Adobe ShockWave Player

Media player for this powerful file type

  • Vote:
    7.1 (727)
  • Category:


  • Version:

  • Works under:

    Windows 8 / Windows 7 / Windows Vista / Windows XP

  • Program available in:In English
  • Program license:Free

Adobe Shockwave Player, formerly known as Macromedia Shockwave, provides Windows and Mac OS X users with a browser plugin that allows the viewing of Adobe Director applications. With over 450 million computers using the software, it has one of the largest market shares for a browser-based multimedia plugin. Shockwave Player provides a way to watch content online, including movies, animations and videos. Often, the player is required to play video games and host interactive types of media. Programmers can also embed Flash-based movies within the Adobe Shockwave movie files. The browser plugin also allows the playback of business presentations and advertisements.

Users can download Adobe Shockwave Player from the Adobe website and immediately start taking advantage of the advanced features that the Web has to offer. While the software plugin works effectively, users should be warned that it's important to keep the plugin updated to patch any security vulnerabilities. The application only takes a few minutes to download and install on supported systems. Once installed, you can begin to watch videos on sites that require the Shockwave technology.

The software provides support for Open Type Font on the Mac and non-UTF-8 characters. Shockwave also supports 5.1 digital surround sound with a maximum of 16 channels. Playback of HD video makes presentations, movies and games realistic and powerful. The player doesn't require you to pay a fee for use and is provided as a free download, with regular free updates to improve its functionality. The main difference between Flash and Shockwave player involves the type of content viewable through each medium. Developers can create more-involved games and add extensions to develop custom-built applications, interactive product simulations, training applications and multi-user online games. Flash Player only plays content created with Flash Professional.

The player works with Internet Explorer 7 or later, Chrome and Firefox on Windows systems. On Mac OS X, the player can be downloaded for Safari. Additionally, the player supports German, English, French and Japanese languages. After downloading and installing the software, you can verify the installation was successful by visiting the Adobe Shockwave Player page to check if the verification animation appears. Overall, the program provides a simple and effective end-user product that works automatically without any advanced configuration.


  • Simple installation that installs in the background.
  • Continually developed by an expert team of programmers.
  • Works transparently in the background of your browser and requires no user interaction.


  • Not available on operating systems that don't run Windows or Linux.
  • Shockwave Player has been largely replaced by other technologies and isn't required for many users.
  • May slow down your browser since it's added as an extension.

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