Which Firefox features would you like to see removed and which polished? - gHacks Tech News

Which Firefox features would you like to see removed and which polished?

Mozilla published a blog post about a week ago on the official blog of the organization which was entitled "what to look forward to from Firefox". The article was rather disappointing from a user point of view as it revealed nothing but fluff at that point.

In it, Mozilla revealed the three pillars of its strategy namely uncompromised quality, best of the web and uniquely Firefox. While that may have made an interesting post, virtually no information were revealed about those pillars in the post.

This left users puzzled as to why this was posted in first place due to the lack of information about each of the pillars. On Monday, Dave Camp posted to the Mozilla Developer Mailing List in which he revealed information that were missing in the original post.

Firefox Pillars

Uncompromised quality refers to a new initiative inside Mozilla that the devs call internally Great or Dead. Basically,what it means is that Mozilla will look at features of Firefox and decide whether to keep them, update them to give them enough polish, or remove them from the browser.

Every feature in the browser should be polished, functional, and a joy to use. Where we can’t get it to that state, we shouldn’t do it at all. In some cases that will mean spending time to make it great. In other cases that will mean removing code that we don’t see ourselves improving any time soon. In other cases it will mean finding third party services or addons that can do the job better than we can. We are putting together a list of the features that need this sort of review. We’ll be asking for help maintaining that list, reviewing the features, and getting them where they need to be.

Mozilla used a similar strategy in the past when it came to the removal of features that were later on offered as add-ons again created by third-party developers.

The only feature that Dave Camp mentioned is e10s which he calls "a big project" that Mozilla needs to get right.

Best of the Web is about Firefox's development community and partners

We intend to spend some significant effort making addons even more awesome by improving security and performance for users and a building a better API that increases x-platform compatibility for addon authors and partners.

Camp talks openly about the Pocket integration in Firefox and admits that the way the code was integrated in Firefox was not optimal and that integration as an add-on would have made more sense.

Uniquely Firefox finally is about giving users back control of the browser and the Web. Camp mentions an update to the browser's private browsing mode that is coming soon. He does not mention what it is in the post but we do know it already: Mozilla plans to integrate the new tracking protection feature in private browsing.

So new feature work is going to revolve around giving users the control to shape their web. We’re going to start with one area where people really want more control - online privacy. You’ll start to see the first stab at  this - an improved Private Browsing mode - land shortly in Firefox.

Things will change and while that is not necessarily a bad thing, it remains to be seen what Mozilla plans to remove, keep or polish. This is a big chance for the organization to win back the favor of disillusioned users of the web browser who saw loved features go and features they had not use for being integrated natively in the browser.

There is a vocal user base that wants to see recently added features such as Firefox Hello, Pocket or the New Tab page modifications removed again. This however is unlikely, especially since the three pillar graphic shows some of them.

The worst case scenario for those users is the removal of features that were part of Firefox for a long time leaving it to the add-on community to reintroduce them again in the web browser.

Now You: What are your thoughts on this?

Summary
Which Firefox features would you like to see removed and which polished?
Article Name
Which Firefox features would you like to see removed and which polished?
Description
Mozilla announced an upcoming change in strategy which it called the three pillars of Firefox. We take a closer look and ask you what you think of the announcement.
Author

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Comments

  1. RN said on July 8, 2015 at 9:15 am
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    The strategists/consultants/marketeers/MBAs have infested Mozilla much like they’ve infested all other facets of life. As with any cancer, the treatments are painful and risky but necessary. Mozilla needs chemo.

  2. Robin Stacey said on July 8, 2015 at 9:28 am
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    Hello and Pocket definitely need to become optional addons. At best they are niche additions that do nothing to enhance the browser, and at worst they are unnecessary bloat. I can understand Mozilla wanting Firefox to offer something else that differentiates their browser from the crowd, but the way to do that is provide a small, fast, lean memory efficient browsing experience that can be enhanced through optional addons.

    Right now Hello and Pocket are seen as Mozilla’s U2 album. They were forced on us. doesn’t matter how good they are, we still don’t want them like that.

  3. br0adband said on July 8, 2015 at 9:37 am
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    Anything that is available as an addon already or could be made available as an OPTIONAL addon removed – return to the basics and stop changing things for no actually good or rational reasons other than thinking they *need* to change. There’s almost a precise point for point match to the downfall of Firefox’s popularity with the changes that Mozilla has been making – they’re where they’re at right now because of what they’ve done. Chrome has almost nothing to do with it in the long run, at least for people that actually know what’s possible with a tool like Firefox.

    I’ve never considered Firefox a browser at all, really, I consider it to be a framework which I build upon with the addons/extensions/plugins to make it what I want it to be. Since Mozilla is basically trying to change Firefox from that concept into something else, I wonder how long I’ll continue using it.

    I have no use for Windows 10 so Edge isn’t part of the solution, I do use Chrome from time to time (it’s portable like all my browsers always are) in testing, Vivaldi, Opera, Maxthon, etc but my “browser” of choice is still Firefox. If I have to keep using an older version that is customized precisely the way I want it to be for years to come, so be it. But I am certainly not happy at the direction Mozilla is going. The just announced news they’ll be redoing the main core of the browser to move away from the XUL underpinnings is promising but, if they go full on batshit crazy and start removing the capability to customize Firefox with about:config entries, I’m going to have a big problem with their actions.

    1. Jamtin said on July 8, 2015 at 12:28 pm
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      “There’s almost a precise point for point match to the downfall of Firefox’s popularity with the changes that Mozilla has been making” Hear! Hear! How do users communicate this to Mozilla though? Apart from voting by leaving, but I feel that is a dilutive message; it’s not as visible as an open letter, open forum appeal or similar.

  4. IgHive said on July 8, 2015 at 9:56 am
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    Start again from version 3

    1. Elizabeth said on July 8, 2015 at 7:45 pm
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      *facepalm*

    2. XenoSilvano said on July 8, 2015 at 10:51 pm
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      lol

    3. BuggaBoo said on July 10, 2015 at 9:25 am
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      Couldn’t agree more. It’s all been downhill from 4.0+. No matter on which machine Firefox becomes unresponsive and needs to be killed and restarted. 3.5 was the sweet spot. Mozilla, make FF lean and extensible again. I don’t need chat, pocket and whatever else you are cramming down everyone’s throats while ignoring the basic functionality of the app!

      1. Myles said on July 31, 2015 at 10:46 am
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        Amen!

        the one feature i want to see removed from FF is its ability to take 100% of the system memory if you leave it open and use it for a few hours. It is such a memory leak and so badly written that it simply just needs to be turned off and back on.

        Chrome on the other hand…perfect!

  5. Earl said on July 8, 2015 at 10:43 am
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    So, they think Yahoo! is “Best of the Web”? And, really, XUL is certainly “Uniquely Firefox” (well, uniquely Mozilla anyway), yet they plan to drop it for… something. Idunno… his (Camp’s) strategy looks sorta like seppuku to me.

    1. Sören Hentzschel said on July 8, 2015 at 11:09 am
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      No one says: >Yahoo! is “Best of the Web”<, the Yahoo! logo is only part of a illustration in a blog article. You know that Yahoo! is Mozilla's most important "sponsor"? ;-)

      I don't understand your point with XUL. Is there one person who think XUL is the way to go in the long term? I know nobody. XUL has a lot of disavantages and XUL is no web standard. Web standards matters for Mozilla, Mozilla is not Apple.

      1. Elizabeth said on July 8, 2015 at 7:47 pm
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        agreed (y)

      2. Jeff said on July 8, 2015 at 9:06 pm
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        That icon is Mozilla’s own artwork, and they are clearly posting it on their page for that aspect of the new changes. Yahoo may be Mozilla’s biggest sponsor right now, but listing Yahoo as “best of the web” seriously undermines what Dave Camp claims they are trying to do.

        Yahoo’s main page is a dreadful mess of tabloid crap directed at older women (their main demo). I loaded the page to look at it and there were no less than *three* auto-playing videos going simultaneously. WTF?

      3. Earl said on July 11, 2015 at 1:48 pm
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        @Sören:

        “Is there one person who think XUL is the way to go in the long term?”

        Only a significant number of devs who’ve been at it for a decade now. Maybe you’d like to get rid of all XML, too? “Nobody” uses that either, huh. (Well, yeah, I rather like XUL myself. There, now you “know” somebody.)

      4. Sören Hentzschel said on July 11, 2015 at 2:07 pm
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        @Earl: Please show me the “significant number of devs”, I can’t find these on Mozilla’s mainling lists in the discussions about XUL.

        “Maybe you’d like to get rid of all XML, too? ”

        No, why? That’s a really poor comparison.

      5. Earl said on July 11, 2015 at 3:58 pm
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        Unlike you (surprisingly), I’m not ignoring the add-on devs. I think we count, too.

      6. Sören Hentzschel said on July 11, 2015 at 4:07 pm
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        Nice try. I *am* add-on developer.

      7. Earl said on July 11, 2015 at 4:12 pm
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        Yeah, I know that. Your reading comprehension needs some improvement, though.

  6. Ben said on July 8, 2015 at 10:53 am
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    As long as E10 does not mean every tab will have it’s own process like in chrome, I’m fine.
    I do not want to buy 16GB of RAM only for my browser. (Right now they use ~6-8GB).

  7. marc klink said on July 8, 2015 at 10:56 am
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    Anything which mimics Chrome needs removal, ASAP.

    1. rasul said on July 8, 2015 at 11:13 am
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      Pocket doesn’t mimic Chrome and does need to be removed.

  8. Ricardo said on July 8, 2015 at 11:21 am
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    I would like they will solve all printing problem, I have specially this problem in my university page, which by the way is the only in which I need to print.

  9. Lestat said on July 8, 2015 at 12:28 pm
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    Well.. So Mozilla wants to get rid of XUL and similar on the long run..

    You know what that means? Classic theme restorer no more. Was somehow to expect that Mozilla wants to go a more native UI way.. easier to maintain, less complexity but also less customization options.

    Now the removal of features since Australis make sense.

    But that does also mean that browsers like Seamonkey or Cyberfox also will be stripped down on the longer term. At that point i really feel i am forced to say, thanks god for Vivaldi developers!

  10. Ben said on July 8, 2015 at 12:34 pm
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    Why do you not publish my post, but several others?

  11. Sören Hentzschel said on July 8, 2015 at 12:37 pm
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    “You know what that means? Classic theme restorer no more. ” “but also less customization options.”

    No, all wrong. Why do you think so? Get rid of XUL does not mean to not offer alternative solutions. Mozilla can create HTML/JS widgets (web components!) as replacement for XUL widgets. It’s a long term plan. Why should Mozilla not be able to replace one technology with another in the next years?

  12. lol? said on July 8, 2015 at 1:04 pm
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    did mozilla said unique firefox? lol. with australis its chrime copy.

  13. Curio said on July 8, 2015 at 1:27 pm
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    Removed
    Hello, Pocket and made optional addons.

    1. Sören Hentzschel said on July 8, 2015 at 1:42 pm
      Reply
  14. Andy Fetzko said on July 8, 2015 at 2:08 pm
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    Privacy and security are the most important items that should be taken care of first. Anything else should be at the users discretion. They must ask what the user needs.Becouse without the user there would no Firefox. Also keep a thousand miles away from GOOGLE……………..

  15. SCBright said on July 8, 2015 at 3:22 pm
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    Uncompromised quality? What kind of sentence is that?
    As a quality expert, I can only understand that Mozilla, by definition, does not want to compromise with the quality.
    Firefox is losing its essence due to a bumpy management.

  16. Robert said on July 8, 2015 at 3:37 pm
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    I hope they’ll fix the download manager, it fails many downloads lately.

  17. RottenScoundrel said on July 8, 2015 at 4:31 pm
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    Too little and WAAAAY too late. Pale Moon (PM) is everything Firefox used to be and more.

    Mozilla over the past few years is the epitome of a horse designed by committee-consensus would look like a camel.

    Good riddance I say. For years I have been lamenting that if I could find another browser that would run NoScript, I’d be on it in a heartbeat. Up until about 6-9 months back, PM was not a polished enough contender to consider, but something has significantly changed at PM and it is now, robust, fast and suiting my needs perfectly.

    I can’t believe that Thunderbird is still clinging to life either, I dropped it years back.

    1. Earl said on July 8, 2015 at 11:12 pm
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      Typical Moonie–still complaining about Firefox (guess you’re not as “rid of it” as you pretend to be). Let it go, man! Just let it go.

      1. David Naylor said on July 8, 2015 at 11:27 pm
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        ^^

    2. PSA said on July 9, 2015 at 12:11 am
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      Just dropping a link for potential onlookers who may be considering trying out Thunderbird. A more fitting way to describe Thunderbird’s actual state of affairs might be: Up and to the right. May one day Firefox follow suit.

      https://blog.mozilla.org/thunderbird/2015/02/thunderbird-usage-continues-to-grow/

    3. browsing said on July 10, 2015 at 2:03 pm
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      Pale Moon isn’t all that. I’m on your side seriously, but actually look and you’ll notice some of the shite about:config settings from FF creep into PM and PM are damn lazy or just too far behind on patching security bugs (months behind), look on their forums and you’ll see no news no information no indication of developement on upcoming patches / current security bugs and their atitude stinks at times like ‘got a problem? program a fix yourself!’ I could deal with maybe a week or two behind firefox to get serious bugs sorted, but they are way behind, even on things clearly pointed out to them. The whole situation is frustrating. So yeah you still have to chase some of this crap in palemoon too.

  18. Michael W said on July 8, 2015 at 4:46 pm
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    Firefox was my favoured browser but has become so slow that Im using Opera most of the time.
    Im not a developer just a user so I can only speculate as to what is wrong and I suspect its what people call bloatware.
    If I use facebook for instance it just stops working for a while,Opera does not do that.It also stutters on other sites and “not responding” is now a common occurrence..

  19. Tom said on July 8, 2015 at 5:04 pm
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    They definitely need to improve javascript handling. Right now, horrible. Browser frequently freezes on javascript rich site. It happens even without flash plugin and add-ons. They also need to improve the automatic update.

  20. jasray said on July 8, 2015 at 5:21 pm
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    Let Pocket be Pocket and eliminate the integration; it’s done nothing buy destroy a great add-on, but there must be some BIG bucks behind the move.

  21. leo said on July 8, 2015 at 6:43 pm
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    I love how Firefox used to replace IE. It was simple, fast, and just a barebone browser without any additional addon or junk. Similarly the same case I left firefox over chrome, although chrome seems to get bloated day by day. I’m windows user so I have high anticipation for Edge. This thing is like a cycle, probably when Edge gets bloated, we all will move to stripped firefox again.

  22. Teiji said on July 8, 2015 at 7:03 pm
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    Improve the Bookmarking system. Remove the “Unsorted Bookmarks” folder and make the one-click bookmark star to save new bookmarks directly to the Bookmark Menu.

    1. Earl said on July 8, 2015 at 11:08 pm
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      You don’t use the sidebar, eh?

      Ctrl+D places the bookmark directly into the Bookmarks Menu; or you could use one of the several popular bookmarking add-ons. I on the other hand find Unsorted to be quite useful, but I certainly couldn’t argue against a preference which allowed the default to be set elsewhere.

    2. Dave said on August 8, 2015 at 10:34 pm
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      Unsorted Bookmarks should not be removed just because you don’t use it, that is the type of attitude that is destroying Firefox, by all means give people the option to have an Unsorted Bookmarks folder or not have one, that is what Firefox used to be all about; customisation.

  23. Dave said on July 8, 2015 at 8:26 pm
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    That “best of the web” pillar looks like they plan to integrate many popular services. That’s the opposite of what I want.

    I like the philosophy that Firefox was built to fulfil. How did they phrase it again? The gist was “minimal and extensible”.

  24. Gary said on July 8, 2015 at 8:53 pm
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    What really needs to be done is for ordinary users of Firefox to come up with a list of five or ten items (like Pocket, Hello, Apps, NewTab, and others) that could be put to a vote to see just how many people would like to see these things retained within Firefox and how many would like to see them removed; and perhaps a separate list of five to ten things people would like to see integrated into Firefox directly that could be put to a similar vote.

    If Mozilla was actually interested in what Firefox users wanted and didn’t want, they would do this themselves. But they’re not interested in what users think. They’ve have their own agenda and that agenda is driving more and more users away to other browsers. I’m right on the verge of switching to something else myself at the moment.

    Since Mozilla will never do this, the next best thing would be to run such a poll on some other site or sites. It could be ghacks although sites like DSL Reports would probably draw a larger response.

    Perhaps we could do both … develop those lists here and then post them on other sites.

    Just a suggestion …

    1. tena said on July 8, 2015 at 10:42 pm
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      Go to options > advanced > data choice
      and enable “Share additional data (i.e., Telemetry)”

      I think that gives Mozilla some usage statistics. Information on how many people actually use the different parts of the browser is much more useful than poll replies.

      1. Gary said on July 9, 2015 at 11:08 pm
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        Probably a good suggestion … except Telemetry is one of those Firefox features I’ve disabled :-)

    2. David Naylor said on July 8, 2015 at 11:26 pm
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      Designing software isn’t done through votes… UX people and coders do that much better on their own. That said, Firefox seems to have strayed from its original mantra of lean, mean browsing machine.

      1. Gary said on July 9, 2015 at 11:05 pm
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        However software is designed, software that annoys its user base, as Mozilla seems to have become adept at doing, won’t last very long in a marketplace where browser choices are endemic.

    3. jasray said on July 9, 2015 at 6:06 pm
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      Yes, just a suggest! NO! It’s the let’s all agree on a few things that is destroying the entire concept that made FF shine. Free choice is disappearing and making FF like everything else–more and more “fixing” of what was the BEST.

      1. Gary said on July 9, 2015 at 11:06 pm
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        Don’t understand the point you’re making so I can’t really comment.

  25. Kend said on July 8, 2015 at 10:09 pm
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    So Mozilla says they want to listen to the user a bit more? How about bringing back some of the customization features of the UI when they switch to pure Webtechnology?

    Using Vivaldi most of the time because Mozilla removed because of Australis many UI features because “simple users have no need for that anyway”

    Personally i do find it a rather peculiar coincidence that now after a browser is around which goal is to have tons of customization features and which developers are interested in the user opinion and follow these suggestions also in many cases Mozilla feels suddenly the need to be more open and interested in what the user has to say! My small personal guess is that the move towards more simple and minimalist loving users was not that successful, wasn’t it Mozilla?

    Anyway, Vivaldi offers that kind of advanced customization features and it is still fast and will get optimized to have more speed. So keeping that power user features out from such a Webtechnology based Firefox would just be an indication that Mozilla only cares for simple users and have abandoned us technology proven ones.

    So… bring back some of these features like address bar moving – just make it impossible that it can be totally removed – and no user is screwed anymore.

    If Mozilla really says they want to be more open to the users, they better do also listen again to the more advanced users and do us also a favor. After all, it was Mozilla and not we who slammed the door.

    I really expect no apology from Mozilla, but if a company for example like Google can also admit that they made a mistake (Bookmark manager) – i hope Mozilla is wise enough to be able to do the same. Because if Mozilla would again start focusing more towards the tech proven user group, i and many others would jump back in an heartbeat.

    But as long as Mozilla drives that recent course, for sure not! Trust is something which has to be earned. And Mozilla has smashed in the past lots of plates to the floor.

    Just my few cents!

  26. XenoSilvano said on July 8, 2015 at 11:00 pm
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    As mentioned in the article, the recent features added to the browser seem rather superfluous to me, Firefox Hello seems more like proof of concept rather than a required feature which I think would be better off made into an add-on (I hardly know anyone else who uses Firefox for me to put this feature to good use), the Pocket simplified reader is another feature that I have hardly felt the need to use. Not to put-down all of the people out there who do use these features but I think they would be better off as add-ons.

    …I also wish they would get rid of the Australis user interface (yeah, the thought of it being in the code somewhere behind the Classic Theme Restorer add-on still bugs me).

    I would like Mozilla to focus more on privacy and security and develope killer add-ons, reduce our dependency on plugins and make the browser experiences, not to say that they are not already doing these things, I would just like them to do more of it.

  27. David Naylor said on July 8, 2015 at 11:11 pm
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    What needs polishing? The Master Password feature is really useful (would help people to use secure passwords) and should be made more easy to find, and the Master Password dialog needs rewording to be intelligible.

    And while I do think Hello seems like a cool feature, it definitely doesn’t seem like something the core browser should be doing.

    Firefox should continue down the privacy path, minimizing the amount of user data being sent here and there for various features/services.

    1. Gary said on July 9, 2015 at 11:12 pm
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      Agree that the Master Password could use polishing. Passwords are a core function and one shouldn’t have to rely on extensions that haven’t been updated in ages to use the password function safely.

  28. Pants said on July 9, 2015 at 2:10 am
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    Just an observation. The ArsTechnica article mentions FF with a base of some 500 millions users – that’s half a billion. That figure is a guesswork derived from a number of sources – even if it’s HALF that, that’s a lot of people with eyeballs on FF at some stage, either as a main browser or otherwise.

    Extensions – go check the number of users?/downloads? ( https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/extensions/?sort=users ) If you ignore AdBlockPlus (20million), Video DownloadHelper (5million) – the next highest (ignoring Firebug for geeks/tech-heads), we’re talking about a handful of extensions with less than 1% penetration – eg NoScript, 2 million out of 250 million and so on – and it rapidly falls off.

    Even if we reduce it to a 100 million everyday regular users – almost all extensions have less than 1% penetration.

    So from Mozilla’s perspective – If they want to effect change, bring attention to new features, make partnerships work, etc etc etc – then just pitching it as an addon is not going to work. Not saying I agree with some of their choices – this is an observation.

    Personally, I think there are a lot of great features from extensions that should be baked in (simple stuff like enhancing the find bar = FindBar Tweak, enhancing the saved passwords = saved password editor, password tags, password exporter – enhancing saving to clipboard/jpg or printing all or parts of a webpage = think printedit, capture & print, screengrab – other extras such as a cacheviewer, and so on ) or ideas that should be added to options (eg the ability to disable mimetype and plugin numeration, option to auto disable new plugins), and some features that were removed should be put back – everyone has an opinion. A lot of these things would just be a single option or only have a couple of settings, and of course everything can have a default to work out of the box. BUT … from a more general perspective, for MOST users, it all becomes information overload, too hard to do, too many settings etc (but again, stuff can just work out of the box with defaults, or only show when needed ). There’s a balance.

    ^^ this is the sort of thing that would make FF unique – really great printing options, really great local password management, really great find options.

    Looking at the most popular addons, a lot are for ad blocking, privacy, security (don;t tell me chrome cares about the first two *that* much). Imagine if AdBlockPlus was integrated into FF – all hell would break loose with 90%+ of their users. Same with NoScipt – 90% of users would think the internet broke.

    Clearly Mozilla realize this and are trying in their own way to make this happen without breaking the internet for non-geeks – the 1+% who worry about scripts – that’s you guys who read and comment here. They’re bringing in new protection tracking and so on. New stuff to happen in privacy mode. Yada Yada. But they throw ideas like uBlock Origin at people or they would lose 90+% of users.

    UI is a different story and personally I think most people don’t care, and as long as the truly annoyed can use CTR (like me) or other extensions for tabs etc then all is good.

    And as for all those bleating on about PaleMoon – I don;t think it’s that wise to long term stick with mozilla based builds that are fast becoming diverged. I have had a portable PM for about 3 or more years – tweaked out the same as my main FF. They are fast becoming rather different and a lot of addons either break or haven’t been updated for PM. To me, PM is the dead fish here, not FF. My FF (thanks to extensions) still looks like it was pre-australis, and behaves better than ever due to code changes, is more secure due to mozilla changes, and still has excellent extensions coming out. I wish a lot of those extension ideas were baked in, but as a tech I can handle it. As a non-tech I would appreciate the simplicity

    TL;DR: There’s always two sides to a story. Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes, because then 1; you’ll ne a mile away and 2; you’ll have their shoes. :)

    1. greendestiny said on December 18, 2015 at 1:14 pm
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      “My FF (thanks to extensions) still looks like it was pre-australis, and behaves better than ever (…)”

      While your FF may act predictably right _now_, there is no guarantee this will continue in the future. FF 24 marked all version of Javascript as unsafe, effectively breaking the Web for millions of users who didn’t disable automatic updates [1]. This happened without any prior warning. Who is to say it won’t happen again and stab me in the back when I need Firefox’s reliability the most (doing term papers or work assignments in crunch time)?

      All glorious boasts the FF dev team makes mean _nothing_ if the browser itself is not reliable in the most basic sense of the word. Removing features that were trumpeted a while ago or adding features that nobody asked for is not wrong by itself; doing so without an announcement or a mention in the release notes is downright schizophrenic.

      This sort of thing could be assigned to incompetence, if only it weren’t marked by arrogant and downright foolish attitude by Mozilla devs. Here is Gavin Sharp, software engineering leader at Mozilla, saying on the topic of add-on bar(former status bar) removal: “We have not been ignoring the negative feedback. We have heard it loud and clear, and decided not to address it with changes in Firefox proper.” [2] Hearing something and then deciding to do nothing about it _is_ effectively ignoring it.

      I use Palemoon on a regular basis after using Firefox for nearly 10 years and I am quite pleased with what I’ve got. Though I don’t have the fancy HTML support, I also don’t get the metric ton of superfluous code that I have to trim, fix with an add-on, tweak, manage, handle, “about:config” and complain about with each new version.

      Among my non-tech circle of friends and family, I have started recommending and installing Palemoon, despite its shortcomings. The people I recommend Palemoon to treat my words as gospel and obey me unquestioningly. Palemoon is stable and won’t change on a whim, requiring me to endure yet another panicked call or instant message, asking me “why won’t it work”. Each Firefox installation removed is one less device infected with Mozilla plague and a small victory for the end user.

      [1] – https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=914690#c33
      [2] – https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=749804#c64

  29. loki said on July 9, 2015 at 3:07 am
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    I still wonder if Firefox needs further attention. The features they removed and the controversial privacy issues brought by the new features they added look like they are trying willingly to put away their users… Thinking how the things evolved in the past few years, I came only to these logical conclusions:
    1. either they lost some important members more anchored in the reality of browsers’ usage and the current team is completely incompetent or
    2. they had been forced to make some compromises and instead of betraying their users, they prefer to scatter their users from a “toxic” application in a different way…
    I really don’t know where they are going, but personally I’m departing slowly from Firefox.

    1. insanelyapple said on July 9, 2015 at 11:34 am
      Reply

      “2. they had been forced to make some compromises and instead of betraying their users, they prefer to scatter their users from a “toxic” application in a different way…”

      Nah, they just proved that adding a “corporation” next to the name obligates to act like one despite of assurances that nothing will change.

  30. Graham said on July 9, 2015 at 5:46 am
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    The feature I’d like to see most removed from Firefox is the Mozilla Corporation. They clearly don’t know what to do with the browser anymore.

    1. Daniel said on July 10, 2015 at 3:58 am
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      Maybe it’s like the Netscape browser?
      Firefox just has to die so that it can be handed over to people who want to make a browser that people want.

      Vivaldi is in the spirit of this Opera revival but still a good while away from final destination.

      At least Google Chrome is not getting bogged down with adding/removing features but simply bug fixing one version after the other.

  31. Dwight Stegall said on July 9, 2015 at 10:53 am
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    Firefox would be a lot smaller and faster if they removed all of the old features they no longer use instead of just hiding them. We don’t need 3 different Certificate Managers. As far as the current features are concerned I’ll wait to decide when Firefox 42 is released.

  32. insanelyapple said on July 9, 2015 at 11:41 am
    Reply

    For what I saw in past few years I don’t expect any good move from Mozilla any more nor I believe in any words from them.

  33. Pants said on July 9, 2015 at 6:48 pm
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    [its been almost 24 hrs – reposting]

    Just an observation. The ArsTechnica article mentions FF with a base of some 500 millions users – that’s half a billion. That figure is a guesswork derived from a number of sources – even if it’s HALF that, that’s a lot of people with eyeballs on FF at some stage, either as a main browser or otherwise.

    Extensions – go check the number of users?/downloads? ( https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/extensions/?sort=users ) If you ignore AdBlockPlus (20million), Video DownloadHelper (5million) – the next highest (ignoring Firebug for geeks/tech-heads), we’re talking about a handful of extensions with less than 1% penetration – eg NoScript, 2 million out of 250 million and so on – and it rapidly falls off.

    Even if we reduce it to a 100 million everyday regular users – almost all extensions have less than 1% penetration.

    So from Mozilla’s perspective – If they want to effect change, bring attention to new features, make partnerships work, etc etc etc – then just pitching it as an addon is not going to work. Not saying I agree with some of their choices – this is an observation.

    Personally, I think there are a lot of great features from extensions that should be baked in (simple stuff like enhancing the find bar = FindBar Tweak, enhancing the saved passwords = saved password editor, password tags, password exporter – enhancing saving to clipboard/jpg or printing all or parts of a webpage = think printedit, capture & print, screengrab – other extras such as a cacheviewer, and so on ) or ideas that should be added to options (eg the ability to disable mimetype and plugin numeration, option to auto disable new plugins), and some features that were removed should be put back – everyone has an opinion. A lot of these things would just be a single option or only have a couple of settings, and of course everything can have a default to work out of the box. BUT … from a more general perspective, for MOST users, it all becomes information overload, too hard to do, too many settings etc (but again, stuff can just work out of the box with defaults, or only show when needed ). There’s a balance.

    ^^ this is the sort of thing that would make FF unique – really great printing options, really great local password management, really great find options.

    Looking at the most popular addons, a lot are for ad blocking, privacy, security (don;t tell me chrome cares about the first two *that* much). Imagine if AdBlockPlus was integrated into FF – all hell would break loose with 90%+ of their users. Same with NoScipt – 90% of users would think the internet broke.

    Clearly Mozilla realize this and are trying in their own way to make this happen without breaking the internet for non-geeks – the 1+% who worry about scripts – that’s you guys who read and comment here. They’re bringing in new protection tracking and so on. New stuff to happen in privacy mode. Yada Yada. But they throw ideas like uBlock Origin at people or they would lose 90+% of users.

    UI is a different story and personally I think most people don’t care, and as long as the truly annoyed can use CTR (like me) or other extensions for tabs etc then all is good.

    And as for all those bleating on about PaleMoon – I don;t think it’s that wise to long term stick with mozilla based builds that are fast becoming diverged. I have had a portable PM for about 3 or more years – tweaked out the same as my main FF. They are fast becoming rather different and a lot of addons either break or haven’t been updated for PM. To me, PM is the dead fish here, not FF. My FF (thanks to extensions) still looks like it was pre-australis, and behaves better than ever due to code changes, is more secure due to mozilla changes, and still has excellent extensions coming out. I wish a lot of those extension ideas were baked in, but as a tech I can handle it. As a non-tech I would appreciate the simplicity

    TL;DR: There’s always two sides to a story. Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes, because then 1; you’ll ne a mile away and 2; you’ll have their shoes. :)

  34. Robert said on July 9, 2015 at 8:46 pm
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    They should improve the download manager as I’m getting too many download failures in the past few months.

  35. Walter Rountree said on July 9, 2015 at 11:39 pm
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    1) Stop changing user interface. Big mistake. 2) Do not hire and fire based on political views or sex reasons. Bigger mistake. 3) Security and privacy are the main reasons I use the Fox. Continue to allow the add-ons that Google hates. 4) Avoiding Flash and other obnoxious ads are the number three reason I use the Fox. Keep the ability to use the same and other add-ons that Google hates. 5) keep working to reduce load times and memory use.

  36. Sören Hentzschel said on July 9, 2015 at 11:46 pm
    Reply

    @Walter Rountree:

    “Stop changing user interface. Big mistake.”

    Mozilla changed the user interface after three years (!) without big change. And why the should stop? Because you don’t like the new interface? In my opinion the user interface of Firefox 29+ is 3x better than Firefox 4 – 28. At least. So you have an opininion, I have an opinion. And your opinion is not better than mine.

    “Do not hire and fire based on political views or sex reasons. Bigger mistake.”

    Nonsense. Nobody was fired because of “political views or sex reasons”. Please check your arguments, thanks.

    1. All Things Firefox said on July 10, 2015 at 5:51 am
      Reply

      Perhaps Mozilla didn’t specifically fire Eich because of his support for traditional marriage but they did succumb to the outside pressure. In this blog post announcing the decision https://blog.mozilla.org/blog/2014/04/03/brendan-eich-steps-down-as-mozilla-ceo/, Mozilla wrote, “Our organizational culture reflects diversity and inclusiveness. We welcome contributions from everyone regardless of age, culture, ethnicity, gender, gender-identity, language, race, sexual orientation, geographical location and religious views. Mozilla supports equality for all.
      We have employees with a wide diversity of views. Our culture of openness extends to encouraging staff and community to share their beliefs and opinions in public. This is meant to distinguish Mozilla from most organizations and hold us to a higher standard. But this time we failed to listen, to engage, and to be guided by our community.”
      It’s interesting that they were open to all except those who disagreed with a vocal group. They failed to support a man who never discriminated against gays but who exercised his freedom of speech.

      1. Sören Hentzschel said on July 11, 2015 at 2:26 am
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        One thing is really interesting: your interpretation of the quoted statement.

      2. Earl said on July 11, 2015 at 2:19 pm
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        What Mozilla needs most? …fewer people like Camp, more people like Eich.

        When you start letting your organization be controlled by whiner-babies, then you’ve pretty much started spiraling down the drain.

      3. Sören Hentzschel said on July 11, 2015 at 2:28 pm
        Reply

        lol, just lol.

      4. All Things Firefox said on July 12, 2015 at 2:47 am
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        Sören, what is so interesting about my “interpretation of the quoted statement”. I take it that you disagree with me.
        Eich was willing to work and did work with gay persons but Mozilla let him resign, a resignation forced by others disagreeing with his religious views. Mozilla simply did not support a man under fire for his religious beliefs. Is this “equality for all”?
        If you could elucidate what exactly is interesting about my interpretation, I would appreciate it.

      5. Sören Hentzschel said on July 13, 2015 at 10:41 am
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        It’s not true what you say. Mozilla wanted to work with Eich, but Mozilla cannot force anyone to work for Mozilla.

      6. All Things Firefox said on July 14, 2015 at 4:08 am
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        Perhaps, but I think that it was Mozilla’s lack of backing that led Eich to voluntarily resign. If the organization had come out and said, “Eich is a great engineer and the right man for the job. We won’t let politics influence our CEO choice”, I don’t think he would have left.
        Now yes, if they had made that statement, even more protests would have occurred and it would have been bad for Mozilla. His resignation because of the bad publicity is understandable. However, the blog post didn’t really say that Eich stepped down because of bad publicity. It talked about diversity and equality, and it seems very hypocritical for Mozilla to write about how it wants freedom of speech and belief sharing.

    2. Dave said on August 8, 2015 at 10:39 pm
      Reply

      The user interface now is rubbish in comparison to pre-Australis days, Australis was one of the worst mistakes Mozilla made, that and the mess they made of the browser when they went to version 4 from 3.6. Those were the good days version 3.6 was a quick, memory light browser with fantastic customisation options.

  37. Pants said on July 10, 2015 at 12:12 am
    Reply

    Testing, testing

    I’ve posted twice now in the last 24+ hours in this thread and the message is not coming through

    1. Earl said on July 11, 2015 at 1:42 pm
      Reply

      Then there’s something wrong with your browser [settings or something]–both of your earlier posts are there (and have been for “a while” [hard to miss]). So, please don’t re-post… again.

      1. Pants said on July 12, 2015 at 3:55 am
        Reply

        Nothing wrong at this end – the fact the two posts were 24+ hours apart but are both way down the list show they were held up. Seriously, in what world do you think a browser setting would disable selective posts from showing. I expected Martin to delete the second one if it was held for moderation (eg suspected spam)

  38. All Things Firefox said on July 10, 2015 at 5:39 am
    Reply

    Reader mode could be polished. The default text size is way too large and is restricted to a narrow column. It should use the website font and text size (if possible) and fill the whole screen with text.
    Also, unlike in Microsoft Edge, it doesn’t work offline.

  39. brows said on July 10, 2015 at 2:29 pm
    Reply

    Do not send out any information anywhere other that what is necessary to retrieve and display the webpage I request. Unless I expressly say so.

    No telemetry, no pings, no device battery data, no OS/screen/plugins data, no beacons, no network mapping, no unique identifiers, no plugin/addon usage or browser startup to mozilla, no url-bar data mining for google/yahoo whoever, no loading links my mouse hovers over, no loading links within pages i havn’t clicked on, no geotracking, do not even dns query linked pages, nothing, get it?

    and do not implement broken/unfinished/experimental web protocols or features that can leave me open to attack for years without even informing me (webrtc/hello) ok.

  40. YKosparov said on July 10, 2015 at 5:37 pm
    Reply

    Guess what i did today… replaced Firefox with Vivaldi

    Vivaldi is a great browser and it offers also that great productivity features Mozilla is removing in favor of less technology understanding users.

    The problem with this is that it does not only alienate the Advanced users, it is also partly a blow if you are used to use these features in a business (rearranging the UI and so on). Btw. I am an independent computer trader and i know quite a lot of professional contacts here in russia and other countries which are quite frustrated of what happened to Firefox lately.

    It really would do Mozilla much good if they add back some of the outsorced productivity features, as they where not only viable for the Advanced users – also companies use features like that a lot.

    So, cutting out this features means not only alienating users, it also means alienating professionals. Seriously, i have not the time to constantly have to worry what Mozilla removes next and then go on a rampage search how to fix it! Time is money, and for this fact alone i could not anymore recommend Firefox.

    And if Mozilla counts 1+1 together they know that they have to do something. But if that only is about removing more additional features and adding bloat, well, things will not run that good for them.

    Anyway, i will not recommend and install Firefox anymore on customers computers because of all that. Enough is enough!

  41. Dave said on July 12, 2015 at 8:18 am
    Reply

    I just want them to stop treating users like idiots.
    1. Remove the plugin disabled notification bar or make and option to disable it. I will NOT update flash and i will want it to work every time regardless! (does anyone know how can i disable this pop up?)
    2. Stop changing the UI.

    1. a said on July 15, 2015 at 2:05 pm
      Reply

      Tools > Add-ons > Plugins > choose from list > Always Activate (from the drop down menu for that plugin on the right)

      bugs were being actively exploited, hackers swarmed to the exploits found in hackingteam’s leak. It was a good idea to put the threat behind a simple click to activate & notify people they were at serious risk of their machines being taken over and they should update asap!; It really was that bad of a situation.

      The general feeling now is flash has to die and will probably always be vulnerable to known or unknown hacks. I’m keeping mine as click to play.

    2. Dave said on August 8, 2015 at 10:41 pm
      Reply

      Totally agree about the UI, Australis should be dumped, the massive egos of the developers needs knocked down.

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