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Use the Silverlight plugin to play audio and video

Support will end for all NPAPI plugins except for Flash in March 2017, when Firefox version 52 is released. See this compatibility document and this article for details.

Beginning with Firefox version 52, support has ended for all NPAPI plugins except for Adobe Flash. See this compatibility document and this article for details.

Microsoft Silverlight is a plugin used by some websites to display multimedia content. This article describes how to check whether you have Silverlight installed and how to install or update it.

Silverlight is not available for the Linux platform and the only open source implementation of Silverlight, called Moonlight, is not developed anymore. It can be still compiled from source but it is not recommended to use it. More information can be found at the Moonlight installation page.

Checking for Silverlight

To determine whether you have the Silverlight plugin installed, visit Microsoft's Get Microsoft Silverlight page.

If Silverlight is installed, you will see a message with your Silverlight version.

Silverlight-currentversion

Installing Silverlight

If you do not have Silverlight installed, follow the Installation Instructions on Microsoft's Get Microsoft Silverlight page.

Updating Silverlight

If Silverlight is installed but your version is outdated, the Get Microsoft Silverlight page will show your installed version and the current version of Silverlight.

Silverlight-update

Click the current version link to manually download and install the latest version of Silverlight.

Note: Silverlight has an automatic update feature so manual updates may not be necessary. See the Microsoft Silverlight Configuration Dialog Box article and the Microsoft Silverlight Updater article for details.

Uninstalling Silverlight

To uninstall Silverlight, follow the Uninstall Silverlight instructions on Microsoft's Get Microsoft Silverlight page.

Silverlight is installed but does not work

Mozilla blocks older versions of Silverlight, causing sites like Netflix to display a message asking you to install Silverlight. To fix this, please update your installation of Silverlight to the latest version by visiting Microsoft's Get Microsoft Silverlight page.

In some cases, this may not resolve the problem and you will need to manually activate the Silverlight plugin:

  1. Click the menu button New Fx Menu and choose Add-ons. The Add-ons Manager tab will open.

  2. In the Add-ons Manager tab, select the Plugins panel.
  3. Find Silverlight in the list of plugins and select Always Activate in its drop-down menu.
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Comments

See /forums/knowledge-base-articles/704903 for related discussions about this article.

See also:

I updated the Mac section at the end and re-titled it, "Silverlight is installed but does not work" based on the discussions here:

...where I wrote on August 25, 2012,

A user reports that, all of a sudden Silverlight is not installed.

Looks like updating to Silverlight 5.1 doesn't automatically re-enable the plugin, so Netflix is still asking you to install Silverlight. You have to open the Firefox Tools menu, then go the Add-ons manager Plugins panel and enable the Silverlight plugin. Quote:

FYI: I downloaded the latest version of Silverlight (5.1.10411.0); I installed it and restarted Firefox, but Silverlight remained blocked until I enabled it using the Add-ons/Plugin page.

Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10.7; rv:14.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/14.0.1
August 23rd, 2012

The issue of needing to manually enable/activate the Silverlight plugin came up again, in a new thread posted Sept 17 2013:

Even though the user had updated Silverlight to the latest version, he still had to manually change the Silverlight setting in the (Tools) Addons -> Plugins list from "Never activate" to "Always Activate".

I posted the following in the Use plugins to play audio, video, games and more kbforum discussion, https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/use-plugins-play-audio-video-games/discuss/6223 [Fx41] Add a note for users who install Firefox Win64 that only the Flash plugin works.

Firefox Win64 installers were made available for Firefox 40 Beta at https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/beta/all/ and should be available on https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/all/ for the Firefox 40 release. When Firefox 41 is released, Win64 installers will be available for download on mozilla.org . We should add a note to this article (and to the linked Java, Silverlight, Adobe Reader, Windows Media Player, and QuickTime articles) that only the Flash plugin currently works in Firefox win64 builds. Related bugs: Bug 1165981 - Whitelist Flash for NPAPI on 64 bit Firefox on Win64 Bug 1187005 - Some plugins (Microsoft Silverlight, Java,...) are not recognized as installed with Firefox 64-bit build on Win64 Bug 1181014 - Make Firefox 41 win64 builds on the Release channel available on mozilla.org.

The release target for Win64 builds was moved to Firefox 42. See bug 1181014 comment 12.

Windows 64-bit Firefox requires Windows 7 or above (bug 1093741).

I made a revision to add an incompatibility warning {for fx42, win7,win8,win10} since the Windows 64-bit builds aren't scheduled for the release channel firefox/all page until at least Firefox 42.

Should this article mention how to update Silverlight?

Right now, this article links to http://www.microsoft.com/silverlight/resources/install.aspx to determine if Silverlight is installed. That page redirects me to https://www.microsoft.com/getsilverlight/get-started/install/default.aspx which tells me, The version of Silverlight installed is: Silverlight 5 (5.1.40728.0) You are ready to use Microsoft Silverlight (I see no link to download or update Silverlight on that page)

The Plugin Check page links to the same page to update Silverlight ... but there is no update available if the Plugin Check page incorrectly reports that the plugin is outdated or vulnerable. Related discussion: https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/forums/plug-check-page-discussions/711577

If I remember right, when a Silverlight update is available, that page will prompt you to download and install the latest version. However, I haven't had to manually update Silverlight in quite a while.

On my Windows 7 PC, I have Microsoft Silverlight 5.1.40728.0 listed under Windows Update, "View Update History -> Installed updates". (See this Microsoft Silverlight Updater article about Silverlight automatic updates. See this Microsoft Silverlight Configuration Dialog Box article about configuring Silverlight updates.)

I made a new revision a few days ago (still pending review) to update the 64-bit Firefox warning, to add a link to this Mozilla blog post.

AliceWyman said

I made a new revision a few days ago (still pending review) to update the 64-bit Firefox warning, to add a link to this Mozilla blog post.

done

I think it should.

When visiting this link: https://www.microsoft.com/getsilverlight/get-started/install/default.aspx

I actually see a option to download the latest Silverlight. It's disguised as a link. Like this: Installed version: Silverlight 5 (5.1.30514.0) Current version: Silverlight 5 (5.1.40728.0)

When I click the link, I'm prompted to download a 12.5 MB file. Then the page says to follow these instructions: For Mozilla Firefox users: Save Silverlight.exe to your hard disk. Once the download is finished, click Open. The installation starts.

I imagine people who disable automatic updates (like me) and ones who have update problems in general would have to update Silverlight manually. So it would still be good to tell them how. :)

Noah_SUMO said

When visiting this link: https://www.microsoft.com/getsilverlight/get-started/install/default.aspx I actually see a option to download the latest Silverlight. It's disguised as a link. Like this: Installed version: Silverlight 5 (5.1.30514.0) Current version: Silverlight 5 (5.1.40728.0)

Thanks, Noah. When you visit the page with the latest Silverlight version, you only see this, with no download link:


The version of Silverlight installed is: Silverlight 5 (5.1.40728.0)

You are ready to use Microsoft Silverlight


I'll update the article to mention how to update Silverlight.

Here's a screenshot showing the message you get when Silverlight is outdated (taken on my iMac OS X 10.6.8)

[[Image:Upgrade Silverlight]]

Upgrade Silverlight

...and here's a screenshot showing the message I got after updating to the current version (we should probably use this new screenshot in the article, instead of the old one):

[[Image:Silverlight5-current]]

Silverlight5-current

Related bug: Bug 1225293 - Support Silverlight for Win64 Firefox ....which is linked from Bug 1187005 - Some plugins (Silverlight, Lync Web App, Java, ...) are not recognized as installed with Firefox 64-bit build on Win64 (comment 165) Quote:


Chris Peterson [:cpeterson] 2015-11-24 09:59:21 PST

64-bit Silverlight will be re-enabled in Firefox 44 by bug 1225293. \o/


Note that the related bug was just approved for Firefox 45: Bug 1225293 - Support Silverlight for Win64 Firefox

P.S. I deferred my pending revision that removed the warning in fx44:


{for =fx42,=fx43,win7,win8,win10} {warning}Important: The new 64-bit version of Firefox for Windows does not recognize or support this plugin. See this Mozilla blog post for details.{/warning} {/for}


When Firefox 44 goes into Beta, we can review bug 1225293 to see if it has been uplifted to Firefox 44. I have a "Needs change" entry set up for that.

In the meantime, I have an edit pending to add "currently" to the warning note and to remove it for Firefox 45, by making the warning {for =fx42,=fx43,=fx44,win7,win8,win10}.

The related bug, Bug 1225293 - Support Silverlight for Win64 Firefox - was just approved for Firefox 43 and fx44. I edited the win64-bit warning and made it only show for =fx42.

I removed "This will be fixed in Firefox version 43." from the win64-bit warning, just in case it isn't. I also edited the warning to make it for =fx42,=fx43 since it's possible that the fix uplifted to fx43 in bug 1225293 was for beta testing.

See also http://www.ghacks.net/2015/11/25/firefox-64-bit-to-support-microsoft-silverlight-after-all/ Quote:

Mozilla plans to integrate support for Silverlight in 64-bit versions of Firefox in Firefox 43 or 44. It is not clear right now if the organization manages to add support of Silverlight in Firefox 43, to be released on December 15, 2015, or Firefox 44, which will be released on January 26, 2016.

I set up a "'Needs change"' entry: [Dec 15, 2015] Confirm Silverlight is enabled in win64-bit Fx 43 release and remove warning - see discussion.

Update, from bug 1187005 comment 167


Chris Peterson [:cpeterson] 2015-12-02 10:02:09 PST

(In reply to Alice Wyman from comment #166) > Chris, can you confirm whether this will take place in the Firefox 43 > release?

Yes, 64-bit Silverlight is now enabled in Firefox 43.

One caveat: at the moment, Amazon Video won't play because it still thinks 64-bit Firefox does not support Silverlight. But if you use an extension to change your User-Agent to look like 32-bit Firefox, then Amazon Video will play. I have asked Amazon to unblock 64-bit Firefox.