Fwd: Intent to unship: bootstrapped extensions

Axel Grude axel.grude at gmail.com
Tue Jun 5 10:49:30 UTC 2018

So when can we (Add-ons authors) get a crash course in writing

  * APIs for replacing XPCOM - and how to fast track the code so it lands in
    Thunderbird before it is borked by Firefox code merges
  * replacements for XUL overlays
  * replacements for CSS overlays

What's the time line here? Hopw many months do we have to completely replace the 
technology? I have one restartless Add-on, MenuOnTop, ut also uses rdf and xul

I would suggest to start with some weekly meetings between Thunderbird devs and 
extension authors so theey can start to understand each others requirements.


*Axel Grude <mailto:axel.grude at gmail.com>*
Music Production and Composition
Thunderbird Add-ons Developer (QuickFolders 
quickFilters <https://addons.mozilla.org/thunderbird/addon/quickfilters/>, 
QuickPasswords <https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/addon/quickpasswords/>, Zombie Keys 
<https://addons.mozilla.org/thunderbird/addon/zombie-keys/>, SmartTemplate4 
Visit my YouTube Channel <https://www.youtube.com/c/thunderbirddaily> for email 
productivity tips Get Thunderbird!
> *Subject:*Fwd: Intent to unship: bootstrapped extensions
> *From:*Patrick Brunschwig <patrick at enigmail.net>
> *To:*Tb-planning
> *Sent: *Tuesday, 05/06/2018 07:21:46 07:21 GMT ST +0100 [Week 23]
> We will need to act soon...
> -Patrick
> -------- Forwarded Message --------
> Subject: 	Intent to unship: bootstrapped extensions
> Date: 	Mon, 4 Jun 2018 20:34:52 -0700
> From: 	Andrew Swan <aswan at mozilla.com>
> To: 	firefox-dev <firefox-dev at mozilla.org>, dev-addons
> <dev-addons at mozilla.org>
> Since various types of legacy extensions became unsupported in Firefox
> Quantum, we've been busy removing obsolete code and streamlining the
> Addons Manager which, as you might imagine, had become quite large and
> complex in order to support a wide variety of legacy addon formats.
> At this point, the largest remaining category of legacy extensions is
> bootstrapped extensions.  We no longer support bootstrapped extensions
> for general use, but we do use them for things like system addons, Test
> Pilot experiments, Shield studies, extensions used in automation, and a
> few other things.  Bootstrapped extensions are useful for these
> applications since they provide a relatively simple way to run some
> chrome-privileged javascript code without having to land that code and
> wait for it to ride the trains.  But continuing to support these
> extensions comes at some cost (for instance, they are one of the last
> users of RDF in mozilla-central).
> An important feature of WebExtensions is that they run in a sandboxed
> environment much like web content without direct access to
> chrome-privileged browser internals.  However, a feature called
> WebExtensions Experiments allows certain extensions to run some
> privileged code.  Converting bootstrapped extensions to WebExtensions
> plus experiments has a bunch of advantages:
> - It means less privileged code overall which is good for stability and
> security
> - Though porting takes some work, the result should be easier to
> maintain and build on in the future
> - It frees us up to remove more old code and further streamline the
> addons manager
> So, we plan to remove support for bootstrapped extensions altogether in
> Firefox 65.  This will entail porting existing bootstrapped extensions
> to WebExtensions (or converting them to something other than an
> extension where that is appropriate).  This effort is tracked in bug
> 1449052.  If you are responsible for a bootstrapped extension that we
> rely on and it is not already tracked as a dependency of that bug, please:
> 1. Add a comment or dependency. to bug 1449052, and
> 2. Aim to get the extension converted by the end of the 64 Nightly cycle
> (Oct 15)
> And needless to say, we shouldn't be creating any new bootstrapped
> extensions at this point.
> A lot of things are going to need to come together to hit his schedule
> but we are eager to get this wrapped up and move on.  If you are
> responsible for an extension and have questions about how to handle it,
> feel free to either contact me directly or drop into #webextensions on
> IRC.  If you want to learn more about WebExtensions Experiments, there
> is a brief overview at [1] and a lot of gory implementation details at [2].
> [1] https://webextensions-experiments.readthedocs.io/en/latest/
> <https://webextensions-experiments.readthedocs.io/en/latest/>
> [2]
> https://firefox-source-docs.mozilla.org/toolkit/components/extensions/webextensions/index.html
> <https://firefox-source-docs.mozilla.org/toolkit/components/extensions/webextensions/index.html>
> _______________________________________________
> tb-planning mailing list
> tb-planning at mozilla.org
> https://mail.mozilla.org/listinfo/tb-planning

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