September 2005 Entries

Checkin of the week

A small collection of some of the most important checkins that has happend during the last week:

Extension manager should use xpinstall crypto hashes
This bug makes it possible for extension developers to add hashes to theirs update.rdf files to protect against mirror network hacks. Basically in your update.rdf file you add a entry like this one <em:updateHash>sha256:3e2fad5911cd757bf8a01f155c3c00db558266d9ed4cb3ba6a59b8d6d3b106b8</em:updateHash>
This is the hash value of the XPI file provide in the update.rdf file. You can specify sha256, md5 and others. Check this patch for more info. More information about this can be found in this and this bug. If you try to update Slashy using the latest nightly build you will be using this feature.

Remove UI for 'Load Images for the originating web site only' pref
Seems like this options confused more people than it helped

September 29, 2005 02:52 PM | Permalink | 1 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Microsoft copying XUL? Avalon Everywhere? Cross-platform Microsoft?

Another interesting announcement here at PDC is that Microsoft is creating a subset of their cool, fancy pants UI layer (formerly code-named Avalon, now WPF) on other platforms, including the Mac! In fact, one of the demos involved showing vector graphics rendered in Safari using a Microsoft plug-in. This subset, called WPF/E, will be powered by XAML (their XML dialect for representing the UI) and JavaScript. Sound familiar? Yes, that's right -- Microsoft also announced a Dashboard clone for Windows Vista. Microsoft will never port .NET to other major operating systems, but to have a subset of Avalon available on other platforms is a bit of a curveball. In fact, in light of Firefox and Safari's upcoming support of SVG and Canvas (and in the future, 3D functionality), this move makes sense; Microsoft wants to provide their own proprietary solution to cut off this new cross-platform initiative. Also, Microsoft's Ajax framework, Atlas, will target WPF/E. The WPF/E subset of Avalon will include all of the Avalon features (vector graphics, animations, etc.) less 3D, some of their XPS features (XPS == Microsoft PDF clone), and hardware acceleration. In a WPF/E session, someone asked if Microsoft's WPF/E plug-in will be available in Firefox; the speaker dodged the question ("We hope such support will emerge..."). My first reaction to WPF/E is frankly disappointment that they wouldn't just embrace SVG, though what I've seen of 2D XAML makes it look a while lot like SVG with different attribute names and various other differences. I wonder if XSLT will do the trick there... Lack of many of the Avalon features in WPF/E, notably hardware acceleration, really makes it seem that the strategy is to make apps work on other platforms, but make them work poorly compared to Windows -- motivating users to switch to a Windows platform.
Read more and more

September 28, 2005 03:50 PM | Permalink | 0 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Best way to get location from inside a extension

Somehow I cant believe I'm asking this question, since it should be documented and used in almost every extension but there seems to be an almost endless way to get the URL of the current document. So my question is:

What's the recommended way from chrome of getting the URL of the current document being displayed in a window?
My requirements are that the answer works in both the current Mozilla SeaMonkey and Mozilla Firefox. If a page consists of frames or iframes it must return the top URL.

A couple of possible answers:
- document.location.href
- window.document.location
- window.location.href
- document.url
- getBrowser().mCurrentBrowser.currentURI.spec
- gBrowser().mCurrentBrowser.currentURI.spec
- content.location
- ?

Can you come up with the ultimate JavaScript code that does this?

What if I need to scan through all the links on the current loaded document when I right click on a page?

September 27, 2005 06:43 PM | Permalink | 13 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Extensions I use - part 4

It's time for a updated list of my previous posting here. These are the extensions I use, not just the ones I have installed.

Firefox Extensions
  • Console2 - replaces the JavaScript Console with what could be the next generation Error Console
  • Copy URL+ - Copies to clipboard the document's URL along with the title or the selected text
  • CuteMenus - Adds icons to menus and popups
  • Inspect Element - Inspect an element with the DOM Inspector
  • InfoLister - Lists installed extensions and themes
  • Linky - Open/download/validate links and pictures in tabs or windows
  • Live HTTP headers - View HTTP headers of a page and while browsing
  • LastTab - Allows tab navigation in a most recently used manner.
  • Linkification - Converts text links into genuine, clickable links.
  • Location Navigator - Tools used to navigate up/down through the numeric portion of a location
  • Link Toolbar - A site-navigation toolbar
  • Launchy - Open links and mailto's with external applications like Internet Explorer, Netscape, Opera, Outlook etc
  • OpenBook - Allows for customization of the Add Bookmark dialog
  • ProxyButton - ProxyButton creates a toolbar button to quickly turn proxy on and off
  • RestartFirefox - Restart Firefox with a quick access File - Menu item
  • Slashy - Fixes Windows backslash file separators in links and images
  • SessionSaver - Magically restores your last browsing session
  • Web Developer - Adds a menu and a toolbar with various web developer tools
September 26, 2005 11:15 PM | Permalink | 7 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Firefox faces challenges as it matures

When Version 1.0 of Firefox was released last November (see "Mozilla launches Firefox 1.0 browser"), it caused a sensation as a seemingly more secure and more feature-rich alternative to Microsoft Corp.'s ubiquitous Internet Explorer, which for years had held a market share north of 90% -- and which Microsoft had barely bothered to improve. Since then, Firefox has achieved what no other browser had accomplished in years: It attained a significant market share at IE's expense. Firefox now holds a market share of between 7% and 9%, according to various market research estimates. But as Firefox nears its first birthday, its maker, the Mozilla Foundation, faces significant challenges, analysts said. These include quickly discovering and fixing security vulnerabilities, competing against an upcoming IE upgrade and broadening Firefox's user base beyond its core of technically savvy users. The stream of Firefox security vulnerabilities uncovered in recent months is par for the course for a young software product (see "Symantec report sparks safe-browser debate"). But it may disappoint users who switched to Firefox expecting it to be immune to security holes.
Read the article

September 20, 2005 10:20 PM | Permalink | 3 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Mozilla hits back at browser security claim

Mozilla is in much better shape than Microsoft when it comes to fixing security problems, claims the organisation
Mozilla has reacted to a Symantec report issued on Monday which said serious vulnerabilities were being found in Mozilla's browsers faster than in Microsoft's Internet Explorer. The study was conducted over the first six months of 2005. Tristan Nitot, president of Mozilla Europe, hit back by claiming on Monday that when a vulnerability is found Mozilla's "ability to react, find a solution and put it into the user's hands is better than Microsoft." Nitot said that Mozilla's reaction time was faster than Microsoft's. "If you look at our ability to respond, we are in much better shape. On 6 September an IDN buffer issue was reported to Mozilla. On 8 September it was publicly disclosed. We ask our developers not to mention any problems until we have a fix for them, but for some reason he went public. On 9 September we had a configuration change that disabled the IDN problem, that users could implement manually, or they could use a patch. Within ten days we had a newer version that was fixed completely."
Read article

September 20, 2005 04:30 PM | Permalink | 0 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Opera is free

Opera Eliminates Ad Banner and Licensing Fee
Opera Software today permanently removed the ad banner and licensing fee from its award-winning Web browser. The ad-free, full-featured Opera browser is now available for download - completely free of charge. "Today we invite the entire Internet community to use Opera and experience Web browsing as it should be," said Jon S. von Tetzchner, CEO, Opera Software. "Removing the ad banner and licensing fee will encourage many new users to discover the speed, security and unmatched usability of the Opera browser." Opera was previously available free of charge with an ad banner. Users had the option of paying a licensing fee to remove the ad banner and receive premium support.
Read the press release

September 20, 2005 12:38 PM | Permalink | 0 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Minimo Support for PPC Devices

Doug has an interesting write up on Minimo support for PPC devices.
We make every effort to produce working builds of Minimo for your Windows CE PPC 2003 device. However, there are some devices that we just can't get to work properly. It may be that I don't have a device like yours to test against. Or it may be that there is some memory map problem which I will describe. The core of the problem is that on this device we run out of address space for some reason. Minimo (including support libraries) today is a bit over 10mb of code, data, text. Each process on Windows CE is allowed 32MB of address space to use. So what gives? My guess is that XIP ROM-based DLLs are laid down breaking up the address space so there isn't a contiguous range where we can load our code.

Doug hopes that bringing the memory usage down in Minimo will not only help Minimo users but also Firefox users:
There are two independent solutions. First we will further reduce the size of Minimo were possible. This will be an ongoing task and one that I hope will benefit not only all minimo users, but also all FireFox users too. I do not expect we will get there over night.

Read the posting

September 20, 2005 08:55 AM | Permalink | 0 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Microsoft looks to spread authentication technology to Firefox

Looking to ease the way customers manage their digital identities, Microsoft has begun working to integrate its InfoCard authentication technology with Internet Explorer and is in discussions with the Firefox and Safari browser developers to have them include the technology on their platforms. According to Microsoft officials, InfoCard integration could show up in Internet Explorer 7.0 even though InfoCard is currently not on the feature list. The goal is to improve security and privacy on the Internet using the InfoCard model, which puts users in control of their personal identity information and would eliminate the need for user names and passwords to sign into a Web site. "We are still working on if there is enough time to get this done" for Internet Explorer 7, says Michael Stephenson, Microsoft's group product manager for Windows Server. "We expect many different applications, smart apps, Web apps and browsers, to use InfoCard. Our own browser will take advantage of it."
Read article

Mike Shaver writes about this and has written about this before.

September 19, 2005 11:43 PM | Permalink | 1 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

To the Opera

The Copenhagen Opera House is an amazing building. We went there yesterday to see the ballet The Little Mermaid which of course is based on the Hans Christian Andersen fairytale. Life is much more than Mozilla and work...

September 19, 2005 11:38 PM | Permalink | 0 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Win32 backend renderer revisited

Currently the backend rendering engine in Mozilla Firefox on Windows is using GDI+. People have been talking about replacing GDI+ with Cairo as the rendering engine. Cairo is a free software graphics library with multiple backends, that provides a vector-based device-independent API for software developers.

Until now the main problem has been performance. Cairo was not as fast as GDI+. But this might seem to have change with the latest release of Cairo. Tim Rowley (tor) has made some new benchmarks which indicates that a switch to Cairo might happen soon.

Tor writes:
Things look quite a bit better than last time, enough that it's tempting to switch from GDI+ to Cairo for Firefox 1.5. It would make all the platforms behave the same, remove the support issue of people without the GDI+ library (anyone pre-WinXP), and fix some rendering issues that can't be addressed otherwise, like the reflect/repeat modes of radial gradients.

Read the blog entry

September 16, 2005 08:56 AM | Permalink | 2 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Linky and Launchy for latest Firefox and Thunderbird releases

I'm working on getting both Linky and Launchy updated so that they work with the latest release of Firefox and Thunderbird.
In the meantime you can download versions with an updated maxversion string here:
- Launchy
- Linky

September 15, 2005 09:38 AM | Permalink | 1 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Killer Buzz Flocks to New Browser

Perhaps the world does not need another web browser -- but it may want Bart Decrem's. Decrem and a small cadre of programmers in Palo Alto, California, have spent this summer quietly readying Flock, an open-source browser, for an early October beta launch. Several members of the team, including Decrem, hail from the Mozilla Foundation, which produced the Firefox browser upon which Flock is built. Flock advertises itself as a "social browser," meaning that the application plays nicely with popular web services like Flickr, Technorati and Flock also features widely compliant WYSIWYG, drag-and-drop blogging tools. The browser even promises to detect and authenticate all those user accounts automatically. It's a clear attempt to be the browser of choice for the Web 2.0 user.
Read blog posting

Flock has landed. We're introducing the world's most innovative social browsing experience. We call it the two-way web. Over the next few weeks, we'll be seeding invites to a few lucky folks.

Flock screenshots

September 15, 2005 09:16 AM | Permalink | 4 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Microsofts browser slide continues

A little bit about the Firefox marked share.

For the 10th consecutive month, the popularity of Microsoft'' Internet Explorer Web browser has declined. Netscape's browser showed the strongest growth in market share in August, rising 33% to a 2.02% share, according to NetApplications, a Web-site analysis company.
Read article

Firefox still holds clout on Internet
Despite the first hack-attack reported against it, Firefox, the nifty little open-source Internet browser, continues to hold sway around the world, taking users away from Microsoft's Internet Explorer, a new survey has shown. According to NetApplications, a website analysis company, Firefox, which is offered through Mozilla Corp., had a market share of 8.27 per cent in August, up from 8.07 per cent in July. On the other hand, the Internet Explorer, continued its slide in the market, dropping to 86.31 per cent from 87.2 per cent.
Read article

Firefox, Netscape, and Safari all gained market share at Internet Explorer's expense
IE lost market share as Firefox, Apple Computer Inc.'s Safari; and America Online Inc.'s Netscape gained. Safari rose to 2.2 percent from 2.13 percent in July, while Netscape posted the biggest gain to 2.02 percent from 1.5 percent. "Firefox isn't the only interesting story in August, with Safari and Netscape on the rise, Internet Explorer faced an offensive on three separate fronts," Phil Vizzaccaro, chief executive of NetApplications, said in a statement.
Read article

September 13, 2005 10:19 PM | Permalink | 2 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

MSDN Opens Up to Firefox and Opera

MSDN announced last week that it had tweaked its subscriber download site in order to make it compatible with both Firefox and Opera. There are some issues, such as extra work needed in installing the File Transfer Manager, however developers are working on a new version of the FTM that should correct final problems.
Read more

September 13, 2005 10:09 PM | Permalink | 0 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Why Firefox Could Improve Your Life on the Internet

So what's all the excitement about? Well, for one, Firefox is a very nice browser. It's fast loading with a clean look. It's easy to use and comes with some very nice features. The one you'll notice right away is tabbed browsing. That is the ability to have a single browser window hold multiple sites that you access by clicking tabs instead of having multiple windows open at the same time. If you haven't tried tabbed browsing you should download Firefox just to see how nice it is and wonder how you lived without it.
Read article

September 06, 2005 08:54 AM | Permalink | 0 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

What's new in Firefox 1.5 Beta 1

This page lists the improvements in Gecko 1.8 branch builds (as of September 2, 2005) over Deer Park Alpha 2. One of these builds will soon become "Firefox 1.5 Beta 1", which is scheduled to be released September 8. Firefox 1.5 Beta 1 includes several key security improvements: splitting windows into inner and outer objects, enabling XPCNativeWrappers by default for extensions, and improving the application update system to make it easier for users to keep Firefox up to date. Several security holes have been fixed as well.
Read the Unofficial Firefox 1.5 Beta 1 changelog

September 03, 2005 11:40 AM | Permalink | 2 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Mozilla as a Development Platform: An Interview with Axel Hecht

Axel Hecht is a member of Mozilla Europe's board of directors, and a major contributor to the Mozilla project, working on XSLT and RDF, among other things. At O'Reilly's European Open Source Convention (October 17-20), Dr. Hecht will be talking about Mozilla as a development platform. O'Reilly Network interviewed Dr. Hecht to find out if the long-held dream of Mozilla as a development platform was about to come true.
Read the interview

September 03, 2005 11:33 AM | Permalink | 1 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

DHL stafet 2005

Notice: This entry is only available in Danish.

Så gennemførte jeg DHL stafetten igen i år. Undskyldninger er der nok af, men en uge på Kreta med lidt for meget god mad og for meget is var nok med til at skubbe tiden lidt. Host host...:)

Men jeg fik da en nogenlunde tid på 23:13 og mit hold en samlet tid på et par sekunder over 2 timer. Da jeg denne gang kunne finde ud af at bruge mit løbe ur er her mine kilometertider 4:15, 4:28, 4:38, 4:46, 5:06. Næste år kommer jeg stærkt tilbage.

Og ja det er lidt sjovt at hvis man søger på DHL stafet på google kommer mit site øverst. Hurra for min pagerank eller hvad det nu er der gør det!

September 01, 2005 10:10 PM | Permalink | 3 Comments | 0 TrackBacks

Back from vacation

I'm finally 100% back from a long vacation. A vacation that meant no PC, no mail, no Mozilla, etc. Wonderful!

I finished watching season 4 of 24. I can only say: See you in season 5. Season 4 had a bit too much action compared to the other seasons. But once again, what a day for Jack Bauer!

I've also had the time to do some reading. I finished the wonderful The Name of the Rose. I watched the movie many many years ago but never read the book. Now I have and it's a really good murder mystery set in a 14th century Italian monastery.

Since I, like many others, have read The Da Vinci Code I had to read Holy Blood, Holy Grail which is the book that Dan Brown based parts of the Da Vinci Code book on. Holy Blood, Holy Grail questions many things including if Christ really did on the cross. From start to finished its filled with question and skepticism to the Christian history.

I also had the time to go to Crete. The "At a Glance" at Lonely Planet best describes Crete: Steeped in Homeric history and culture, scented by wild fennel and basil, Crete welcomes and overwhelms visitors with its wealth of myths, legends and history, a blessed and dramatic landscape, an extraordinary fusion of past and present, and an abundance of choices and experiences.

Coming back from vacation also gave me some technical problems. First my ISP gave my IP address to another customer resulting in me not being able to connect to the Internet. Then my hard drive at work uttered three blips and blow up. I had that one replaced with a fast Seagate Barracuda SATA drive. So back to reinstalling all of my applications once again.

Of course we also spend some time in our sommerhus.

September 01, 2005 11:48 AM | Permalink | 1 Comments | 0 TrackBacks
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