Should FxA remove support for old browser integrations?

Shane Tomlinson stomlinson at
Thu Sep 14 14:36:02 UTC 2017

Firefox 29 is the first version of Firefox desktop that used Firefox
to sign in to Sync [1]. Firefox 29 was released on April 29, 2014.

In the nearly 3.5 years since Firefox 29 was released, Firefox has aged by
26 full releases. Perhaps surprisingly, FxA still officially maintains
and supports sign in to Firefox 29. I just tried to make sure I wasn't going
to have to eat those words. It works. Yay us.

The thing is, as FxA adds more features that are only supported on
Fx >= version N, maintaining support for these old browsers is becoming
increasingly complex, time consuming, and expensive. Our full functional
suite now takes an hour to run, many of the tests are for browsers which
been unsupported by Mozilla for some time.

I propose we purposely lose some of the extra baggage by officially dropping
support for Firefox <= current ESR - 1. Why current ESR - 1? Well, Mozilla
officially supports Firefox back to ESR. There are a bunch of companies
lag behind even that, and since we are a nice group that doesn't like to
folks, we'll support 2 full ESRs. Current ESR is based on Firefox 52. The
previous ESR was based on Firefox 45. We'd officially support down to
Firefox 45.

For users that try to sign in to FxA on these old browsers, we could show
nice screen that says something along the lines of "Hey, sorry to do this
to you,
but your browser is really really behind the times. For your own safety,
a link the latest and greatest."



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