Firefox Headlines (November 10, 2021)

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Mark Striemer

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Nov 10, 2021, 12:43:44 PM11/10/21
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Hey Firefox fans!

Here's a summary of our discussion about what's been going on in Firefox development over the last two weeks!

Thanks to Mike Conley, Harry Twyford and Zibi Braniecki for putting these notes together with me.

Highlights

  • The current plan is to begin the slow rollout of Fission (Site Isolation in Firefox) next week for users on the release channel

  • We enabled the new downloads experience on Nightly only! (not shipping or on beta with 95)

    • If you have questions, please see the public explainer doc first to see if it’s answered there

    • If you see issues, please use one of the links in that doc to file a bug.

  • Some really great stuff for users on macOS have landed recently in Nightly:

    • Firefox now supports sending webpages via Handoff: when you have a page open in Firefox on your Mac, you will see a prompt to open that page on your other nearby Apple devices (bug 1525788). 

    • Starting in Firefox 94, watching fullscreen video on Mac will consume significantly less battery power (meta 1653417).

    • Fonts are now rendered correctly on non-English systems running macOS 12 (bug 1732629).

    • Content process startup is 30-70% faster (bug 1467758).

  • Thanks to :emilio for making the autofill background color configurable

Friends of the Firefox team

For contributions from October 19th to November 1st 2021, inclusive.

Resolved bugs (excluding employees)

Fixed more than one bug

  • Itiel

  • jbarson

  • Leslie

  • Mathew Hodson

  • onuohamiriam44

  • onuohaoluebube05

  • Oriol Brufau [:Oriol]

New contributors (🌟 = first patch)

Project Updates

Add-ons / Web Extensions

Addon Manager & about:addons

  • John Bieling contributed a fix to about:addons to ensure that about:addons “Languages” category listview will be pointing the user to the language section on addons.mozilla.org when all langpacks has been uninstalled and the about:addons Languages category listview is the currently selected view - Bug 1737875


WebExtensions Framework

  • Fixed an intermittent issue on opening unpacked extensions’ browserAction popups - Bug 1735899 in Firefox 95

    • This issue was actually related to a pre-existing issue, only revealed after we fixed Bug 1706594 (and it was triggered by a stale preloaded stylesheet cached entry, which was stuck in the loading state because of a pre-existing bug in RemoteLazyInputStream::Close)    

  • Mathew Hodson got rid of the remaining uses of “ChromeUtils.import(..., null)” in the WebExtensions framework internals - Bug 1531368 (and Bug 1733851, Bug 1733871, Bug 1733883, Bug 1733886).

  • Tomislav landed a fix for a regression related to the sender.url value sent along with the messages sent from a content script using the WebExtensions messaging APIs - Bug 1734984 (originally introduced from Bug 1729395)  


WebExtension APIs

  • :dw-dev contributed a fix for the “browserSettings.zoomSiteSpecific.set” WebExtensions API method (which ensures that the controlled browser setting is going to be reset as expected when an extension using this API is uninstalled) - Bug 1735047

Downloads Panel

  • With the new Downloads Panel experience enabled, work is ongoing on the issues that people are finding on Nightly

  • Ava, this past summer’s outreachy intern, is also continuing to work on download spam protection.

Fission

Form Autofill

Desktop Integrations (Installer & Updater)

Lint, Docs and Workflow

macOS Spotlight

  • Fixed a performance issue affecting users with pinned tabs in fullscreen mode. UI jank occurred when the user moused to the top of the screen to reveal the menu bar (bug 1701929). 

  • Users with M1 Macs can now import bookmarks from Safari on startup (bug 1735140). 

Password Manager 

Search and Navigation

  • Daisuke fixed telemetry for the New Tab Page search field hand-off to the Address Bar, so that search counts are appropriately counted - Bug 1732429 

  • Harry fixed the search mode indicator colors in high contrast mode - Bug 1735643 

  • Thanks to all the contributors from the community:

    • Simon Farre contributed a patch improving performance of some tokenization in the address bar. Bug 1726853 

    • Tanju Brunostar contributed a patch fixing searches for “.de” or “.com” in the address bar trying to visit a page instead of searching - Bug 1724473 

    • Leslie contributed a patch fixing high contrast hover state of the shield/lock icons - Bug 1737054 

Below the fold

  • [mconley] Firefox::General triage duty rotation

  • [mconley] See a Firefox performance issue in Bugzilla? Set [fxperf] in the whiteboard so that the front-end performance group can triage it. We’ll make sure the right people see it.

  • [mtigley] I learned you can set preferences in browser.ini. This sets preferences before the application launches.

    • [mconley] Yes! Very handy for preferences that are only read once at startup

  • [kpatenio] Can also apparently set prefs using --setpref with ./mach run


This information, including all of the previous updates, are fully available in this doc: https://docs.google.com/a/mozilla.com/document/d/1u9YH3ULNRYg6G-fN-Udkvfkcvg0alJfzi_zIAfFNkL8/edit?usp=sharing


Also note that I'm really just synthesizing and humanizing the stuff that's on the Wiki, which is freely available from here: https://wiki.mozilla.org/Firefox/Meeting, so check that out if you want the source material. It'll also be posted (minus the Below the Fold stuff) to the Nightly blog.


Finally, if there's a Firefox-ish team that you feel isn't being represented here, please let them know about the above meeting so we can get their updates.


Keep on rockin' the free web,

Mark

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