My computer (macOS 10.15.7) still has Adobe Flash CS3 (and Flash CS3 Video Encoder) installed (though not used, as I gave Adobe up when they moved to a subscription model). Do I have to uninstall this and, if so, how? The only uninstaller I have found, under /Utilities/Adobe Installers, is 'Add or Remove Creatiive Suite 3 Master Collection' which, unsurprisingly, brings the message '"setup.app" needs to be updated' when I run it.
Can I just delete the associated Adobe files? What other stuff will be left lying around? Are there other places where I must look for Flash files, browsers, AIR, etc.?
Should I be using the Adobe Creative Cloud Cleanup tool?
"Should I be using the Adobe Creative Cloud Cleanup tool?"
Yes, @Eric5C84 . It couldn't hurt to run the Adobe Cleaner tools. You probably have a whole bunch of old 32-bit program files that Catalina cannot remove. It's a shame you didn't vanquish them all BEFORE you upgraded your OS.
Thanks for the advice. I tried the Creative Cloud Cleaner tool but it doesn't seem to have helped. I'm not sure if it did anything but all the Adobe folders still appear to be there. It doesn't look as though anything was deleted.
You don't have to uninstall it. It isn't connected the Flash Player which expires this week.
Thanks for your help. Should I just delete all the Adobe folders (the 32 bit programs can't run anyhow)?
As you can probably imagine, we don't have a test team dedicated to managing super old product versions on modern operating systems. A lot of the work we do on a daily basis is the maintenance involved in keeping our products aligned with the latest operating system changes (particularly on MacOS, where they're pretty aggressive with continual breaking changes).
I don't like to give advice that I (or my team) haven't tested first, so I'll leave that decision to you. If you don't need the disk space, simply having files on the disk is low risk. If you do choose to start deleting stuff, make a backup first, and make sure you can revert should the changes prove damaging.
In terms of Flash Player, the big attack surface is around the browser plug-in, which is primarily tasked with running untrusted content from the open web (e.g. banner ads, etc). In the lead-up to Flash EOL, we (in tandem with our browser partners) have already taken a lot of action to minimize that attack surface (making Flash disabled by default, click-to-play, etc.). In a few days, any existing copies of Flash on your system (assuming they're reasonably current), will themselves also stop loading content from the open web.
Flash Authoring / Animate CC presents far less risk, as you'd need to actually open, compile and debug/run malicious content on your local machine for any malicious SWF to execute. (Installing Flash Authoring / Animate CC may install a debugger variant of Flash Player, which our uninstaller will remove).
You can remove the Flash Player plug-in on MacOS by running our uninstaller