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plugin-container.exe internet access

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Post Posted June 22nd, 2010, 11:30 am

Why does the Firefox plugin container (plugin-container.exe) require access to the internet through the local filtering proxy that I am using? I just updated the Flash plugin for Windows, and the firewall reported that this program had been prevented from using 127.0.0.1 TCP outgoing access. The Flash video loaded and played anyway, so why does this program need outgoing communication?

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Post Posted June 22nd, 2010, 11:34 am

Moving to Firefox Builds.
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Post Posted June 22nd, 2010, 1:03 pm

I'm guessing that on Windows, the OOPP use TCP sockets to communicate with the browser. The address 127.0.0.1 is localhost/loopback. It is a virtual network that is only accessible from your computer back to your computer. (EDIT: wasn't paying attention to who the OP was. I suspect you already knew that Anonymosity)

If it only happens when using the Flash plugin, it's anybody's guess as to what it's doing. Does it still happen with OOPP disabled?
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Post Posted June 22nd, 2010, 1:46 pm

The code is open, so anyone interested enough can go in and look for what's happening.
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Post Posted June 22nd, 2010, 1:48 pm

Moving this back to Support. Next time I check the update schedule... :)
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Post Posted June 22nd, 2010, 8:10 pm

Can anyone explain why plugin-container.exe needs to access the net for some sites but not others? It's NOT trying to access localhost, but the actual website that I'm trying to surf. If I deny it access, everything still runs fine.

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Post Posted June 22nd, 2010, 9:22 pm

The plugin container only talks to Firefox. If it is attempting to connect to the internet, then it's the actual plugin trying to make the connection.

The reason you're seeing it now is because plugin-container.exe is a new process that your Firewall doesn't have rules for. You didn't see this previously because the plugins were being run as part of the firefox.exe process, which already had permission to access the internet.
There have always been ghosts in the machine... random segments of code that have grouped together to form unexpected protocols. Unanticipated, these free radicals engender questions of free will, creativity, and even the nature of what we might call the soul...

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Post Posted June 22nd, 2010, 10:08 pm

If you don't allow plugin-container access to the internet you cannot load the plugin content, it's that simple. Mozilla should probably do some PR about this, but knowing them, they won't.

I just re-read your post... it is odd that the Flash content loaded anyway. When I block plugin-container with Zone-Alarm, it will not load Flash content, although I haven't used a wide enough variety of sites to see if that is true everywhere.
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Post Posted June 22nd, 2010, 10:27 pm

Better question is can i tweak the time it takes to unload the plugin-container.exe process after the plugin that initialized the container(and tab) has been closed?

Because from where is stand it takes way too long to unload this process.

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Post Posted June 22nd, 2010, 11:10 pm

If the plugin container isn't actively being used in a page, it isn't consuming any resources other than the base-level memory it needs (which will be cached to disk if needed by other processes). There is no gain from closing it.

AFAIK this behavior is not really any different from the way in-process plugins are handled; you just can't see it.
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Post Posted June 23rd, 2010, 1:24 am

Bluefang wrote:If the plugin container isn't actively being used in a page, it isn't consuming any resources other than the base-level memory it needs (which will be cached to disk if needed by other processes). There is no gain from closing it.

AFAIK this behavior is not really any different from the way in-process plugins are handled; you just can't see it.

Yeah well at times there are 4-5 plugin-container.exe processess running.Each consumes about 5-10MB of memory while doing nothing.
Also i havent noticed firefox.exe taking less RAM.It still seems the same to me.On my case around 100MB with 1 tab.

I assume the plugin-container.exe behaviour is still controlled by the general setting?.Say i have set firefox to cache to RAM instead of disk so the plugin-container.exe will follow this rule?

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Post Posted June 23rd, 2010, 2:55 am

Wrong kind of caching.

When plugin-container.exe isn't actively running, yes it consumes "virtual memory" (active RAM + harddisk cache). If the plugin-container.exe data is in RAM, and that space is needed by another process, Windows will move it from RAM to the pagefile on your harddisk. It will stay there until it is needed by the plugin-container.exe process (i.e. it starts running again).

Unless you are running low on virtual memory (unlikely), there is no ill effect of keeping those processes.

AFAIK there are no settings in Firefox to determine how soon the plugin-container.exe processes are killed. Currently they are killed when Firefox exits.
There have always been ghosts in the machine... random segments of code that have grouped together to form unexpected protocols. Unanticipated, these free radicals engender questions of free will, creativity, and even the nature of what we might call the soul...

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Post Posted June 23rd, 2010, 4:21 pm

Bluefang wrote:I'm guessing that on Windows, the OOPP use TCP sockets to communicate with the browser. The address 127.0.0.1 is localhost/loopback. It is a virtual network that is only accessible from your computer back to your computer. (EDIT: wasn't paying attention to who the OP was. I suspect you already knew that Anonymosity)

If it only happens when using the Flash plugin, it's anybody's guess as to what it's doing. Does it still happen with OOPP disabled?

First, what is OOPP?
With Firefox on Windows, I am using Proxomitron for filtering, and it is a local proxy, so Firefox is going out thru 127.0.0.1:8080, and that is what plugin-container.exe was trying to do.
Right now, I set a rule in my firewall to block it, but if I have problems loading videos, I can change the rule to allow it.

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Post Posted June 23rd, 2010, 4:24 pm

OOPP-- Out of Process Plug-ins. It is what plugin-container.exe does.
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Post Posted June 23rd, 2010, 6:01 pm

https://developer.mozilla.org/devnews/i ... available/

Right now, I set a rule in my firewall to block it, but if I have problems loading videos, I can change the rule to allow it.

You should probably allow it. It's just the plugin doing whatever it does. This was already happening before, it was just done through the firefox.exe process (which was already allowed by firewalls/proxies).
There have always been ghosts in the machine... random segments of code that have grouped together to form unexpected protocols. Unanticipated, these free radicals engender questions of free will, creativity, and even the nature of what we might call the soul...

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