[–] 59nadir link

I find the bit about Chrome interesting, considering I've never had a Chrome installation even without any kind of add-on that was as fast as FF Quantum. Even without any features at all Chrome is much slower and it doesn't even have proper extensions for most things.

reply

[–] chmln link

On Linux, its still night and day difference in favor of Chrome.

I wish FF performance was as good as it is on Windows.

As much as I want to like Mozilla, even with Quantum, there's pretty much no hardware acceleration at all, missing out on potentially big performance benefits.

As others mentioned, e.g. VDPAU has been available for a long time now and there's no excuse for not taking advantage of GPU acceleration.

Now contrast this to evil Google and Chrome.

Firefox: https://imgur.com/mvtDenC Chrome: https://imgur.com/HBOpucc

reply

[–] ben-schaaf link

For me it's exactly the opposite. While js and render performance might have been worse, scrolling has become more and more choppy with every chrome release while Firefox has absolutely no issues (even without quantum)

reply

[–] beerbaron23 link

There certainly is hardware acceleration in Firefox on Linux, more then likely it has been disabaled because of your configueration/set-up/drivers. To turn it on go into your "about:config" and toggle the entry "layers.acceleration.force-enabled" to "True" and restart. Then Firefox is as fast as Chrome or faster, simple as that. Although it would be nice if there was a dialog telling the user their setup is incorrect/unsupported and giving them the option whtout digging into the config, I believe this is the number one reason people think FF is slower, cause their HW acceleration is disabled and they don't even know it is...

reply

[–] Qwertious link

>There certainly is hardware acceleration in Firefox on Linux, more then likely it has been disabaled because of your configueration/set-up/drivers. To turn it on go into your "about:config" and toggle the entry "layers.acceleration.force-enabled" to "True" and restart.

Implying that it wasn't deliberately disabled. HW acceleration on Linux isn't enabled by default, and for good reason. Until those underlying reasons are changed, Linux does have a hardware-acceleration-on-Firefox problem.

reply

[–] btown link

Are there any articles that elaborate on what work still needs to be done?

reply

[–] joshbaptiste link

yup.. enabled this option on Linux Mint 17.1, FireFox 51 .. crashed the nouveau driver 10 minutes later.. had to restart.

reply

[–] SkyMarshal link

FF 57 is the first release of a big rewrite, I'm sure it will get VDPAU at some point, but they needed to get the base feature set stable first.

reply

[–] HenryBemis link

It looked great, up to the point that 70% of my addons were disabled. I rolled back in 5mins :)

I'll give it another chance in a couple of weeks, and hope that there will be a bypass that will force my outdated addons to work.

reply

[–] ajdlinux link

There won't be a bypass - Fx57 has completely dropped legacy extension support.

This is a good thing, and it's just a shame that so many addons haven't been updated yet.

reply

[–] ywain link

This isn't quite true. Support for legacy extensions is disabled by default, but can be re-enabled via the `extensions.legacy.enabled` flag in about:config.

reply

[–] rebelwebmaster link

Don't expect it to work very well, though, given that a lot of the supporting code for legacy addons was already removed from Gecko 57.

reply

[–] ajdlinux link

Huh, thanks for mentioning that! I didn't realise there was still a flag for it - serves me right for not doing my research.

Though losing Electrolysis will defeat one of the main benefits of running Firefox 57...

reply

[–] scholia link

Though you lose multi-process operation, I think....

reply

[–] branchless link

only on incompatible MP plugins.

however I've just ran nightly and although it says vimfx will work as a legacy plugin it's not working, so the deal's off. I shall not use my mouse!

reply

[–] mercurial link

You can try vimium-ff (FF 57-compatible). There is also Tridactyl [1] currently in development.

1: https://github.com/cmcaine/tridactyl

reply

[–] WCityMike link

Only in Nightly.

reply

[–] SllX link

So while I'm still waiting on NoScript to get an update which is actually forthcoming (possibly tomorrow, but within about a week from what I gather), I took a look around to see which of my other add-ons were updated.

Other than a couple that were useful but ultimately not that important, and a couple I can do without until they get updated eventually, I managed to find that most of my Legacy extensions do have updated versions out. Namely, Video DownloadHelper and Greasemonkey, both extensions I thought would die with Firefox 57 out. That said, I wouldn't have known if I hadn't looked at the add-ons site as near as I can tell, while they still say "Legacy" in my Add-ons tab, they do have separate releases on the add-ons site specifically for Firefox 57 which are incompatible with my current browser and I'll probably have to install them again when I do update.* Assuming that is the case, you might find a decent chunk of that 70% already ready and you just have to take some extra steps to get them working again.

Overall, I am optimistic, lots of people have lots of nice things to say about 57 and the extensions situation is not looking nearly the sort of bad I was first expecting. I'm sure I've had more painful wait periods for my extensions going back almost a decade ago as it seems I really am waiting on just one and that one is coming shortly. Even those extensions which are now unsupported actually seem to have decent replacements and I've switched them over already.

* Note, this portion is entirely speculative, refer back to my commentary on waiting till an updated NoScript comes out before I actually install Firefox 57. It's possible they would just update once I do upgrade to 57 rendering my subsequent speculation entirely wrong.

reply

[–] absove link

Greasemonkey will be updated from legacy to the compatible one automatically, no user intervention needed. I assume this holds true for all such extensions.

reply

[–] manojlds link

If it as just as good as chrome, why should I switch? Especially given how good Chrome Dev tools are.

reply

[–] callahad link

Aside from the privacy / philosophy / openness / counterweight-to-monopolization-of-the-Web angles which Yoric mentioned, you might find we're actually better than Chrome in some areas. Often small things, but I find I prefer the feel of Firefox to Chrome.

- If you do frontend work, our CSS grid inspector is unparalleled https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Tools/Page_Inspecto...

- Firefox has built-in tracking protection (https://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2017/11/12/firefox-to-offer...)

- Powerful add-ons like Tree Style Tab make managing large numbers of tabs much easier (https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/addon/tree-style-tab/)

- Our WebAssembly performance tends to be better

- We should have better resource utilization when you have many tabs open

- You can mute audio on a page clicking the little speaker icon in the tab

If you want to contribute to the DevTools themselves, they're built using standard web technologies: HTML/JS, React/Redux, etc. https://github.com/devtools-html/

reply

[–] Namrog84 link

> - You can mute audio on a page clicking the little speaker icon in the tab

Although I don't know if chrome has this on by default nowadays as I turned it on so long ago.

But mute audio on per tab via speaker icon is available in chrome as well.

in chrome://flags/

* Tab audio muting UI control

If enabled, you can mute/unmute per tab via doing same thing.

reply

[–] koot link

Yes, it's been enable as default for a while now. But again firefox is awesome and the 57 version is simple blazing fast

reply

[–] johndoe489 link

Front end dev here. The main issue I have for now is that whenever I hit CTRL Shift C to open the console, you can clearly see the thing draw itself for nearly one full second. It would be fine if it somehow cached, but if you close it and open again, same delay.

Short of being able to optimize it soon, perhaps you could try buffering and displaying it at once. It would look less clunky and flimsy.

That said I'm giving FF57 a run as my main browser, will keep using Chrome Dev Tools for now.

reply

[–] aquadrop link

You've switched to multiple processes model, but you don't have "task manager" as Chrome. Do you plan to implement it in the future?

reply

[–] Yoric link

Working on it right now, but no ETA yet.

reply

[–] aquadrop link

Ok, thanks. I hope you make it even more informative than the Chrome's one :)

reply

[–] chris_wot link

Please, that's one of the most useful troubleshooting tools in Chrome.

reply

[–] Santosh83 link

about:performance is a somewhat similar substitute for now. You can see stats of the various processes and close or reload tabs.

reply

[–] 0x49d1 link

Yes.. Somewhat. For example can't see how extensions are doing from there.

reply

[–] phillc73 link

> - Firefox has built-in tracking protection (https://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2017/11/12/firefox-to-offer...)

Is there a way to selectively unblock certain trackers on a specific page?

I currently have the Tracking Protection set to Always and the block list on Strict. No problems yet, but I know there will be a few sites which won't correctly. Previously I always used Ghostery and there was a nice option to view exactly how many and which trackers were being blocked on each page. When viewing the blocked trackers, they could be selectively unblocked one at a time if required. This was handy to make some embedded video work, without necessary enabling Facebook tracking, which would occur if the whole page was unblocked.

reply

[–] schuyler2d link

Take a look at the eff's privacy badger add on, which let's you control each script/source on a per-page level

reply

[–] JoshMnem link

Try umatrix.

reply

[–] patall link

especially TreeStyleTab is considerably weakend with the new update (like all extensions that now have to fit into less powerful webextension). From my point it is so bad (I lose 4 out of 6 regularly used add-ons) I am actively considering of leaving firefox for the better.

reply

[–] anotheryou link

What do you use? Some things are still a bit hacky, but it all comes together for me. I had everything packed, ready to move, but than came the ports :)

reply

[–] patall link

To be honest I have not switched yet, but the changes I have seen in TreeStyleTab make me question why I should stay at firefox with that because I can get the features of the new TST in Chrome as well. Also I won't work with Colorful tabs anymore. Further I think I will miss some of the decapriated features in the Zotero update.

(And I will have to find appropiate replacements for Leechblock and FireGesture)

reply

[–] aibara link

Leechblock is updated. The developer made it into a separate add-on though.

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/leechblock-ng...

reply

[–] uglycoyote link

What "TST in Chrome" are you referring to? Tree-Style Tabs are one of the main things that keeps me using Firefox over Chrome. All of the Chrome Tree-style extensions that I have tried are these hacky things that use an external window.

reply

[–] hudbuddy link

I tend to use Chrome for its devtools, but I'd add WebRTC support to the list of things Firefox excels at

reply

[–] BuckRogers link

It also has toolbar RSS feed support. I've been using this since when Firefox was in beta (Phoenix) and it's a killer feature for me. I may use Feedly on iOS but desktop/laptop I love having the same feeds right on the toolbar. Chrome doesn't support RSS feeds in this way because there's no way to advertise with them.

Always watch where the incentives run, Chrome is for Google's best interests, not the web's and not the user's. Always has been and always will be because it's a for-profit organization.

reply

[–] Avernar link

> If you want to contribute to the DevTools themselves

I wish I had the time. So I'll have to wait for someone else to add the element DOM properties tab in thr panel that has the style rules and layout. Firebug had it, Chrome has it.

The right click and then Show DOM Properties with the results in the console pane is just painful to use.

reply

[–] agentdrtran link

Tree-style tabs won't be around much longer.

reply

[–] callahad link

Tree Style Tab is available on Firefox Quantum and will be with us for a long, long time. Piro, the author, wrote an excellent article about his experience porting TST to a WebExtension: http://piro.sakura.ne.jp/latest/blosxom/mozilla/extension/tr...

reply

[–] 0x49d1 link

Nice extension, but no search for tab option. For now I use Firefox built-in option to search for tab: open new one and start typing the title of tab, I want to find. The drawback: that search is VERY dumb and you have to exactly type the proper name, no fuzzy logic or smth at all.

reply

[–] mistermann link

I got the new Tree Style tabs installed, but I'm still seeing the standard tabs at the top, is there a way to hide those?

reply

[–] uglycoyote link

I asked this exact question on Stack Overflow earlier today and found that someone else had already also asked it and got an answer.

https://superuser.com/questions/1261660/firefox-quantum-ver-...

(basically, hacking some CSS rules by creating a file in your AppData directory, so that the top bar is hidden)

Incidentally, I also discovered that Tree Style Tab's settings page under Firefox has a nice little box where you can configure the CSS it uses, which was nice because I prefer it with a smaller font and less padding.

reply

[–] Sylos link

What uglycoyote commented is the stopgap solution for now, but an API for doing that is in the works, so in a few versions from now, you shouldn't need that more-or-less hack anymore.

reply

[–] Yoric link

Better privacy? Non-profit? More open source? Cheerful community? Pick one or more :)

reply

[–] toweringgoat link

Privacy is about the same, Mozilla Corporation (who distribute the browser) aren't non-profit, both are open source. Correct on community maybe.

reply

[–] callahad link

The privacy situation is absolutely different; Mozilla has no profit motive to monitor and monetize your activity on the Web. For example, Firefox Sync is specifically designed so that we have no knowledge of your browsing data.

In contrast, when you sign into Chrome, "Your experience in other Google products is personalized by including your Chrome history with your Web & App Activity."(https://support.google.com/chrome/answer/185277)

reply

[–] raller link

> The privacy situation is absolutely different

https://www.reddit.com/r/firefox/comments/74n0b2/mozilla_shi...

reply

[–] JadeNB link

> Mozilla has no profit motive to monitor and monetize your activity on the Web.

But if a substantial portion of Mozilla's funding comes from an organisation that does have a profit motive to monitor and monetise my activity on the web, then surely that's almost as bad (for me as the end user)?

reply

[–] Drdrdrq link

There's a world of difference. For Mozilla to sell out on user's privacy it would mean game over. They simply can't afford to do so, even if they wanted to (which I believe they don't). Google on the other hand? That's their main business, they are an advertising agency. Sure they make nice products too but make no mistake where their profit is coming from.

reply

[–] jeffdavis link

I donate to Mozilla because they claim to support privacy, and I want them to be less dependent on large donations.

reply

[–] AsyncAwait link

> Mozilla Corporation (who distribute the browser) aren't non-profit

Mozilla Corporation is wholly owned by the non-profit.

> both are open source

Not to the same degree, as Chrome != Chromium

reply

[–] chimeracoder link

> Privacy is about the same, Mozilla Corporation (who distribute the browser) aren't non-profit, both are open source.

Chrome is not open-source. Chromium is, but Chrome is not.

reply

[–] pornel link

I personally like how it handles hundreds of tabs. No matter how many tabs I have open they remain usable size, and the compact UI theme is even more compact than Chrome.

Tab containers are useful for having multiple accounts on the same site (Gmail/Github), or isolating work or most secure sites from regular browsing. The containers are more light-weight and more general than Chrome profiles (and they don't depend on having external accounts).

Pinned tabs don't close on Command+W. It's a small thing, but I kept accidentally closing my pinned tabs in Chrome.

Chrome Dev Tools are hard to beat, although Fx is slowly catching up there, too. I don't mind launching Chrome just for web dev.

reply

[–] scholia link

> No matter how many tabs I have open they remain usable size

They were! I think they've shrunk, though that might be an optical illusion... And I can't see a simple way to make them bigger (simple as in: not editing the css file).

reply

[–] mythmon_ link

There is a pref that controls the minimum width now (browser.tabs.tabMinWidth). The default changed from 100px to 76px in Firefox 57. You should be able to tweak this to change the minimum width.

reply

[–] scholia link

Fantastic. Many many thanks.

reply

[–] dabockster link

A lot of us in the dev community feel that some of the web standards that Chrome is pushing does not reflect the will of the community at large. Chrome is also tied to a company known to have a business interest in data collection, while Firefox is maintained by the community with some funding from a nonprofit.

reply

[–] AsyncAwait link

To support a non-profit, so that they actually have the might to fight for us.

reply

[–] WC3w6pXxgGd link

Are you under the assumption that profit is bad?

reply

[–] benlower link

because Google has the worst biz model in the tech industry and is doing harm to the world.

reply

[–] aquadrop link

I think Chrome and its DevTools has positive overall effect on the world.

reply

[–] myrryr link

I guess you were not around during the Halloween papers then.

Or the Sco Linux lawsuits.

reply

[–] benlower link

i was not. def slimy stuff.

reply

[–] binaryblitz link

How so? That's a pretty bold claim...

reply

[–] V-2 link

Fortunately brave rebels fight against this harm in every way they can :)

https://blog.mozilla.org/blog/2017/11/14/firefox-features-go...

The real world is not Star Wars. For all the privacy considerations etc., this comment above reads extremely naive.

reply

[–] wtetzner link

Honestly, I find it to be (subjectively, I didn't actually measure anything) much faster than Chrome. At least, it feels much snappier on my MacBook Air.

reply

[–] coldtea link

Yeah, if it's just for the good of the internet, openess, and society, who cares to jump to an equal (but better at those regards) engine?

reply

[–] Zardoz84 link

Becasue Firefox Dev tools are better ? I feel the Chrome dev tools more hard to use.

reply

[–] microtheo link

Yes, it is even better if you have a precision touchpad and you disable smooth scrolling. Whole new world of reactivity! It is almost as smooth as edge!

reply

[–] infogulch link

Whoa thanks for the tip! This is so much better!

reply

[–] daveheq link

Now Google just needs to test their apps like Drive on it... I stopped using Firefox partly because they were so buggy on it.

reply

[–] pluma link

If this were Microsoft in the 90s, everyone would be calling this anti-competitive behavior. Saying they're just buggy because they're not tested well is putting it much more nicely.

reply

[–] QAPereo link

Same, and when you add script control with uMatrix it’s just perfect!

reply

[–] forgot-my-pw link

Firefox is pretty similar looking as Chrome now. I liked FF before cause it looked different, now everyone just copies Chrome look.

reply

[–] willtim link

The dark theme looks much better than Chrome.

reply

[–] V-2 link

Does it? As a matter of fact, it's much more similar to MS Edge. With dark theme it's super close in terms of look. Rectangular, beefy tabs.

reply

[–] pluma link

I'm not sure what you mean by "beefy". Do you mean the "touch" density with the very large tabs and icons? I'm on "compact" and it's very similar to Chrome except for the right-angled tabs. You can switch between three levels of density:

https://winaero.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/firefox-...

reply

[–] schrodinger1337 link

While there are some similarities in the UI I don't think the photon design system is a chrome ripoff. http://design.firefox.com/photon/welcome.html

reply

[–] parmesan link

I just updated - WOW! What an improvement! Compared startup time and scrolling around some over-monetized sites; Behaves just as well as Chrome. Time for a switch again, I've missed FireFox since I started having Chrome as my default browser back in ~2011

reply

[–] eoger link

Have a look here [0] for legacy extensions replacements.

[0] https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1TFcEXMcKrwoIAECIVyBU...

reply

[–] DamnInteresting link

There's no replacement for ScrapBook, a plugin where I have a decade of stored annotated documents (no hyperbole, my oldest files date from 2007). Ever since I discovered that FF57 was going to kill ScrapBook I had to disable Firefox updates so I don't lose access to ~6GB of stored data. It's a mix of past, present, and future writing research.

I know I have access to clumsy workarounds such as copying FF56 to a VM with updates disabled, or to have parallel Firefox installs, but Scrapbook is a daily-use tool for me, and clunky workarounds won't last long.

I'm thinking about reverse-engineering the way ScrapBook stores data so I can write my own migration to something else, but...oof.

Anybody have any suggestions for another plugin/product that offers the same features? Or, dare I dream, one that can import everything from ScrapBook? My searches for the latter have come up dry, but perhaps something obscure exists.

reply

[–] JohnTHaller link

If you're on Windows, grab a copy of Firefox Portable ESR 52: https://portableapps.com/apps/internet/firefox-portable-esr

You can 'install' it anywhere you want (Documents folder, other drive, cloud folder, etc). You can copy your profile in using the steps outlined here: https://portableapps.com/support/firefox_portable#local_prof...

It will remain updated through April 2018 and your profile will stay separate from your installed copy of Firefox. In April, ESR is switching to a newer Quantum version of Firefox, so old extensions will be disabled. If, at that point, there isn't a suitable replacement for ScrapBook, disable updates in your copy of Firefox Portable (if you're using the PortableApps.com Platform to automatically update it, rename your FirefoxPortableESR folder to FirefoxPortableESROld or similar) and only use it for ScrapBook not to go online.

reply

[–] throwanem link

Scrapbook, that takes me back. Haven't used it in a dog's age. But I would be enormously surprised if it did no longer store saved content under your Firefox profile directory, and back when I used it, it just saved the files there and maybe did some link rewriting. Not really a lot of importing necessary to view the content outside the extension - you'd just need to point a browser at its file:// URL.

Not sure how much that helps in terms of retaining the actual functionality, which unless I'm badly mistaken would only be feasible in the WebExtensions API via the external application messaging interface - and you'd need a separate program that would receive those messages and do the mirroring for you, and maybe expose a local HTTP server or some other such horrible hack to let you fetch the content tree for rendering in the browser as a table of contents/tree of bookmark-style links. But at least you might not have to lose what you've got.

reply

[–] DamnInteresting link

Today I spent some time looking at how ScrapBook stores information. It's a bit of a mixed bag, with some plain text files, some XML, some HTML (besides the saved pages themselves). I managed to figure out how it stores folder structure, bookmarks, saved pages, and annotations. Fortunately there's no database, and no encryption, so I can write a tool to extract the information if needed.

The remaining question becomes: how to replace it? What other tool supports all this?:

* Local saving (as opposed to cloud)

* Storing source URL with support for re-fetching

* Bookmarks (for pages that won't save locally in a useful way, such as YouTube)

* "Deep saving," saving the main page AND linked pages, and keeping them bundled together

* Full text search

* Probably other features I do not recall offhand

Even if I can get the data out, it's hard to know where to put it. Most solutions these days are cloud-oriented, which is unappealing to me. I could build my own stand-alone replacement, but what a headache. I could fork ScrapBook and try to make it work with the latest Firefox, but I have no experience in the plugin domain, nor the time to prioritize learning it.

Sorry for the rant, I'm just trying to figure out how to proceed without severe productivity loss.

reply

[–] throwanem link

I'd look at the Zotero standalone, but that's just an offhand guess. Other than that, I got nothin' - except 52 ESR, which is good for security updates until some time next year, and won't get the breaking changes from 57.

reply

[–] vanderZwan link

> I'm thinking about reverse-engineering the way ScrapBook stores data so I can write my own migration to something else, but...oof.

Looking around on the ScrapBook website[0] reveals that "gomita", the author of the plugin, has a GitHub profile[1]. Sadly without a repository of ScrapBook source code. Still, you could try contacting gomita and ask if they want to put it there to help with reverse engineering it? Or maybe even document how it works.

[0] http://www.xuldev.org/scrapbook/

[1] https://github.com/gomita/

reply

[–] gpm link

Firefox extensions contain the source code anyways, find the "xpi" file, which is actually a zip file, unzip it, and explore.

Not to discourage asking for help, just that the source not being on github isn't super relevant.

reply

[–] leoedin link

Is the Web Scrapbook extension compatible with the files it generates? It seems to have a lineage (via Scrapbook X) that descends from ScrapBook.

https://github.com/danny0838/webscrapbook

reply

[–] xtraeme link

Unfortunately, the answer is no.

https://www.reddit.com/r/firefox/comments/7btuln/so_long_and...

The Firefox team has specifically said they won't add support for the foreseeable future.

https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1246236#c113

More here: https://github.com/danny0838/firefox-scrapbook/issues/209#is...

Losing several hundred thousand users¹ probably isn't in the team's best interest; so hopefully they will make it a priority to revisit this, but I have a feeling there are resource limitations that will make this by design won't fix.

¹ https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1TFcEXMcKrwoIAECIVyBU...

reply

[–] unexistance link

I can relate to this, tho for me it was TiddlyWiki(-legacy), and UnMHT

you can use the ESR[0] release with the extension AND disabling auto-update, and use -no-remote paramater to run multiple instance FF...

So in your case, you can have two instance, one FF running ScrapBook, the other is new-and-shiny FF... I used this setup daily with multiple FF running at my whim, didn't feel clunky

p/s: ScrapBook sounds awesome, I myself did saves PDF version of website, where it still can be indexed/searched properly

[0] https://ftp.mozilla.org/pub/firefox/releases/

reply

[–] csdreamer7 link

Not to my knowledge, but you can use the LTS version of Firefox. Which if I remember is still compatible with older plugins. It will be a year before Mozilla refreshes with the newer branch.

reply

[–] Figs link

It won't last that long. The current ESR version of Firefox is 52. It will be switched to 59 at the start of March 2018, and 52 will be completely discontinued in June 2018. That's a little over 3 months until it becomes annoying to get a copy of, and a little over 6 months until it's dead.

https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/organizations/faq/

reply

[–] acemarke link

All prior Firefox builds are easily accessible via Mozilla's web interface to their FTP server at http://ftp.mozilla.org/pub/firefox/releases/ . For example, the latest FF52 ESR update for English Windows x64 is at http://ftp.mozilla.org/pub/firefox/releases/52.5.0esr/win64/... .

reply

[–] vixen99 link

"Or, dare I dream, one that can import everything from ScrapBook?". Let's hope dreams are answered. You can add me to that probably long list of hopefuls who have huge records of online life in scrapbook for pre-57 Firefox.

reply

[–] newscracker link

It’s been a long time since I used ScrapBook. I don’t know about anything that can import from it either.

I wanted to suggest Zotero as a tool to capture information of different kinds. It’s a multi-platform tool that also has “connectors” (extensions) for different browsers. [1] It may probably not be a complete replacement for ScrapBook.

[1]: https://www.zotero.org/download/

reply

[–] slrz link

The original Zotero also died with the demise of XUL extensions. It, too, used to be a Firefox extension.

reply

[–] TuringTest link

Zotero can also be installed as a stand-alone application, independent of the Firefox version

reply

[–] xbkingx link

At this point it would be best to start exploring other notetaking extensions and programs, like OneNote, Evernote, Zotero, etc. Now is the time to jump ship because from here on in it will get more and more unlikely that any viable bridges will remain compatible.

I did find this add on to convert Scrapbook files with a quick googlin' (no experience with it). Hopefully it helps. https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/scrapbookx-co...

The other option is to look at some of the PDF printing add ons because I remember a few supporting batch operations on scrapbook data. At least they did in 2010-ish.

reply

[–] plopz link

Looks like a lot of wont be ported, limited functionality and lack of necessary APIs on that list. Doesn't quite give me much confidence in WebExtensions.

reply

[–] nicoburns link

Note that the webextension APIs are still under active development. So just because the APIs don't exist yet doesn't mean that they won't ever.

reply

[–] doodpants link

> Note that the webextension APIs are still under active development.

In which case, switching to webextension support exclusively is premature at this point, don't you think? It would have been better to wait until the API was robust enough to allow 99.99% of legacy extensions to be ported.

reply

[–] Yoric link

Unfortunately, this would have meant no Firefox Quantum.

As a Firefox dev (I'm still working at Mozilla, although not much on Firefox atm), I have seen many, many occurrences in which I couldn't optimize codepaths, or even in some case fix bugs, because the old extension mechanism made it impossible.

Consider the necessary steps:

1. realize that an internal API is broken;

2. come up with a new non-broken API;

3. port all the internal code using the non-broken API;

4. add a compatibility layer between the broken API and the non-broken API;

5. check all the existing add-ons to find out which ones use the broken API;

6. hope you didn't forget any add-on;

7. attempt to get in touch with all the add-on developers;

8. repeat 7. many, many times, until you are sure that the add-on developers that do not respond have simply abandoned their add-on;

9. negotiate a transition plan with the add-on developer with whom you have managed to get in touch;

10. land the patch that you have written now 3-4 months ago;

11. maintain both the broken API and the non-broken API (and their tests) for ~1 year, until you are reasonably sure that all add-on developers who intend to migrate have done so;

12. maintain (and test) a downgrade path for people who switch between versions of Firefox;

13. finally land your code;

14. realize that you still have accidentally broken some add-ons and people are (rightfully) unhappy because "Firefox broke my add-on";

15. it's 18 months since you wrote your 2-lines patch, you can finally get rid of the dead code and tests and move to something else.

This was one of the reasons for which the Chrome teams managed to be faster and more efficient than the Firefox teams (well, that and a bazillion dollars to hire way more people). The add-on architecture is the main reason for which projects such as multi-processes only landed ~8 years after we had working prototypes and some other performance projects never landed at all.

So, yes, removing the add-on architecture is definitely painful for a number of Firefox users, but I believe that we could not postpone it any further, even if it meant that some useful addons could not be ported immediately. Also, for what it's worth, we have postponed it by something like 7 years already :)

reply

[–] wpietri link

I'm sure you'll hear a zillion complaints, but I really appreciate you folks doing this. I've been using a beta version for the last few months on one of my computers and it's so very much better. I can't wait to have it everywhere.

As long as you're here: I was told that the old extension API was way too broad, locking in a lot of design choices that were not really considered from the "do we want to maintain this for years and years" perspective. And that the new one is much more focused and considered. Is that the case?

reply

[–] Yoric link

(thanks :) )

> As long as you're here: I was told that the old extension API was way too broad, locking in a lot of design choices that were not really considered from the "do we want to maintain this for years and years" perspective. And that the new one is much more focused and considered. Is that the case?

Definitely. The old extension mechanism was basically "here is the toolkit we are using to build Firefox, come and plug anywhere/replace anything". If my memory serves correctly, at the time, Mozilla Browser/Firefox was (almost) the only browser doing any kind of extensions (I'm not counting M3 and a few experimental/academic browsers), so there was no real precedent on how to do this.

For a time, it worked extremely well. After all, much of today's Firefox is built from add-ons that were progressively integrated in the browser. And then, progressively, we realized that there were drawbacks to this "anything goes" approach, but we couldn't fix things because that would mean breaking thousands of add-ons.

So, after many years trying to postpone the inevitable for the sake of our users, we finally switched to a much better defined API. This WebExtension API is much smaller, much better documented, and does not expose internals-only stuff. Which means that now, we can fix internals-only stuff without breaking the API. Which should make the life of both Firefox developers, add-on developers and users much better :)

reply

[–] slrz link

Thank you for your work on Firefox.

> This WebExtension API is much smaller, much better documented, and does not expose internals-only stuff.

It also doesn't expose a lot of stuff that's useful and not tied to Firefox internals in any way.

The browser is one of the most heavily used programs on people's computers. Integrating it with the rest of your system and workflow can have huge payoffs in user experience and productivity. The traditional XUL-based extension system, while not always pretty, allowed for that. WebExtensions are severely lacking here and some of that seems by design.

As an example, I'm still trying to figure out a non-insane way to implement something akin to the It's All Text extension that allows editing text areas on websites using a proper text editor.

reply

[–] thristian link

As a fellow fan of It's All Text, I've looked into this a little bit, though I never got around to implementing anything. You're looking for the "Native Messaging" feature: https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/Add-ons/WebExtensions/Na...

I just checked the It's All Text github repo, and their suggested replacement is a thing called GhostText¹, which actually seems a good deal fancier that IAT ever was.

¹: https://github.com/GhostText/GhostText

reply

[–] slrz link

Looking at GhostText and its editor integration scripts, those basically work by running a websocket server on localhost. Implementing access controls seems to be left as an exercise for the reader.

If I understand the native messaging API correctly, nothing in there requires the presence of any networking daemon. The browser just execs a program you can communicate with using JSON messages on stdin/stdout. That is already a lot better than I thought.

reply

[–] throwanem link

I tried that, too. There is no such method at this time that doesn't involve setting up something in between the browser and the editor to marshal between the browser's native messaging API [1] and the editor's desire to operate on text files. I don't think that's insane at all, but the complexity involved did exceed my frankly passing desire to get IAT back - I barely ever use it any more. It shouldn't take a reasonably experienced extension developer more than a day or so to implement, though, I would think.

[1] https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/Add-ons/WebExtensions/Na...

reply

[–] mook link

I believe IE also had extensions (the channel bar in Windows 98, and later toolbars and ActiveX that partly lead to Firefox becoming so popular). It certainly didn't have as much flexibility as XUL though!

reply

[–] Yoric link

That's possible. ActiveX was powerful but... problematic :)

reply

[–] zbraniecki link

Oh yes! It very much is :)

reply

[–] xtraeme link

I hate to be the person to say this, but perhaps a better approach would have been to simply create a build pipeline that iterated over the addons on AMO to find the ones that use functions from the changed API and bulk send out an email about the changes to the authors (this eliminates steps 5 through 8). The addon developers then get the chance to change it or not. If it's broken oh well (eliminating steps 8 through 15). Making it the responsibility of the FF core team to sit on changes while waiting for a reply is a procedural problem not a problem with XUL/XPCOM. Moving to Web Extensions, which fundamentally make it impossible to access the full file system, permanently breaking many useful addons with no functional way to migrate to FF57 and calling that better is frankly dishonest.

reply

[–] Yoric link

> I hate to be the person to say this, but perhaps a better approach would have been to simply create a build pipeline that iterated over the addons on AMO to find the ones that use functions from the changed API and bulk send out an email about the changes to the authors (this eliminates steps 5 through 8).

This would have automated steps 5 through 8, but not significantly reduced the problem.

> The addon developers then get the chance to change it or not. If it's broken oh well (eliminating steps 8 through 15).

Ah, well, sure, in that case, randomly breaking add-ons all the time would indeed have made our life easier. But everybody else's life would have been much worse, so we decided not to do that :)

> Making it the responsibility of the FF core team to sit on changes while waiting for a reply is a procedural problem not a problem with XUL/XPCOM.

It's a problem of the combination of having no API (i.e. XUL/XPCOM) and not wanting to break user's add-ons.

> Moving to Web Extensions, which fundamentally make it impossible to access the full file system, permanently breaking many useful addons with no functional way to migrate to FF57 and calling that better is frankly dishonest.

Let's just say that we have different priorities. While it's not as powerful, it's better for security, performance, privacy, bugs and future-proofing.

reply

[–] zakius link

>Ah, well, sure, in that case, randomly breaking add-ons all the time would indeed have made our life easier. But everybody else's life would have been much worse, so we decided not to do that :)

but you did exactly that

>Let's just say that we have different priorities.

seems so, your priority became... trying to speed up hoping that people too dumb to care would switch back from chrome despite it's horrendous and unethical marketing while sacrificing everything that made your browser viable

reply

[–] xtraeme link

> Ah, well, sure, in that case, randomly breaking add-ons all the time would indeed have made our life easier. But everybody else's life would have been much worse, so we decided not to do that :)

This is the part that I think you are going to get the most flak for. People are willing to deal with temporary setbacks if the changes can be brought in at some point. Permanently breaking things and calling that better will get the Mozilla Foundation a mountain of angry hate mail from people who committed to the platform.

> Let's just say that we have different priorities. While it's not as powerful, it's better for security, performance, privacy, bugs and future-proofing.

I have no problem if the Mozilla Foundation or the Firefox team has different priorities, but say that rather than telling technical people the reason for the changes is because XUL or XPCOM are somehow so hideous the team had no choice. It smacks of dishonesty when everything that you have described here is a problem with procedure not anything technical.

reply

[–] Yoric link

> I have no problem if the Mozilla Foundation or the Firefox team has different priorities, but say that rather than telling technical people the reason for the changes is because XUL or XPCOM are somehow so hideous the team had no choice. It smacks of dishonesty when everything that you have described here is a problem with procedure not anything technical.

Well, some of our priorities with WebExtensions are (not necessarily in this order):

- stable, documented, future-proof API;

- improving security;

- improving performance;

- improving privacy.

You are, of course, free to consider these things "not anything technical", but they were impossible as long as add-ons weren't based on an API at all.

So, again, while I fully realize that there is a cost, I believe that we're moving from something unsustainable to something sane, which makes it better in the long run.

reply

[–] xtraeme link

> I believe that we're moving from something unsustainable to something sane

It is only unsustainable because the FF team chose to make the process more difficult than it had to be. This is how what you are saying sounds:

1. We didn't want to break plugins so we involved addon developers

2. The process takes so long that it takes 18 months to introduce any new code

3. Since 2 was so slow we decided instead we would PERMANENTLY break plugins with no way to ever fix them

Put another way: things were taking too long because of Mozilla's own self-imposed guidelines so the Firefox team had no choice but to PERMANENTLY break addons that will never be fixable by design because the Firefox team was so concerned about temporarily breaking plugins. This is double speak. The predicate (3) contradicts the subject (1).

After it was pointed out how ludicrous this sound the caveat is added that this had to be done in the name of security, performance, and privacy. At what point did security and performance become more important than an open platform and why? Numerous addons exist solely to provide privacy by blocking fingerprinting, stopping redirects, providing control over cross-site requests (RequestPolicy Continued), super-cookie safeguards (BetterPrivacy), and these options are no longer available. How are these privacy enhancing features being added now that the option has been removed since the goal is privacy?

The whole thing is hard to take at face value when everything seems to be self-contradicting (sans performance).

reply

[–] Yoric link

Looks like we're both running out of arguments, since we're both essentially repeating ourselves, so I'm going to admit that I'm not going to manage to convince you :)

Have a good day.

reply

[–] xtraeme link

I am not trying to be hard on you. I know you likely don't have any real say in the process, but as one of the senior developers at the Mozilla Foundation you have an opportunity to call out shenanigans when you see it.

First we hear the changes are because adding new code took too long because the team didn't want to break addons, yet WebExtensions does just that in ways that are far worse than just temporarily breaking addons.

Second we hear it's about privacy. Yet WebExtensions breaks a large number of privacy plugins that won't be ported. There is also the Cliqz partnership and the October experiment. "In August 2016, Mozilla ... made a strategic investment in Cliqz. Cliqz plans to eventually monetize the software through a program known as Cliqz Offers, which will deliver sponsored offers to users based on their interests and browsing history."[1] "Mozilla is experimenting with including the Cliqz plug-in by default in its open source Firefox browser."[2] The reader can decide for themselves whether or not this is in the interest of privacy.

All that is left then to explain the changes are possibly security and speed. Security I am not so sure about as privacy and security tend to go hand in hand. It would be nice if you could respond to the earlier questions. FF57 is noticeably faster however so that is at least believable.

Whatever the real story is I do appreciate you engaging with us because you have no obligation to be here and you deserve respect for that.

Stay well David, hope you have a good day too.

[1] http://archive.fo/zjf8a#selection-319.2-323.243

[2] https://www.htmlgoodies.com/daily_news/mozilla-experiments-w...

reply

[–] qplex link

I have to agree with this.

If you provide an API you'd better commit to it.

A lot of work is being wasted because of this.

"Do not break userspace".

reply

[–] pcwalton link

The browser internals aren't userspace. Web Extensions are userspace. The browser internals are more like kernel space, which the Linux kernel breaks, all the time [1].

[1]: https://github.com/torvalds/linux/blob/e7aa8c2eb11ba69b1b690...

reply

[–] Yoric link

Indeed, if you provide an API you'd better commit to it. The difference is that before WebExtensions, there was no API. Everybody was just hooking into the internals.

That's not "do not break userspace" – which makes sense – that's "do not change anything, ever" – which is project suicide.

Now, with WebExtensions, there is a difference between the API and the internals, so we can commit to something. And, while there is a cost to this change, that's definitely a much, much, much better base for developers on both side of the API.

reply

[–] pseudalopex link

Mozilla pitched the Add-on SDK to developers as that kind of API. It was deprecated less than a year ago with no migration path and a half-baked replacement.

reply

[–] qplex link

Sure, to be pedantic about it, but the point of "not breaking userspace" is not a technical nitpick on browser extensions.

It's the guideline from Linus and for a good reason. It's impossible to base work on shifting sands.

reply

[–] Anthony-G link

Many thanks for this informative post. I’ve read quite a few of the official Mozilla communications (announcements, blog posts, etc.) and so far, this has been the best explanation I’ve read for the impetus to move from XUL-based add-ons to WebExtensions. I write this from the perspective of a user who will lose almost half of their current extensions when they upgrade to 57.

reply

[–] Yoric link

Thanks :)

(and sorry about your extensions)

reply

[–] Already__Taken link

Also by moving ahead you are making the platform more valuable to get authors of plugins to come back and develop upon.

reply

[–] pluma link

Ignore the naysayers. Thank you for this. I've been dodging legacy add-ons already because they like to interfere with multi-process mode, killing Firefox's performance. Ubuntu's crappy legacy add-on actually nearly made me dismiss Firefox out of hand when I first gave it another try in February.

reply

[–] nar001 link

I know it's not really the subject, but since you work at Firefox: Is Thunderbird still actively developed? Or basically on life support?

reply

[–] firefox56 link

Just rollbacked to firefox 56.

reply

[–] hendersoon link

I'm sure you're absolutely correct in all the above, but I was happy with Firefox 56, then you broke mouse gestures so I stopped using Firefox and switched to Vivaldi. Whether alienating a huge number of formerly content users ends up increasing Firefox marketshare remains to be seen. But I won't be one of them.

reply

[–] msla link

Did any of that require destroying the usability of the UI?

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] iterati link

The right thing to do would have been to work on those extensions BEFORE breaking users' experience.

reply

[–] Tomte link

Mozilla doesn't create all those extensions.

And the extensions' authors had, what, two years advance warning or so?

Criticize the real culpits, not Mozilla.

reply

[–] throwanem link

There's only so much an extension author can do if WebExtensions doesn't expose an API corresponding to one which was critical in the XUL extension.

I'm in that position myself right now, having volunteered to take over Firemacs development before I found that there is no way to listen for keypress events in browser chrome. You can only do that in injected content scripts, which don't work except in web content and are also affected by CSP. Until that changes, there's nothing that I, or the Vimperator developers for example, can do to provide an acceptable user experience.

It's super frustrating, and I don't blame users of such extensions for being angry about the indefinite lack of a future for them. But I also don't really blame Mozilla for prioritizing the implementation of the necessary APIs below other tasks which are important to a larger fraction of the Firefox user base.

reply

[–] dblohm7 link

Have you engaged with the WebExtensions team to help develop a new API that would suit your use case?

reply

[–] throwanem link

No, because the Vimperator crew had already done so, and what solves their issue will also solve mine. Otherwise I would have.

reply

[–] Yoric link

As a Mozilla dev, I fully support the move to WebExtensions, but I also disagree with you.

Porting an add-on to a whole new architecture is lots of work. People who do this on their spare time, or small companies, or companies relying on contractors, may not have the time/resources/will to do it, even within two years. Also, in some case, the APIs are simply not available.

As for why I believe that the move to WebExtensions was necessary and could not be postponed further, I have written a few lines in another thread: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15695854

reply

[–] Tomte link

Sure, but what I'm arguing against here in this thread is the pervasive "Mozilla is evil, they only killed XUL extensions for fun". Just read this thread.

When actually millions of users get a vastly superior Firefox. Many, many extensions have been updated. And some extensions – mostly niche ones haven't. I love that trade-off.

reply

[–] Yoric link

On this, I definitely agree.

The point of your post on which I disagree is the idea that we need to name a "culprit".

reply

[–] Tomte link

Parent started blaming people. I certainly understand when authors don't have time or have lost interest.

Insofar I was wrong. It's not authors who are to blame, it's very vocal users. You can see a few of them right here.

reply

[–] wlesieutre link

If the required WebExtension APIs don't exist (per nicoburns' comment) I'm not sure what you want the extension authors to do about it.

"Complain loudly" was the strategy that got Mozilla to implement Tree Style Tabs as a WebExtension feature so that the addon could be rewritten for FF57, but there are presumably still legacy extension capabilities that haven't gotten that treatment.

reply

[–] disconnected link

Look at this from a user perspective:

The user diligently updates Firefox, optimistically hoping that this new version will be as awesome as the previous ones that vastly improved performance. Firefox starts and, suddenly, a bunch of things that used to work stop working.

Why?

Well, essentially, something that they can't hope to comprehend and that they never asked for and had no input on just ruined their browser.

What do you think they are going to conclude? That extension developers are to blame?

Nope.

Their conclusions are going to be something along these lines:

"Those idiots (Mozilla) broke Firefox... again"

"Firefox 57 is a buggy piece of Turd"

"I'm tired of dealing with this shit. I'm switching to Chrome"

Users won't blame the extension developers. They will blame Firefox.

Mozilla should have done a better job with this transition. "Upgrading" an extension to use the new API requires a complete rewrite, AFAIK.

It is TOTALLY unreasonable to expect that a bunch of developers - who probably are doing this for free - are going to be able to quickly migrate their extension to the new API - especially considering that the API isn't even stable yet, and is missing a ton of functionality.

This is the mother of all breakages. Mozilla should've tried to smooth this transition, not just simply pull the pin on the web extensions grenade and yell "Catch!".

They screwed this up big time. Time will tell what this will do to their ever shrinking market share.

reply

[–] staticassertion link

> Users won't blame the extension developers. They will blame Firefox.

What's funny to me is that these 'users' you describe are apparently on HN - I thought this place was mostly software devs, but it's striking how many posts seem to fundamentally misunderstand the decisions made by Mozilla.

> This is the mother of all breakages

I would be that somewhere above 90% of FF users will be unaffected. Given Firefox's market share that's still a lot of people, but let's not pretend like they broke everything overnight.

> Mozilla should've tried to smooth this transition, not just simply pull the pin on the web extensions grenade and yell "Catch!".

You're implying that this was an unexpected change that Mozilla was not forthcoming about. It is the opposite. We've all known about this for months.

The value prop of no longer being tied to an extremely old system is significant and you're not giving it any of its due credit.

reply

[–] dblohm7 link

>We've all known about this for months.

Years, in fact.

reply

[–] usrusr link

The users' perspective, in short: before 57, I had one browser that was fast but lacked all the UI tweaks that I had grown accustomed to over the course of a decade or so (Chrome/Chromium), and one browser that maybe wasn't so fast but had all those UI tweak (Firefox, which I used all the time).

Now I have not one but two fast browsers with a UI that I do not like.

It's perfectly understandable that Firefox devs would love Firefox to be more like Chrome, but that has nothing to do with what the (existing) users want: they already have Chrome available, they are not holding their breath waiting for Firefox to become Chrome.

reply

[–] hendersoon link

Thank you, your post perfectly encapsulates my feelings on the matter.

reply

[–] kelnos link

> "I'm tired of dealing with this shit. I'm switching to Chrome"

That was already happening, where "this shit" was crippling performance issues, and a lack of sandboxing and modern security features.

I expect Mozilla believed that the user fallout from breaking some extensions would be less than the existing continuing fallout of the ongoing issues.

> Mozilla should've tried to smooth this transition, not just simply pull the pin on the web extensions grenade and yell "Catch!".

You do realize that this transition has been going on and has been publicized for years, right?

reply

[–] Sylos link

1) Mozilla isn't retarded. They've done market research on this.

For example, in Sep. 2015 around 40% of users did not use any extensions at all. Another sizeable number of users is going to have their ad blocker and nothing else. Even with 2, 3 or 4 extensions, it's unlikely that you're going to experience a breakage, and if you do, it's likely that you'll find a replacement.

Average users rarely use unpopular extensions and popular ones either are maintained or will have a replacement made. There are some semi-popular ones that currently can't yet be fully recreated, but those are the types of extensions that change so much about the browser that average users won't be using them anyways.

2) Users aren't retarded. I know, we like to act like they are, but only the most cynical are going to switch browsers, because of this. Out of spite. It does not make any sense to switch to a different browser, just because the browser that you're used to has become different. Nor does it make sense to switch to Chrome, which is still by far less extensible than Firefox 57, just because Firefox has become somewhat less extensible.

3) The core of the API is more than stable. It's Chrome's extension API, that's been battle-tested in Chrome for years. Most extension developers will not need more than that. And it's most definitely not missing a ton of function, especially not things that non-power-users need.

4) Their market share is not anymore shrinking. It's been growing again since the release of Firefox 48. That was the release which shipped the first iteration of multiprocess. They could not have shipped multiprocess as early as that, if they did not know legacy extensions to be deprecated now with 57. Because the majority of legacy extensions are not multiprocess-compatible and neither would have been updated to be.

AMO would be reverse Russian Roulette where only roughly 1 out of 6 extensions will not kill your performance. That's just as well something you can't expect average users to understand and it would be like that for the next few years still.

So, yeah, they did rush this, but it was to save their market share. Had it continued to drop like in the half year before Firefox 48, we'd now be deep into negative user numbers.

reply

[–] usrusr link

> Even with 2, 3 or 4 extensions, it's unlikely that you're going to experience a breakage, and if you do, it's likely that you'll find a replacement.

This is simply not true as there had been many popular UI-centric extensions that just can't be replicated as webextensions due to lack of API support. "Advanced UI features belong in extensions, not in main" had been the Firefox mantra for many years and negativity about 57 is the logical consequence.

reply

[–] Sylos link

Which are the type of extensions that change so much about the browser that average users just won't use them.

When I discovered Classic Theme Restorer, Tab Mix Plus and similar, I was already a semi-pro user and I still found them intimidating.

There were a lot of checkboxes and they changed around a lot of things and I didn't yet know how to create a separate Firefox profile where I could've actually just wildly tried different options without the fear of something breaking irreversibly.

reply

[–] venatiodecorus link

the only plugin that broke for me was NoScript and I switched to uMatrix which I like even more. i'm not exactly a firefox power user i guess but i am a web developer who is definitely an advanced user, and i was barely affected by this.

reply

[–] samastur link

If required APIs don't exist any more, how is that extension author's fault? (Tab Groups user here)

reply

[–] Tomte link

If they don't exist, sure, but most of the bickering is "I want XUL and nothing else".

And how many of those lamenting the absence of some API have actually told Mozilla what they need?

By all accounts Mozilla has been very responsive and helpful. Not everything was possible, but the problem lies mostly not on their side.

reply

[–] throwanem link

> most of the bickering is "I want XUL and nothing else"

I don't know that that's fair. The discussions I've seen and participated in have revolved around equivalency, not identity.

> how many of those lamenting the absence of some API have actually told Mozilla what they need?

The Vimperator devs and some users have been very clear on that point.

> Mozilla has been very responsive and helpful. Not everything was possible, but the problem lies mostly not on their side.

Mozilla has indeed been responsive and as helpful as they can be given the constraints under which they operate. But extension developers aren't really to blame here either, because if WebEx doesn't include an API you can use to do what you need to do, then what option do you have? There's frustration on all sides - Mozilla devs, extension devs, and users. But we're all pulling together toward the same ultimate goal. I don't know what improvement anyone expects to elicit by trying to assign blame.

reply

[–] chimeracoder link

> I don't know that that's fair. The discussions I've seen and participated in have revolved around equivalency, not identity.

I've developed a couple of Firefox extensions. One of those was an e10s-compatible replacement for Vimperator, because Vimperator relied on XUL[0]. (Vimperator broke long before Firefox 57, because e10s broke backwards compatibility with some extensions long before Firefox 57 did).

The old extensions "API" was essentially a way to plug into arbitrary parts of the Firefox codebase. A Firefox developer has previously said that "[previously] the entire codebase was our extensions API".

That's not scalable or maintainable in the long-run, and I would assume that any software developer who's worked on a moderately-large project would appreciate that allowing arbitrary entrypoints and coupling makes it impossible to do literally anything without breaking some part of that extremely ill-defined API.

It's really, really unfortunate that moving towards a modern approach to browser extensions meant breaking work that people had put in over the last fifteen years, but... there's literally no other way to do it. Firefox was the first non-experimental browser to allow browser extensions, and there are both benefits and costs to being first-to-market. In this case, the downside is that they ended up accruing this technical (maintenance) debt.

As someone who's written Firefox extensions that are no longer available due to the switch, I'm disappointed that this had to happen. But as a Firefox user, I'm much happier having Quantum and Electrolysis (e10s), and if the tradeoff is between those two directly, I'd choose Quantum + Electrolysis over those extensions.

Or, to put in XKCD form: https://xkcd.com/1172/

[0] https://github.com/ChimeraCoder/electrovim

reply

[–] throwanem link

By "equivalency" I mean having access to equivalent APIs for specific functionality, as for example the inability to listen for window events that's breaking Vimperator and friends. (And electrovim! Have you noticed that it stops working on chrome pages that don't run scripts? Has the CSP bug been fixed? I didn't think it had been.)

Maybe it's not possible to support window event listeners without breaking e10s. But I see no a priori reason why it should be.

I haven't seen anyone in a serious discussion demanding 100% XUL API compatibility or feature coverage. (For the purposes of this comment, most discussion of the issue on HN is unserious.)

reply

[–] Dylan16807 link

The inability to listen to window events also screws over gesture extensions, which is my main sticking point right now.

reply

[–] pmoriarty link

"As someone who's written Firefox extensions that are no longer available due to the switch, I'm disappointed that this had to happen. But as a Firefox user, I'm much happier having Quantum and Electrolysis (e10s), and if the tradeoff is between those two directly, I'd choose Quantum + Electrolysis over those extensions."

Well, I'm a Firefox user, not an extension developer, and Pentadactyl happened to be one of the extensions that made using Firefox bearable. Now that it's permanently broken, I'll be moving to another browser which can offer a similar experience: Qutebrowser.[1]

[1] - https://www.qutebrowser.org/

reply

[–] chimeracoder link

> Well, I'm a Firefox user, not an extension developer, and Pentadactyl happened to be one of the extensions that made using Firefox bearable. Now that it's permanently broken,

Pentadactyl was all-but-abandoned for years before Vimperator was broken. It's been almost four years since it saw a release - which was for Firefox 24.0-30[0]. Its website still links at least three links to code.google.com on the front page! (I'm actually shocked if Pentadactyl has even been working for you until now, given that it was supposed to break a few release cycles ago - when e10s shipped - but maybe you just haven't updated Firefox in a while, or you manually disabled e10s.)

Vimperator - which is also incompatible with Firefox 55+ for the same reasons Pentadactyl is - at least has been receiving maintenance attention in the meantime[1], and also provides alternatives for use with Firefox 55+ (and 57+).

If you'd rather switch browsers entirely than use something like Vimium[2] on Firefox, go ahead, but it's hard to justify holding an entire browser back just to maintain compatibility with an extension that has been abandoned by its own maintainers. As I mentioned, I can't even reasonably expect them to hold Firefox back to maintain compatibility with the extensions I wrote and actively maintained. As a Firefox developer, I'm disappointed, but as a Firefox user, I'm more than happy enough with the changes to make up for it.

[0] http://5digits.org/pentadactyl/

[1] https://github.com/vimperator/vimperator-labs

[2] https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/vimium-ff/?sr...

reply

[–] pmoriarty link

Despite there being no official releases in years and being abandoned by its official developers, Pentadactyl was kept afloat by its users, from whom you could still get fixes and releases through google code and google groups. I also fixed some things for myself, based on help from the community. Despite all this, it did finally completely break recently (before FF 57), and I just had to not update FF for a while until I found an alternative. I used PaleMoon for a while, but now I'm switching to Qutebrowser.

"it's hard to justify holding an entire browser back just to maintain compatibility with an extension that has been abandoned by its own maintainers"

Pentadactyl was far from the only extension that Firefox decided to break. Many other extensions were affected.

As far as Pentadactyl itself went, the reason its maintainers abandoned it was because Firefox kept breaking compatibility with it over, and over, and over, and over. They understandably got frustrated by that and moved on to other things.

Then, when Firefox put their foot down and announced that they'd be changing the browser so that Pentadactyl will never again be able to work on it, no matter what its developers did, a lot of people didn't see the point of putting more effort in to. It survived only because of the dedication and help of the remaining community. Now there's nothing even they can do. Not with Firefox anyway. So we're moving on to something else.

reply

[–] venatiodecorus link

you are a tiny minority and a specialized browser fork is a great solution for your use case in this situation.

reply

[–] kelnos link

I think that's a great point: it's difficult, near impossible, to make any particular piece of software contain 100% of the features that 100% of people want. Especially in the case of a tiny-minority feature, a specialized version that caters to your needs sometimes makes the most sense.

I just worry that people using some of these alternative browsers are opening themselves up to security issues since those code bases are less well-tested for security problems, and often they don't have the developer resources to implement things like process isolation and sandboxing.

reply

[–] aorth link

> I just worry that people using some of these alternative browsers are opening themselves up to security issues since those code bases are less well-tested for security problems

Absolutely. The web browser is one of the most notorious attack vectors on computers these days. I find it hilarious that a vocal minority of power users is protesting this _massively impressive_ Firefox release just because they lost Tree Style Tabs or some extensions for downloading videos. Switching to a legacy fork like Waterfox or Firefox 52 ESR is not an enlightened move!

reply

[–] stesch link

We lost NoScript!

reply

[–] JoshMnem link

Pentadactyl was the greatest browser extension ever created. I hope that something similar will appear in the future.

reply

[–] kelnos link

Well, I'm a Firefox user, not an extension developer, and I much prefer a performant browser with modern security features (and the ability to implement more in the future, which they couldn't do pre-57). I've lost a couple extensions during the move, but the tradeoff is well worth it to me.

And it sucks that you don't feel that way -- it really does -- but I suspect the vast majority of Firefox users feel as I do, and in the end Mozilla needs to cater to the most users possible.

reply

[–] iterati link

electrovim is in no way a replacement for Vimperator. It's a couple of keyboard shortcuts. None of the current vim-like plugins for FF57 match what vimperator/pentadactyl can do. The problem I have isn't that they broke legacy things, it's that they broke legacy things without offering a path to rebuild them.

reply

[–] chimeracoder link

> electrovim is in no way a replacement for Vimperator. It's a couple of keyboard shortcuts. None of the current vim-like plugins for FF57 match what vimperator/pentadactyl can do.

Uh, yes, I'm the author of Electrovim, so I'm quite aware of the functionality that I was literally unable to implement because no equivalent API existed.

> The problem I have isn't that they broke legacy things, it's that they broke legacy things without offering a path to rebuild them.

Did you not read the rest of the comment, where I explain why there is no feasible way that they could have offered any path to rebuild them?

reply

[–] iterati link

> I've developed a couple of Firefox extensions. One of those was an e10s-compatible replacement for Vimperator, because Vimperator relied on XUL[0].

Replacement for Vimperator implies it's, well, a replacement for Vimperator.

> Did you not read the rest of the comment, where I explain why there is no feasible way that they could have offered any path to rebuild them?

I don't see how your addressed that. Yes, existing extensions that used XUL would have to be rewritten using new APIs. My issue is that those APIs don't even exist. That there are good reasons the old APIs aren't available anymore doesn't address the lack of new APIs that offer anything near equivalent functionality.

reply

[–] throwanem link

Is it impossible to support window or otherwise chrome-level event listeners and also e10s? As I said in a prior comment, there seems no a priori reason that should be the case.

reply

[–] chimeracoder link

> Is it impossible to support window or otherwise chrome-level event listeners and also e10s?

Yes, because those things are now running in different processes, which means it requires IPC, and allowing extensions to communicate over IPC with the chome throws all the benefits of e10s out the window.

reply

[–] throwanem link

The Mozilla triage meeting in September, which covered this issue, suggests that the requested feature may land in Firefox 58: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1pw5y-GHwDLPV9bYK4HWCiZts...

It looks like it's been broken down into a number of separate issues since then, and there's some discovery yet to be done on how exactly the implementation will need to proceed - I feel like Firefox 58 is very optimistic, but I also feel like saying "this is never going to happen" is pretty premature at this point. At the very least, the Firefox devs don't seem to agree.

reply

[–] Silhouette link

My browser and extensions did useful things yesterday that they do not do today. Who changed something in the meantime?

Obviously I paid nothing for Firefox and Mozilla owes me the same nothing in return, but if it wants to keep users and remain significant, breaking arguably its main advantage might not be the best plan.

reply

[–] Yoric link

If you're interested, I explained above https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15696184 why the switch was necessary.

As a Firefox user (and dev) I believe that breaking some extensions today in a clean manner that will let us maintain compatibility in the future is way prefereable than randomly breaking extensions with every single version of Firefox, as this has been happening forever. Plus this break has set us free to actually improve Firefox and make it competitive again, something I believe is in everybody's interest. I realize that it's painful for the users who lost some add-ons upon which they relied, but I believe that given the alternative, this was the best choice possible.

reply

[–] Silhouette link

I was a software guy long before I was a web guy, so I completely understand the desire to clean up internals.

Unfortunately, as a user, the bottom line is still that if I update I will receive very little benefit and lose a lot of very useful functionality. It's not just the odd extension for me, it's things I use every day that are the most important reason I've stuck with Firefox.

I accept that I'm probably in a minority and that Firefox is going to go with what makes Mozilla money and pays the bills, which in turn probably means what attracts larger user demographics at the expense of the rest of us.

Mozilla in turn will have to accept, as I'm sure it does, that it's going to turn off power users and that it's going to prompt legitimate questions over why anyone would go with Firefox, even with these developments. The obvious alternative for most people, Chrome, already had the performance and architectural advantages, but previously lost out on flexibility and privacy concerns, and unfortunately Mozilla just surrendered a significant part of those advantages.

reply

[–] Yoric link

I can understand your point of view. I believe that better security, performance and privacy is worth the partial (and hopefully mostly momentary) loss of customization, but YMMV.

reply

[–] Silhouette link

I hope time will prove you right.

FWIW, Firefox 57 is currently looking like a net loss in terms of security and privacy. A significant number of the extensions people have previously used for blocking or restricting potentially intrusive or dangerous behaviours seem to have been lost, in some cases without equivalent WebExtension alternatives being available.

If you're arguing that 57 is now more secure and better for privacy, perhaps you know something that people like me don't, and if so, maybe it's worth highlighting whatever built-in functionality can now replace those protections more in the documentation/marketing?

reply

[–] Yoric link

> FWIW, Firefox 57 is currently looking like a net loss in terms of security and privacy. A significant number of the extensions people have previously used for blocking or restricting potentially intrusive or dangerous behaviours seem to have been lost, in some cases without equivalent WebExtension alternatives being available.

First, I'd like to put things in context. When you write "Firefox 57 is currently looking like a net loss in terms of security and privacy", I suppose that this might (arguably) be true for you and a few other power users, but for the ~100% of users who do not use these power add-ons, their life will only be improved by the change.

Plus, I actually think that all the add-ons in the domain either have been ported or have an equivalent that has been ported. Certainly all the ones I use have been. Am I missing something that people actually use for their protection?

> If you're arguing that 57 is now more secure and better for privacy, perhaps you know something that people like me don't, and if so, maybe it's worth highlighting whatever built-in functionality can now replace those protections more in the documentation/marketing?

There is only so much message that marketing can propagate in a single campaign. I expect that we'll have another marketing campaign in a few months detailing what we've been doing for security and privacy. Especially since we'll have exciting stuff to showcase :)

Let me give you a few keywords of stuff we've been doing to improve security: a gazillion fixes, better static analysis, replacing some critical components with Rust, introducing the first formally proved implementation of cryptography components in a browser, sandbox improvements, etc.

On privacy, I'll admit haven't really paid attention, but the new add-ons you install don't have access to your private data without your consent, I remember that we've been working working with Tor Browser to reduce fingerprinting, etc.

reply

[–] Silhouette link

I find it interesting that your instinctive view of privacy seems to be about restricting add-ons. That's certainly a useful thing to do, as we can see from some of the recent sell-outs that have meant once-trusted extensions silently became privacy loopholes. Even so, personally I'm more worried about the privacy implications of tracking and other covert behaviours by web sites/apps, and that's where the extensions you could run with Firefox really came into their own.

Someone has helpfully made a spreadsheet showing many old extensions and possible 57-compatible replacements, with notes on where things are a full replacement, there is limited functionality, there are known privacy issues, etc. I can't immediately find it again, so apologies for the lack of link, but have been references posted in some of the major online forums today, so perhaps you'll come across it. One of the things that was striking was that a lot of the extensions relating to blocking content or selectively toggling behaviours like running JS seem to have broken and not to have full replacements. I know that NoScript was a big one (though I've seen reports this evening that a 57-friendly version has just been released in that particular case). Quite a few ad-blockers and similar tools also seemed to have been affected, along with extensions like Greasemonkey that allow running customised JS and some analogous stylesheet customisers, and a few aimed at controlling the use of cookies and other data storage mechanisms.

For completeness, let me also say that the internal security improvements are all welcome, as is the continued separation of search from address bar and general lack of trying to spy on everything happening in the browser that seems to be ever-increasing in certain other quarters.

reply

[–] Yoric link

> Even so, personally I'm more worried about the privacy implications of tracking and other covert behaviours by web sites/apps, and that's where the extensions you could run with Firefox really came into their own.

This definitely makes sense. I know that we have new APIs that make some of it much easier to implement, but I imagine that they still have some limitations (I haven't checked). My hope is that APIs will be progressively extended to remove these limitations.

Regardless, I believe that we're better off with a sane API that add-on developers can trust, that we're going to maintain and extend, rather than with all-powerful stuff that breaks randomly :)

reply

[–] hendersoon link

100%? Your arrogance is frankly infuriating.

Firegestures had 270k users, according to AMO. A quarter of a MILLION people.

You broke mouse gestures entirely on MacOS and Linux, and didn't allow them to work well on Windows (DOM needs to load before gestures can be used because you force script injection, don't work on internal pages, don't work on top of browser chrome, etc).

reply

[–] mook link

Playing the devil's advocate: the top two most popular extensions (as listed on [1]) are Adblock Plus at ~14 million, and uBlock Origin at ~4.2 million users. That means Firegestures has about 2% of the top extension, and about 1.5% if you combine the two (assuming not many people use both ad blockers at the same time, especially since they use the same lists). That's just the people with those extensions. And it appears that that's active daily users (as opposed to people have downloaded it at some point in a Firefox that is no longer being used).

I do agree that Mozilla has handled the transition terribly; they should have made the API available first before removing everything. That way they would at least have the excuse of it being the add-on authors not cooperating. The way they've done it, before actually making the things possible, just makes it look like they're arrogant.

[1]: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/search/?sort=users&...

reply

[–] Yoric link

Please read the thread before you chime in. We were talking about security add-ons. Mouse gestures are not security.

reply

[–] kelnos link

> ... but if it wants to keep users and remain significant, breaking arguably its main advantage might not be the best plan.

I fully expect that this move will certainly lose Mozilla a few Firefox users, but on balance it'll be a net win: they were already losing users to performance problems and lack of modern security features. The users the lose due to lost extensions will be tiny compared to the users they won't lose in the future now that Firefox actually feels like a modern browser performance- and security-wise.

I expect Mozilla knows a ton more about their users than we do and any guesses about user retention due to this move are pure speculation (including what I wrote above). I trust them to do the right thing here, a trust they've earned over the past (nearly) two decades that I do not place in, say, Google & Chrome.

reply

[–] Santosh83 link

> I fully expect that this move will certainly lose Mozilla a few Firefox users, but on balance it'll be a net win

I certainly hope so, for the sake of an open web. Hope they can take on the universal pushing and bundling that Google does with Chrome. Anecdotally I can say that none of my acquaintances are even aware of Firefox because Chrome can with their OS and they never saw a need to look beyond it. I hope Mozilla has a clear strategy to advocate and market Firefox, since technical merit alone is not going to out-compete Chrome's entrenched position.

reply

[–] Paianni link

Use 52ESR.

reply

[–] Tomte link

That's not true. Your browser does exactly the same things that it did yesterday.

If you chose to update to the new version where you knew exactly what extensions would be running and which wouldn't... well, your fault.

reply

[–] Silhouette link

I didn't choose to update yet, for exactly that reason.

The problem remains that now I have to choose between:

56 (without security updates)

57 (without many useful extensions)

52ESR (without functionality and performance updates, and only until mid-2018 anyway)

Clearly none of these is as good as what I have had until this point.

reply

[–] swinglock link

You could try Pale Moon.

reply

[–] throwaway2048 link

firefox autoupdates without prompting

reply

[–] venatiodecorus link

i suppose that depends on your OS/update mechanism. mine doesn't.

EDIT: although i have it set to auto-update in the settings, maybe i just don't realize this because i never close/restart it heh :D

reply

[–] kelnos link

I think it's a little unreasonable to point blame at a group of people who largely built extensions on their own time, with no expectation of any form of compensation. It's entirely reasonable to decide you don't feel like supporting an extension anymore, and a community to take the reins doesn't just magically appear.

And regardless, there are still a lot of things that the old extensions API let you did that you simply cannot do with WebExtensions.

Having said that, Mozilla did the best they could in this transition. You can always argue that they cut over too soon, and that they should have waited until WebExtensions was a little more mature and covered more use cases, but the reality is you have to draw the line somewhere, and I'm sure they agonized for quite a long time over where that place would end up being. They also know a ton more about their users than any of us random HN commenters do and are way more qualified to make that decision than anyone here.

reply

[–] gnud link

Two years without the APIs making a port possible.

reply

[–] Tomte link

Two years without saying which APIs they needed.

reply

[–] iterati link

Simply false. You don't appear to know what you're talking about, so maybe you should stop pretending.

https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1215061

reply

[–] CorpusCalcium link

Anyone can read the bug report there and see what actually happened. Nobody even tried to detail what they needed until the VimFX came around a year ago to do so, and to begin workin on an experimental API. That experiment didn't really bear fruit until TWO MONTHS AGO, when the Firefox devs were knee-deep in the release cycle of their biggest product launch since version 1.0.

So yeah, the Firefox devs didn't have much to go on except inactionable "just do whatever Vimperator needs" junk, and no other vested interest seems to have lifted a finger to help the VimFX guy speed up his work on the experiment after he finally got the ball rolling, so blame doesn't really rest on the Firefox devs here.

reply

[–] HaroldTheBarrel link

That's not really the full picture.

One of the lead Firefox extension API devs is also the primary Pentadactyl (and former Vimperator) dev. I'm sure they were aware of exactly what was needed for that and similar extensions. They also made it clear from their earliest announcements that they intended supporting these extensions.

It simply isn't a priority which may be fair enough.

Pentadactyl still works well on ESR.

reply

[–] CorpusCalcium link

But the full picture also includes the fact that if all people were willing to do was wait for someone else to do the work, then they really have no high ground to complain that it didn't get done in the time-frame they wanted.

Other addon devs did help push things along, and they got the abilities they needed much sooner. We can only excuse ourselves so far before we share in the responsibility for things not getting done.

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] nicoburns link

Totally agree with this. I think it was a mistake on Mozilla's part not to put more effort into extension parity before the switch-over. But I'm relatively optimistic for the future.

reply

[–] throwanem link

Have you seen the Firefox backlog? If they'd gone for 100% API parity before the switch, we'd have had to wait another three years for e10s, and I don't know if that would have been survivable.

I'm not happy about the situation as it stands, and I don't expect anyone else to be. I would be a lot more not happy about having to switch to Chrome because Firefox had become unusably slow - which it had already more or less done, before e10s started to land this year. Absent that I'd probably have had to switch already, just to be reliably able to get work done. And then there would be no one on the teams I've worked on who cared at all about maintaining Firefox compatibility, because everyone else already switched years ago. Less than ideal though the status quo be, I have a hard time seeing how any of that would be preferable.

reply

[–] MadWombat link

> I have a hard time seeing how any of that would be preferable.

Not to you. But not everyone cares about the same things. I have used Firefox as my main browser ever since it split off from Mozilla Suite. Personally, I have never, in the whole history of Firefox had a problem with its speed. At various points I might have had some problems with stability, some problems with compatibility and some problems with memory usage. But speed is just not an issue for me. Even in the "slowest" browsers most of the time is spent on network latency anyway. But I have, over the years, customized my Firefox experience to some degree. I do not do anything crazy, I don't have a zillion of extensions, but I am really used to the few I do have. And this release broke those with no sufficient replacement. And the release was distributed as automatic upgrade, so I was not even asked if I want to upgrade. A warning of some sort would be nice before breaking so much functionality. And now that the upgrade happened, there is no clear way on how to revert it. A quick google search tells me that downgrading runs a chance of corrupting my profile. I might have to risk it anyway, since after using FF57 for a day at work, I feel that my productivity and workflow are seriously impaired. At this point I am not sure whether I should stay with the LTR version of FF, switch to an FF derivative like Waterfox or change browsers altogether. The FF57 experience is so vastly different from my pre-57 workflow that I might as well be using a different browser already. There were important features to FF that kept me a loyal user through many years. Those features are gone now.

reply

[–] throwanem link

I've been using Firefox for almost as long. Perf has been an issue for half a decade. Anecdotal evidence and telemetry analysis both suggest it's much more common to encounter the issue than not.

Don't get me wrong! I'd love to have both. But if we can't - and it seems right now that indeed we cannot - then I think perf has to be the one to pick. Otherwise the browser dies and we're all SOL.

Try backing up your profile and downgrading. I'd be surprised if anything breaks. Although I had also assumed anyone bringing legacy addons into 56 would be warned before the 57 update, so maybe I'm overly optimistic here.

reply

[–] kelnos link

> Personally, I have never, in the whole history of Firefox had a problem with its speed.

That's... weird. To put it nicely.

I've been using Mozilla since early in its milestone phases, and Firefox since it came out. Firefox was originally a pretty nimble browser, but fairly quickly became super slow. When Chrome came out I couldn't believe the difference in speed. Everything from UI responsiveness to rendering speed to reliability was better.

At some point I moved back to Firefox for a single reason: I had an 8GB laptop and Chrome's memory usage would balloon with the number of tabs I usually keep around, to the point that it made my laptop unusable. I lived with Firefox being much slower in general because its worst-case performance was much better than Chrome's on a memory-constrained laptop.

Since I force-enabled e10s a year or so ago things have gotten much better (despite the bugs). I still use Chrome every now and then for the odd website that chokes on some combination of Firefox plus the extensions I have installed, not to mention Chromecast support. But Firefox 57 is finally now faster than Chrome by default, and the difference is night and day. It's completely inconceivable to me that you suggest that Firefox hasn't had severe performance problems. The fact that Mozilla has been focusing so hard on perf for nearly a decade now is more than enough evidence to me that it's been a huge problem.

reply

[–] MadWombat link

> That's... weird. To put it nicely.

I tried to explain it and I am not sure whether I am doing a bad job at it or people just don't believe me. I don't think browser speed matters. Even in the slowest days of Firefox, the time it took for content to download was longer or at least comparable to rendering time. Even now, with broadband access everywhere, if I look at dev tools, network access takes much longer than page rendering for most pages I access. So why should I care if rendering takes an extra second or two if it already takes just as long to actually get the content across the net. I do not expect web pages to be instantaneous, simply because they never are and so I do not get annoyed at render speed.

I do get annoyed when a forced upgrade removes features I relied on in my workflow.

reply

[–] forapurpose link

> A warning of some sort would be nice before breaking so much functionality

There have been periodic warnings on HN's front page for two years.

reply

[–] MadWombat link

No. A warning from the software itself. Something in the tube of "This is a major upgrade that drastically changes the browsing experience and breaks compatibility with addons you might rely on. Do you want to upgrade?". Instead, what I got was "Please restart Firefox to complete the upgrade".

reply

[–] developer2 link

Mozilla absolutely made the right decision to dump a decade's worth of legacy code to improve performance, and make the future happen now. Let's be real: had they supported legacy extensions, extension developers would ignore porting until Mozilla finally said "that's been long enough, we're removing legacy support". The result is simply that the rough transition happens now instead of a couple of years down the line.

Every popular extension will be ported within a matter of weeks, worst case scenario 2-3 months for those that are unabanonded, but less popular. If you are missing a deal-breaker extension, then don't upgrade yet... how is that a bad thing? "But I want the latest and greatest, super fast Firefox now - with all my extensions!". Talk about wanting to have one's cake and eat it too. The new Firefox wouldn't be new and improved if it was backwards-compatible with the stone age.

reply

[–] HelloNurse link

You forget the big technical issue: many web extension API features that are needed to port old Firefox extensions do not exist yet (e.g. filesystem access) or are conservatively crippled (e.g. adding buttons, menu items, other GUI elements). Your 2-3 months of frantic effort will start not immediately but in a vague future when the Firefox team feels like improving the web extension API. It is fairly obvious from API documentation and bug discussion threads that they only care for feature parity with Chrome web extensions, not with old Firefox extensions.

The transition could have been managed gradually, by piece by piece replacement of the old extension API with the new web extension API (made available to old style extensions). Extension developers would have made the small changes needed to port from a deprecated old API to a new API that does the same thing, up to the final step of reorganizing without significant code changes the old extension, now relying exclusively on web extension APIs, into a web extension. Abandoned extensions would have fallen by the wayside very fast, deficient APIs would have been fixed before actual usage, and Firefox would have moved forward without betraying users.

reply

[–] Yoric link

You're pretty much describing what Firefox has been doing for the past few years.

At some point, however, the rest of the world keeps moving and, no matter how painful for everyone involved, it becomes unfeasible to wait for all add-ons to be ported (or even portable).

reply

[–] pseudalopex link

What they're describing is hybrid WebExtensions, which were only introduced earlier this year.

reply

[–] analogic link

not all, just mine

reply

[–] Yoric link
[–] throwanem link

"Betraying users"? 52 ESR isn't going anywhere, and I hope you'll forgive me for finding it a strain upon credulity to imagine that any regularly active HN participant could fail to observe even one of the many front-page articles over the past year which have talked about Firefox 57's breaking changes. If it means that much to you, stay on 52 for a year or two, until the extension API and ecosystem have had some time to catch up and stabilize. In the meantime, slinging heated rhetoric on the subject helps nothing and no one.

reply

[–] kelnos link

> 52 ESR isn't going anywhere

In 4-5 months, ESR will be replaced by Firefox 59, and support for 52 will end shortly after.

Sure, the old version isn't "going anywhere", but running an unsupported browser these days is pretty foolish security-wise.

reply

[–] HelloNurse link

It isn't a matter of "failing to observe": without the necessary API, extensions cannot be ported. I personally looked into rewriting the extensions I needed a couple of years ago, I figured out it was impossible and I gave up.

Some very important extensions have fortunately been able to pressure Firefox into supporting them, but the typical Firefox user who depends on some niche extensions has no clout.

reply

[–] throwanem link

Such is life. I'd rather have Firefox survive and continue to compete effectively than go chasing after perfect compatibility with those extensions I've also temporarily lost the ability to use until the necessary APIs land.

If Mozilla could have done both, Mozilla would have done both. They could not. I get that that's super frustrating. I'm not happy about it myself, because the change broke my workflow a little as well - until I engineered my way past that, because I'm a grown-ass adult and I solve my problems, or learn to cope, instead of whining about them - and also because I put myself on the hook for a Firemacs reimplementation that can't land for probably another year at best. That's annoying. I get it.

But slinging vitriol on the subject obtains nothing and aids nobody. It makes the people who do it look like jackasses, it makes the people who do the actual work feel like they can't win and may as well not try, and it makes everyone else embarrassed both on the behalf of the whiners and for their own sake in being associated, however loosely, with a community so full of Tumblr-grade drama. It's embarrassing and stupid and pointless and counterproductive and I wish people would stop. There are better ways to spend the same effort - like, for example, contributing patches to the webex implementation. Hard work, I know, and whining is easy. But that doesn't really play in favor of the whining, either.

(Yeah, I get that you're not really a major example of what I'm complaining about. You just happened to be right here when I lost my patience. All the same, though.)

reply

[–] kelnos link

They put 8 years of effort into extension parity. At some point you end up deciding that the breakage is less important than fixing foundational problems that cause people to leave your platform in droves due to the lack of ability to fix performance and security problems.

There are a few extensions I use that have stopped working that don't have a replacement (yet?), which sucks, but the tradeoff is well worth it.

reply

[–] DiThi link

Most of these were done by users scratching their itch. And I'm confident that's exactly why we'll get most of those experiences back.

reply

[–] CaptSpify link

Not necessarily. WebExtensions by design don't work on firefox pages, nor do they have full access to the browser like the old addons used to have. There are a few requests our there to get the needed access added, but Mozilla is basically going to let those rot: https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1215061

reply

[–] digi_owl link

Sadly not how the FOSS world works any longer.

All that matters is the "shiny" (often wrapped in some kind of "social consciousness" claptrap), and those of us that has come to rely on existing behavior has to either suck it up, move on, or fork (And even forks struggle)...

reply

[–] amaranth link

I don't remember the FOSS world _ever_ working like you seem to think it should. The CADT Model[1] isn't exactly new and it wasn't really new when jwz coined the term either. Only the kernel, POSIX-y things, and enterprise software provides what you're asking for. And forks of Firefox struggle because writing a browser is really really hard and they can't keep up with the changes needed.

[1] https://www.jwz.org/doc/cadt.html

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] discreditable link

The one extension I'm missing (which has been broken since e10s) is cliget: https://github.com/zaidka/cliget

reply

[–] jeroenhd link

FYI: Firefox (and other browsers as well I think) already have built-in functionality for generating a cURL command with all the headers and cookies included.

In the dev tools, you can right-click on a request in the "network" tab and click Copy > Copy as cURL.

Sadly, this only works for requests you haven't already done with the dev tools open and it doesn't generate wget commands, but you might get some use out of this while the add-on is being updated.

reply

[–] discreditable link

This is my workaround for now, but Copy as cURL doesn't preserve the output filename given by the server. Not to mention it's a bit of a pain in the butt.

reply

[–] tmzt link

Adding -O usually takes care of that. I'm using curl with -L -O over wget now.

Are you missing having it in the context menu?

reply

[–] discreditable link

The download prompt mostly. Although the context option was sometimes useful it wasn't very reliable. Sites often don't give you direct links to download files that the context menu would help with.

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] chippy link

That list is missing Hide Caption Titlebar Plus https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/hide-caption-...

reply

[–] scholia link

I searched but failed to find a substitute for that....

reply

[–] barrkel link

That's a super-useful spreadsheet. Most of my extensions have at least alternate versions with some overlap on what I use.

reply

[–] nerdponx link

This is also a pretty fantastic list of Firefox plugins in its own right. Thank you!

reply

[–] rk06 link

It needs an entry for RamBack[0]. Before installing RamBack, FF was very frustrating and I was seriously considering chrome

[0] https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/ramback/?src=...

reply

[–] stuartd link

Given the performance and memory usage improvements in FF57, it might not be necessary any more (I note that extension was last updated in 2007)

reply

[–] rk06 link

Hopefully it won't be necessary in FF57. Though I can attest that it is necessary in FF 54 and FF55

reply

[–] SAI_Peregrinus link

Tree Style Tabs has been updated to a WebExtension.[1]

Getting a menu bar no longer needs an extension, you can just right-click in the blank areas near the address bar and select "menu bar".

uMatrix can control and spoof Referer sending (I'm unfamiliar with RefControl, so this may not be exactly the same.)

Self Destroying Cookies[2] is a good way to keep cookies under control, though again I'm not familiar with the addon you mentioned.

[1] https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/tree-style-ta... [2] https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/self-destruct...

reply

[–] JetSpiegel link

Self-Destructing Cookies is not a WebExtension, you want Cookie AutoDelete.

https://github.com/Cookie-AutoDelete/Cookie-AutoDelete/

reply

[–] SAI_Peregrinus link

Self Destroying Cookies is a WebExtension. There are now a couple of forks.

reply

[–] StillBored link

Hopefully one of them can deal with localstorage? Because my 30 mins of using cookie autodelete, leads me to think it isn't as good as self destructing... It doesn't seem to reliably delete cookies unless I click the "clean" button.

reply

[–] Merad link

So, dumb question (maybe), but how do you get tree style tabs to install? I'm running FF 57 but that page says it's incompatible because I'm running FF 51. I checked and the user agent string being sent is:

Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; rv:51.0) Gecko/20170125 Firefox/51.0;

reply

[–] SAI_Peregrinus link

Stop spoofing your user agent string, install it, then resume spoofing. It should be

    Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; Win64; x64; rv:57.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/57.0
by default for Firefox 57 on Windows 7 64-bit

reply

[–] Merad link

I have never (to my knowledge) done anything to change the user agent. I dug around in about:config and discovered that general.useragent.override somehow got set.

Edit: Something is resetting that override every time the browser starts. Dunno what, the only addons I run are uBlock and RES (and now TST).

Edit 2: It was being set in user.js. No idea how it got there...

reply

[–] milofeynman link

Do you have

  privacy.resistFingerprinting = true
set?

reply

[–] Merad link

Nope, I discovered that it was being done in user.js. No clue how that happened...

reply

[–] milofeynman link

I believe

  privacy.resistFingerprinting = true
spoofs user agent. Does anyone know if there is an addon or to whitelist which pages you don't want it spoofed on?

reply

[–] StillBored link

Click "See all versions" and scroll down until you find one that is compatible.

reply

[–] chippy link

This new release is all about attracting new users to FF from Chrome. It will hurt those of us who actively have been using and living with Firefox.

In time, they say, they will bring back the various APIs for the extensions (although it's still "might" and there's no timeline yet) - so in the meantime, if you liked FF for it's customisation, we just have to suck it up. It's similar to when Ubuntu moved to Unity and attracted all the new users but pissed off all the existing userbase. We should expect a big backlash when all the linux repos get updated and the power users release they have a degraded experience.

reply

[–] Max_Mustermann link

Plenty of us have been using and living with Firefox without using one of the deprecated functions of XUL, or using them minimally. For those of us this release has been fantastic, and I'd wager we make up a considerably larger proportion of the userbase.

reply

[–] Lev1a link

First off: Ich mag deinen Nutzernamen.

Second: I agree with your point that most of the userbase is most likely not running some weird addons that are hooked into the internals of FF via the old API. I actually suspect a rather significant portion of the userbase is running at most one of the handful of variants of ad- and/or scriptblocker.

reply

[–] mook link

It looks like some distros are going to take a bit of time to get Firefox >52 because of rust dependencies. They're definitely working on it, at least.

reply

[–] Indolat link

> This new release is all about attracting new users to FF from Chrome.

And I'm actually thinking of switching from Firefox to Chrome now.

reply

[–] IChrisI link

Tree Style Tabs was the only blocker for me, and I was amazed that it was possible to recreate under the new API.

I use both Firefox and Chrome, but for very different purposes. In Chrome, I have 20-50 tabs spread across two windows. In Firefox, 400+. Tree Style Tabs is necessary for how I use Firefox. My backup plan was staying on an older version, possibly indefinitely.

reply

[–] sp332 link

The APIs are still being expanded. Tree-style tabs was near the top of the list of things they wanted to get support for before the deadline. They also had a bunch of bugs open for various features where devs could discuss use cases for potential APIs, and even "office hours" to work directly with extension devs to help them port their add-ons.

reply

[–] acjohnson55 link

I was also very, very concerned about Tree Style Tabs. It's one of the main differentiators Firefox has for me over Chrome. Very happy it's mostly been preserved. I really only care about having my tabs on the side, not necessarily the nesting.

reply

[–] tetraca link

I personally find the nesting excellent because I am a junkie that opens 90 tabs at a time meandering through the internet and it gives a way to trace my context/history.

reply

[–] errnoh link

You're probably better off not updating yet. I'm unable to open my old session after the 57.0 update.

1283 tabs open in the session that I'm trying to open. FF56.0 the session opens in around 20 seconds. FF57.0 I let it try to open the session for 40 minutes and still wasn't finished.

Not sure how it would perform if it would manage to open all the tabs but currently it's pretty much unusable for tab-heavy user.

When starting a new profile and starting session from scratch the browser seems really nice. I'll try nightly at some point and see if it's any better. If not I guess I'll write some tickets for them.

reply

[–] frandroid link

Caveat: Of course your tabs should just open up in FF57.

But seriously, save all tabs as bookmarks. You're surely not using 97% of these tabs anyway.

reply

[–] KozmoNau7 link

400 tabs? 400?

I'm sorry if I sound a little condescending, but have you considered using bookmarks instead? I cannot even imagine a workflow where four flippin' hundred active tabs are needed.

reply

[–] IChrisI link

It's not one workflow, and there is no scenario in which all 400 tabs are active at once.

Bookmarks take an extra step to save to, an extra step to load from, and do not stay in sync as I browse. Synchronizing a bookmarks folder with 10-20 tab changes would take significant human overhead.

Bookmarks are also slower to review than tabs, if you need to see anything besides the name/url/icon. You would need to load the bookmark into a tab before viewing it. Tabs are already in a tab, though not necessarily loaded.

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] detaro link

You can be almost certain that people using hundreds of tabs have considered bookmarks and didn't find a better workflow using them, yes.

(Personally, I believe a good bookmark-like system could solve most reasons I have many tabs. But I neither know what exactly that'd look like nor do I want to spend the time developing it, so tabs it is)

reply

[–] SAI_Peregrinus link

Bookmarks have a really, really bad interface compared to tab trees.

Bookmarks are flat by default. You can make folders, but that takes manually opening the bookmarks manager and placing newly created bookmarks into the appropriate folder. Folders also waste space in the tree; one bookmark can't directly be the parent of another. The web doesn't have folders, it has links.

Bookmarks don't preserve structural context the way tab trees do. For example when using an API documentation site I'll open the site in a window, and from there open classes I need info on in tabs. Methods or related classes go in sub-tabs. I eventually end up with tabs for all the bits of the API I need to reference AND THE STRUCTURE!

Bookmarks are also hidden behind a menu, and are slow to access. Tabs can simply be suspended to save resources, and their trees collapsed.

Etc, etc. Bookmarks have horrible UX compared to tab trees.

reply

[–] barrkel link

Trees collapse, and typically represent recursive exploration of some particular area, and can act as a kind of task list or reading list. You collapse the tree when you're not actively drilling into that topic.

Combine with a solid session manager (I use Session Manager) to back them up regularly, and they fill in a third space between an open tab and a bookmark: something you only want to visit once, some time in the next few days / weeks, and have no desire to keep around longer than that.

reply

[–] quickben link

I think 640 tabs should be enough for everybody ;)

reply

[–] oblio link
[–] MadWombat link

Maybe it is just me, but Tree Style Tabs is ridiculously slow on FF57. Takes about 3 seconds between the moment I hit F1 and the moment the TST sidebar is done loading.

reply

[–] andrepd link

The WebEx Tree Style Tabs is markedly inferior to the "Legacy" version. It is simply an integral and indispensable part of my workflow, so much that I can't even fathom browsing without it. I guess I'll stay on 56 for a while.

reply

[–] robin_reala link

If you’re going to stay on a version then you’re probably better off on Firefox ESR as the current version will keep on getting security fixes until the middle of next year (by which time hopefully the features you’re missing will have come back).

reply

[–] jhasse link

I doubt it.

reply

[–] wickawic link

What is worse about it in your opinion? I was pleasantly surprised with how well it worked, and in fact the old extension had bugs for me where hiding the tab bar wouldn’t work properly.

reply

[–] jhasse link

No native context menus.

reply

[–] aflat link

I'm of the other opinion. The legacy one was inferior, a couple bugs here and there, but usable. The new one removed the bugs I was having, and appears to be snappier. I just wish I could move the new tab button from the bottom to the top. Code doesn't look too hard, so I'll probably add a PR myself

reply

[–] louiz link

Same for me, there’s no VimFX or Keysnail equivalent. I’ll just stay on firefox 57-0a1 (that’s an old alpha release, where (strangely) VimFX and the good old Tree Style Tab still work) for a long time.

reply

[–] DiThi link

What problems do you have with the new version?

reply

[–] louiz link

- Open a new window: the tabs are not there by default - You need a css hack to hide the standard bar - There’s an ugly title thingy at the top of the tab pane

reply

[–] DiThi link

> Open a new window: the tabs are not there by default

It's not ideal but not a showstopper for me. I mostly use one window, where the toolbar is restored by default, and when I open a new window I got used to clicking the toolbar button (which I moved to the left) or pressing F1.

> You need a css hack to hide the standard bar

> There’s an ugly title thingy at the top of the tab pane

I just copied the "css hack" once and forgot. The last item is solved the same way. For those who don't know:

Inside the profile folder (with a name like "xxxxxxxx.default"), create a folder called "chrome", and a file inside called "userChrome.css" with the following content:

    #TabsToolbar, #sidebar-header {visibility: collapse !important;}
    #TabsToolbar {margin-bottom: -21px !important;}
IMHO It's quick enough to do and I believe this won't be needed in a few months.

reply

[–] baby link

Thanks! Here's how I did it on macOS:

1. Go to about:support in Firefox URL bar.

2. the address is in "Profile Folder" row.

reply

[–] DiThi link

Thanks! I didn't know that. It seems to be like that in other OSes too. I've tried to edit my previous comment but I was just over the time limit.

reply

[–] nisse72 link

Brilliant! Thank you!

reply

[–] baby link

it's uber slow

reply

[–] DiThi link

What OS, CPU, etc? It's pretty fast to me.

reply

[–] baby link

MacOS Sierra, 3.1 Ghz Intel i7, 16GB of DDR3, SSD, ...

I have no idea why it's so slow.

reply

[–] shabbyrobe link

It's uber slow for me too. Similar specs. Several hundred millisecond tab switches with a clean profile. Typing into slack is like typing into an SSH session over a bad dialup connection. Adding Tree Style Tabs kept my CPU over 20% and my fans running permanently. Maybe it's faster for people on Windows or Linux, but on macOS it's a major regression.

reply

[–] TheRealPomax link

Sooooo did you make a donation to the author so that they actually have a reason to spend some of their personal time on improving it beyond the initial porting effort? I mean, they have a life they need to live and time they need to allocate too, right? If it's and indispensable add-on, you can probably part with a few bucks to help get it improved to the level you need, rather than the level the author felt was appropriate.

reply

[–] baby link

the author of TST is refusing donations AFAIK. He also said a lot of blockages came from Firefox and not from himself. I find it a bit sad that Firefox is not making TST a prime feature of Firefox. Are no Firefox developers using TST? I find that surprising.

reply

[–] TheRealPomax link

It's possible most of them are now using the combination of tab containers and the "snooze tabs" extension, rather than trees. A test pilot feature that lets you mark tabs as "I don't want to see you until tonight/tomorrow morning/the weekend/next week/etc". It really cuts down on the need to keep 100+ tabs open (you just silo the tabs based on their role, then snooze all the ones you don't want to lose but don't need in the slightest right now either).

reply

[–] baby link

I've tried the snooze things for other things and I just ended up snoozing things again and again. Nowadays it's typical to have 10-20+ tabs open at all time that you're going to need during the day. That's already too much for tabs on top

reply

[–] Vinnl link

> to get a menu bar back for Bookmarks

Is that something other than the "Bookmarks Toolbar" or the "Menu Bar" (which includes a bookmarks drop-down) that I can enable by right-clicking on the empty space in the toolbar?

reply

[–] cptskippy link

I'm not sure what he's talking about either. I just upgraded and shockingly my menubar/bookmarks configuration was preserved. It looks a little tight but it's still arranged how I had it.

reply

[–] Vinnl link

This might be too much for you, but if it's looking too tight, note that there's also a Density menu at the bottom in the customisation screen that lets you widen the interface (including, presumably, the bars).

reply

[–] cptskippy link

I have my density set to compact, changing it affects the vertical space of everything except the bookmarks and menu bars. They remain incredibly tight.

reply

[–] Vinnl link

That sounds like something that shouldn't happen! Care reporting it to them? https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/

reply

[–] infogulch link

I desperately wish FF showed the bookmarks bar on the new tab page like Chrome does. It makes bookmarks infinitely more usable for me.

reply

[–] DiThi link

Hopefully now there will be many developers with an itch they must scratch. Tree Style Tabs was the main blocker for me too.

reply

[–] digi_owl link

That itch is perhaps better scratched over at Pale Moon, though i worry that even it is doomed...

reply

[–] eumenides1 link

To see tree style tabs updated so early is a so important to me.

I've even got the non-technical SO on tree style tabs, they consider the browser broken if the add-on isn't working.

reply

[–] pixelbeat__ link

I don't see how to disable yhe existing horizontal tab bar though? Now I have both that and tree style :/

reply

[–] SAI_Peregrinus link

You'll need a custom userChrome.css

    @namespace url("http://www.mozilla.org/keymaster/gatekeeper/there.is.only.xul");

    /* to hide the native tabs */
    #TabsToolbar {
        visibility: collapse;
    }
    
    /* to hide the sidebar header */
    #sidebar-header {
        visibility: collapse;
    }
You probably want to enable the menu bar if you do this, to stop the minimize/maximize/close buttons from overlapping the menu & other buttons on the right top corner.

reply

[–] fasquoika link

>keymaster/gatekeeper/there.is.only.xul

Pretty amusing tbh

reply

[–] eumenides1 link

There is no OOB way to do it ATM, you need to modify the userChrome.css. see below for more details.

https://www.reddit.com/r/firefox/comments/736cji/how_to_hide...

reply

[–] TazeTSchnitzel link

I found it a good opportunity to reëvaluate which extensions I'm actually using. Most of them I wasn't.

reply

[–] barrkel link

For one reason or another, I reinstall an OS every couple of years or so, and start out with a fresh Firefox instance. I invariably end up with the same 14 or 15 extensions (delta is due to Linux work laptop vs Windows home PC). I use them all, but obviously my reliance on them follows the 80:20 rule.

reply

[–] DiThi link

I had them all synced for several years, surviving several data-losing crashes. I realized how I didn't actually use most of them.

reply

[–] karrotwaltz link

Alright. Is anyone else here using Firefox's master password and found a solution in FF57?

I have been using Master Password+ extension for a very long time, but without it using a master password is hell. I had a lot of other modules, but this one was the reason I was still using firefox.

The annoying password prompt taking focus like popups in IE every time you open the navigator or a website you are not logged in is just crazy. It is annoying enough that I am asking myself if anyone at Mozilla even using Firefox accounts and master passwords.

Does anyone have a nice sync alternative to firefox accounts that include bookmarks and passwords (and it would be even better if I can sync using a git repo)

reply

[–] sfink link

Sorry, I don't follow. I'm on Nightly (the 58-to-be) and I have Firefox configured to use a master password. It seems to come up once per session -- are you shutting down your browser constantly or something? I'm a little confused as to what specifically you don't like. (The one time it comes up is pretty jarring, I'll agree.)

reply

[–] karrotwaltz link

I don't care about having to enter my password once at home. I care much more about having my navigator at work (which syncs all my personal accounts, including bank & government) being unlocked all day long, and much more when I'm not the only one to have admin access to my machine.

57 hasn't been released long enough for me to tell how it'll go... but when I dismiss the prompt once I don't want it to go modal every time firefox tries to sync or every time I click a link on a page I'm not logged in.

reply

[–] nextos link

And thankfully Vimperator is getting ported to: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/tridactyl-vim...

Very basic functionality already works.

reply

[–] plopz link

Unfortunately, I don't think theres ever going to be a Classic Theme Restorer equivalent that works going forward.

https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1328244

reply

[–] KozmoNau7 link

A lot of that stuff is built into the browser, for people who care to look through the customization options and possibly do a tiny bit of about:config tweaking.

reply

[–] electrotype link

Have a look at https://github.com/Aris-t2/CustomCSSforFx , it can do many things, even if it's not a perfect Classic Theme Restorer replacement.

reply

[–] piyush_soni link

For me it's the Tab Groups add-on which is just irreplaceable! Firefox's "Containers" helps a bit but not that much.

reply

[–] _JamesA_ link

Another Tab Groups user here.

Between Tab Groups and Tab Mix Plus for a multi-line tab bar I have to seriously redesign my workflow.

I could live with Tree Style Tab if it could nest tabs on the horizontal tab bar. I run FF on a portrait 1200x1920 screen and the vertical sidebar takes up too much space.

reply

[–] eridal link

The TagGroups is so part of my daily basis that I went back to the v56.0

I cannot stress enough how it helps me to switch between contexts. It's one of those things that you just did not know that you needed so much.

What options do we have?

reply

[–] piyush_soni link

None that I know of. What helped me the most about Tab Groups was not just the tabs organization, but the face that I could create regular expressions so that a new page would automatically open in its own tab group (and everything else in one 'Default' tab group). That was a killer feature!

reply

[–] myfonj link

Take a look at Waterfox [0] fork (at the moment based on Firefox 55). Just successfully ported my ancient Firefox profile to it and all circa 20 legacy extensions are alive and kicking. Author seems to be willing to port features from Firefox trunk while preserving legacy features [1].

[0] https://www.waterfoxproject.org/ [1] https://www.reddit.com/r/waterfox/comments/79mwsc/waterfox_w...

reply

[–] zeveb link

> Hopefully most of the missing extensions will be developed sooner rather than later.

The API is still missing the ability to implement some things, which is preventing developers from supporting the latest Firefox.

I won't upgrade until Keysnail is able to run.

reply

[–] neilsimp1 link

I'm using Tile Tabs WE now instead of Tile Tabs, since that no longer works. Tile Tabs WE does it's tiling by opening new windows as a workaround, but I feel like that kind of misses the point.

Does anyone know of any alternative?

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/tile-tabs-we/

reply

[–] yborg link

According to the dev, a version that would work more or less like the original is waiting on https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1318532 which apparently has implementation but has been cockblocked for 3+ months by somebody in the review chain.

reply

[–] tmzt link

Ironically more Servo features could actually make this work better than the XUL version, such as supporting GL/CSS 3 transforms on the <webbrowser> components.

Take a look at Servo's current UI for how this could work.

Of course this doesn't help much with Quantum in its current state.

reply

[–] sandstrom link

Moving to WebExtensions (a shared standard for extensions in Chrome/Firefox/Edge/Opera/etc) is good.

Much easier for extension developers (most extensions are unpaid open-source work) to support for multiple browsers.

To track the conversion progress for a particular extension, have a look here: https://arewewebextensionsyet.com/

reply

[–] jandrese link

You don't need a plugin to get the menu bar back, you can just do (tap alt) View->Toolbars->Menu Bar, at least in FF56. I don't know for certain if that option still exists in FF57, but I hope it does.

I've been turning the menubar back on in Firefox for ages now. It's really dumb to hide it IMHO because they never used that space for anything else. It was just useless blank space.

reply

[–] urlwolf link

Argh, it dropped one feature that I loved: clicking on current tab does a ctrl tab.

reply

[–] nisse72 link

I'm using tree style tabs, but now I have both tabs in a sidebar (where I want it) and conventional tabs along the top. WTF?

If anyone can see how to disable the tab bar at the top, please enlighten me!

reply

[–] baby link

Tree Style Tabs is freaking slow since Firefox 57 unfortunately :/

reply

[–] itaris link

It's worth noting that most legacy extensions still actually work. You just need to enable them.

reply

[–] mccr8 link

You can't enable them in the release version of Firefox. You'd have to use Nightly, I believe.

reply

[–] sp332 link

That might be true for this release, but Firefox has committed to moving away from XUL. That means your extensions are guaranteed to break eventually.

reply

[–] sleepychu link

They prevent you from using the modern features though.

reply

[–] m1r0 link

There is a similar plugin(like Tree style tabs) for Chrome - Tabs Outliner

https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/tabs-outliner/eggk...

I was a Firefox zealot before they decided to go in this direction. For me Chrome does all the things FF does but much faster(at the moment).

reply

[–] yellowapple link

Looks like it still uses a separate window, which is less than ideal, for me at least.

reply

[–] baby link

this plugin is bad. What is Chrome doing seriously :/ I've tried it a decade ago and it was still the same shit.

reply

[–] barrkel link

Hopefully most of the missing extensions will be developed sooner rather than later. I have 15 extensions installed, 14 of which are "Legacy".

The most critical one, Tree Style Tabs, has been converted. That was the key blocker that prevented me from seriously using Chrome. But many more remain; Cookie Controller, RefControl, some kind of Classic Theme Restorer equivalent (to get a menu bar back for Bookmarks, at a minimum), etc.

reply

[–] alexandrerond link

Years of work to make Firefox the fastest browser.

Countless research and engineering hours.

With actual amazing, noticeable results as soon as you try it.

With a bunch of useful UI features.

"But tabs aren't curved, so fuck these guys! I won't upgrade!"

Oh well...

reply

[–] MadWombat link

I didn't have any complaints about speed. Who actually cares about browser speed? But I do care that suddenly, my browser looks completely different, half the functionality I use is missing and there is no way for me to get it back. The fact that this happened as an automatic upgrade without as much as asking me whether or not I want it to happen is not exactly a winning point either.

Edit: It seems that I was too hasty with my "who cares about speed" question. Apparently a lot of people do. I guess I just never found FF that much slower than other browsers. If it takes a second or two longer to load some page it is just not important to me.

reply

[–] Barrin92 link

>Who actually cares about browser speed?

I do. I can't use a browser that does not feel snappy. I couldn't care less about whether tab edges are round or not.

reply

[–] coldtea link

>Who actually cares about browser speed?

Millions of people who've switched to Chrome. Including hundreds that have said as much in HN comments over the last 5 years.

reply

[–] kk_cz link

great. let them use Chrome then. FF was strong in customization. I don't care if site refresh takes 20ms or 50ms - I can't notice.

I do care very much if you break all of my current extensions and as a result the UI behavior I was used to is gone. It's like being forced to switch to a completely new browsers. If I wanted different browser I could have switched to Chrome years ago, thank you very much. Customization is much more important than speed.

reply

[–] coldtea link

>Customization is much more important than speed.

Obviously it's not, since the majority of Firefox user base (which used to be very high) jumped to Chrome 5-10 years ago, despite the first having customizations (add-ons) and the latter not yet (and when it added, incompatible ones).

In fact, by mozilla's own estimates (based on telemetry), only about 33% or so of their users even use add-ons.

reply

[–] kk_cz link

sigh... should have ended that sentence with "for me", but I thought that it was clear enough that the entire paragraph is about my preferences, not talking about users in general.

still - as you wrote, folks who cared about speed jumped the ship already. Honestly, I don't believe they're coming back, just because FF's speed is now comparable to Chrome.

> In fact, by mozilla's own estimates (based on telemetry), only about 33% or so of their users even use add-ons.

alternatively: advanced users that tend to use add-ons also happen to be those who know how to disable telemetry.

reply

[–] urda link

> Who actually cares about browser speed?

Pretty much every end user, especially non-tech related end users.

It's kind of a huge deal FYI.

reply

[–] moosingin3space link

> Who actually cares about browser speed?

This, from Hacker News, who not one week ago was complaining about "everything being perceptibly slower" and who constantly complains about latency in applications. Pretty sure everyone cares about browser speed.

reply

[–] SilasX link

Yes, sorry we annoyed you with not wanting existing view-layer functionality to be irreversibly broken. Especially given FF's policy of "no, we're not making it easy to revert. Ever."

I lost my entire workflow one day when I did an "emergency upgrade" to FF that broke my addons and wouldn't even let me fix it.

I got some German actors to play it out:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=taGARf8K5J8

reply

[–] taurath link

Its hogging the crap out of my CPU (turns fans on) and is noticably slower than chrome on my 2015 MBP. Much respect to the devs at Mozilla, but my user experience hasn't been great thus far.

reply

[–] jrs95 link

I think it looks and feels much better than before.

reply

[–] Indolat link

I think the new design is absolutely horrible.

reply

[–] tempestn link

I actually agree with you on a few fronts.

1) by default tabs are now white on a white background, with the active tab only being a slightly darker grey.

2) Everything is much more crammed together (tabs and bookmarks toolbar especially) which makes sense on a small laptop monitor, but on my desktop is just annoying.

3) Dialog boxes to confirm closing of multiple tabs have white text on grey background. (?!)

4) Folder icons in bookmarks toolbar now have this retro black and grey design.

5) Tabs are at the top of the window with no gap, even when not maximized, making window dragging more difficult.

In many ways it feels like a throwback to much older designs.

reply

[–] JonathonW link

What OS are you on? The default style on Windows takes your system title bar color (or a dark blue if you don't have Windows set to show the system accent color on title bars); the default style on OSX uses a dark translucent background. Both use light gray tabs and a light gray toolbar background.

If you've migrated from a previous version of Firefox and customized the browser at all, you may not be getting the default settings, though-- right-click the toolbar or Bookmarks Bar, and take a look through the options at the bottom of the page. Themes will give you an option between the default, light, and dark themes (it sounds like you're stuck on the light one); density adjusts spacing in the toolbar area. And you can check "Drag Space" to add space above the tab bar for dragging, or check "Title Bar" to turn the system title bar back on.

reply

[–] tempestn link

It appears something about my existing profile was incompatible with the new version, causing a number of these strange issues. I didn't have a UserChrome.css, nor was I using a custom theme, so I don't know what it could have been, but creating a new profile at least dealt with the strange colour issues.

And thank you for that drag space tip. Definitely part of what I was looking for. I just assumed it toggled the ability to drag whitespace around while customizing!

reply

[–] 0xTJ link

I strongly disagree, and FF 58 is even better.

reply

[–] Indolat link

Well... it seems that disagreeing to the opinion of the crowd is a very bad thing. /s

reply

[–] wingworks link

I actually like the new design, the one thing that I do still miss is the elastic scrolling at the top/bottom of pages that Safari and Chrome have (and every other Mac app that you can scroll in). Just doesn't feel like a native Mac app.

reply

[–] seanalltogether link

I'm a bit annoyed by the dark header bar now, they previously only used that for private windows, now it appears they use it for both.

reply

[–] gschier link

You can change it to "light" in the prefs :)

reply

[–] seanalltogether link

Yeah I just tried that and it changes the private window to light as well. I guess it doesn't matter much cause i don't use private much, but it's weird they have removed that distinction now.

reply

[–] callahad link

If you want that kind of distinction, it should be pretty trivial (less than a dozen lines of code) to implement a dynamic theme to that effect. We've got an article in the https://hacks.mozilla.org queue about exactly that -- stay tuned :)

reply

[–] callahad link

Here's an add-on that does exactly that: https://github.com/mdn/webextensions-examples/tree/master/pr...

It's not currently packaged and uploaded to addons.mozilla.org, but you can try it by cloning the repo, navigating to `about:debugging,` and clicking "Load Temporary Add-on." Select the `manifest.json` file and you're good to go.

reply

[–] bribroder link

In Firefox private mode you will always see a purple icon with a white face mask in the top right corner

reply

[–] kbrosnan link

If "Firefox will Never remember history" is set in the settings then the icon will not be present.

reply

[–] rodorgas link

Firefox never made that distinction. What you describe is a Chrome beaviour. I think it'd be better if Mozilla copied it.

reply

[–] chc link

Yeah, Firefox on desktop has always just had a badge on private windows, with everything else being the same. I think mobile uses different colors, though.

reply

[–] seanalltogether link

You might be right, I swap between the Firefox and Chrome for home and work stuff and maybe I'm getting things mixed up.

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] dtech link

I haven't used Firefox for years, and to me it felt very natural and smooth on OS X when I tried the new version today.

reply

[–] confounded link

I had a very customized UI for Firefox, and was pretty upset by that going away. But after an afternoon with the dark theme I forgot all about it, and am now vastly happier. Give it a good go! :)

reply

[–] KozmoNau7 link

Do you have any specific examples?

reply

[–] Mizza link

When you click on a new link, there is an "explosion" animation on the tab where it turns entirely blue for a second. This happens every time you click a link. I'm finding this extremely distracting. I'm sensitive to this kind of stuff so I always try to disable animations on everything I can.

The top bar is also black-ish now rather than the system grey. This looks particularly bad with the new "blue" highlight indicator. The tabs are all square rather than rounded. It all looks pretty hideous.

reply

[–] tvon link

FWIW, the tab shows the loading progress in blue, so you're seeing the result of quick page loads. Not arguing your experience, just clarifying what is happening.

You might like the "Light" theme, which I think is available by default. That won't do any rounding for you, however.

reply

[–] KozmoNau7 link

No, it's actually a "this page has finished loading" animation. Personally I like it, but of course taste varies.

reply

[–] WD-42 link

You can change the theme to "light" in preferences. If should get rid of the black bar. This has been a common complaint from osx users.

reply

[–] jventura link

Can't seem to find where it is in firefox preferences. Could you please extend your solution?

reply

[–] Mizza link

This got me too. It's not in preferences, you have to use the hamburger menu thingy. Then, it's shoved randomly at the bottom.

The overall design is really a mess in 57, although browsing does seem faster.

reply

[–] masterleep link

Pretty weird to put it there instead of Preferences.

reply

[–] cpeterso link

You can also switch themes in the Add-ons Manager: about:addons

reply

[–] FnuGk link

Found by going to Tools->Add-Ons and then clicking Themes

reply

[–] mhandley link

Use the hamburger menu, select "Customize", and it's at the bottom of the screen.

reply

[–] Exuma link

You mean the blue loading indicator?

reply

[–] Mizza link

No, the active tab now has a blue stripe on it. Every tab has an animation of a darker stripe swooshing in at the top when you hover over it.

reply

[–] Indolat link

> Do you have any specific examples?

Labels of background tabs became very transparent. This makes them completely unreadable, as my desktop background is quite dark. So, these tab labels are written with black letters on a dark blue background. So freaking good usability! /s

reply

[–] KozmoNau7 link

Switch to the "light" theme in the customization options. It looks better.

reply

[–] sturmen link

I think the look is a great improvement.

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] syphilis2 link

Thank you for sharing how to disable the blue flash when opening new tabs. I have the same complaints you do, though I'm running Windows 7.

I also notice now that when I close a tab the screen flashes white. This is very distracting when closing a tab with a dark background.

reply

[–] masterleep link

The loading animations are really distracting and bad. Some better UI to disable them (or ideally just get rid of them by default) is needed.

reply

[–] callahad link

If you dislike them, you can disable those kinds of animations by toggling `toolkit.cosmeticAnimations.enabled` in `about:config`

reply

[–] masterleep link

There's a big scary warning about making any changes in about:config, so I'm reluctant to do so.

reply

[–] ChrisGranger link

Changing a single about:config setting is pretty harmless (you can just reverse the process if you need to), and callahad is a Mozilla employee. You can do it without worry.

reply

[–] msla link

And it's impossible to put the tabs beneath the address bar, or to have actual toolbars.

Decades of UI/UX knowledge, down the drain. Usability is gone.

reply

[–] stinky613 link

> Decades of UI/UX knowledge, down the drain. Usability is gone.

Exactly the opposite; this is an evolution that has been taking place over the past decade.

Firefox has had tabs-on-top as the default since Firefox v4.0[1]. Chrome has had tabs-on-top for its entire existence (starting in Sept 2008); Opera had them before Chrome.

The merits can be argued either way, but don't act like this is sudden or arbitrary; it's neither.

Consider that maybe--just maybe--the dev teams at Mozilla, Google, et al. have done some usability studies in the past decade that informed these decisions.

I get that you may prefer tabs below the URL bar, but your claims about the greater state of UX are baseless and absurd.

[1] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HmgtW2Iw-kE posted June 2010

EDIT: Google made a comic for the release of Chrome 1.0 that includes an explanation of their original rationale for putting tabs on top. https://www.google.com/googlebooks/chrome/big_18.html

reply

[–] msla link

De gustibus non est disputandum

The idea that someone else can know what another wants better than the other person is absurd. Your arguments might be valid for defaults, but they must be configurable defaults, because taste is subjective, arbitrary, and, despite what some believe, never in error.

I know what UX I want better than anyone else. Nobody can gainsay my personal taste.

reply

[–] walterstucco link

Or maybe they just do and you're just wrong

We don't have a configuration to put the clutch pedal on the right side

Do we?

reply

[–] walterstucco link

Besides, de gustibus non est disputandum doesn't mean what you think

It means that is useless to discuss about other living being tastes, not that Mozilla should provide every single configuration you want

In this case you're the Romans eating the asparagus with the butter in Milan while in Rome they preferred olive oil and Mozilla is the Milanese host serving you the butter asparagus

In Italy we have a say: "you either eat this soup or you jump out of the window"

reply

[–] johnpowell link

It took a bit of work but I was able to get it pretty close to how I had it before.

https://i.imgur.com/qygcIv4.png

I used the light theme and density = compact and enabled the title bar. And then I followed the instructions on this reddit thread to put the tabs on the bottom and the bookmarks above the tabs.

https://www.reddit.com/r/firefox/comments/6x2tmz/can_i_have_...

I also added a little CSS to space things out a little.

reply

[–] msla link

Thank you for helping me instead of acting like you know better.

reply

[–] Kuraj link

> And it's impossible to put the tabs beneath the address bar

I do not understand the significance of having the address bar above tabs from the UX perspective.

If anything, I feel that it should be below so that it can appear as a part of the tab's content - because it's contextual (each tab has it's own "instance" of the address bar)

reply

[–] Mizza link

I've found a way to move the tabs below the address bar here: https://github.com/Isaac-Newt/userChrome-styles

reply

[–] msla link

Thank you for helping me.

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] dralley link

Tabs on top makes far more UI sense than tabs on bottom.

I wish I could find a full-size screenshot of this, but here:

http://news.mynavi.jp/articles/2010/06/29/firefox-tabs-on-to...

Green is "page-controlling UI", Magenta is "browser-controlling UI".

reply

[–] jrs95 link

> toolbars

Man, am I glad that UI/UX knowledge went down the drain

reply

[–] dec0dedab0de link

Toolbars are better than almost any alternative as long as they were honestly designed for completing a task. They got a bad rap because of all the spyware that average users were accumulating.

reply

[–] oliv__ link

Was thinking of upgrading...until now.

Can anyone post a screenshot?

reply

[–] callahad link

Plenty of screenshots at https://mozilla.org/firefox/, but I'd suggest giving it a shot yourself. Lots of work went into cleaning up the UI, adding appropriate, subtle animations, etc. On macOS, the titlebar and sidebars use platform's "vibrancy" effects, etc.

reply

[–] masterleep link

I wish the animations were more subtle!

reply

[–] oatmealsnap link

Try clicking the link..

reply

[–] Mizza link

I just upgraded. It completely changes the chrome of the browser on OSX and it is _absolutely hideous_. There are a lots of unnecessary animations that I find very jarring. I don't know if there's a way to change it back yet.

UPDATE: There is a "Customize Firefox" button which allows modifying the theme, which fixes the colors, but not the shape of the tabs or the animations.

UPDATE: In about:config, you can disable some of the animations with `toolkit.cosmeticAnimations.enabled: false`

UPDATE: You can bring back curved tabs with this: https://github.com/wilfredwee/photon-australis

reply

[–] dilap link

Interesting. I'm on mac, and I'd say I'm usually pretty sensitive to native widgets, but for whatever reason the toolbar and the menus don't bother me at all. Overall it has a very clean feeling to me. Maybe just because I've gotten so used to browsers being their own little world.

What does drive me crazy is

1. not having bounce scrolling

2. not live-panning the page when using a swipe gesture to go back

Bounce scrolling, especially, I think is table stakes if you want to take the Mac seriously.

reply

[–] awinder link

Yeah those are good items too. The compact view from elsewhere in this thread was a huge step up. I still feel like the "weight" of the icons is heavy compared to chrome / safari / photos / finder / etc, and I'd rather native menus than the custom non-native ones, but I can live with this.

reply

[–] jventura link

I have similar remarks. On OSX, the tab and the url bars are too big, they seem out of place.. Also, the black tab bar seems strange to me as I have a black OSX menu bar..

reply

[–] superdaniel link

You can make the tab bar and url bar smaller by going to the menu > customize > density > compact.

reply

[–] developer2 link

Thank you so much. That change, combined with the switch to the Light theme, makes Firefox so incredibly better on macOS.

reply

[–] awinder link

yeah this was such a huge step up, thanks so much. that circled back button was especially driving me nuts so that going away instantly improved my take on this :D

reply

[–] jventura link

Thanks! By the way, for those who read this, to change the theme is menu > customize > theme.. These things are not easy to find!

reply

[–] gls2ro link

And I would add to this, if it is possible, integration with keychain

reply

[–] rectang link

This was possible until today and FF57 with the "Keychain Services Integration" plugin -- but it can't be ported to WebExtensions.

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/keychain-serv...

I will miss it and I'm not sure what to do next.

reply

[–] sdfjkl link

I have all my passwords in OS X Keychain too (why would you use an external password manager when your OS comes with a perfectly good one). I did not switch from Safari to Firefox until I discovered above addon many years ago, and I won't upgrade to 57 until Mozilla either fixes the SDK so the addon can be ported or (better) integrates into OS X Keychain like a well behaved Mac application should.

reply

[–] bg0 link

Agreed, totally open to give this a try but there is no way I'm porting all my passwords over

reply

[–] softawre link

I think most people here use more than 1 non-mobile OS?

reply

[–] kiliankoe link

I assume this is in reference to using the builtin macOS keychain? It syncs just fine to iOS as well if you use iCloud Keychain. That's obviously not possible with Android, but you don't necessarily need a 3rd party password manager if you're only using Apple products.

reply

[–] hinkley link

This to me sounds like something Firefox itself should do, not an extension author...

reply

[–] jhasse link

Problem is: Firefox doesn't.

reply

[–] rvanmil link

If only they'd put all the effort spent into trying to imitate macOS into actually building an AppKit version... I guess that's never going to happen due to the cross platform nature of Firefox, but it also means (among other reasons) I'll never use it as my primary browser.

reply

[–] pcwalton link

Firefox uses Cocoa/AppKit extensively. It doesn't "imitiate macOS": it actually uses the system APIs throughout.

The one thing it doesn't do is to use native widgets to render the UI of the browser chrome. Using native widgets for Web content in a cross-platform browser isn't a very attractive proposition, because native widgets either can't be composited at all (Windows, GTK+) or require that you delegate your entire graphics stack to the OS-specific compositor for Web content (macOS). Delegating the entire graphics stack to Core Animation would prevent us from making any improvements to it (for example, WebRender). Given that a lot of browser UI (e.g. preferences) is becoming Web content in both Chrome and Firefox, for consistency's sake it seems better to use the same widgets for chrome and content.

reply

[–] rvanmil link

I completely understand the reasons, but the result is an application which does not feel and behave like a native macOS application. It is a lot better than all the Electron crap out there for sure, but it's still a major reason why Firefox can't replace Safari for me.

reply

[–] Yoric link

There used to be a MacOS native Mozilla browser [1] called Camino. It was kind of killed by Safari, though.

[1] Or is it a "macOS native mozilla browser", these days? everything seems to lose its uppercase.

reply

[–] _frog link

I think the light theme feels much more 'native' on macOS, especially in Nightly where they've added the same 'vibrancy' effects they use on the standard theme[1]. That said, a few things like the Photon-style menus and the lack of bouncy scrolling make it feel a little out of place.

[1]: https://i.imgur.com/TrRyhLU.png

reply

[–] tzs link

I'd like it to be able to use certificates in the user's login keychain.

reply

[–] awinder link

This is so close to great but can a mac snob ask how to get a more consistent UI experience out of firefox? I'm totally happy with how everything behaves inside the web panel but:

  1.  At a minimum I'd be happy with a toolbar icon set that was a little more in step with OS X design (but willing to hear 
      if I just have misunderstanding of design :D)
  2.  As a reach, os-native menus or at least more native-style menus for things like the toolbar menu

reply

[–] cptskippy link

It's been fast, faster than Chrome in my experience, for at least a year. Now it's extremely fast.

reply

[–] barosoa link

Blisteringly fast. Great job FF team!

reply

[–] wickawic link

And apparently not all of the performance improvements are even integrated into the browser yet!

reply

[–] Exuma link

I trashtalked Firefox being slow forever, I just tried it out and I must say it's definitely very fast. Great work to the Firefox team.

reply

[–] clouddrover link

There's no need for a NoScript replacement. Giorgio Maone (author of NoScript) says NoScript for Firefox 57 will be released today:

https://hackademix.net/2017/11/14/double-noscript/

reply

[–] nerdponx link

One odd deficiency of uMatrix and NoScript I found is that uBlock Origin gives you the ability to block scripts by filename, whereas uMatrix and NoScript can only get as refined as subdomain and scheme. My current setup is some mutant combination of all three, but I would hope that this functionality might converge at some point.

reply

[–] barosoa link

Tried this. It was too complicated and slow enabling every subdomain by hand.

reply

[–] Crespyl link

It is a little fiddly to set up at first, certainly.

There are a few tools to make it easier though: if you're dealing with a site that uses a lot of semi-random subdomains (like googlevideo or cloudflare), it's possible to just whitelist the whole domain and get all the subdomains automatically (and then block individual subdomains if you want).

It might be defeating the purpose, but you can also change the "scope" of the changes you make by clicking the blue button in the upper left corner of the panel. You can choose the scope from current domain, current subdomain, or global "*". If you select global, you can, for example, unblock the various youtube/googlevideo related embeds/iframes/xhrs there, and then youtube embeds will work on every site.

The one thing I wish the addon would do is sync my black/whitelists through Firefox Sync so I didn't have to either redo everything on a new computer, or go to the trouble of exporting/importing them.

reply

[–] drdaeman link

> sync my black/whitelists through Firefox Sync

It's technically possible, although UX is terrible. Go to uMatrix settings, make sure to "enable cloud storage" option is set in the "settings" tab, then manually upload and download rules in the "my rules" tab.

No automatic sync (won't be implemented[1]) and, no merges at the moment (button's broken[2]).

[1] https://github.com/gorhill/uMatrix/issues/467

[2] https://github.com/gorhill/uMatrix/issues/807

reply

[–] gorhill link

> No automatic sync

By design. Losing all rules because of sync snafu out of control of uMatrix is the absolute worst case. Importing/merging manually will prevent such disaster.

reply

[–] drdaeman link

Well, if it would be incremental (passing changelists of rule additions and deletions rather than state snapshots), then any serious data loss should be very unlikely. And if deletion log records would contain the deleted records and prunned only after a short while, things could be even rolled back.

As I get it, it would require significant changes to the code, though.

reply

[–] Crespyl link

Thanks, that's a lot better than what I was doing before.

reply

[–] gorhill link

The granularity is up to each user, none is enforced.

I personally just stick to base domains usually. When a site is broken, allowing one or two 3rd-party base domains is often just enough to fix it.

If you want to go subdomain-granularity, this is your choice -- it's not forced on you. Some even go as far as subdomain/type (the cells in the middle).

reply

[–] digi_owl link

I think the bigger problem is that it exposes the grid from the word go.

I myself though i had to enable each sub-set individually until i took a closer look at the behavior when clicking certain ui elements (that as i recall were unlabeled).

Noscript on the other hand only present a list of domains, though one can enable sub-domain granularity in the options (never felt the need).

reply

[–] dyukqu link

For those who look for NoScript replacement, uMatrix[0] (from the maker of uBlock Origin) has got you covered (with "A Desperately Needed User’s Guide"[1]).

[0]https://addons.mozilla.org/en-GB/firefox/addon/umatrix/ [1]http://adamantine.me/index.php/2015/11/18/umatrix-desperatel...

reply

[–] rcarmo link

Well, I'm running it on a 7-year-old Mac mini (yeah, no battery, I know, but hold on...), and _idle_ Firefox, without focus, is ticking along at 0.7-1.5% CPU time.

Safari is zero. Dead still. I type this and it moves to 0.3%.

No idea what Firefox is doing...

edit: Also, even without focus, Firefox climbs to 8.9% CPU just by hovering my mouse over it. Safari goes to 0.2%.

reply

[–] daniel_iversen link

Mmm thanks! And looks like there are a few anecdotal reports and bugs around battery drain https://www.reddit.com/r/firefox/comments/7a91ss/battery_lif... what a shame if there are issues there - would be a showstopper for my personal usage at least! Hope they haven’t overfocused on speed at the cost of worse battery life.

reply

[–] tooltalk link

Well, I guess that depends on the content of whatever you are viewing. I tried the same on my 5-year old rMacBook Pro:

youtube.com: Firefox ~6%, Safari ~0%

news.ycombinator.com: 0%, ~0%

amazon.com: ~2%, ~2%

reply

[–] amirmansour link

I'm on one of the latest MacBook Pros and Firefox uses more CPU, RAM, and energy than Safari. I don't mind the extra CPU and RAM usage, but the energy usage needs some work, specially during idle time. On average the energy impact of the new Firefox has been double that of Safari.

reply

[–] richdougherty link

Kind of a related question... if I'm a developer and I want my software to be mobile friendly, what should I do and how should I test it?

Are there any reasonable proxies for battery usage that I can run during continuous integration? E.g. measure CPU usage while running tests, measure CPU wakes (somehow?), measure memory bandwidth or IO used? How would I do this?

reply

[–] daniel_iversen link

It’s great that FF is now faster but how’s battery life in this new engine? The reason I stuck with safari and only a year ago moved to chrome was that google finally was able to drastically improve battery life on chrome for Mac... where is FF here (their release page doesn’t mention “battery” at all), does anyone know?

reply

[–] SAI_Peregrinus link

Try Tree-Style Tabs. It totally replaced tab groups for me, it's far more capable.

reply

[–] scott_karana link

Thanks, can't hurt to try.

reply

[–] Sylos link

WebExtensions were specifically announced alongside Electrolysis. This is not Mozilla's fault.

reply

[–] pseudalopex link

When WebExtensions was announced, Electrolysis was already on by default in Developer Edition, and Mozilla planned to begin blacklisting incompatible extensions within 3 months.[1] The author of Tab Groups had just finished rewriting his extensions for Electrolysis.[2] He only gave up 18 months later, partly because of how frustrating Mozilla made the process of getting missing functionality added to WebExtensions.

[1] https://blog.mozilla.org/addons/2015/08/21/the-future-of-dev...

[2] https://web.archive.org/web/20170128013037/http://fasezero.c...

reply

[–] Sylos link

Your link 1 is from 2015/08/21. Electrolysis was rolled out with Firefox 48 on 2016/08/02. The respective Developer Edition build was released on 2016/04/25.

reply

[–] pseudalopex link

Electrolysis development started in 2009. It was enabled by default in Developer Edition starting with Firefox 42 (2015/08/11) and opt-in before that.

Nobody knew in August 2015 that Mozilla would delay the Electrolysis rollout, allow incompatible extensions would continue working into 2017, pick an arbitrary date to drop XUL extensions instead of tying it to WebExtensions milestones, drop the Add-on SDK at the same time, and not really support gradual porting.

reply

[–] jhasse link

I guess extension developers didnt expect being forced to WebExtemsions only so soon.

reply

[–] scott_karana link

I too am sad that despite the awesome speed, I'm forced to stick with v56 out of necessity for my add-ons.

Tab Groups (which was originally a first-class Mozilla feature called Panorama) absolutely changed my browser workflow, and I can't imagine regressing...

The new APIs won't support replacement any time soon, and the dev has already given up, since they'd already had to run a fundraiser once to add Electrolysis support, just to find that their work would be thrown away in the near future anyways.

And that's just one example... :(

reply

[–] Yoric link

For Firefox 57, the team has been working essentially on improving CPU, GPU and memory usage, as well as concurrency. I know that some people have been looking at energy, but that's not where most efforts were spent.

I hope that our next priority becomes energy. Stay tuned :)

reply

[–] amirmansour link

That's great to hear. For a lot of users, Chrome is not the competition, but rather Safari, because Safari is energy efficient and privacy conscious. If Firefox can get as energy efficient, or even just close enough to Safari then it becomes THE clear winner.

reply

[–] mccr8 link

None of the Firefox Quantum work has looked at power usage, so don't expect any changes on that front.

reply

[–] Starwatcher2001 link

This is mentioned in the release notes:

"AMD VP9 hardware video decoder support for improved video playback with lower power consumption"

reply

[–] tedunangst link

How many users have AMD laptops?

reply

[–] dralley link

AMD graphics. And since we were talking about Macs, the answer is "a lot"

reply

[–] revelation link

And what is the intersection of "Macs", "AMD graphics" and "battery powered"?

Pretty sure it is the empty set.

reply

[–] skarap link
[–] akerro link

Well... new renderer and JS engine are faster and use less memory, which means less CPU cycles are used for the same thing and less information is stored in RAM, there are improvements for Windows and Linux hardware acceleration. This all summed-up means reduction of power consumption.

reply

[–] bzbarsky link

The new style system is faster, but partly due to parallelizing, which doesn't necessarily mean fewer CPU cycles (though _can_ mean more time spent in CPU sleep state).

I don't know why you think 57 uses less memory than 56 for the "renderer and JS engine". I don't think it does. In fact, the data shows that it actually uses a bit more than 56, though this obviously depends on workload.

(Disclaimer: I work on the Firefox rendering engine and have done some work on the JS engine.)

reply

[–] hinkley link

In theory, race to idle might save it. In practice, my fellow web app devs will throw more crap on the web page until things are slow again and only then push back on feature creep from management.

reply

[–] bonaldi link

It's really pretty terrible, on Mac at least -- there's a bug about it: https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1404042 which is being tracked for v58.

reply

[–] nnethercote link

Note that these kinds of things are typically highly dependent on machine/browser configuration and workload. So that bug's title is overly broad, power consumption is fine for many (most?) people.

reply

[–] ucha link

It has not been improved and still consumes significantly more power than Safari. It's the major reason why I won't switch.

reply

[–] yalogin link

What is the typical use case for you?

reply

[–] puszczyk link

Web browsing

reply

[–] cvburgess link

Anyone know how the new FireFox compares on battery-life? Safari crushes Chrome on this front currently, but I'm curious how FireFox compares now.

reply

[–] mrweasel link

They published a beta version a month ago: https://blog.lastpass.com/2017/10/lastpass-beta-firefox-57.h...

It's been working fine for me.

reply

[–] SnowingXIV link

This is what's holding me back from changing mostly. Honestly, lastpass is great for me but I almost wish built in browser password managers were better. I used to use Google Chrome's password manager but one time I synced with another computer or phone and everything got erased and there was no undoing it. I lost everything. Maybe syncing is better now but after that sync that thought "hey let's make sure everything is like this brand new device" I hesitate.

reply

[–] Santosh83 link

High time that passwords management was integrated into the OS, where it belongs. These days its not just sites, but hundreds of apps too that want your passwords, and browser based extensions can't interface with other apps. On the other hand a standalone password manager has at best a flaky interaction with web pages inside a browser window, and often has to be supported by an in-broswer extension, adding to complexity of code and interaction.

We need the OS to store credentials and expose a well-defined, OS independent API for apps/sites to identify themselves securely and request for the user's authentication. This will go a long way towards mitigating exploits like cross-site scripting attacks, phishing, software keyloggers, clipboard sniffers and so on.

I really find it amazing that this is something none of the major OS creators have tackled in a standarised manner.

reply

[–] wpietri link

I use multiple OSes on a daily basis. I think most people do. The right time for OSes to solve this problem was circa 2000. After the mainstreaming of the smartphone in 2007, it was too late.

reply

[–] Shorel link

I really doubt a Microsoft Windows integrated password manager could be conveniently accessed from Android, OSX or Ubuntu.

In fact, I imagine almost every OS vendor would try some form of lock-in.

reply

[–] drdaeman link

An application can read from one store and send data to another app to persist into another store.

The one issue I see is that to sync properly such app would need a changelist (with the vector clocks and stuff), and the only thing most credential stores provide is the current state and no history track. An app may implement such list to itself, though, outside of the OS credential storage - without actual credentials, just referring to the record IDs so it's not too sensitive.

Another is, such external app would need to repeatedly access the credential store. If there is no API to detect if the store is locked or not, it may either require to keep it unlocked, or spam user with access prompts or something like that.

Oh, and it would be problematic if the store pins records to the applications and doesn't allow e.g. Chrome to access Firefox passwords and vice versa. You'll need highly privileged access (root) or somehow hook another app and inject yourself into its address space (WinHook, Xposed, etc).

But e.g. Windows Vault <-> KDE or Gnome keyring sync is certainly possible. In theory. Don't know if anyone had ever implemented it in practice, though.

reply

[–] sleepychu link

I think the main problem with the inbuilt password managers is they're designed as a convenience mechanism to locally store password copies, not as a complete replacement for user remembered passwords.

reply

[–] sleepychu link

At last LastPass has released a new version! (FF Developer Edition has passed beyond the grace period so only allows modern extensions. I've been using Chrome just for lastpass for months!)

reply

[–] r3bl link

As far as your edit is concerned, try searching for "browser.tabs.tabMinWidth" in "about:config".

I know it's available in Beta / Nightly, but I don't know if it got backported to Stable nor will it.

reply

[–] dom96 link

Nice. This works, thanks! :)

reply

[–] TuringTest link

I've been using the nightly version for several months, and it doesn't slow down significantly.

reply

[–] amirmansour link

Customize > Density (at the bottom) > "Normal" :)

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] dom96 link

Just upgraded. Definitely feels snappier at first glance, what I'm most curious about however is how much the speed deteriorates the longer I use it (if at all). The older version was definitely pretty bad after a couple of days of uptime.

All in all though. Nice job so far. :)

Edit: I do sorta feel like the tabs are now smaller (when there is a lot of tabs open), any way to make them bigger?

reply

[–] cptskippy link

Unfortunately that doesn't disable the "Recommended by Pocket" crap on the New Tab Window. I have Firefox installed on 8 different machines and the option to remove "Recommended by Pocket" in the New Tab Preferences only appears in half of them.

If you're missing the option then you can open about:config and set "browser.newtabpage.activity-stream.feeds.section.topstories" to false to get rid of it. I also blew away the "browser.newtabpage.activity-stream.feeds.section.topstories.options" key that contains all of the configuration crap for pocket.

Unfortunately non of this is or the op's settings are synced in your Profile so you have to change it on all of your machines. :(

reply

[–] mook link

Huh, going through the prefs there it looks like they probably have telemetry going on in the new tab page. Where all your history goes.

I miss the Mozilla that actually acted like they cared about privacy.

reply

[–] mintplant link

I'm not sure what you're referring to, can you clarify?

reply

[–] mook link

Sure; I'm just complaining about the _existence_ of `browser.newtabpage.activity-stream.feeds.telemetry`. I'm not comfortable having tracking so near user data.

Now that I'm not on a mobile and can actually look at the code, it looks like it's defined at [1]. I must be reading TelemetryFeed.jsm wrong, though, because that says addSession() holds on to the URL (as .page) and createPing() puts it into the ping...

[1]: https://hg.mozilla.org/releases/mozilla-release/file/FIREFOX...

reply

[–] mintplant link

Tracing back through the code, this is only triggered with a URL by the RemotePages watcher, which notifies when the URL matches one of a whitelist. The only whitelisted URLs currently are about:home, about:newtab, and about:tabcrashed.

https://searchfox.org/mozilla-central/source/toolkit/modules...

https://searchfox.org/mozilla-central/search?q=symbol:%23Rem...

reply

[–] helenius link

If you like syncing files you could look into user.js for syncing config settings:

http://kb.mozillazine.org/User.js_file

reply

[–] cptskippy link

Am I missing something? I don't see how that ties into Firefox Sync to propagate changes to all instances.

* Also, that's very cool regardless.

reply

[–] helenius link

Not really, just that you need to be crazy enough to write and sync a file instead with e.g. Resilio or Dropbox.

reply

[–] cptskippy link

Well I appreciate the link. That's certainly easier than editing properties in about:config.

reply

[–] djhaskin987 link

Just click on the gear on the "New tab" page, you can disable recommended by pocket.

reply

[–] cptskippy link

> Just click on the gear

> I have Firefox installed on 8 different machines and the option to remove "Recommended by Pocket" in the New Tab Preferences only appears in half of them.

The gear you're referring to opens the "New Tab Preferences" screen that I was referring to.

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] jp_rider link

If you'd like to disable pocket, here are instructions:

https://help.getpocket.com/article/1025-disabling-pocket-in-...

reply

[–] raquo link

As an alternative to Self-Destructing Cookies, there's Cookie AutoDelete which does work with Quantum. https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/cookie-autode...

reply

[–] jd3 link

This is the largest disappointment of all. The power of XUL/XPCOM extensions was the only thing really keeping me invested in Mozilla in recent years.

reply

[–] sandstrom link

The move to WebExtensions (a shared standard for extensions in Chrome/Firefox/Edge/Opera/etc) is great.

It makes it much easier for extension developers (most of which work for free, on open-source projects) to maintain support for multiple browsers with a shared codebase.

If you want to track the conversion progress for a particular extension, have a look at this site: https://arewewebextensionsyet.com/

reply

[–] MadWombat link

Heh. Tab Groups are not even on the list.

reply

[–] SllX link

Self-Destructing Cookies isn't supported anymore. I just found that out myself a bit earlier and am giving Cookies AutoDelete a shot.

Edit: Forgot to mention but if you check the add-ons site, you should be able to find an updated extension for Video DownloadHelper.

reply

[–] mkup link

UPDATE: new version of Video DownloadHelper addon for Quantum Firefox was not useful for me: it requires external companion app to write files (which I don't trust and don't want to install). But I found another addon: "Flash and Video Download", which does its job quite well without any assistance from external software.

reply

[–] mkup link

Thanks, list is much better now:

  + uBlock Origin
  + Cookies AutoDelete
  + Video DownloadHelper
  - YesScript
  - Save Session
Remaining addons are not that essential, especially in comparison to much faster Firefox.

reply

[–] arunc link

    - DownthemAll

reply

[–] blaenk link

This one surprises me the most, not the fact that DownThemAll itself isn't WebExtensions compatible, since that was known since last year [0], but that there is a huge gap in download management functionality.

I'm not even asking for all of the functionality present in DownThemAll, I'd just like:

    * to be able to queue up multiple downloads without actually starting them, so I can start/resume them once I go AFK for example
    * auto-scan all links on the page and be able to filter them to add links to the download queue, e.g. to queue up all files matching a certain filter
    * rearrange the queue's order
    * persist the queue across browser sessions
    * pause any given download and be able to resume it across browser sessions
Meanwhile the usual built-in download functionality nowadays appears to be pitifully bare-bones by comparison, only providing the ability to manually download individual files one by one with no semblance of a queue, nor a way to limit concurrent downloads to one (e.g. I'd rather have one finished and ready to use than 5 downloading slowly due to the connection being spread thin).

For what it's worth, thankfully the author of DownThemAll is working on a WebExtensions version [1], which may also get released on Chrome and other WebExtensions-compatible browsers [2].

[0]: https://www.downthemall.net/re-downthemall-and-webextensions...

[1]: https://www.downthemall.net/delays/

[2]: https://www.downthemall.net/progress/

reply

[–] Viper007Bond link

Currently being rewritten.

reply

[–] hinkley link

A subset is currently being rewritten. Which is a surprise because he announced he wanted nothing more to do with Mozilla over this, last year. Wonder what caused the change of heart.

reply

[–] patall link

- TreeStyleTab weakened

- Zotero weakened

- mouse gesture addons

reply

[–] kissickas link

Vimperator :(

reply

[–] nnethercote link

I've heard that Vim Vixen is decent, though I haven't used it myself.

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/vim-vixen/

reply

[–] kissickas link

From research I also found Vimium-FF and Saka Key. I just dread the whole process of trying each one out (I'll probably just settle for the first or second one I try) and subsequently re-customizing everything. It took me hours to get Vimperator where I wanted it (between the learning curve and modifying settings) and to lose that is like losing my .vimrc file.

reply

[–] MadWombat link

- Tab Mix Plus

- Tab Groups

reply

[–] Viper007Bond link

TMP beta is a web extension.

reply

[–] MadWombat link

Can you post a link? I have looked at their site and all current builds, including dev say that they are not 57 compatible.

reply

[–] Viper007Bond link

Sorry, I may have heard wrong. I personally just stopped using the addon.

reply

[–] MadWombat link

shrug I have yet to find a viable alternative

reply

[–] mkup link

Firefox Quantum feels very fast, but addon support is disappointing :(

  + uBlock Origin
  - Self-Destructing Cookies
  - YesScript
  - Video DownloadHelper
  - Save Session

reply

[–] richardboegli link

For those who still need older plugin system, use Firefox ESR for as long as possible or switch now to Pale Moon.

I gave FF57 (Quantum) a try during Beta and it was FAST. I am still using Pale Moon, but installed FF57 to see the improvements, to keep an alternate browser installed and also because Mozilla "Container Tabs" looks very interesting. https://wiki.mozilla.org/Security/Contextual_Identity_Projec...

Using Tree Style Tabs and Container Tabs looks to be AWESOME, once they do a little bit more polish to switching between containers.

At the moment, they haven't implemented hiding of the horizontal tabs as Mozilla haven't officially implemented the feature. It is a work in progress though.

See this workaround to remove tabs: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15343940

Now that FF57 is out of beta, I'll give it another go.

reply

[–] vocatus_gate link

FWIW Palemoon (https://www.palemoon.org/releasenotes.shtml) is a fork of Firefox that attempts to maintain a power user environment and negate some of the ridiculous changes Mozilla rolls out. Updated pretty regularly and works more or less as well as vanilla Firefox. I've been using it on Linux Mint and Windows 7-10 for years now.

reply

[–] placeybordeaux link

Could you elaborate on how the second source is about censoring/tracking users?

reply

[–] bobcall link

Creating a single entity who gets to control what is true from its point of view?

> Mozilla’s Open Innovation team will work with ["like-minded"] technologists and artists to develop technology that combats misinformation. Mozilla will partner with global media organizations to do this, and also double down on our existing product work in the space, like Pocket, Focus, and Coral.

Firefox is the gatekeeper to the web for many and if Mozilla or this initiative is going to inject their bias in the browser, then it means that anyone that Mozilla or the Mozilla Information Trust Initiative disagrees with will get censored or their speech altered. No organization that is run by humans can make the claim that they won't have a bias one way or another. In order to have a free society, we must have the freedom to express any idea (no matter how stupid they might be). People have become too lazy to look at other sources or challenge what they hear. Ideas need to be challenged in the open and be able to hold their own weight. We should not need an organization or a browser making those calls.

reply

[–] bobcall link

This will be the first version of Firefox that I won't be using. The final straw with me was the "Studies" integration. I've wanted to stop using Firefox since Pocket and EME was integrated, but I have failed to find anything else that works for me. I can no longer pretend to trust the Mozilla Foundation or the Firefox team, given their track record over the last few years. In our current era, the browser has become a critical piece of software and it is dangerous to trust an organization who wishes to censor [1][2] and track users.

[1] Brendan Eich https://www.forbes.com/sites/quora/2014/04/11/did-mozilla-ce...

[2] Mozilla Information Trust Initiative : https://archive.fo/jcJWg

reply

[–] petval link

The toolbar API still lacks the required features to allow multirow. According to bugzilla discussions they might add it somewhere in 2018 :( You can also find contradictory statements from different developers like "this should be handled by addons" vs. "addons should manipulate only the web content not the browser itself" etc. It's a mess so maybe if we users push enough they might understand. See https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1246706

From my point of view they should also provide mouse gestures because the WebExtensions work only after DOM is loaded and not having gestures on internal pages is a huge discomfort and user experience dissonance to put it mildly.

reply

[–] kk_cz link

> "addons should manipulate only the web content not the browser itself"

WTF? Who in their right mind can think that the only reason people installed add-ons was to manipulate the web content? UI is the main differentiating factor between browsers, FF strength was the ability to customize UI for user liking.

reply

[–] phreack link

Absolutely, the one reason I had never left Firefox's side during Chrome's best moments were the few extensions like Bamboo RSS reader and Tab Mix Plus, which I never found good alternatives to and just were indispensable once I tried them.

reply

[–] DeepYogurt link

Firefox 56 still works.

reply

[–] jcoffland link

You have to go back to 55 to get legacy extensions to work.

reply

[–] 51Cards link

I am typing this this on v56 with all my legacy extensions working?

reply

[–] jcoffland link

Without Tab Mix Plus Firefox 57 is not an option for me. Does anyone know of an extension that allows multiple tab rows? Tab Trees and like extensions don't cut it. This is the main reason I never switched to Chrome.

It's too bad FF had to abandon it's massive library of legacy extensions for this upgrade. The myriad of extensions is one of FF's main benefits over other browsers. I've happily accepted lower performance in trade for configuration options. I suppose the most popular extensions will eventually be ported.

reply

[–] 0xFFC link

Exactly, this is the only reason why I don’t use anything other than Chrome. While I really want to switch to FF. Chrome “add to desktop” does make website almost as like a desktop app and without unnecessary tabbar and stuff.

I wish firefox could do that.

That being said, I don’t use any native app at all other than a terminal emulator. Just terminal + vscode + chrome.

reply

[–] Yoric link

For what it's worth, Firefox used to be able to do this (with a few manipulations). At some point, that feature was killed, because apparently nobody (except me) was using it :/

It's a shame, because I would really like to be able to move my chat clients out of the Firefox UI.

reply

[–] orthecreedence link

I REALLY want an Electron/NWJS build on top of Firefox. I would scrap chrome altogether both for personal use and for building "desktop" apps.

reply

[–] thinkloop link

I'm loving the new FF, my missing feature is being able to open a site as a desktop app. I use chrome to make different icons/windows/apps for gmail, hn, reddit, photos, cloud9, etc. Anyone know if there is a way to have a website shortcut open in its own window and have an icon in the taskbar?

reply

[–] Vinnl link

It has never been part of the release - it was part of a test rollout to 1% of German users (not sure if that was of an actual or a beta release).

reply

[–] hysan link

Well for one thing, it was part of an actual release according to Mozilla's own blog post about it.[1] Second, that still doesn't answer my question about what happened with regards to Cliqz. Is it still being considered? What were the results if the test has concluded? Or are they still testing it in 1% of FF57 downloads to German users? Mozilla has been silent with regards to their Cliqz test which is why I'm asking.

[1] https://blog.mozilla.org/press-uk/2017/10/06/testing-cliqz-i...

reply

[–] Vinnl link

Right, hence the ellipsis. So if you're not downloading German Firefox you probably won't have to worry about it.

I don't have an answer to your other question (maybe someone else will), although since that post says they'll keep us posted and I haven't seen anything, and since it hasn't been that long ago, I don't think too much has come of it yet.

reply

[–] hysan link

Asked this a week ago in anticipation for the release but got no response.[1] Whatever happened with Cliqz? Is it still a part of the release?

[1] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15643154

reply

[–] callahad link

Huh, I can't replicate that in Fedora. Are you using a binary downloaded from Mozilla directly, or from one of the various Debian APT repos? Can you email me with more info (my HN username @mozilla.com), especially what desktop environment you're using, X vs Wayland, etc.

reply

[–] liuw link

I downloaded the tarball from Mozilla website. I use i3 with X.

I'm happy to provide more information via email.

reply

[–] BeefySwain link

Is there a repo for FF57 for Stretch? If not, what is the "best" way to get it?

reply

[–] jxcl link

It doesn't seem like there is. mozilla.debian.net says:

>Jessie and Stretch backports of Firefox release and beta are gone because of the requirement of rust to build them, which is not available in Jessie or Stretch. Please update your apt sources to use Firefox ESR instead.

I've downloaded the tarball from the firefox homepage, extracted it, and put it in ~/opt, and symlinked it to ~/bin/firefox, which is on my path first.

reply

[–] liuw link

I'm using it now. It is really snappy!

There are bugs though. I'm using Debian Stretch. Right click menu doesn't work: it appears for a fraction of a second then disappears; so does the top-bar menu of LastPass plugin.

reply

[–] bryanlarsen link

Android will get Quantum with 58, in approximately 6 weeks time.

https://www.ghacks.net/2017/10/31/firefox-58-for-android-ena...

But even without Quantum Firefox on Android is way faster than Chrome because it supports ad blocking plugins.

reply

[–] mtgx link

Yeah, I can't wait for FF58 on Android.

TBH FF on Android has felt a little choppy, even with ublock origin enabled. The Chromium-based Firefox Focus feels faster, but too bad it doesn't support extensions. Hopefully FF58 will be the best of both worlds on Android soon.

reply

[–] bryanlarsen link

It feels choppy, so it feels slower, even though it renders pages faster because it's not downloading and rendering ads. A great example of how feel matters.

reply

[–] sp332 link

I agree 100%. I ended up disabling my adblocker on twitter.com just because it was causing so much jank while I was scrolling.

reply

[–] option_greek link

Any idea how to make firefox focus forget google search history. Its kind of pointless to forget regular browsing history but keep search history around. Open for any workarounds because FFF is quite fast when compared with regular FF.

reply

[–] chrisper link

I am curios. Are you using FF Beta on Android or regular FF?

reply

[–] floatboth link

Don't wait, use Nightly! :)

reply

[–] Vinnl link

Probably today as well, but it won't see the massive speedup desktop Firefox has seen yet - that should come with one of the next few releases.

reply

[–] jhasse link

The thing that makes Firefox on Android unuseable for me: URLs which should be handled by apps (e.g. youtube) always open in Firefox.

reply

[–] blinkingled link

It generally takes them a while. If you're impatient you can try out the beta from play store - it's at b15 which is very close to the release version and it's working good for me on couple devices. Much better than the older versions that's for sure.

reply

[–] neilsimp1 link

Wondering this too

reply

[–] bobajeff link

I wonder when the Android version of Firefox will be updated to 57.

reply

[–] farnsworthy link

Nice to see an update, and performance improvements are noticeable.

If you're missing blank tabs like I was, restore blank tabs at Preferences|When Firefox starts, and set Home Page to `about:blank`.

If you prefer new tabs to be blank as well, that's managed via the gear button on the new tab page, and by deselecting checked options.

Themes are set at Tools|Add-ons|Themes. (For example, if you want a lighter-style theme restored.)

I posted more thoughts here:

https://jaidee.io/articles/on-the-new-firefox

reply

[–] Sylos link

Relevant bug report: https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1283299

Experimental Nightly build with the Client-Side Decorations that you want enabled: https://github.com/stransky/gecko-dev/tree/titlebar-csd

(This link is taken from comment #64 in that bug report.)

reply

[–] jhasse link

If youre using Fedora: They backported it to 57 and you can activate client side decorations in about:config.

reply

[–] choward link

The one feature I wanted that chrome has isn't there in Gnome: no worthless title bar that shows redundant information. I saw screenshots for Gnome with the title bar missing before Quantum was released, so I had my hopes up.

There is an extension to get rid of it. However, you also have to manually install some other garbage too. They provide a debian package, but I'm not using a debian based OS so it's a pain in the ass. I'll stick with Chromium, thanks.

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] staticassertion link

Do you observe this behavior in a completely new Firefox profile?

reply

[–] gog link

Judging by the comments, I could be in a minority, but to me this version feels slower.

There is a noticeable lag before first paint of the page. This is specially visible if you have a fast site. I was able to click through links on the site with no lag, now there is a small, but noticeable lag.

Also, where did the "Restore tabs" button go from the homepage?

EDIT: Also, it looks like my fans are running more often, so CPU usage could be higher as well.

reply

[–] AndrewStephens link

Forgetting about the speed for a moment (which is great), I like the direction they are taking the user interface. Recent versions of FireFox had terribly clunky and frustratingly bizarre UI elements, 57 is a huge improvement.

reply

[–] a254613e link

With their recent testing of Cliqz integration I doubt they're really committed a lot to protecting users privacy.

HN discussion: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15421708

reply

[–] johndoe489 link

Isn't that turned off when you disable "search suggestions"?

I don't like search suggestions even in Chrome. I find it makes the omnibar less useful.

The omnibar was the game changer for me when Chrome did it. I never have many tabs open as I can recall anything I've visited previously by typing a few words. More often than not what I want is one of the first suggestions.

So to help with this, I turn off search suggestions since they are not relevant to my past browser activity. I also got in the habit of frequently using Private window so that my History has more relevant content. It's great and I'm confident I don't need to bookmark a lot.

reply

[–] DerfNet link

user privacy is exactly why I'm excited to finally have a decent mainstream competitor to Chrome. If nothing else this is a nice gate out of the Google ecosystem.

reply

[–] cryptos link

I hope that firefox will continue to protect users privacy as good as possible. I'm thinking of super cookies and the like. Other brother vendors don't seem to be very engaged in this area.

reply

[–] DC-3 link

Congratulations to the developers on an important release.

reply

[–] DiThi link

No need to dive into about:config. Just click the gear icon at the top left to disable all stuff.

reply

[–] oblio link

On the other hand, for some reason they've decided to make the tab previews smaller. Now I have a bunch of small thumbnails on a huge page... And now way to increase their size :(

reply

[–] DiThi link

Have you tried Ctrl-wheel or Ctrl-+ (plus key)?

reply

[–] oblio link

Huh, it's actually saved, I thought it was a temporary setting. Thanks! :)

Still not perfect, since I'm just zooming in some PNGs. And the new thumbnails are square while most pages that I view are rectangular. But it will do, for now.

reply

[–] contravariant link

I would be happy if I could just get a new tab that responded to addon defined gestures and hotkeys.

Best solution so far seems to be to use the New Tab Override addon and point it to a blank page somewhere online.

reply

[–] Sylos link

I'm not entirely sure what you mean with that, so I can't test it, but have you tried about:blank? So, just give it "about:blank" as URL in New Tab Override.

That's a blank page, as you might have guessed, but it's built into Firefox, so should load a lot faster. Really don't know, though, if Firefox actually treats it like a webpage or not.

reply

[–] contravariant link

Extension defined pages and all special "about:" pages are apparently off limits. You also can't make New Tab Override point to a local file (it can load a local file and present it as a webpage, but that defeats the point as it just becomes an extension defined webpage again).

reply

[–] shabbyrobe link

Just installed it, looks like the update overrode my previously set default of a blank "new tab" page in favour of their overly fancy, ad infested "new tab experience" page. Looks like it's time for another scan of about:config for any other nasties they decided to sneak in there this time.

reply

[–] sirtel link

A developer answered in another post

> The point of parallelization is to harness the full power of the CPU. If you don’t want that try reducing the content process limit near the bottom of general options.

[https://hacks.mozilla.org/2017/11/entering-the-quantum-era-h...]

reply

[–] bonaldi link

It's not murdering battery because it's "harnessing the full power of the CPU", it's chomping through almost 1% battery a minute on Mac while doing virtually nothing.

Apparently "vibrance" is one of the culprits and switching to the light or dark themes can help a lot. But yes, it's destroying battery compared to Safari for me. Which is a shame, as it's already my default on Windows.

reply

[–] steveklabnik link

Sounds like you should definitely file a bug.

reply

[–] bonaldi link

there is one: https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1404042 — it was moved to being tracked for v58.

reply

[–] dpc94 link

Has anyone had poor performance on mac? I notice that my fans tend to spin up quite frequently with normal browsing. I didn't really have this issue with chrome.

reply

[–] beaconfield link

w00t! I started using Firefox 1.0 after being a Netscape user back in the day. I love Mozilla and all they stand for and I'm so excited that they are releasing Quantum and kicking ass again.

reply

[–] drzaiusapelord link

Mobile FF is built on versions far behind the desktop FF. Give it time.

reply

[–] nnethercote link

It's more complicated than that. Firefox on Android uses much of the core code that desktop does. But sometimes new features do get enabled on Android a little later. One example is Stylo, the new style engine, which isn't enabled on Android yet.

reply

[–] majani link

Wow, no one's talking about mobile? Have they fixed the lagginess and inaccurate click detection that routinely crops up on the Android browser?

reply

[–] abtinf link

I don’t want necessarily want an adblocker built into my web browser. It creates too much centralized risk and power for the kinds of shenanigans pulled by ABP or ghostery, and it would hurt adoption of good add-ons like ublock.

What I DO want to see is something like ublock matrix become a standard feature. Matrix is an incredible add-on that has made the web more useable and more debuggable for me. If it was built-in, the defaults would have to be toned-down or turned off, because it breaks too much of the web, but a simple “privacy mode” toggle to step up restrictions would be welcome in a private browsing window.

Call it “War Mode” or “Paranoid Window” when using a private window with maxed out Matrix.

reply

[–] atonse link

It's not an adblocker. It's a "content blocking" engine. Basically, there are two pieces to any blocker: the blacklist, and the actual execution (matching against blacklist rules, and probably executing JS to remove it).

Safari's got a native engine for the execution part. And you pass in the blacklist with declarative rules. It's the best of both worlds in that you get competing blacklists, but the actual engine is even faster than JS. And for security like you said, there aren't any shenanigans since it's literally a JSON blacklist and can't contain code.

reply

[–] Sylos link

Firefox includes Tracking Protection, which, as it says on the tin, blocks trackers, not ads. But many, many ads have trackers built in, so it practically also blocks most ads.

This is default-enabled in Private Browsing. To enable it in normal browsing, you can toggle privacy.trackingprotection.enabled in about:config. I think, there's also now a GUI toggle in the settings to do that, I haven't checked yet.

And well, the main-motivation for not default-enabling it is not some Google-conspiracy, it's because they'd take away the income source of many webpage owners who in turn would simply stop testing against Firefox, if not block it completely.

Apple doesn't have to give as much of a fuck about this, as they have basically guaranteed market share with macOS and iOS, and because Chrome uses a fork of their browser engine, so if webdevs test against Chrome, it'll almost certainly also work in Safari.

reply

[–] atonse link

Thanks for the clarification. I've made the necessary changes.

Regarding engines, Chrome uses Blink, as opposed to WebKit. They were forked a couple years ago.

reply

[–] atonse link

Feels GREAT! Happy to be using this in addition to Safari. I also added uBlock Origin as an adblocker but would still love if FF eventually included native, declarative content blocking like Safari (probably less likely given how much money they get from Google).

reply

[–] oblio link

You can reconfigure almost everything back...

For the chrome elements size: Menu -> Customize -> Density -> Compact.

reply

[–] huhtenberg link

Yeah, saw that. That's not "Compact" though, that's "Cluttered".

The top part of the browser window is now an utter mess. I can live with the new tab style, but the layout with absolutely no vertical spacing/padding and these new "minimalist" icons is just... ugly, and unnecessary at that. I don't think I'm the only person who cares for how things _look_ in addition to how they _work_.

reply

[–] huhtenberg link

Is there a pre-57 theme for the UI?

The new one is way too minimalist. It also appears to target people with poor sight all chrome elements suddenly became larger.

EDIT - The upgrade also wiped all GreaseMonkey scripts for some reason. Hmm.

EDIT - Downgraded back to 56. Way too many jarring UI changes as well as the AddOn breakage to justify the new snappiness. Mozilla also appears to have pulled the link to the "old releases" page from their main website, so here it is - https://ftp.mozilla.org/pub/firefox/releases

reply

[–] leadingthenet link

Previous discussion about performance improvements can be found here: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15686653

reply

[–] lizzard link

Super fast! And I'm so happy that Tree Style Tab is working smoothly.

reply

[–] SAI_Peregrinus link

It's nice, I guess. Doesn't feel any faster, but since I tend to load new links in tabs and then visit them after I've never really noticed page load times anyway.

reply

[–] godelski link

It feels a lot snappier, but I definitely am not seeing a memory improvement. `about:memory` shows ~230MB for the top one, but task manager shows me at 1.3GB. I only have 13 tabs open. Yesterday this same tab set was running about the same memory. I know my linux computer at home runs lower memory with more tabs (that one hasn't been updated to 57 yet)

But the browser speed feels A LOT smoother.

Update: In the last hour I'm now reading about 1.8GB at 16 tabs. Still acting really fast though.

reply

[–] callahad link

We track most of our bugs in Bugzilla (https://bugzilla.mozilla.org). Once you've created an account, go to File a Bug, Core, and choose "Audio/Video: Playback" as the Component in the form.

(In general, it's fine to chuck bugs into Firefox -> Untriaged and they'll eventually land in the right place.)

If Bugzilla's a bit of a pain, just let me know and I'll happily file it for you.

reply

[–] tmzt link

Are Quantum bugs in bugzilla or Github?

reply

[–] Yoric link

Bugzilla. There are a few exceptions, but if you misfile a bug to Bugzilla, don't worry, it will be moved to Github during triage.

reply

[–] r3bl link

> Is there a location where I can submit a bug report?

You're probably looking for https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/enter_bug.cgi

reply

[–] robin_reala link

There’s already one filed that you can track: https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1395158

reply

[–] frayesto link

Anyone else use PocketCasts web player? Chrome is able to play audio at 2.7x speed without distortion while Firefox still has issues.

Is there a location where I can submit a bug report?

reply

[–] scottjad link

The benchmark Mozilla highlights for this release (2x faster) is Speedometer 2.0. FF57 is 2x faster than FF52, which came out roughly 7 months ago.

In my own personal testing (you can run on your machine in a couple minutes), FF57 is 10% faster than FF56 on that benchmark, and Chrome 60 is 10% faster than FF57.

https://mozilla.github.io/arewefastyet-speedometer/2.0/

reply

[–] mythmon_ link

I know about this, which is a really interesting comparison, but I haven't found any benchmarks.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YIywpvHewc0

reply

[–] awake link

Does anyone know of benchmarks comparing this to the current version of chrome. The Mozilla team only mentions that it’s faster than previous versions of Firefox.

reply

[–] rhabarba link

IMO, it sucks now.

I like the awesome new speed even on my old Sandy Bridge, but the death of ANY possibilities to add features to the browser UI is not worth it. Really.

reply

[–] jhasse link

They also use Google Analytics for telemetry btw.

reply

[–] akulbe link

I wonder why, with Mozilla's pro-web and pro-user focus... why not DuckDuckGo?

reply

[–] taurath link

Gave it a shot. My complaints on 20m of usage (2015 MBP):

1. Firefox is sitting at 15-20% of my CPU with 2 tabs open. I've never had the fan come on just from browsing tabs on chrome. I opened gmail while typing this and now I'm at about 50% of my CPU and the fan is blaring. Something seems very wrong.

2. The import from other browser (assuming say I already had an old version installed and selected "replace" on mac install) option is VERY hidden behind a bunch of menus. It also didn't import any of my cookies to google, HN, or probably most other passwords in the keychain.

3. Resizing a window feels really sluggish and not snappy, as does tabbing back and forth between tabs. It takes a noticable like 500-800ms to switch to gmail. Most tabs are around 200-400ms. This feels massively slower than chrome thus far

4. The design when typing in the search bar is pretty jarring, filling up a huge amount with white space.

I'll keep trying but if the CPU doesn't chill out this is basically a non-starter for me.

reply

[–] farresito link

There's been this new one, but I have used it very little.

https://github.com/ueokande/vim-vixen

reply

[–] majewsky link

Uh, that one looks nice. It's the first Vimperator-like WebExtension that I've seen that has ex-commands.

reply

[–] buovjaga link

Some new stuff is needed, see the last comments in this: https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1215061 "Better keyboard shortcut support"

reply

[–] Vinnl link

Depends on your needs. If it's mostly the shortcuts, Vimium works pretty well (at least for me). If you want the full-blown UI customisation, then I'm afraid extensions are not allowed that anymore due to the associated security risks.

reply

[–] Karunamon link

Vent mode on:

That is pathetic. More paternalistic nannying of the user, making their life actively worse in favor of closing off a very limited security hole. If that’s the mindset, wouldn’t it be even safer to not have a browser at all?

reply

[–] Vinnl link

Well, yes, but people are going to have browsers. This does make it easier for me to install Firefox for my mom and not have her call me about "not being able to visit websites anymore" and me having to figure out something removed her address bar or something.

I mean, obviously there's pros and cons, but it's a damned if you do, damned if you don't situation.

reply

[–] zeveb link

> If you want the full-blown UI customisation, then I'm afraid extensions are not allowed that anymore due to the associated security risks.

That's total BS. It's my software running on my computer. I get to decide what I consider a security risk, not Mozilla.

reply

[–] Karunamon link

This "user is an idiot" mentality permeates their development culture. As another example, Mozilla would rather you don't get to access a site at all if it's misconfigured a certain way, rather than putting in any kind of override.

https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=435013 (Ten years old, fixes proposed, questions unanswered. Note the status.)

If I sound upset, it's because this is personally offensive (not to mention infuriating) to me, and many good-faith questions have gone ignored.

reply

[–] Vinnl link

Yes, but at the same time, I'm installing software on my mom's computer, and unfortunately, she's not a good judge of what is a security risk. I'd trust Mozilla with that more.

As I said elsewhere, it is frustrating as well. But it's not like there aren't upsides to it as well, that just might not apply to us.

reply

[–] aquova link

Has Vimium been updated to work under the new extension system?

reply

[–] Vinnl link

Vimium wasn't even available for Firefox before (it was a Chrome extension), but it is now.

VimFx hasn't, but Vimium has replaced it for me.

reply

[–] fmoralesc link

I am using saka key, it works pretty well for basic stuff.

reply

[–] alvarosevilla95 link

You could try the ff port of vimium, but it's not vimperator.

reply

[–] Asdfbla link

Is there a good Vimperator replacement for the new webextension addon system?

reply

[–] b3lvedere link

It's fast. Fast!

Thanks!

It seems i also got Ebay as an additional search engine. Oh well.. deleted it. :)

reply

[–] Merad link

The UX isn't as nice, but you can set up multiple profiles in Firefox. There are/were some extensions to make profile switching easier but I doubt they are compatible with 57.

reply

[–] dsschnau link
[–] mderazon link

This is great but unfortunately you can't have separate extensions with it. For example you can't have 2 Lastpass extensions

reply

[–] ramenmeal link

I'm trying it out now. Seems fast and I like the UI. I think there is a feature missing that I require... In chrome I can log into two separate accounts, my work and my personal. They run as practically two separate instances of chrome, so I can log into a separate lastpass account for each. Is this possible with firefox?

reply

[–] chaotic_clanger link

* where are my dragons? i mean add-ons

* https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/addon/tree-style-tab/ leaves original firefox row of tabs opened. so now i have two sets

* ffox currently eats 8-12% of cpu (i.e. almost one whole core) for itself. the consumption does not seem to stop.

reply

[–] hayd link

Would love to see an Electron-compatible runtime coming from Firefox (using the new engine), using less memory etc.

Looks like positron used to do this but is now dead :( https://github.com/mozilla/positron

reply

[–] pavs link

I have to say it's been a while since I have been impressed with a firefox official release, I have been using nightly for a couple of weeks now.

Another thing to note, and maybe most people don't instinctively realize this, but Chrome should get a lot of kudos for bringing both browsers and the web forward in such a short time. Let's not forget - the clusterfuck both Firefox and IE were before chrome came to the scene. A lot of the implements that makes Firefox awesome now came from chrome.

Chrome played just as big of a role as FF did to bring IE out of the gutter.

I haven't used IE (or whatever it's current incarnation is called) for a long time as a daily driver - spend some time about 6 months ago - wasn't impressed, but still better than what it was before.

Thanks, Chrome team.

reply

[–] jlgaddis link

To chime in with some of the others, I decided to try out Firefox again [0] when the FF57 beta/nightly/whatever was first released and am very happy that I did!

Looks like that was ~48 days ago and I think I've opened up Chromium maybe two or three times since then.

(WRT extensions, LastPass was the only thing I "missed" (we have Enterprise for $work) although I normally use the CLI utility instead anyways. They came out with a beta a few weeks ago and it was actually working great until about two days ago when it suddenly broke for me. The other extensions I use -- uBlock Origin, Vimium -- have been working just fine.)

[0]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15344018

reply

[–] tolger link

Having Reader View available out of the box is huge for me. This is one of the reasons I prefer Safari when I'm on MacOS. But I use Ubuntu most of the time, so I'm switching back to Firefox as my default browser. So far, it's been great.

reply

[–] johndoe489 link

The omnibar is less convenient than Google Chrome: it appears that pressing DELETE does not actually remove a search suggestion from History. Instead it seems to be ranked down. This is not useful, there should be a way to completely remove a suggestion (unless it is currently a bookmark).

In Google Chrome I navigate with the omnibar so much, it was the game changer for me when Chrome was new. The ability to quickly recall any page I visited before. Coupled with the ability to finetune these suggestions by removing unwanted entries.

reply

[–] thecollate link

It’s blazing fast.. Hoping to see more successful Rust based applications.

reply

[–] fred123 link

Quick performance comparison, FF 57 with only a single tab (upwork.com) and Chrome latest with 30+ tabs:

Chrome: https://i.imgur.com/o8f4ZHp.gifv FF 57: https://i.imgur.com/kaQl5gN.gifv

FF 57 is much slower. Maybe a very specific use case but confirms my experience so far that FF is much slower than Chrome on basically everything.

reply

[–] KozmoNau7 link

Less than a second here. Yes, I can see it paint, but it's nowhere near 5 seconds. And I'm on a base model Thinkpad T440, hardly a speed machine these days.

reply

[–] amelius link

Did you wait until the box was fully populated?

reply

[–] KozmoNau7 link

Yes.

reply

[–] acdha link

Which site did you test it on? All of the developer tools (Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge) will take awhile to load a massive DOM tree with many thousands of nodes.

reply

[–] amelius link

It's supposed to be faster, but when I open developer-tools and click on "Inspector", it takes almost 5 seconds to paint.

EDIT: Okay, tested again; it depends heavily on the website you do this on.

reply

[–] yannovitch link

Do you know how many bookmarks it can sync ?

I have 30000+ bookmarks, and I use my bookmark structure all the time on all my devices, that's my workflow to write later content on my websites ( my folders = my categories, sort of) and I don't want to change my workflow.

When I was using FF two years ago, it couldn't sync that many bookmarks, and that's the only reason which was keeping me from using FF (besides speed and memory usage, but that tend to vary).

reply

[–] zabil link

I've been using Firefox nightly after Quantum changes got in and I love it. I use it as my default browser.

Now that the changes are mainstream I'll be switching to version 57.

But I can't stop using Chrome yet. We write a lot of functional tests and Chrome is better at it.

It's got libraries like Puppeteer, good Webdriver support and a headless mode that just works. I can't put my finger on it, but it's difficult to run automated tests with Firefox.

I hope Firefox gets something like Chrome's DevTools protocol.

reply

[–] TheRealPomax link

As long as you use different profiles, and start each of them up with the profile indicated as runtime option: yes. (particularly useful when you need to test some website against a main, beta, and nightly version of a browser simultaneously)

reply

[–] Vinnl link

I believe you can on every platform, but make sure to use a different profile (-P option, off the top of my head), as they're not compatible between releases.

reply

[–] sundarurfriend link

The developer of Waterfox has promised to continue supporting "legacy" add-ons, so that's an option you can explore.

reply

[–] Sylos link

Mind though, that this effort will almost certainly die off after June 26, 2018. That's the EOL date of Firefox 52 ESR, meaning the actual end of Mozilla supporting legacy extensions.

This sort of cynic statement is based on this legacy extension system having been a major maintenance burden for Mozilla, so now one developer or even a small team trying to take that over, I can hardly imagine to work out.

reply

[–] sp332 link

You can if you run them in different profiles. Use firefox -P to launch the profile manager and create a new profile. You can sign both profiles in to the same Firefox sync account if you want to share history etc between them.

reply

[–] aryehof link

Can one run the new version alongside a previous version?

I need to access occasionally extensions unsupported in the new version: namely Scrapbook and the extension that provides maff file support.

reply

[–] acdha link

Try starting Firefox in safe mode in case that's some broken extension:

https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/troubleshoot-firefox-is...

reply

[–] __BrianDGLS__ link

No extensions installed. Literally just downloaded firefox.

reply

[–] yoasif_ link

Sibling comment recommended opening a bug. I concur: https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/enter_bug.cgi?format=guided#h=b...

reply

[–] TheRealPomax link

sounds like you should file a bug about that so they can be aware of that problem and look into it.

reply

[–] __BrianDGLS__ link

I'm on windows 7, the new version seems to keep spawning a process which grinds my machine to a halt.

I've had to open task manager twice now to kill it. Only downloaded it 10 minutes ago.

reply

[–] bzbarsky link

Right, because some of the relevant standards got changed slightly in some of the edge cases ACID3 tests (e.g. to deal with shadow DOM), and browsers got updated to follow the standards, but the maintainer of ACID3 doesn't want to change the test. See https://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-archive/2017Jul/000...

reply

[–] xpil link

It scores 97/100 in ACID3. Not that it matters but stil...

reply

[–] SnowingXIV link

Same issue here. Disabling smooth scrolling fixed it.

reply

[–] contingencies link

Had some lag after install and had to disable smooth scrolling in General Preferences to sort it. Not sure if I was somehow hallucinating but it's smooth now. OSX.

reply

[–] Washuu link

Does anyone know a replacement for Focus Last Selected Tab functionality? Meaning, when closing a tab, it focuses the previously selected tab before that one.

reply

[–] JohnTHaller link

For fans of using Firefox without installing it into Windows (or just trying it out temporarily without leaving things behind), the portable version is also available for your cloud folder, portable drive, or local drive: https://portableapps.com/apps/internet/firefox_portable

reply

[–] submeta link

Firefox 57 + Duckduckgo = Winning team!

reply

[–] submeta link

This post made me switch from Safari to Firefox. (I abandoned Chrome several years ago. Don't like Google's philosophy.) Hadn't really been using FF in ages. It has made tremendous improvements. Super fast startup and navigation.

Also installed a plugin named Vim Vixen. Now I am able to navigate and use the browser almost without touching the mouse.

Thank you Mozilla. Keep up the good work!

reply

[–] callahad link

Sorry about that inconvenience. The current plan is to revisit WebSocket debugging in Q1 next year, per https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=885508.

Part of the delay is the complete rewrite that most of the DevTools are undergoing. As we move from legacy, in-house solutions (XUL) to standard web technology (HTML/JS, React/Redux, etc.) as part of the "devtools.html" project: https://github.com/devtools-html/

reply

[–] pfooti link

I see the tracking issue has been in bugzilla for years. I get that it is a tricky map from the raw packets to these frames, but relying on a 3rd party extension to the point of deprioritizing work on this is a pretty iffy call - I wasn't excited about trusting an extension at all; that the extension seems to have been broken in 57 entirely (foreseeably too) just feels meh.

I guess I'm part of a minority of people who does a lot of websockets work? Well, that's guaranteed to be true - a random feature deep inside the devtools is probably a deal-breaker for like four people.

reply

[–] callahad link

Very sorry about that. The third party extension was developed by a core DevTools engineer, just not merged upstream. We'll get there. :)

reply

[–] pfooti link

Is there some super-compelling reason why FF doesn't let you inspect websocket frames? I was taking FF for a drive yesterday, based on the earlier thread, and it was nice until I started debugging my web app.

I'm not interested in trusting a third party extension with all my network data either, so the plug-in to do this isn't an option. It's weird, but this really is a blocker for me for general use.

reply

[–] bespoke_engnr link

I've just updated and it seems really nice so far. Best of all, the "Tree Style Tab" extension works again, and it's glorious.

reply

[–] johndoe489 link

Is it possible in Firefox to remember the "pinned" state of a tab matching a bookmark when it is closed?

It' be awesome if some of my bookmarks always open in a pinned state. Examples: rain.today (white noise). ... But I don't want them to be there everytime I open the browser, hence to remember the pinned preference with bookmarks.

reply

[–] jusjus link

Still can't view websocket messages natively in the browser. The add on that did this don't work in the new version

reply

[–] w-m link

When I'm trying to resize the "Welcome to Firefox" window on a Retina iMac on 10.12.6, the wavy background animation completely freezes. Firefox then takes more than a second to update the window content and restart the animation.

That particular welcome screen seems like a really poor choice to demonstrate the supposedly much-improved rendering engine on my machine.

reply

[–] dvdhnt link

I updated to the beta last night before doing a bit of homework. While working in Google docs, I noticed that if you right click and try to "paste without formatting", you get this popup: https://cl.ly/3O0n2e3y1p1e

Has anyone experienced that in a browser other than Firefox?

reply

[–] 0x49d1 link

Very nice release, congrats! Are there any plans to improve tab search option in AwsomeBar? For example now you have to really precisely type the name of the tab to switch to it. You can add some kind of fuzzy search logic to find the tab on relatively relevant typing. With >10 tabs open that would be really useful.

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] pier25 link

Woah it's super fast.

Anyone knows if the other major browsers are working on a similar approach to increase performance?

reply

[–] esistgut link

I would really like a Debian repository like the one used for Chrome, providing working rolling releases.

reply

[–] wnevets link

One downside is that there isn't a replacement for the tab wheel scroll add-on. Very annoying.

reply

[–] amadeusw link

I also got the firefox for android after seeing the sync feature. However the tabs don't sync by default and I haven't seen any guide on how to use this feature. I'd appreciate any pointer in the right direction.

reply

[–] Sylos link

On the desktop (in Firefox 57), you can find your tabs under Library->Synced Tabs.

On the Android version, they appear on the homepage->History->Synced Devices.

Mind that they don't sync immediately. There's an interval for syncing. You can lower this interval in about:config by editing one of services.sync.scheduler.*, also possibly services.sync.syncInterval, but I don't know for sure what each individual one does. Also, you can tell it to do a sync right away, on the desktop version with Alt+t, then s; on the Android version by going into the settings, then tapping on "Firefox Account" at the top and then "Synchronize now".

reply

[–] Rusky link

Those can be disabled from the new tab page itself.

reply

[–] flyinghamster link

Ah, better. It was not at all obvious how to get rid of it.

Hamburger -> General -> Home -> Top Sites

Then it can be toggled off. Whew!

EDIT: It's still not nice to have this sort of thing come up by surprise.

reply

[–] CaptSpify link

That pissed me off too. When did Mozilla become an advertiser?

reply

[–] Sylos link

They own Pocket. This is just their own content recommendation engine. No payments involved. An attempt to make the web rely less on search engines.

reply

[–] CaptSpify link

I don't see your point. They are still advertising to me

reply

[–] flyinghamster link

Just updated it on Android... and I wish I hadn't.

The very first thing I was greeted with on the "top sites" page was a bunch of "Recommended by Pocket" links, and no way to disable that.

I can't find anything in about:config to disable this either. How about NO, goddammit?

Shame on you, Mozilla.

reply

[–] helper link

Ah, it works for github.com but not for google. Seems like an issue with the google login page.

reply

[–] helper link

Whats the status of u2f in firefox 57? Trying to login to gmail I get "Something went wrong. Remove your Security Key and try again." I enabled 'security.webauth.u2f' and 'security.webauth.webauthn' but that didn't seem to help :(

reply

[–] wishinghand link

A question I have- I've been using Firefox Developer Edition and it says "57.0b12 (64-bit)" when I check its version. Is it kept in parity (or slightly ahead) of Firefox? Do I have all of the new features and speed boosts like Quantum?

reply

[–] Drdrdrq link

I'm still seeing version 56 on Google Play, is Android version 57 not available yet?

reply

[–] adventured link

Congrats to the Firefox developers and team in general. I've stuck with Firefox as my primary browser since version 2 or 3, even as it became very frustratingly slow or resource inefficient compared to Chrome. Version 57 is tremendous.

reply

[–] TheCoreh link

I believe the React and Redux toolbars are exactly the same as Chrome's

reply

[–] mychael link

I write software for the web so speed is secondary. I want to know: Does the inspector have better/more features than Chrome's Inspector? Does it have Redux and React Toolbars that are better than the Chrome ones?

reply

[–] Max_Mustermann link

Have you tried youtube-dl(https://rg3.github.io/youtube-dl/)?

reply

[–] barosoa link

Not for a while. I was hoping for a browser addon.

reply

[–] barosoa link

No video download helper. Anyone got a good way of downloading video streams?

reply

[–] Santosh83 link

Not for me. I can slam the cursor to the top edge of the screen and click on a background tab and it comes to focus just fine. This is of course with Firefox maximised. Am on Windows 10 just for info... perhaps the UI is slightly different under your OS...

reply

[–] V-2 link

I'm on Windows 10, too, so I assume the UI shouldn't be that far off.

The problem - see the link to Bugzilla I pasted - is supposedly related to the use of multiple displays (which involves different DPI settings). A small thing to be sure, but somewhat annoying, given that switching tabs is a fairly common action when using a web browser.

What's unpleasant is how long it takes to resolve it. From Bugzilla:

> This is a pretty annoying usability regression that will ship in 50. Will we be able to fix it for 51?

It's version 57 :)

reply

[–] V-2 link

As one of these people who switched away from Firefox to Chrome a long time ago, I was curious to give it another go now that it's revamped and all. I tend to do it very year or so, but something is always wrong.

Unfortunately, I quickly bumped into one simple deal-breaker (the same that discouraged me from using Opera once, if I recall). Firefox adds a few pixels of useless gap space above the tabs, meaning I always have to move the cursor slightly downwards when changing tabs.

Some googling revealed the bug was actually reported over a year ago: https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1302168

As of now, it persists. Back to Chrome - see you again next year : )

reply

[–] dbg31415 link

It's great, until you go to stream a video. Then the fans kick on, the computer gets too hot to hold... Been this way forever, hope Firefox can address this at some point in a future release.

reply

[–] esistgut link

I use a dark theme on my Gnome desktop and in Firefox default form input elements follow the theme settings. The textarea I'm typing in here on HN is barely readable with this colors.

reply

[–] AdmiralAsshat link

Pretty much all the extensions I need have been converted to WebExtensions at this point. DownTheMAll remains the sole holdout at this point, but I really only use it on one of my workstations.

reply

[–] petre link

Where do I see the params of post requests in the developer tools? The parameters tab only shows url params. The old behaviour was to show both. Also, rendering a 50k json response is slow.

reply

[–] throwanem link
[–] etcet link

You can now find HNES for Firefox here: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/hnes/

reply

[–] ndrake link

Here's hoping Hacker News Enhancement Suite becomes available soon.

https://github.com/etcet/HNES

reply

[–] citruscomputing link

Loading webpages is faster for me, but youtube has a lot of jank and videos freeze every few seconds. Is anyone else experiencing this, and if so, have you been able to fix it?

reply

[–] jhasse link

Yes, it has always been different to Chrome (better IMHO).

reply

[–] johndoe489 link

On Windows 10, am I dreaming or the font smoothing looks a tiny bit different (from Google Chrome)?

I kinda like it, small text looks a bit stronger and smoother à-la OS X.

reply

[–] rammy1234 link

Firefox AGAIN became my favorite. Allows me to control my privacy to the level I want. Great improvements. I believe there is more to come. YAY !!

reply

[–] louiz link

what concerns do you have regarding firefox’s security?

reply

[–] deisner link

It's just that if security is a core priority, you'd expect to see this mentioned at least once. Based on what I read, the core priorities are speed, privacy, and convenience.

Compare this to Chrome, Safari, and Edge (tagline: "A fast and secure browser that's designed for Windows 10"): https://www.google.com/chrome/browser/features.html, https://www.apple.com/safari/, https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/microsoft-edge.

Perhaps this is just a marketing or internal communication issue. Did somebody from security engineering have a seat at the table when the Firefox 57 marketing material was discussed?

reply

[–] Yoric link

For what it's worth, in most companies, marketing material is typically created by marketing people, with very limited interaction with engineering.

The message for Firefox 57 is performance. This doesn't mean that other stuff wasn't improved (case in point, better sandboxing), just that you can only tell one story at a time.

reply

[–] kingkilr link

This release has our continued progress on sandboxing.

reply

[–] ReverseCold link

Fixed: "various security fixes"

(which is a link to details)

reply

[–] deisner link

I'd feel a little better if the words "secure" or "security" appeared at least once in the marketing material: https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/57.0/whatsnew/, https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/.

reply

[–] vernie link

Will it be possible to get multi-row tabs back?

reply

[–] Sylos link

You can disable "toolkit.cosmeticAnimations.enabled" in about:config.

This affects more than just the pulse, but you'll probably actually be happy about that...

reply

[–] gbrown_ link

Thank you!

reply

[–] gbrown_ link

Anyone know how to disable the new loading animation? I find the "pulse" at the end of the animation very distracting.

reply

[–] shady-lady link

Glad Tree Style Tabs ported over to 57...but kinda annoying I needed to uninstall/re-install add-on to get it working again

reply

[–] bwidlar link

Just updated, arch linux, great experience. Really really fast, the new dark theme is great. Thanks to the developers.

reply

[–] klez link

It works for me.

I keep two instances of Firefox (Release and Nighly) on my work computer (Windows 10), Nightly on my phone (Android) and a couple computers at home running Firefox ESR (Debian). No problem whatsoever, even with such an heterogenous setup.

Do you have any particular need that you think steers from the normal and that Chrome does currently serve? Because for my use case, everything works perfectly.

reply

[–] arkitaip link

Don't have a particular need, I've just never Firefox's sync feature so I don't know how well it performs.

reply

[–] DiThi link

Yes. Been using it for years. The only gotcha is that adding a new devices loses the date of bookmarks. If you care about that, a workaround is to export and import them.

reply

[–] Vinnl link

It is, but it does only work on Firefox (and GNOME Web), so if you want to sync with your phone, you'll have to use Firefox for Android (or iPhone) too. Which is nice as well, and should become a lot speedier in one of the next few releases too.

reply

[–] andrepd link

Yes, and you own the private key.

reply

[–] DiThi link

It's a very nice feature. But note that a consequence of this is that you'll loose data if you desync all devices. The private key is only transferred from device to device, without being stored in any server.

reply

[–] callahad link

We actually fixed that failure mode three years ago with the release of Firefox Sync 1.5. The encryption key can now be re-derived from your password, so you can always recover your data as long as you remember your password. Even if you lose all of your devices.

reply

[–] DiThi link

Ah, good to know. Ideally it should also derive another key when logging into Sync, so it's never sent verbatim even through a secure channel.

reply

[–] callahad link

We do :) The full details are at https://github.com/mozilla/fxa-auth-server/wiki/onepw-protoc..., but basically we derive two separate keys: one for authentication, that gets sent over the wire, and a completely different one for decrypting the sync key, which is not set over the wire. This means that even if you can observe the entire transaction, you still aren't able to derive the decryption key.

It's more or less:

    let quickStretchPW = PBKDF2(email, password)
    let authPW = HKDF('authPW', quickStretchPW)
    let unwrapBkey = HKDF('unwrapBkey', quickStretchPW)
Where unwrapBkey !== authPW.

reply

[–] DiThi link

Perfect. So web login does that too, I guess. Therefore as good as before but easier to use. I'm happy I don't need to trust the server.

reply

[–] jboynyc link

In my experience sync works really well.

reply

[–] arkitaip link

The main thing keeping me tied to Chrome is how it syncs passwords, bookmarks and history. Is Firefox's sync as good?

reply

[–] johndoe489 link

Yeah this isn't the same at all. For example I don't know how to add a custom search like:

http://www.stopforumspam.com/ipcheck/%s

When I add a search via right clicking the search box on that site it doesn't work.

Plus, the completion UX is great on Chrome, as soon as you press space or tab aftert he keyword it confirms with a special UX "Search Wikipediea" for example. Here, you get no feedback whatsoever... if I type sfs 1.1.1.1 is it going to google that, or is it actually going to search StopForumSpam for the IP ? I have no idea until I press enter. :(

UPDATE

Looks like you have to use "keywords for bookmarks"

http://kb.mozillazine.org/Using_keyword_searches

reply

[–] johndoe489 link

I see, thanks. It seems the flexibility of entering a custom URL with the %s in it for the search term is lost.

reply

[–] johndoe489 link

1) Is it possible to change the shortcut for Private window to CTRL Shift N somehow like in Chrome? (instead of Ctrl Shift P). (I like that I could use that shortcut with my left hand (albeit with some nice thumb extension action).)

2) Any way to remove the bottom bar icons when the omni bar completion box shows? ... wait... How do I even edit search engines in Firefox? Like say, typing "yt (space) search term" to do a search on YouTube?

reply

[–] e12e link

You probably want extended support release, not an old(ish) unsupported version:

https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/organizations/faq/

reply

[–] MadWombat link

It seems that the extended support is only going to last until mid 2018, so that is not what I want either. Wonder how long Waterfox is going to last.

reply

[–] MadWombat link

So... is there an official guide for downgrading back to an older version? For those of us who lost functionality?

reply

[–] jmh530 link

Honestly, I'm having all kinds of problems. I've had to force quit a bunch of times. Some sites are 100% fine, but others cause CPU to 100% and doesn't come down. Feedly was the first I noticed, but it happened again on Yahoo Finance when I clicked on a stock quote. It happened when I went to the new tab settings and tried to change those. Some things are just really off.

reply

[–] jmh530 link

Feedly performs like garbage with the new Firefox. 100% of CPU when clicking on the feed and doesn't go down.

reply

[–] intopieces link

I've since switched to UnGoogled Chromium but might have to give this a shot just get TreeStyle Tabs back.

reply

[–] ProAm link

Does anyone know how to make the newtab screen dark? All the user styles seem not to work anymore?

reply

[–] r3bl link

WebExtension version of NoScript is going to be released today: https://hackademix.net/2017/11/14/double-noscript/

reply

[–] barosoa link

It's legacy.

reply

[–] fyrstenberg link

Do anyone have NoScript working in 57r? The latest dev version from noscript.net doesn't want to install.

reply

[–] undefined link
[deleted]

reply

[–] callahad link

The instructions at https://support.mozilla.org/kb/import-bookmarks-data-another... show how to import data from other browsers into Firefox.

reply

[–] DiThi link

Bookmarks and history both have import/export functions. I've used them, as well as Firefox Sync which preserves your privacy more than Chrome's.

reply

[–] maxerickson link

There is an importer for at least bookmarks in the bookmark management window.

(it will access the other bookmarks directly)

reply

[–] wklm link

Did anyone find an easy way to export bookmarks, history etc from chrome to firefox?

reply

[–] Yoric link

This could be many things, but if it is only when you download/save-as, from the top of my mind, that sounds like an Anti-Virus bug.

Where did you report it?

reply

[–] rexreed link

He's another person reporting [0]. It happens even on safe mode, and I'm on Mac OSX without any AV installed. It started happening only a few releases ago, so not sure what has changed in the download manager. If I go back to, say, FF 45, then it's all happy.

[0] https://superuser.com/questions/982182/firefox-freezes-when-...

reply

[–] ComputerGuru link

I’m sure it’s nowhere near as simple/reproducible as you’re making it out to be. At any rate, I couldn’t reproduce it on my clean installation of Firefox 57, so there is that at the very least.

(Hint: if your post said “every time I try” instead of “every time you try,” I’m sure it would have been better received.)

reply

[–] sxates link

Just tried that on my mac, worked fine?

reply

[–] rexreed link

Ever since version 50.0, Firefox consistently crashes / freezes every time I try to download a file / save-as an image. I've seen this reported by others as well. This makes Firefox very much unusable for me. Perhaps someone here will pay attention to that.

(fixed you try to I try to make it more about me ;)

reply

[–] 0xcoffee link

Yes, even after disabling UI animations, the blue bar above tabs does not go away. Still looking for a way to disable this.

reply

[–] masterleep link

On first glance, it's got some pretty annoying loading animations for tabs.

reply

[–] elnygren link

TIL Chrome is the worst browser on my Macbook atm.

Not too long ago it was the best.

reply

[–] calyhre link

Still miss a proper / user-friendly profiles management interface :(

reply

[–] Zeklandia link

I'm just glad that uBlock₀ works in Firefox 57.0 for Android.

reply

[–] el_padrinho link

What you think is better, this version or still google chrome?

reply

[–] genzoman link

I updated to 57 from 56 and now FireFox won't launch :(.

reply

[–] godzillabrennus link

This is exciting! Glad to see Google Chrome has competition.

reply

[–] asfdsfggtfd link

Any recommendations for installing the ESR version on Linux?

reply

[–] shmerl link

What Firefox version is Webrender release scheduled for?

reply

[–] akazuba link

there is. ctrl+shift+o > import and backup> import data from another browser. you can import bookmark, history, passwords, everything.

reply

[–] gorn link

Is there a way to import bookmarks from Chrome?

reply

[–] distances link

Are you on beta/nightly on Android? I feel it's much better now, but still not as good as Chrome.

The add-on support (uBlock) is absolutely crucial on mobile though so I could never go back to Chrome.

reply

[–] lonk link

Scrolling is still laggy and jerky on android.

reply

[–] superdaniel link

Even the scrolling on macOS is more smooth!

reply

[–] SquareWheel link

Congrats Firefox team on this release!

reply

[–] jeshwanth link

Wow, super responsive firefox now :)

reply

[–] tmzt link

You could try switching off WebGL rendering on maps, if that's still an option.

reply

[–] Shivetya link

since 56.0 google maps went black on me and nothing seems to matter. really confused how something so simple just breaks; I am on OS X fwiw.

I end up swapping to safari for some functions and then using firefox for others. throw in 57 changes the look for no reason. I don't need dark tabs as default, updates should not change the user experience without permission

reply

[–] Kattywumpus link

No more Private Tabs.

reply

[–] gregorymichael link

This is really fast.

reply

[–] ryanpcmcquen link

Thank you Mozilla!

reply

[–] jacknews link

vertical tabs?

Seems like vertical-tabs-reloaded no longer works.

reply

[–] clouddrover link

But NoScript will be released today:

https://hackademix.net/2017/11/14/double-noscript/

reply

[–] stesch link

End of the week.

reply

[–] stesch link

Downvotes for this? WTF?

reply

[–] stesch link

Currently no NoScript for Firefox 57.

And no gestures if you are on Mac or Linux.

reply

[–] user5994461 link

The release disabled noscript. Do not update.

reply

[–] dsschnau link

its so good!

reply

[–] makapuf link

I'd say that the most sensible choice in the absence of any payment, considering FF sensibility and message, (i.e. according to me) DDG would be the most sensible default. (edit : clarify)

reply

[–] dymk link

When has any proof ever been given that they’re any more privacy conscious than any other search engine?

reply

[–] Finnucane link

They're not an ad agency, which is a good enough answer for me.

reply

[–] dymk link

An ad agency has a big incentive to keep your user data to themselves, as that's their most valuable and competitive resource. Google and Facebook have a huge incentive to not leak information about their users; why would someone pay them if that data was available elsewhere?

DDG has every incentive to sell user data, given that they don't have their own ad network with which to target. How else would they make money off of it?

reply

[–] dymk link

My point is that "they're not an ad agency" is not an argument that a company has some incentive to protect user privacy, and "they're an ad agency" is not an argument that a company is incentivized to sell user data.

reply

[–] Finnucane link

Yeah, okay, DDG _might_ be lying about their privacy promises. They _might_ be tracking us all ways to Sunday the way Google and Facebook do. They _might_ have some seekrit, back-door ad sales department that nobody knows about and somehow they've managed to keep secret. Which, of course, is a great method for making ad sales.

reply

[–] Vinnl link

What does incentivise them is that their entire marketing is based around the privacy messaging, and thus pretty much their entire userbase considers that their primary selling point. If it ever came out that they were handing over that data to whomever, they'd be gone in an instant.

reply

[–] Sylos link

Their privacy statement is pretty clear. That's a legally binding document and lying in that will get you pretty high fines even in the US.

reply

[–] trendia link

Netflix was sued because they kept rental history on former customers.

Netflix revenue: $8,800,000,000

Lawsuit amount: $9,000,000 (or approx 0.1%)

Lawyers received: $2,100,000

Plaintiffs received: $30,000

[0] https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2012/07/class-action-law...

reply

[–] Oishikatta link

You can't compare to revenue, that makes no sense.

Netflix's global net income in 2012 was apparently $17 million.

A $9 million fine is then over half of their annual income.

[0] https://www.scribd.com/mobile/document/121853053/Netflix-4Q-...

reply

[–] millstone link

What sort of proof could they offer that would satisfy you? Honest question.

reply

[–] Yoric link

I believe that there will be an official announcement later today.

(I'm a Firefox dev)

reply

[–] mythmon_ link

The details of these deals aren't generally public, so I don't expect to see any official answers about this.

reply

[–] Redoubts link

Well, it's particularly interesting when you tie these two facts together:

> According to documents filed with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC), Yahoo paid Mozilla $375 million in 2015, and is obligated for the same amount each year through 2019 under a five-year contract.

> Under terms of a contract that has been seen by Recode, whoever acquires Yahoo might have to pay Mozilla annual payments of $375 million through 2019 if it does not think the buyer is one it wants to work with and walks away.

reply

[–] dralley link

I would really love to know what the Blood Alcohol Content of the Yahoo representatives that signed that contract was. Those terms seem absolutely braindead stupid.

reply

[–] Redoubts link

I don’t know, but I bet Mozilla’s representatives’s were higher.

reply

[–] dralley link

Idk, $375 million per annum through 2019 despite a declining user base, with the ability to leave the agreement at any time if Yahoo was acquired without incurring any penalty and where the new owner still has to pay out the contract without receiving anything in return, is a pretty goddamn good deal for Mozilla.

reply

[–] dminor link

Mozilla's drinking is celebratory :)

reply

[–] fabrice_d link

That is not good news for the health and diversity of the Web which Mozilla is supposedly defending (unless this means less cash). How does that reconcile with their "Big Browser" campaigns?

They could instead switch to some underdogs to help them improve, but no... Google it is again, with the excuse of "It's better for the user". Sad day, Mozilla!

reply

[–] dralley link

The underdogs don't have hundreds of millions of dollars to pay Mozilla. They do have to keep the lights on.

But, Mozilla does often do partnerships with smaller, local search engines in small markets.

reply

[–] Vinnl link

From the announcement post [1]:

> As part of our focus on user experience and performance in Firefox Quantum, Google will also become our new default search provider in the United States and Canada.

Does that mean the deal with Yahoo! has lapsed? And is there a new deal with Google, or no deal at all? (And what would be the revenue impact of that?)

Edit: Just saw an announcement for this as well [2], with no word about revenue. Guess that means that Yahoo! isn't paying anymore and that it means Google is the more sensible choice when nobody pays - though that's still reading between the lines.

[1] https://blog.mozilla.org/blog/2017/11/14/introducing-firefox...

[2] https://blog.mozilla.org/blog/2017/11/14/firefox-features-go...

reply

[–] brody182 link

brave browser all the way

reply

[–] illamea85 link

Loaded with Cliqz trojan horse!

reply

[–] mason182 link

still brave browser is much better, its fast, blocks all trackers, ads, bitcoin, BAT integrated and much more

reply

[–] ForFreedom link

Absolutely no difference from chrome w.r.t memory usage.

reply

[–] SadWebDeveloper link

+1 m using Chrome + uBO + uMatrix + uBlock Protector while NoScript 10 gets released.

reply

[–] TheRealPomax link

Slightly confused here: what's the point of "using Chrome instead" when FF supports all of the addons you're using 'in the mean time' already? Just use FF with those addons until NoScript gets its official release in tandem with the official FF release?

reply

[–] SadWebDeveloper link

Every major FF release always come with major bugs followed by a minor release fixing them a couple of days later, plus it comes with headaches discovering "Whats New" or for me "What should i disable next" or "What feature they delete", usually i tolerated those changes because i had NoScript by my side and now that NoScript disappear the line between Chrome and FF its pretty thin therefore meanwhile everything settle, m using an already tuned Chrome.

tl;dr FF without NoScript is basically Chrome, without NoScript Firefox is meaningless to me, it's the only thing that has kept me on Firefox.

reply

[–] Severian link

I won't touch it until NoScript is available.

reply

[–] MadWombat link

So... my Firefox just auto-upgraded to 57

* No multi-row tab bar and no way to get it (from Tab Mix Plus)

* Tabs are ugly square and no way to get them rounded

* Tabs are too small and no way to set minimal tab size

* Tabs are all the same color and no way to get them colored again

* No tab groups, the replacement is containers, but there is no way to move an existing tab into a container and no way to only see tabs for a particular container.

* Tab Session Manager seems to provide named sessions, although I have not tested it properly yet

I wouldn't say that the new FF is completely useless, but it has affected my browsing experience in a strongly negative way. I will give it a few days, but at this point Chrome might provide more features I actually want (never thought I would say that).

Edit: Reading other comments in this thread, I found a link to a set of CSS files that bring rounded tabs back (https://github.com/wilfredwee/photon-australis). Unfortunately it disables color coding container tabs which makes separating containers a pain. Well, guess you cannot have everything.

reply