The Firefox add-ons repository, short AMO (Addons Mozilla Org), hosts thousands of add-ons for the Firefox web browser.
I like Firefox AMO more than the Google Chrome Web Store, and the core reason for that is that it makes add-on discovery easier. I can sort by newest or updated for instance, something that cannot be done on Google's Chrome Web Store.
Mozilla lists featured add-ons, most popular add-ons, as well as up and coming extensions on the front page.
All add-on types that are supported by Firefox are highlighted on Firefox AMO. This includes WebExtensions and classic add-ons. The repository even lists add-ons that are no longer compatible with recent versions of the Firefox browser (due to changes to the add-ons system).
With Mozilla's decision to support only WebExtensions in Firefox 57 comes an issue that Mozilla has not addressed yet: most add-ons on AMO are not WebExtensions, but are still highlighted to users when they open the repository.
Lets take a look at featured, most popular and top rated, and the ratio of legacy add-ons and WebExtensions:
Please note that this reflects the current status of the add-ons. Some add-ons, like NoScript for instance, will be released as WebExtensions before Mozilla makes the cut in Firefox 57.
The main issue with the current display of add-ons on Mozilla Firefox's add-ons repository is that Firefox users who install any legacy add-on will have those add-ons disabled in November 2017 when Firefox 57 gets released.
This can be a frustrating experience, considering that November 2017 is just around the corner. I'm not suggesting that Mozilla removes all legacy add-ons on AMO, but the organization should consider hiding those on the main entry pages.
The reasons why add-ons should not be removed are:
Firefox users, especially new ones, who visit the AMO site may install legacy add-ons in the browser. Those will work just fine for the next release cycles, but won't anymore with the release of Firefox 57.
Mozilla should, at the very least, add a disclaimer or notification to the legacy add-on installation process that highlights the fact.
While tech savvy Firefox users know all about the change already, the majority of Firefox users probably does not.
Now You: What's your take on this?
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.