tell me someone made another movie on Judge Dredd that's actually good?) And of course, sometimes the movies you at first don't recognize end up being the ones you love the most.
      • Same here. At first I assumed Hollywood was out of ideas and just rehashing older movies like Total Recall. But the original Stallone Dredd was terrible so my expectations were low. I guess this is why remakes are a good idea sometimes; they can be better than the original.
    • by xfizik ( 3491039 )
      You think Netflix's selection is shit? Try Netflix Canada. They'd have to pay me to subscribe to their service.
      • by pnutjam ( 523990 )
        Netflix canada has some selections that aren't available in the US. It's missing some, but I like the selection. (not canadian)
    • by nine-times ( 778537 ) <> on Friday September 19, 2014 @11:30AM (#47946001) Homepage

      Yeah, Netflix should get their act together and stop showing shit movies like "The Elephant Man" and "There Will Be Blood". Comedies like "Grosse Pointe Blank" and "Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure"? Who would ever want to watch those? Netflix is absolutely useless unless they can show truly great movies like "Transformers 4: Age of Extinction".

    • Your logic is all flipped. The question you should be asking is simply, "Am I getting $8 worth of entertainment?" Netflix has never had a great selection of the latest stuff (even back a few years ago it wasn't that great), so if you're analyzing the value proposition through that lens, you're ignoring the actual value that it provides. Rather than asking what they don't have, the type of question that should be asked is if what they do have is worth the paltry asking price.

      The more I've used Netflix, the b

      • For me, some of my selections are TV shows I simply was too busy to be at home whenever they originally aired. I can go back and now watch them at my convenience not network scheduling. For example I started watching Lost but got busy with one work in the 2nd season. I couldn't really catch up at the time which meant all subsequent seasons were out of the question as they story progresses from season to season.
      • Ya, I'm getting $7 worth of entertainment. A bigger selection than my satellite subscription, except for the current shows. However the number of current shows I was watching had greatly shrunk. Plus I'm getting high def tv, even many of the old shows from the 60s are much clearer and crisper (those that were originally shot on film).

        I was going to pay another $8 for Hulu Plus for some of the current shows now that the seasons have started up. Except that they're not showing Doctor Who despite the big p

  • Accommodating Netflix is often cited as a reason for pushing DRM into HTML5, but this is a fallacy. Leaving aside one's opinion of Netflix, or even the general existence of DRM, it's perfectly possible to have the big DRM companies to solve their problems by using a privately negotiated addition to the HTML5 standard. There's no reason to put it into HTML5.

    Many lovers of free software have been pushing for open standards for years, but now we're headed to a situation where someone can request a HTML5-compli

    • Well you could stop blindly following such a strict definition of free software.

      DRM is hear and it is going to stay.
      Back in the analog days. We had tape for VHS. Sure you can copy it. But after 2 or 3 copies of copies the quality degrades. So to mass share VHS movies ends up being costly with poor quality over generations.

      Then we had CD's where at the time they held more data then you could really fit on your drive. So you had non-DRM data however because you couldn't store it on something other the

    • HTML doesn't mention DRM. See for yourself: []

      There's Encrypted Media Extensions, which everyone says is "ZOMG DRM", but it's an entirely separate document, and no more insidious than EncryptedXML.

      You can't "standardize" DRM, it's literally impossible.

  • by aglider ( 2435074 ) on Friday September 19, 2014 @10:38AM (#47945353) Homepage
  • by pahles ( 701275 ) on Friday September 19, 2014 @10:46AM (#47945443)
    What does the National Speleological Society have to do with Netflix?
  • Now you could modify a compliant browser to strip out the HTML5 DRM crippleware and very easily rip videos from Netflix. But that's not necessary, I think everything hits TPB and Netflix at around the same time anyway.

  • A video streaming provider other than Netflix also relies on Silverlight, and I was able to get it to work using Pipelight (couldn't get Moonlight to work), and only on SUSE (couldn't get CentOS or Ubuntu to work).

  • XBMC support soon? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by MMC Monster ( 602931 ) on Friday September 19, 2014 @11:53AM (#47946279)

    Hopefully this will allow a good XBMC client. Would love to be able to watch netflix seemlessly within XBMC.

    • As a sidenote, today I came across an interesting XBMC plugin called xbmctorrent [] which allows you to directly watch movies behind magnet links. So I guess it's like the Popcorn Hour thingy.
  • Try Crackle, and then Netflix will appear awesome!

The following statement is not true. The previous statement is true.