Australis landing plans
8 November, 2013 § 38 Comments
The team working on the new Australis version of Firefox (myself included) is starting to get close to merging to mozilla-central. We’re too far from being able to say exactly when this code will merge, but I want to go over our backout plan for Australis.
As you may or may not know, Australis is a project to provide an updated visual design, streamlined tab strip, new Firefox menu and improved customization capabilities.
Due to its large scope, Australis couldn’t be implemented with the ability to toggle its presence via an about:config preference. This unfortunately carries with it a more burdensome plan to undo the changes should there be issues that lead us to delay the release of Australis.
When Australis (currently located on the UX branch) merges to mozilla-central, the Australis team will manage a special project branch that mirrors mozilla-central but excludes the Australis changes. This branch is located in the temporary Holly project.
In the likely chance that we choose to hold Australis on the Nightly train for an extra release cycle, we will use Holly to merge to mozilla-aurora. This will allow the mozilla-central changes not related to Australis to continue moving along with the release trains.
This also presents an issue in that the code that reaches Aurora will have a tiny fraction of the testing hours on it compared to the Nightly builds. To work around this, I’m asking that users who aren’t interested in Australis use the Holly branch for their Nightly builds. This will help spread out some of the testing hours and make sure to catch any potential merge bustage faster. I’ll be posting a link to download Holly nightlies once we merge from UX to mozilla-central.
In the meantime, if you are looking to help test Australis you can download a build from the UX branch.
There is a sentence I can’t quite understand; This unfortunately carries with it a more burdensome plan to undo the changes should there be issues that lead us to delay the release of Australis.
Are you saying,
1) This unfortunately carries with it a more burdensome plan to undo the changes, if there should be issues that lead us to delay the release of Australis.
2) This unfortunately carries with it a more burdensome plan to undo the changes, and as a result, there may be issues that lead us to delay the release of Australis.
I’m not a native speaker, so I would appreciate if you could clarify the meaning.
Thank you for the question. Number 1 is the correct interpretation.
will old plugins, addons and skins of the firefox we have right now work with the new version you got in the works here, what would 3rd party developers have to do to be compatible with your changes, if theyre affected by them?
Many plugins, add-ons, and skins will remain compatible with Australis. However there will be some that will need some maintenance work to adjust to the changes. With the extended time on the UX branch, and potentially extended time on the Nightly channel, third-party developers should have ample time to update their work to remain compatible with Firefox.
Can we land australis such that it won’t remove strings we’d need in the case of holly? That’d be really helpful for the localizations that work on nightly, and also in the scary case where we find out that we need to use holly while being on aurora.
As part of this work, we didn’t remove any strings to keep localization changes happy. We did move them to the bottom of the files so they were more obvious that they were short-lived.
Where do these changes leave people who rely on customising their own Navigation Toolbar? Icons and spacers and such. Can this still be done or not? Is the Customise Toolbar drop down still going to be there?
Personal customisation aspects of Firefox are the only reason to use the browser for a lot of people. Can you clarify, please?
The navigation toolbar can still be customized. If you want to move the stop or reload button out of the location bar you’ll have to use an add-on though.
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Sorry for the typo. I was talking about custom toolbars which you can create by clicking the “add new toolbar” button in customization mode.
I know Firefox is the king when it comes to Addon APIs and I have written some UserChromeJS scripts to make the best out of it. But the truth is addon developers are leaving Firefox while the opposite is happening to Chrome. Mozilla doesn’t seem to give a damn.
I see Holly is temporary. Will there be any way to keep old interface forever ?
Sorry, but we will not support the old interface going forward. You can install 3rd-party themes to get the style that you would like.
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i was hoping for a less ‘Aqua’ and more iOS7 makeover. windows changes look spot-on. OS X changes are welcome, but the interface could use less gradients, aqua, etc.