For sites that rely on Adobe's hellspawn, Edge will go all Clippy on users and ask if they really want to run it or would rather fire it into the heart of the sun to enjoy a fiery death it so richly deserves. The company is not clear on how long the transition will take but with its announcement, Microsoft joins the list of Apple, Google, Mozilla to move on from Flash and move towards a faster and more secure Web experience. "At the end of this process, users will remain in control, and will be able to choose Flash for any site they visit". The latter company has also blocked Flash ads from its Chrome browser. For sites that still depend on Flash, users will have the opportunity to decide whether they want Flash to load and run, and this preference can be remembered for subsequent visits.
The click-to-play option that will be enabled by default for Flash-based content in Windows 10's Edge browser. Microsoft will allow Flash content to run on some of the most popular sites that still use Flash.
But even though there are no release details, Flash Player 18.104.22.168 is most likely a security update, especially given the publishing date - both Adobe and Microsoft are rolling out security patches for their software on the second Tuesday of each month, so it's natural to expect this new Flash Player version to come with security improvements as well.
The company announced on Wednesday that Microsoft Edge will be changed in the forthcoming Windows 10 Creator's Update to not load Flash whenever possible.
The update will be available to Windows Insider users immediately, and will roll out publicly with the Windows 10 Creator's update in 2017. Microsoft's done worse for its own ActiveX technology in Edge, so it's not as if Redmond is singling Adobe out for this treatment.
Microsoft is also encouraging developers to adopt the HTML5 standard, and has indicated that similar updates are coming for Chrome, Safari and Firefox.
"We are deeply aware that Flash is an integral part of many web experiences today", Crispin Cowan, a member of the Windows Security team, wrote in a blog post.