Removal of nsILocalFile and other interfaces, was: Upcoming change to fixIterator function in iteratorUtils.jsm

R Kent James kent at
Mon Aug 7 16:26:12 UTC 2017

TL;DR: Could someone please step forward to maintain an information 
pages of gecko changes between TB 52 and TB 59 that affect addons?

It is going to be quite a burden for our addon developers to maintain 
compatibility when m-c is removing interfaces and making other changes 
that were delayed until gecko 57 because of impact on extension 
developers. Many popular extensions are barely maintained, and the 
burden of figuring all of this out is going to be hard.

We don't really have the resources to support all of the activities that 
the Mozilla addon team used to provide, but will stop providing after 
XUL addons are deprecated for Firefox in gecko 57. But it would be great 
if someone could step forward and maintain a page of changes needed to 
make a TB 52 addon compatible with TB 59.

We may also need to rethink some fundamental addon policies for TB 59. 
Like, we will need to come up with our own review strategy, as I assume 
that the Firefox addon team will cease reviewing XUL addons. We should 
probably rethink the "compatible by default" decision that was made by 
Firefox years ago, but supported by them using an automatic scanning of 
addons for incompatible features, which we never implemented. The old 
system of relying on addon developers to flag their addons as compatible 
with TB 59 will probably be needed, as the vast majority of addons will 
no longer be compatible without maintenance effort by addon developers.


On 8/7/2017 6:19 AM, Jörg Knobloch wrote:
> In the process of streamlining their APIs for mozilla57, Mozilla core 
> yesterday removed nsILocalFile (to be replaced with nsIFile) which 
> will affect many add-ons. As of yesterday, those add-ons stopped 
> working in Thunderbird Daily.
> As previously advised, STEEL has also been removed. Here a list of 
> interfaces removed last week:
> nsILocalFile, steelIApplication, extIApplication, nsIEntityConverter, 
> nsIProgrammingLanguage, nsILocaleService and friends, 
> nsIScriptableDateFormat
> Details: Bug 1347507 
> <>
> Removal imminent for
> -- 
> Jörg Knobloch - jorgk at <mailto:jorgk at> - 
> <>
> Thunderbird Developer <> 
> (Thunderbird 
> <>, Compose 
> <> and Mailnews 
> Editor <> and 
> MIME <> 
> peer) - Member of the Thunderbird Council 
> <>
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