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video does not load and no error message

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FireFox 28.0 Mozilla FireFox for Ubuntu canonical - 1.0

Just installed Ubuntu 12.04.4 LTS on an ancient one-time XP machine.

Everything is fine until I try to play a video - doesn't matter which one, youtube for example. The page loads perfectly well EXCEPT for the video. The cursor in the area of the video is the 'hand/fist with pointing finger'. All thumbnails and other images load OK

This is very frustrating as I am trying to instal speakers on a silent motherboard with cmos battery on the way out!!

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Please ensure that you have the most recent Linux version of Adobe Flash Player installed. This may require you to reinstall Flash Player.

If you are running the most recent version for Linux, please try disabling the Flash hardware acceleration.
To do so, follow the instructions on this Mozilla support article, under the Playing Flash videos makes Firefox hang section.