back to article Firefox 57: Good news? It's nippy. Bad news? It'll also trash your add-ons

Mozilla plans on November 14 to start rolling out Firefox 57, a massive update that just might send many of its users scurrying for the LTS release. First the good news. Firefox 57 is faster, quite noticeably so, thanks to improvements to what Mozilla calls Project Quantum. Quantum encompasses several smaller projects in order …

  1. i1ya
    Thumb Up

    Using Firefox Quantum since beta. Really fast. I did some tests, and the only place where Chromium is still faster is javascript on subsequent page loads (probably because they cache JIT compilation results). Call me a fanboi (I am), but browser is great. Although UI is so Chrome-ish that I sometimes confuse those two. Yep, some useful addons don't work. Nope, don't miss them since the time I read how some of them were cooked (hint: sometimes they modify JS source of browser UI functions - imagine the hell of maintaining that)

    1. JohnFen Silver badge

      I'll confess up front -- increased speed is nice, but not an incredibly compelling thing to me. That said, it doesn't matter if it's the fastest browser in the history of mankind if it has left out critical functionality. Particularly when the UI is subpar (although it is certainly less terrible than it has been).

      I'm hoping that it's not missing the stuff that is critical to me. I'm skeptical, although since playing with 57, I'm a little less skeptical.

      1. illiad

        Johnfen: there are other Moz based browsers.. :)

        Pale moon is a good steady one, with a good forum, latest release is great, still running months old addons... :)

        1. JohnFen Silver badge

          Re: Johnfen: there are other Moz based browsers.. :)

          Indeed. I'm using Waterfox as my daily driver right now. If/when 57 meets my needs, I'll switch back. Otherwise, I'll stay put.

        2. arh

          Re: Johnfen: there are other Moz based browsers.. :)

          Waterfox is another good option. All legacy add-ons are supported. Although the question is if this fork of Firefox can eventually survive.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "I'll confess up front -- increased speed is nice, but not an incredibly compelling thing to me."

        Edge is faster than Chrome. Doesn't make it any more popular...

        1. David Austin

          Edge is weird; for the first few versions of Windows 10, it was a fast and competent rendering engine, that someone forgot to build a UI for. Looks better now, but it just kinda sits there, ignored.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "Looks better now, but it just kinda sits there, ignored."

            Not by me. Now that Ghostery and uBlock Origin are available as addins it's a practical and much faster browser than Chrome.

    2. Dave K Silver badge

      But you see, this is the bit I struggle to understand. Firefox looks just like Chrome, and uses practically the same extensions as Chrome. So, what's the unique selling point?

      Sorry, but I see Firefox as increasingly irrelevant these days because they don't seem to want to be any different from Chrome. I used to use Firefox because it had a powerful and flexible UI, and the best selection of addons. Now, both those advantages are gone.

      I still hope Mozilla will do something genuinely interesting and different with Firefox, but right now their design approach seems to just be to mirror what Google is doing.

      1. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

        Chrome?

        @Dave K

        So, what's the unique selling point?

        How about it doesn't send your entire browser activity to Google?

        1. macjules Silver badge

          Re: Chrome?

          How about it doesn't send your entire browser activity to Google?

          Does it for me. I use FF Developer more now than I used to, mostly because I hate the Google Inspector 'ads' that flash up.

        2. Kiwi Silver badge

          Re: Chrome?

          So, what's the unique selling point?

          How about it doesn't send your entire browser activity to Google?

          I use No Script and ad blockers to block out all that google spyware, and it's suggested that No Script is a "legacy" plugin (and thus will be gone?). Once that happens, google will have open-season on all my browsing and will be at least as bad as Chrome.

          Hmm.. FF looks like chrome, breaking NS (if that happens) will let it send stuff back to g... Wonder if the g-boys have increased their bribfunding of Mozilla?

          1. This post has been deleted by its author

        3. dbtx Bronze badge

          Re: Chrome?

          @Pen-y-gors

          How about it doesn't send your entire browser activity to Google?

          That's not a selling point. It's what anyone deserves already. The batteries at the grocery store sometimes say on the package "100% mercury free" but the food doesn't.

          1. This post has been deleted by its author

        4. TG2.2

          Re: Chrome?

          @Pen-y-gors

          sure, so the browser doesn't but nearly every site you go to does, with its cookies, its adwords, its ties to everything else google, so that the browser itself only does the fetching, but its fetching everything from google (yes, not literally but figuratively with so many others pulling bits and pieces from google).

          I'm in the camp that says Firefox ESR 45.9 was my last version and looking to migrate to forks.

          why? In the early days we taught users "look at the address / url bar" .. "look at the status bar" .. these are areas that will hold valuable information.

          Ever since Chrome appeared, and had its agenda of dumb-ing it down, things have gotten worse for the conscious user.

          I have the statusbar visible .. why? because I can get an instant status without mouse over (which too many of those bs web-apps require. I look down I see what level of encryption this site uses, I see the current weather cloud, I see my ABP & Scriptish icons, unobtrusively off to the sides of said status bar.. they aren't squeezing the address bar, and yet they are instantly visible with simple tap if needing to disable stomething quickly. I see that Forecast Fox (fix edition) just updated from cloud to cloud with rain .. seeing that *now* could hover over the radar for more information .. but I don't have to and I valuable information without the hovers and clicks..

          Would love the speed of the new browser .. but I'd rather fit and functionality and lose some peed .speed

        5. Sil

          Re: Chrome?

          Google is again the default browser though.

          And the security service against malware and phishing is the service from Google.

      2. Kiwi Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        But you see, this is the bit I struggle to understand. Firefox looks just like Chrome, and uses practically the same extensions as Chrome. So, what's the unique selling point?

        I know. A couple of days ago I went into the prefs in FF for the first time in ages. Spent a few minutes wondering how the hell chrome got on my system!

        Firefox is pointless now. Used to be so far above everything else.

        Hopefully they can act like Oracle and give the source to someone who actually wants to do a decent job on the browser, like Pale Moon for example. (and the funding as well - without FF what point is there Mozilla staying around?)

      3. rmullen0

        Just say no to parrotting Google

        Personally, I don't know why other browser vendors feel the need to parrot Google. Chrome's UI is nothing to write home about. Especially, the stupid "hamburger menu" which IMHO is user hostile. Personally, I don't see what the problem is with classic menus. At some point apparently a rule was created that you can't just have a menu at the top of an application and are only allowed to have the idiotic hamburger menu or even worse Office ribbon bar train wreck. New is not always better. As far as I'm concerned, the UI creators of the past had it write when they came up with the idea of having menus that are relatively standard across applications. Also, as far as I'm concerned, it seems that they are making things worse from an accessibility standpoint. I'm not even sure you can use keyboard alone with these applications.

        1. Kiwi Silver badge

          Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

          Personally, I don't know why other browser vendors feel the need to parrot Google. Chrome's UI is nothing to write home about.

          Oh, I can see plenty in it to write home about. That said, if my parents were still around and I tried, they'd probably thrash me to within an inch of my life, ground me for a decade, and half that time I'd have a bar of very strong soap shoved in my mouth.

          [walks off to the 'tune' of "I'm forever blowing bubbles"]

        2. Updraft102 Silver badge

          Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

          "New is not always better. As far as I'm concerned, the UI creators of the past had it write when they came up with the idea of having menus that are relatively standard across applications."

          Exactly write (wink). The menu-bar wasn't just something people used until something better came along... it was and is a very efficient entry point to a menuing system. It doesn't use much vertical space (unlike the unintuitive and confusing ribbon), and it gives a good bit of "information scent" about the options that lie behind each top-level category like File, Edit, View, and the like. Even on a program you have never used, you can tell the kinds of things it can do and where to find such options just by considering the menu-bar options, which are generally in the same order (File, then edit, then view on the left, Help on the right, and the more program specific options in the middle).

          For the experienced user, the menu bar is still faster using that system than having to stop what you're working on and use your cognitive abilities to recall where the option you need is hiding. The hamburger menu and its disappearing and inconsistent top level menu creates instead an "out of sight, out of mind" dynamic. Users of phone apps that switched from something resembling the PC menu bar to the more "modern" and space efficient hamburger menu show significantly less user engagement of the options hidden behind the hamburger than in previous versions of the app that had the more traditional UI. That did not change in time as users became accustomed to the new UI; the options in the hamburger remained less used than they had been previously. Of course, that's on phones, where the hamburger is supposedly more accepted and appreciated than on a PC, which doesn't need to accommodate tiny screens that get even tinier when UI big enough to receive taps from fleshy fingers takes up part of them.

          Whether or not users of phones really appreciate the hamburger or not, they certainly have come to expect it. That seems to be the rationale for pushing it onto PCs, where it's even less appropriate than on phones. The hamburger is trendy now, so it must be in every program, lest the electronic fashion police think that a given vendor is un-hip and tragically backward stylistically.

          Marketers don't deal well with tried and true things that were honed to perfection long ago. They may be the best tool for a given job, but marketers are not in the business of providing tools that work with a minimum of grief. They want something new and flashy that they can declare to be the latest best thing since sliced bread... something that will create "buzz." It doesn't matter whether the thing actually is better; that is for people of the future to figure out at a later date. For now, the goal is to sell, sell, sell, and that means it has to be "new and improved."

          The same phenomenon can be seen with the "cloud" trend we're enduring right now. Many people have noted that it's very reminiscent of the the mainframe era, where the users utilized terminals that didn't do any of the computation themselves, but were merely a front-end for the centralized mainframe. PCs were the revolution; decentralized computing that didn't depend on a mainframe was the new trend. Once the decentralized computing model stopped being new and trendy and itself became the status quo, the old centralized model looked new and different to the youngsters in marketing departments and in older people with short memories. If it is new and different, it has to be better, right? If you want to get credit for coming up with a revolutionary new idea, it has to be sufficiently different from the status quo to catch people's attention. It doesn't matter if what we have now is better, because you can't very well sell to people that which they already have.

          1. Kiwi Silver badge
            Boffin

            Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

            Users of phone apps that switched from something resembling the PC menu bar to the more "modern" and space efficient hamburger menu show significantly less user engagement of the options hidden behind the hamburger than in previous versions of the app that had the more traditional UI.

            I seriously doubt that. How many calls did you field from family/friends about things that could be found in any of the top-level menus? When telling them to go to "File then Save", how often did you have to carefully, with millimetre-by-millimetre mouse directions, tell them how to even find the "File" menu - hidden away up there in plain sight?

            I think some places have tucked the menu away not because of screen real-estate, but for many it's it's not used and a waste of effort making it :)

            I prefer generally to hide the menus, knowing generally I can get them back just by pressing "ALT" or at worst "ALT-F" - not everyone thinks like that and at least with FF there is still an option to turn the menus on under View -> Toolbars -> Menu bar. Personally, if I could move it to the sides of the screen (and still have the words readable) where 50% of the space is wasted rather than long the top (where 90% of the space is precious!) I'd be more inclined to leave it visible.

            1. Updraft102 Silver badge

              Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

              "Hamburger Menus and Hidden Navigation Hurt UX Metrics"

              https://www.nngroup.com/articles/hamburger-menus/

              Why You Need to Replace Your Website Hamburger Menu, and How

              https://www.imrcorp.com/innovative-marketing-blog/why-the-hamburger-menu-is-terrible-and-how-to-replace-it-with-a-better-alternative

              The hamburger menu doesn’t work

              It’s a beautiful, elegant solution that gets it all wrong, and it’s time to move on

              http://jamesarcher.me/hamburger-menu

              Why the hamburger menu is killing your business

              https://blog.themeskingdom.com/why-the-hamburger-menu-is-killing-your-business/

              Death by Hamburger

              Why three little lines are hurting your UX

              https://uxdesign.cc/death-by-hamburger-2d1db115352a

              Mobile Menus: Hold the Hamburger?

              http://www.getelastic.com/mobile-menus-hold-the-hamburger/

              Why and How to Avoid Hamburger Menus

              https://lmjabreu.com/post/why-and-how-to-avoid-hamburger-menus/

              There are tons more, but you get the idea. The issue is well-known in the UX industry, but damned if it ain't trendy. It's demonstrably worse than what came before it, with quantitative studies of the amount of engagement with features behind the menus before and after UI changes to and from the 'burger to back it up, but everyone has to be trendy, so here we are.

              The last article on that list was the one that was my introduction to this; before that, I had taken the 'burger as a necessary evil on limited-space mobiles, but one that had no place on PCs (the latter part I still endorse wholeheartedly). Now I realize that the 'burger is so counterintuitive that it has no real place anywhere (but especially on desktops). It's like "one UI to rule them all" in Unity, GNOME 3, and Windows 10... it seemed like a good idea at one time, but hindsight has shown that it was actually a poor idea, and we'd be better off if UI designers would simply drop them and revert to things that did work.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

                Then tell us. If the Hamburger menu is SO bad you could measure quantitative productivity loss, why does Chrome, THE dominant Web browser, still dominates? IOW, if it's SO bad, why isn't it a turn-off?

                1. MJI Silver badge

                  Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

                  Google Chrome is popular because users are pushed into it by every time they visit a Google site.

                  Also because a lot of users have been conditioned to use search rather than the address.

                  Sorry but this irks me, you KNOW you are going to site X, type in the address rather than search for it.

                  Gong www.bbc.co.uk is quicker than searching for it and clicking to it.

                  Personally I just go Bookmarks and there it is right at the top. So much easier.

                  But then I do know someone who uses a sat nav every trip, including work to home (1/4 mile)

                  1. Kiwi Silver badge
                    Boffin

                    Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

                    Google Chrome is popular because users are pushed into it by every time they visit a Google site.

                    Don't forget the number of programs that have hidden (under "advanced options") "install google chrome" and "make chrome my default browser" pre-ticked checkboxes.

                    Some users won't notice. Some will think it's better. Many won't want to go through the perceived effort of ringing someone and asking for help of changing it back (and a lot of us don't exactly help their perception when we do the #rolleyes and "wtf have you broken now" comments with exasperation and sarcasm flooding from our voices).

                2. Updraft102 Silver badge

                  Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

                  " If the Hamburger menu is SO bad you could measure quantitative productivity loss, why does Chrome, THE dominant Web browser, still dominates?"

                  That's a specious line of thought. Popularity does not imply that every aspect of a given item is perfect. You seem to be suggesting that any product with a lot of market share must be perfect. Once IE6 dominated... if it was so bad, how did it have 95% market share at one point? That's more even than Chrome has, or has ever had. (And it had no hamburger menu!)

                  You could just as easily have asked, "If violating user privacy is so bad, why does Android, THE dominant mobile OS, still dominate?"

                  "If malware is so bad, why does WIndows, THE dominant PC OS, still dominate?"

                  I don't know about you, but I still think tossing the user's privacy to the wind is bad, and malware is definitely bad. There are all kinds of examples where the most popular item in any given category has serious flaws. Chrome has a ton of them... lack of customization, Google spying, bad UI, weak addons, to name a few.

                  What choice do regular people perceive that they have with regards to the hamburger? It's everywhere. It's on their phone apps, their favorite web sites, and on all of the major currently-developed browsers. Edge has it (though the icon is three dots, not the classic hamburger), and so does Firefox. What would clue them in that there's another choice? It's the norm, even if it's a crappy norm.

                  The same dynamic can be seen in the proliferation of flat UIs. They're demonstrably and quantifiably worse than skeuomorphic UIs, as reported by an article here on the Reg a few months ago, yet they're everywhere too. It turns out that UI designers are often more concerned with aesthetics than they are with utility or usability. How this obsession with aesthetics led to the development of the most ugly UIs ever (UWP, for one) is another subject completely, though of course opinions will vary about what's ugly or not.

                  1. BOB JOHNSON

                    Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

                    I can't even remember how many years FF was my go-to browser but it was many years. Then came the ugly, the ugly, the extension killer and I said goodbye to FF. One time I posted my distaste on Mozillazine and I received a tongue lashing. How dare you point out what many people are already pointing out --- you troll! Yep I was part of the bandwagon of people who were not happy, it was civil discourse from me but FF fans were not so civil. I was threatened that I either shut up or the moderator would ban me. So much for discussion.

                    So I let FF fall to the back of the classroom, there are enough browsers to choose from that I didn't need FF. I give it a whirl once in a while and find it to be a resource user and what seems to be a covert wanna-be advertising vehicle. I do not think FF will ever regain its market share. IMHO who ever was standing behind FF making decisions is the culprit, the person that inserted the poison pill.

          2. rmullen0

            Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

            @Updraft102 Well said. I agree with what you said about cloud also.

        3. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Thumb Up

          Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

          "Chrome's UI is nothing to write home about."

          because it STINKS/SUCKS like every OTHER 2D FLATSO FLUGLY TOUCHY-FEELY CRAP interface.

          "Especially, the stupid 'hamburger menu' which IMHO is user hostile."

          pretty much says it, yeah. MAYBE of limited valuable for touch screens, HIDEOUS and IRRITATING for "the rest of us".

          "Personally, I don't see what the problem is with classic menus."

          They're not "new, shiny" and "millenial, it's OUR turn now" enough.

          "At some point apparently a rule was created that you can't just have a menu at the top of an application and are only allowed to have the idiotic hamburger menu or even worse Office ribbon bar train wreck."

          It's all tracking back to THE METRO, actually. Blame THIS person:

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Larson-Green

          Apparently she's leaving Micro-shaft

          https://winbuzzer.com/2017/11/01/windows-8-metro-office-ribbons-overseer-julie-larson-green-leaves-microsoft-xcxwbn/

          maybe too many saw the connection (I know, _I_ helped spread the word!)

          "New is not always better."

          THANK! YOU! for saying that!

          "As far as I'm concerned, the UI creators of the past had it write when they came up with the idea of having menus that are relatively standard across applications."

          Back in the late 80's/early 90's, "the OS/2 days", IBM wrote a book/guide on 'common user interfaces' that was included with the Windows 3.0 SDK. I have a copy somewhere... (along with that old SDK and it's large collection of dead tree manuals, and similar dead-tree manuals on OS/2 1.2 presentation manager programming).

          "Also, as far as I'm concerned, it seems that they are making things worse from an accessibility standpoint. I'm not even sure you can use keyboard alone with these applications."

          probably not. you're right. It's all fat-finger-friendly, and "SCREW YOU" if you use keyboard+mouse.

          time for a REBELLION amongst users.

          Big THUMBS UP to @rmullen0 for saying all of that.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

            "because it STINKS/SUCKS like every OTHER 2D FLATSO FLUGLY TOUCHY-FEELY CRAP interface."

            Welcome to the 21st century. You can get back in your Delorian now!

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Just say no to parrotting Google

              Your 21st century car is build to last only 2 years while that Delorean still drives on.

              Perhaps not that Delorean but you get my drift. As it has been said before: newer != better

      4. rmullen0

        The unique selling point for Firefox compared to Chrome is that it comes from a more trustworthy company whose job isn't to mine your data.

        1. Kiwi Silver badge

          The unique selling point for Firefox compared to Chrome is that it comes from a more trustworthy company whose job isn't to mine your data.

          No, they just give it away to 3rd parties for free (3rd party cookie settings), and by breaking addons on a regular basis, including the ones that are there to protect privacy.

          Mozilla could approach these addon writers and actually bake some into FF - if they're interested in privacy.

          1. dbtx Bronze badge
            Facepalm

            vive la JavaScrapped

            Is there an example of MZ 'baking in' anything ever? Their big thing is to do the opposite, starting with the email client, HTML editor, etc. No matter how interested in privacy they are, the writing on the wall says "remove it, banish it from core, and let the addons fill in the gap any way they see fit." It's kinda sensible when you grant they need to manage their time but kinda nonsense when they do that thing they did. Someone will say "they're the ones who get to decide what moving forward actually means, and here's a new API, live with it" but they cheerfully knocked the teeth out of their browser in the process.

            Ignoring bleats is just one of their skills. "You know the score, pal! If you're not dev, you're little people."

            1. Updraft102 Silver badge

              Re: vive la JavaScrapped

              "remove it, banish it from core, and let the addons fill in the gap any way they see fit."

              That was the whole point of Firefox. It was to be stripped of all of the heavyweight stuff of the Mozilla Suite, and what was left would be a light, fast core with only the features that nearly everyone would want. The more specialized stuff would be available in the form of powerful addons, so what you ended up with would theoretically be a browser that was as light and quick as possible for whatever particular style of browsing you had in mind.

              As such, the powerful addons that can do pretty much anything the program itself can do are at the very core of why Firefox exists, and what it has always been about. Yes, there are negatives associated, including security risks, potential slowdowns, etc., but such is life-- nothing's perfect. If XUL is slow and buggy as Mozilla claims, the most obvious solution would be to fix the bugs and make it faster, not amputate it and replace it with something some other company wrote that doesn't come close to matching the power of what is already there.

          2. This post has been deleted by its author

            1. Kiwi Silver badge

              Seriously? Just change the 3rd party cookie settings if you like. Even better, use an addon like Cookie Autodelete to be better protected then any default setting.

              For what % of users is that a reasonable option? How many users have a "fear" of any settings/options menus? How many have been taught, probably thanks to the IE toolbars issues, to avoid addons like the plague unless someone they know installs them for them?

              More importantly, Firefox (along with the Tor team) is the *only* browser improving fingerprint resistance.

              Odd behaviour though don't you think? More importantly, why does Mozilla think that having such a bad-for-privacy (and even worse for "fingerprint resistance") setting turned on by default is helpful to their goal of stopping browsers being fingerprinted? They could block every mechanism by which Facebook can see my browser details, screen resolution, installed plugins etc - and yet all this is defeated by letting FB set/access their own cookies on my machine when I visit El Reg, or Tentmaker, or the motorbike restoration sites etc.

              It's like putting in a 60' high walls, a wide moat with not just man but boat-eating sharks (with frikkin lasers on their heads), a $billion anti-aircraft system, $million/hr armed bouncers on the front door; and having a well-signposted 6-lane tunnel under the moat that leads straight into the main vault.

              I appreciate Moz's work towards privacy, but this one setting makes their efforts rather wasted. Easy for you and me to change, but lets see you tell your grandmother to "just change the setting" eh?

      5. This post has been deleted by its author

        1. JohnFen Silver badge

          "does not send tons of data to google by default"

          No, it sends it to Mozilla by default now.

          "similar, *but more powerful*, webextension addon system"

          More powerful? I suppose if you're comparing to Chrome, but it's much less powerful than the old system. This is a point where FF has become *more* like Chrome, not a point of differentiation.

          "fingerprint resistance, no one else is working on this"

          This is very nice!

          "rust components"

          Why does this matter? It may be a point of differentiation, but how is it a meaningful differentiation?

    3. Kiwi Silver badge
      Boffin

      Yep, some useful addons don't work. Nope, don't miss them since the time I read how some of them were cooked (hint: sometimes they modify JS source of browser UI functions - imagine the hell of maintaining that)

      I mostly live with a crappy slow internet connection. Speed of rendering isn't going to improve the rest of the experience unless Mozilla can come up with the equivalent of "sticking instant coffee in a microwave".

      But those addons I use to make my life easier? Without them, there's no point in using a browser.

  2. Version 1.0 Silver badge

    NoScript ?

    Looks like noscript is a "legacy" add-on - I wonder if it will survive this?

    Realistically, Firefox is a web browser - "faster" is not a big deal because everything is still bottle-necked at the pipe. Does faster just mean that we can all be pawned by some script run by an advert on YouTube faster now?

    1. gsf333

      Re: NoScript ?

      If by faster they mean it will load up quicker, then this is certainly a very welcome improvement.

      Firefox up until a couple of years ago used to load up almost instantly, now even on fast computers it is still like trying to load Windows on a 386.

      If it's something else, then yeah, never noticed it slowing me down when browsing.

    2. Neil Barnes Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: NoScript ?

      Looks like uBlock Origin is working, but noScript isn't (yet). That's a deal breaker.

      --> Icon for Firefox, not for the noScript developers.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: NoScript ?

        uBLock Origin might still be blocked by a bug according to the WebExtensions list

        Ghostery has a clean bill of health - but apparently Greasemonkey has blocking bugs.

        1. GoE

          Re: NoScript ?

          uBlock Origin was ported to WebExt a while ago.

          https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/ublock-origin/

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: NoScript ?

        The counterpart to NoScript is RequestPolicy: one prevents dubious scripts from running, the other prevents content from untrusted domains from even being requested or fetched in the first place. Does anyone know if RequestPolicy or similar is being updated to the new extension format?

        1. Kiwi Silver badge

          Re: NoScript ?

          Does anyone know if RequestPolicy or similar is being updated to the new extension format?

          The page at https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/requestpolicy/ has the wonderful text "Not compatible with Firefox Quantum " in there, however the author (Justin Samuel) makes the comment that he is letting others take over dev as RequestPolicy Continued.

          On that page (https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/requestpolicy-continued/) there is also the wonderful "not compatible" text, but on that page Martin Kimmerle says :

          "Firefox 57+ / RequestPolicy WebExtension // multiprocess compatibility

          I'm working on a WebExtension version of this add-on. If you want to help with the transition, please install the "Development Channel" version at the bottom of this page. Development help is welcome as well; the tracking issue for the WebExtension transition is #704. Thank you."

          So there you have it. With some luck at least some decent plugins will reach FF. Then again, with more luck WF/PM will take over from FF (including the funding) and Moz will go the way of many other companies who shove their heads up their own backsides so they can't hear what their users want.

    3. nowster

      Re: NoScript ?

      https://blog.mozilla.org/addons/2017/08/01/noscripts-migration-to-webextensions-apis/

      It's in hand.

      1. Not also known as SC

        Re: NoScript ?

        Until NoScript is updated, my installation of Firefox won't be. I find the internet practically unusable now without NoScript. I'd rather have slow Firefox with NoScript than be bombarded with the crap I see when I have to use IE at work. (Privacy Badger looks ok too)

        1. shifty_powers

          Re: NoScript ?

          Noscript already has a webex extension which works with the nightly/developer builds. it will be released to stable channel when 57 is released on the 14th. anyone with it currently as a legacy addon and disabled should get the webex version at the same time according to the developer.

        2. HieronymusBloggs Silver badge
          Pint

          Re: NoScript ?

          "I find the internet practically unusable now without NoScript."

          Have an upvote and a beer.

          I'd be happy to use something like Dillo, except online banking and shopping sites won't work without JavaScript. The banking sites are some of the worst culprits, with breakages forcing a change of browser every few months or even weeks.

        3. Lomax
          Thumb Up

          Re: NoScript ?

          > I find the internet practically unusable now without NoScript.

          Aint that the truth! NoScript is the only add-on I've actually donated money towards - have an upvote!

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: NoScript ?

        Glad to here the migration is moving along. Maybe it's time for an extra donation to help grease the wheels.

    4. davidp231

      Re: NoScript ?

      You mean Youtube runs faster? My hanging browser would beg to differ... that is unless of course I tell it I'm using IE6 - in which case the site loads the way it should (ie it actually loads, instead of hanging the browser for 20 minutes with just the Youtube logo).

    5. Muscleguy Silver badge

      Re: NoScript ?

      The latest Mac version went Quantum about a month ago and NoScript does not work. I have replaced it with uMatrix and prefer it.

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: NoScript ?

      Use uMatrix instead of NoScript. It's developed by the same guy who makes uBlock Origin.

  3. Hypnotist

    LastPass

    It's available in beta from their own site. I miss a bit of functionality (the "copy password to clipboard" menu item seems missing) but it's working otherwise.

    AC because I'm happy not to advertise I use LastPass.

    1. gsf333

      Re: LastPass

      I think you've already advertised it as you are not logged in as AC.

      1. Spacedinvader

        Re: LastPass

        LOL

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: LastPass

        Look into my eyes, look into my eyes, the eyes, the eyes, not around the eyes, don't look around my eyes, look into my eyes, you're under. You'll forget you ever saw the name Hypnotist. Three, two, one... You're back in the room.

        (With apologies to Little Britain)

    2. Florida1920 Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: LastPass

      @Hypnotist

      Your endorsement was mesmerizing.

  4. Frozit
    FAIL

    The main reasons I use Firefox is NoScript and AdBlock. LastPass is where I store my passwords, so it is a must have as well.

    Without Noscript, there is really no reason to pick FireFox over other offerings. Will be amusing.

    1. AdamWill

      NoScript and Lastpass are both ported already.

      1. JohnFen Silver badge

        "NoScript and Lastpass are both ported already"

        I keep hearing that in comments in various places, but I haven't been able to find anything official confirming it. I don't care about LastPass -- my concern is NoScript. Can you point me to some sort of authoritative source for this information?

        1. eldakka Silver badge

          NoScript Official Forums:

          NS like any other extension is in the process of being ported over to the new extension model forced by Mozilla and so while it continues to function flawlessly, it has been in the process and Giorgio has been hard at work and locked away do it, so it will show up as it becomes ready and stable enough to be released, otherwise he prefers to keep it off instead of releasing something buggy. So, all I can say is be patient, but thank you for letting us know.

  5. mscha

    Partial list of “legacy” extensions I'm using: Context Search X, FireGestures, Flagfox, LastPass, Open With, Status-4-Evar, Tab Groups, and perhaps most importantly, Tab Mix Plus.

    I've no reason to stay with Firefox when all of these stop working. Goodbye Firefox, hello Vivaldi!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @ mscha

      I use both FF and Vivaldi. I've settled on FF for most browsing although I use Vivaldi judiciously on one machine. Vivaldi has to wait for Google to patch security flaws before Vivaldi can update theirs because Vivaldi uses the Google browser engine which - to me - could be presenting a time lag which might be a windows of opportunity for hackers. But I do use it on one computer, I just don't go all over the web with it

      But Vivaldi is a lovely piece of software that is so customizable, and a pleasure to use.

      Firefox is my workhorse though. And I enjoy using it. It's simpler and cleaner than Vivaldi but in some ways not as customizable in layout and visually.

      You indicate you are concerned about your legacy plug-ins. Well, there are and will be many non-legacy plugins to explore, ones that may just do the trick(s) you want them to do.

      Anyway ..

      1. Chloe Cresswell

        I switched from firefox to seamonkey when it went chrome like in the UI.

        If I want a chrome style engine, I use Vivaldi. I'm more likely to switch totally to vivaldi then to return to firefox if Seamonkey goes the same way.

      2. Updraft102 Silver badge

        "But Vivaldi is a lovely piece of software that is so customizable, and a pleasure to use."

        It doesn't even come close to Firefox with Classic Theme Restorer installed. No matter what I try, I can't get rid of what Bob calls "2D FLATSO FLUGLY" appearance. That's a deal breaker. Why is there no option to render using native widgets that look like they belong on my PC? The customization is all about how you want the ugly flat UI configured, but you're getting an ugly flat UI.

        "Firefox is my workhorse though. And I enjoy using it. It's simpler and cleaner than Vivaldi but in some ways not as customizable in layout and visually."

        FF is way, way more customizable than Vivaldi with addons.

        "Well, there are and will be many non-legacy plugins to explore, ones that may just do the trick(s) you want them to do."

        Nope... sadly, that is not possible. It is those UI customizing addons specifically that do not and will not come in Webextensions versions, because Webextensions do not have the capability to modify the UI like XUL does. If Mozilla extends the Webextensions API, that will be different, but they have shown hostility to that idea in the past. As of now, they are pushing us to Webextensions even while the new API can only do a fraction of what XUL can.

  6. GoE

    API incomplete

    It's worth noting that some addons are impossible to port to WebExtensions for the simple reason that the API doesn't include a bunch of stuff that the old one did. Some by design, some because they're not ready.

    NoScript has to wait until 57 launches before it can access parts of the API that it needs, which is why it hasn't been updated yet. SSLeuth needs access to certificate information that is entirely locked away with no anticipation that it will ever be available. Classic Theme Restorer and any theme addon that makes changes to the UI design (no more tab styles) are also impossible because those parts of the API are deliberately missing.

    1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

      This might be the thing that makes me look elsewhere for a browser. Shame really.

      Pale Moon might be the solution but as I'm on the ESR Branch I still have time to look around.

      Chrome is not the solution for me because of Google. Not interested in using any google software unless I really, really have to.

      1. GoE

        Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

        The new theme is at least better than Australis (burn rounded tabs, burn), and a few features are still possible through css, but most aren't.

        It's SSLeuth that I'm going to miss. The developer has suggested that some functionality might be possible if an EFF proposal is implemented, but Mozilla has rejected every other proposal to expose TLS info. Firefox was the only browser in the world to allow you to see how strong a website's certificate was, now they want to be just as naff as everyone else.

      2. tiggity Silver badge
        WTF?

        Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

        It's all part of the obsession to mimic Chrome.

        Thats why classic theme restorer is so useful - to make the UI half way user friendly.

        So, the Moz folk realising they still hasd users left after making teh UI a PITA, searched for a way to alienate those remaining users.

        They found a way - change how extensions have to work, including remove extension access to some "low level" functionality so some extensions will no longer work.

        That will alienate those users whose "must have" extensions cannot be ported.

        Moz folk fail to realise the reason many of use use FireFox is precisely because it is not Chrome and it allows us fine grained browser control that Chrome does not.

        1. bombastic bob Silver badge
          FAIL

          Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

          "Moz folk fail to realise the reason many of use use FireFox is precisely because it is not Chrome and it allows us fine grained browser control that Chrome does not."

          If I had the time... I'd definitely consider wrapping webkit with a UI that doesn't suck. Last I checked, Midori looks way too much like Chrome now.

          FF 3 in classic theme restorer is a pretty good setting. Hey Mozilla, PAY ATTENTION DAMMIT! You're acting like MICROSHAFT and GNOME, and ALIENATING your CUSTOMERS!

          1. AdamWill

            Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

            Customers, eh? How much are you paying for Firefox then?

            1. Richard 12 Silver badge

              Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

              Mozilla make all their money from Firefox.

              If they lose their users, they lose their income and cease to exist.

              1. illiad

                Re: Richard 12

                FF already has lost many, BUT... more clueless idiots sign up...

              2. AdamWill

                Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

                This is entirely true, but it still doesn't mean Firefox users are customers. You're someone's customer if you bought something from them, end of.

                1. Kiwi Silver badge

                  Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

                  This is entirely true, but it still doesn't mean Firefox users are customers. You're someone's customer if you bought something from them, end of.

                  I did buy Firefox from them though.

                  1. Charles 9 Silver badge

                    Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

                    "I did buy Firefox from them though."

                    When and at what price in cold hard cash?

            2. Adam 52 Silver badge

              Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

              Mozilla's customers are "Yahoo in the United States, Baidu in China and Yandex in Russia" according to Forbes.

            3. Updraft102 Silver badge

              Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

              "Customers, eh? How much are you paying for Firefox then?"

              I've provided free marketing for many, many years-- since before Firefox existed. I've provided free tech help to their users, in some cases restoring satisfaction with their product that threatened to alienate them. I've searched from their affiliate-linked search plugins intentionally, and I have left on the thumbnail "previews" (ads) in the new tab menu when normally I destroy all ads with a vengeance. I've allowed telemetry to assist them where I would normally would simply shut it down. I've filed bugs.

              You don't have to fork over cash personally to have paid for something. I haven't contributed cash to Moz, but I have contributed other stuff.

              1. Kiwi Silver badge

                Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

                You don't have to fork over cash personally to have paid for something. I haven't contributed cash to Moz, but I have contributed other stuff.

                You're far from alone in this. Many of us who're looking elsewhere have done what we can to help FF survive and thrive, inc stuff like telemetry and allowing some of the advertising to come through.

      3. JohnFen Silver badge

        Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

        I thought the lack of CTR was dealbreaker, but I tried out 57 and have to say -- I can live without it on 57. 57 fixed a few of the broken things that CTR fixed, and allows enough modifications that I can live without it now.

        The lack of NoScript, however, remains a showstopper issue.

        1. GoE
          Thumb Up

          Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

          CTR just released an update with an option that shows you what is and isn't compatible with 57. There are still a few annoyances that are either wholly incompatible or will need to be developed, but yeah Proton seems to have fixed a lot of Australis' issues.

      4. nematoad Silver badge

        Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

        "Pale Moon might be the solution..."

        Yes, give Palemoon a try.

        I moved from FF a while ago as Australis and other changes started to alienate me and I wouldn't go back. Mostly the same look and feel as FF although it is slowly moving away from FF. I'm lucky as Palemoon is in the PCLinuxOS repos but have noticed when trying out other distros that it may not be included. I don't know what the situation is with other OSs.

        I think that you will be pleasantly surprised.

      5. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Megaphone

        Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

        "This might be the thing that makes me look elsewhere for a browser. "

        If I'm ever forced into using 57 or later, I'll consider "how to patch it" and publish the patches.

        Firefox can STILL be built from source, particularly in FreeBSD.

        I expect that all you need to do is patch the buttons and menus, and ESPECIALLY make it possible to ********EXTERMINATE******** THAT *** DAMNED @#$%+-* HAMBURGER BUTTON!!! [it's the best feature of classic theme restorer]

        (Thunderbird, too, by the way - but in Tbird you have to drag the hamburger back onto the 'customize menu' thingy - in FF with classic theme restorer you can right-click the hamburger and select the "remove" option and IT GOES AWAY and NEVER COMES BACK - "I toldz it to go away, and it DID! I'm Freeeeee!" )

        So the conclusion: the only way we'll get what we want is if we give Mozilla the BIG MIDDLE FINGER and DO IT OURSELVES. that would include GETTING RID of AUSTRALIS. I'd be SO happy if Mozilla LOSES the browser wars over this, with their OWN LEGACY CODE.

        [Last I checked, palemoon still has trouble building on FreeBSD, so I can't really use it]

      6. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

        Take a look at SlimJet if you're looking for a Chrome alternative without all the snooping.

        1. Martin an gof Silver badge

          Re: No Classic Theme Restorer?

          Take a look at SlimJet

          Try Netsurf. Small, fast, no Javascript so NoScript isn't an issue :-)

          M.

    2. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: API incomplete

      Also the article says that "this change is not a surprise to Firefox extension developers. The roadmap has been published for well over a year now".

      The roadmap was published but the API wasn't, that's a moving target and still will be after Firefox 57. The API call developers need to port their extension to WebExtensions might be coming soon or Mozilla might have no intention of adding it.

      Two extension types are getting the chop, XUL and Jetpack, leaving only WebExtensions. That's a lot of extensions which will never get updated because Mozilla didn't manage to convince developers to migrate to a newer API with fewer features (think UWP).

      I'm in no rush to update, I'll stay on Firefox ESR for a while.

    3. Khaptain Silver badge

      Re: API incomplete

      "NoScript has to wait until 57 launches before it can access parts of the API "

      That depends on whether or not the Firefox team has already given them access to the API... as many of the larger houses can and sometimes do. It all depends on the deal that they have, if they have one at all.

      1. GoE

        Re: API incomplete

        Giorgio said last week that he doesn't have access to them, that he'll have to wait for release

  7. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge
    FAIL

    I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

    I don't see why they cannot continue support for legacy extensions. Warning that "this might be slowing your browser down - don't blame us" would be better than not continuing support.

    Instead, Mozilla simply add themselves to the long list of others who choose to dictate what users will get, will have to put up with, rather than letting users decide for themselves.

    I don't know if the change will affect me or other staff but it's annoying that it's another thing I have to worry about which I shouldn't have to. I'll be disabling auto-updates until I can find some time to assess the impact.

    Thanks for the heads-up.

    1. beardman

      Re: I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

      You either change or die. Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

      1. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge

        Re: I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

        You either change or die. Such is life.

        It doesn't have to be that way. Mozilla did not have to turn off support for legacy extensions; they have chosen to.

        But you are right, it is increasingly "you have no choice". That's quite depressing.

        1. James 51 Silver badge

          Re: I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

          Legacy support was making firefox slow and unstable. They had to let something go eventually or be stuck in a tar pit of their own making.

          1. Dave K Silver badge

            Re: I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

            There are lots of ways this could have been better handled. If they have the telemetary to show addons that crash or slow down Firefox, why not implement some sort of blacklisting for them (with an override that warns of the issues). Or why not allow classic addons with a warning?

            Fixing/extending the API for the new addons would also help as a number of popular classic addons are impossible to port due to the limitations of WebExtensions.

            However you look at it, a powerful addons ecosystem has been replaced with a watered down and far weaker one. That's a risky move that will alienate some people.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

        @beardman:

        I had a look around, as you suggested. My 40 year old guitars are still working - still compatible with modern strings, amps and effects and I can buy spares for them. My amp still works on the mains 240V and the valves are readily available. My toaster and cooker (30 and 40 odd years old) still work - and I can still buy replacement elements for both. My 6 year old car still works on petrol and I can still get compatible tyres, battery brake discs, etc. I can even buy a rear can and reed valves for my 50 year old motorbike. Most of the stuff in my life which is more than 10 years old still works, is still compatible with everything it was ever compatible with and is still supported. So it's a very small part of my very recent life in which stuff becomes obsolete after a couple of years.

        1. nematoad Silver badge
          Happy

          Re: Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

          "My amp still works on the mains 240V,,,"

          <pedant> They changed the voltage a while back to 230V so as to be in line with the rest of the EU. </pedant>

          I don't know if that will change with Brexit though.

          1. PNGuinn
            Headmaster

            "My amp still works on the mains 240V,,,"

            <pedant> They changed the voltage a while back to 230V so as to be in line with the rest of the EU. </pedant>

            <pedantic pedant> Not quite. They opened up the voltage tolerance so that there was "compatability" throughout the eu. I'm not aware that anything in the UK actually changed. (Yet).

            More of a problem some years ago when places like Holland and Frogland moved off 110v to something more civilised. At least all the eu were humming from the same frequency hymn sheet ... if not synchronised to the UK.

            >> He'll do. </pedantic pedant>

          2. John Sager

            Re: Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

            They changed the voltage a while back to 230V so as to be in line with the rest of the EU

            No they didn't. The allowed tolerance was changed by EU administrative fiat so that both nominally 220v (in Europe) and 240v (UK) would fall into the new allowed tolerance bands. I don't know whether recently installed LV transformers in the UK network have moved to be centred on 230v - can't be arsed to google it.

            1. Ian Emery Silver badge
              Boffin

              Re: Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

              UK is 240 +/- 10%, since the lower end covers 220v, there was no need to change the UK voltage; obviously though, if we get a 10% over volt, it may cause issues with some Euro spec devices, but the only ones I can think of that it would damage would be filament light bulbs - which are in the process of being banned anyway.

              (Sparky - retired).

              (part time pendant)

            2. Wensleydale Cheese Silver badge
              Happy

              You could try using a meter :-)

              "I don't know whether recently installed LV transformers in the UK network have moved to be centred on 230v - can't be arsed to google it."

              The first I heard of the 230V harmonisation was about a decade ago. The newly installed bank of meters in the building all said 220V (I'm in Europe), so I was sceptical about when it would arrive.

              I measured the mains using a meter, and hey presto, it was already on 230V.

          3. Martin an gof Silver badge

            Re: Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

            They changed the voltage a while back to 230V

            No they didn't - they just changed the nominal value and the allowed tolerance, from 240V +/- 6% to (IIRC) 230V +/- 10%. This meant that nobody had to go about changing taps on distribution transformers (though new ones probably are installed to nominal 230V rather than 240V or the continental 220V) and manufacturers had to make sure their equipment could cope with the wide range of voltages encountered.

            This had several effects; older equipment continued to work exactly as it used to, newer equipment with switch-mode power supplies couldn't care less (note that this change has also more-or-less coincided with the change away from incandescent bulbs), and people transporting electric kettles around the continent probably didn't notice that they took slightly longer to boil in Barcelona than they did in Basingstoke.

            </pedant>

          4. Mage Silver badge

            Re: They changed the voltage a while back to 230V

            No, an illusion.

            Most of UK is still 240V

            Most of Ireland is still 230V

            Most of Mainland Europe is 220V. Old Mainland European transformer based electronics with no voltage settings will slightly cook in UK. Set UK gear to 240,

            Under UK pressure, the EU allowed the UK to set + and - limits different to mainland. The + limit in UK is now just under 220V to up to 245V instead of 250V.

            Most EU countries have 220V in centre of range.

            Ireland took advantage of this, so Irish range is just under 220V to about 235V.

            So the typical voltage in UK and Ireland is unchanged. Only the extremes. SMPSUs don't care. Filament / halogen lamps do care. You'll have over 50% less life using a 220V high efficiency filament at 240V, Life vs voltage for tungsten filament is worse than inverse square law,

            Cookers and toasters for UK market may be 240V, so perform rather slower in mainland Europe and a bit slower in Ireland. Irish retail is dominated by UK retailers, such that a gas cooker or phone has the wrong connector.

          5. MJI Silver badge

            Re: Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

            I think they changed the specification of mains so that all EU voltages were covered including 240v

        2. JLV Silver badge

          Re: Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

          Oh, come on. While I am just as annoyed as anyone else at losing my personal faves - NoScript in my case - at least temporarily, this analogy is pretty darn leaky.

          If you had a leaded gasoline car, you'd be out of luck, unless you did whatever you need to do to keep them running on modern gas.

          If you had bought lots of cassette tapes, you'd not have them working on any recent equipment.

          If your light fixtures for some reason insists on incandescents...

          And, how many times have we seen people complaining that Windows is a mess due to its support for outdated technologies? How many people have - justifiably - skewered IE for leaving all sorts of crud enabled?

          FF has put in a lot of effort rewriting their core, it's time that we get some payoff.

          There's always a fine point between gratuitous changes and ones that make sense going forward. Python 2 vs 3 is a case in point - the changes to 3 were important clean ups in a language that takes clarity and consistency very seriously. To the best of their ability portability was facilitated and stuff back-ported to 2.7. It's not super difficult to write code that runs on 2 and 3*. But, yeah, it broke code. I'm still on 2.7 myself, but I disagree that the whole idea was an unplanned clusterf**** and will eventually move to 3.

          Uncomfortable and inconvenient? Yes. Unjustified? No. Sometimes you need to change things and I respect that, as long as you aware of the costs to your users.

          Browsers are too central to current computer security to take risks from keeping huge chunks of legacy code, including extensions that may essentially be un-maintained.

          I'll give the benefit of the doubt to Mozilla, one of the better software projects around IMHO, that they've done a good job, weighed the alternatives and had reasons for doing this. Then I'll wait for NoScript before upgrading. If they've really screwed the pooch I'll switch to Vivaldi.

          What I won't do is compare my ($$$) car to my (free) browser ;-)

          * which is not to say that what makes sense in a development framework - where the complexity of compatibility is the developer's choice and is limited to their app - is the right thing to do on a browser.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

            @jlv "If you had bought lots of cassette tapes, you'd not have them working on any recent equipment."

            I've got loads of cassette tapes and they still work fine on my cassette player because no one from the cassette player manufacturer has come into my house, taken the back off the players and made them incompatible with the tapes. They'll continue to be compatible until one or the other wears out. Richer sounds still sells the Teac AD850 which, astonishingly, is still compatible with cassettes I bought in 1976!

            1. JLV Silver badge

              Re: Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

              So whats to keep you from using an old version of FF? Or a fork? How is that different?

              I get the frustration here, but, on balance, I find it better that FF de-crufts itself. If it was not such a front-facing program when it comes to security, I'd probably be less tolerant of breaking changes.

              Not everything they do suits me - still peeved at cookie-management changes from a while back. But overall they're not MS or Google or Safari so I cut them a bit of slack.

              p.s. I wasn't thinking of generally paying but NoScript's guy almost got some of my cash just now, except he's PayPal only.

            2. jelabarre59 Silver badge

              Re: Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

              I've got loads of cassette tapes and they still work fine on my cassette player because no one from the cassette player manufacturer has come into my house, taken the back off the players and made them incompatible with the tapes

              And you can also read *and convert* your tapes with this or this. Trying to convert some 8-tracks for a friend, and that's proving to be a lot more trouble though (finding a player that still works).

              1. Martin an gof Silver badge

                Re: Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

                Trying to convert some 8-tracks for a friend, and that's proving to be a lot more trouble though (finding a player that still works).

                I have a load of NAB cart players which use the same format cartridge, but run at 7½ips and with three tracks (stereo plus control) rather than eight. If you fancy fiddling about swapping heads or something, let me know. They are going spare at the moment, propping up a shelf in my soon-to-be-demolished garage.

                I dare say there are companies "out there" who would provide the service. Here's one that does NAB cartridges (no mention of 8-track) that I found when looking for an image of the cart machines I have. Never used them, though I have used a different company to transfer some old 8mm film. I chose Cinenostalgia because they were near enough for me to drive down, and they did an excellent job at a good price. Don't think they do audio formats though.

                M.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            What I won't do is compare my ($$$) car to my (free) browser ;-)

            @JLV. "What I won't do is compare my ($$$) car to my (free) browser"

            And that's the problem - maybe we should. When I spend money on a car I have certain expectations and the car makers fall over themselves to meet them. They live in a regulated world, they have to fit in with a whole bunch of EU regulation, but they main focus of the design and features is the end user, or "customer" as they like to call us, because we have the money and they want it.

            Why don't software companies run the same model? It's an honest question. We users have got money. We seem happy to spend tons of it on hardware; if I tot up just the tech stuff I can see from where I'm sitting (Mac, phones, tablet, NAS, printer) it comes the thick end of £5k. We're not cheapskates, so why aren't the softies after some of that money. Not all of us put "free" at the top of the requirements list.

            Would people pay for a browser if it could be configured like a new car?

            1. King Jack
              Childcatcher

              Re: What I won't do is compare my ($$$) car to my (free) browser ;-)

              Why don't software companies run the same model? Because they have trained the masses to expect change, the more rapid the better (according to them). If something just works then the muppets won't trust it if the version doesn't jump every few months. They expect to throw things away and buy new. In a few years the penny will drop and sanity will return. Stability will be a desirable as will features that are consumer friendly.

            2. MJI Silver badge

              Re: What I won't do is compare my ($$$) car to my (free) browser ;-)

              Cars

              Well my oldest ever and my newest ever are both compatible with roads.

              My oldest would have got hardened valve seats if it was not so difficult to get spares so was off the road a little too much (dead manufacturer - Rootes) and I could not afford 2 cars.

              But they all had similar user interfaces.

              Wheel in front, indicator & lights on left stalk, wipers on right stalk. right pedal go, left if there clutch, middle or left if two brake. Gear levers in middle, near hand brake.

              Yet under all this all were different, one chassis, rest monocoque, all gearbox behind engine, all to back, one to front. 2 live axle rear, 1 live axle front, rest all independent. 1 tractor juice, rest petrol, 1 turboed, 2 hot cammed, rest as is. One carbed, one unit injectored, rest MPFI. 4, 5 and 6 cylinders. Inline and Vee.

              Point is all are different, (apart from the similar to each other GM V cars), but are similar to drive with similar controls.

              We used to have this with computers, with the WIMP environments, you could go between completely different OSes and not be surprised. But now MS wants cars to have foot operated steering and nose operated brakes. The "equivalent to" icon is the equivalnent of hiding the steering wheel in the glove box and having to fit it every corner, for the car to then automatically put it away again.

          3. PNGuinn
            Trollface

            Re: Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

            "If you had a leaded gasoline car, you'd be out of luck, unless you did whatever you need to do to keep them running on modern gas.

            If you had bought lots of cassette tapes, you'd not have them working on any recent equipment.

            If your light fixtures for some reason insists on incandescents..."

            For most cars the mods to the engine to cope with unleaded are fairly easy. Making it run as well on the unleaded carcinogenic hooch that passes for petrol is another matter. You may need to adjust the timing curves (distributor mods) and carburation as well as fittting hardened seats to the exhaust ports and probably new valves. Hint : these may already have been fitted from new eg in any ally head.

            Or you can add an additive to the petrol. There are at least a couple that have been tested thoroughly and are proven to work. Or, in the UK add your own lead tetra ethyl. Be careful though, organic lead is nasty stuff.

            My beef though is that you pay through the nozzle for the extra cost of manufacturing the new sh&t and then have to pay again to get it to work safely / properly.

            If you don't use your old classic much and drive it carefully you may be ok for 10,000 - 15,000

            miles or more with lead memory - the coating of metallic lead on the valve seats can last a long time. Just watch the valve clearances carefully.

            Be careful though, the bastards reduced the lead levels in 4 star to way below the levels needed to protect the engine long before we went "Unleaded". You may have less lead memory than you think, And don't do a decoke.

            Cassettes? making a comeback, I'm told - just like gramophone records!

            If your light fixtures for some reason insists on incandescents..

            Well, the technology's slowly getting there. Compact mercury vapour fluorescents were a dead loss from he beginning, but fluorescent leds are showing promise, Apart from the lousy colour rendering and eye strain caused by peaky line spectra. Largely curable but at a serious loss in efficiency.

            The only light fixtures having problems with leds at the moment seem to be 12V dichroic tungsten replacements, where it's really the "fault" of the transformers being asked to operate outside their ratings on too low a wattage, led lamps to replace 150W and 200W gls lamps and replacements for 300W 500W and 1000W linear Halogens.

            It's interesting to see the marketing landgrab here. Fittings without replacable lamps. Factor in the cost of a new fitting and the sparks to change it and cost savings don't look so rosy.

            Progress - Bah. We need an internet connected digital candle icon. Spherical, of course, with a B22 base. None of yer Edison Screwups.

            1. DanceMan

              Re: 12V led replacements

              @ PNGuinn

              "The only light fixtures having problems with leds at the moment seem to be 12V dichroic tungsten replacements, where it's really the "fault" of the transformers being asked to operate outside their ratings on too low a wattage"

              Thanks for this. My electrician son-in-law told me not to use 12V led MR16 in track light fixtures that have the transformer in the individual units that attach to the track. I thought it was because of the starting load. Good to hear the actual reason.

          4. Kiwi Silver badge

            Re: Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms.

            ?If you had a leaded gasoline car, you'd be out of luck, unless you did whatever you need to do to keep them running on modern gas.

            Which was.. Ahmm. Erm.. Dammit it's on the tip of my tongue.. Nothing comes to mind though..

            Oh wait, that's it.. NOTHING While there were issues at the start of the change over, the gas was altered to deal with the issue. My car and my bikes, and the cars and bikes of others I know who still have older stuff, haven't changed. Still the original fuel lines in most cases (except where other things have caused a need for replacement).

            If you had bought lots of cassette tapes, you'd not have them working on any recent equipment.

            Yeah. Try finding a record player as well these days. Very hard to buy new cassette players.. oh wait1

            If your light fixtures for some reason insists on incandescents...

            Not hard to find. Just go to your local store (in NZ still at least). But unless you're using something like a lava lamp, you can replace them with CFL, Halogen or LED - many plug-in replacements exist. Many.

            And, how many times have we seen people complaining that Windows is a mess due to its support for outdated technologies?

            I don't think that's the reason Windows is a mess.. </troll>

            1 https://www.newegg.com/Cassette-Players/SubCategory/ID-780

            Browsers are too central to current computer security to take risks from keeping huge chunks of legacy code, including extensions that may essentially be un-maintained.

            There's a point where it sends people away though. Take a look at Ubuntu with the change to UI a few years back - from leading Linux distro to also-ran overnight. MS with Win8, 8.1 and 10 (still collectively trying to reach the same user numbers as 7, and 8+8.1 IIRC still lags behind XP for current users (not looked at the stats in a while so ICBW).

            It is one thing to clean up code - fine and happy with that. Also no real problems for me with them breaking un-maintained extensions. But breaking things so that extensions users actually want to use (some en mass, such as CTR) and removing functionality so that those addons can never be updated?

            I left FF when some of the stuff I want to use was no longer available. I might look at it again around v250 or maybe wait till v500. If it's still around then. Hopefully by then the people who want it to be exactly like Chrome (except the name) will have died off/moved on and FF can get back to being a decent, leading browser instead of the fat kid lagging behind the rest hoping desperately to be noticed.

            (I can speak coz I was the fat kid...)

      3. inmypjs Silver badge

        Re: I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

        "You either change or die"

        2 of 8 extensions I use are not legacy.

        So yes I changed to Waterfox as Firefox continues to fuck itself.

        1. AdamWill

          Re: I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

          Looking at the count in the Add-Ons page isn't really accurate. Many addons are already ported but aren't being updated in the official store until release day or just before it. If you look up each addon that's shown as 'legacy' you may well find there's actually a ported version, or a better alternative.

          The only addon I actually lost entirely without replacement in the transition was Calomel.

      4. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Thumb Down

        Re: I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

        "You either change or die. Such is life. Have a look around - it's a constant race of arms."

        YOU can be a fatalistic tumbleweed if you want to. _I_ flat out REFUSE.

        Saying 'yes' to everything is easy. Saying "NO" is HARD. I would rather do the difficult thing, because it is the right thing to do.

      5. anoco

        Re: I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

        That may be proof that you're wrong,

        https://patch.com/california/malibu/cretaceous-era-frilled-shark-found-swimming-coast-portugal

        But I doubt you'll understand it.

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

      "Instead, Mozilla simply add themselves to the long list of others who choose to dictate what users will get, will have to put up with, rather than letting users decide for themselves."

      ^^^^ What YOU said ^^^^

      thanks for saying it. I can't POSSIBLY thumb-it-up enough.

    3. AdamWill

      Re: I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

      I don't think the removal of old extension interfaces has a lot to do directly with the performance enhancements. Removing codepaths always makes things simpler, of course, but I don't think that's the *main* reason. The main reasons the old extension interfaces are going away, AIUI, are the burden of maintaining them, and their security and reliability consequences - some of the things they allow addons to do are fundamentally not safe, and can result in instability and/or security problems.

      An old blog post - https://blog.mozilla.org/addons/2015/08/21/the-future-of-developing-firefox-add-ons/ - has some details on why the deprecation happened.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

        An old blog post - https://blog.mozilla.org/addons/2015/08/21/the-future-of-developing-firefox-add-ons/ - has some details on why the deprecation happened.

        They originally said that Jetpack extensions would mostly remain but it turns out that that's not true, they later decided to throw all old extension types out. I think Mozilla's guilty of drinking its own kool aid and they'll end up losing their core users, those that wouldn't ordinarily desert Firefox for any reason because of add-ons.

      2. Updraft102 Silver badge

        Re: I always wanted to be an organ grinder's monkey

        "some of the things they allow addons to do are fundamentally not safe, and can result in instability and/or security problems."

        No doubt. Life is full of all sorts of things that can have negative consequences, but we deal with them or embrace them anyway. It's part of being free, and part of living rather than just existing until death. Life itself is not safe, and I wouldn't want to live in a rubberized, bubble-wrapped world where everything that could possibly be not safe was forbidden and impossible. Sure, we'd be safer, but would we even want to live in such a controlled, stifling world?

        Risks can be mitigated; security or stability bugs can be fixed, whether in an addon or in the browser itself. Functionality that relies upon the full-power addons and that will not be made a part of the core browser component cannot be fixed or mitigated. It's just GONE.

  8. src

    Fast

    The Quantum beta has been my goto browser for a little while now. I haven't run any benchmarks but it feels plenty fast on Linux (work) and Windows 10 (home). Only missing one extension - a nice autofill for annoying web sites that won't allow password saving. A nice effort and the compact UI is nice on my widescreen laptop.

    1. Ian Emery Silver badge

      Re: Fast

      Mozilla put SOME of the new code in the current release - and it made a pretty huge difference in speed for me.

      The lack of too many of my vital addons such as NoScripts (may be updated in time), FlagFox (no news), and FoxClocks (no news); meansing I have just switched off auto update, and will be waiting for these programs to get updated, or (in a month or so), start looking for good replacements.

      For those who dont understand why FlagFox is important.

      A few years ago, my mother got redirected to a perfect fake clone of her business bank log in page; the only reason she didnt enter her business password and key code was because I had installed FlagFox, and she realised the site was in Romania, and not the UK.

      A call to the bank followed a system scan by me finding nothing, and it turned out the redirect was at the banks end (way to go Barclays), but never publicly acknowledged. I dont know how many business customers got scammed.

      BTW, if you have NoScript, you dont really need AdBlock; I switched off ADP+ as it was slowing FF down so much, and NS blocks all the ads anyway.

  9. pip25
    Flame

    Supporting legacy addons is not the real problem here

    The actual problem is that the new WebExtensions API can only do a fraction of the things the old API did. Simply put, some old extensions cannot be rewritten, because the new API simply won't let you modify the browser to the same extent. Mozilla did put in some effort to include additional APIs, but at the end of the day, most of these issues were met with a simple shrug.

    Considering its addons were pretty much the only edge Firefox had left compared to Chrome, that's the real tragedy right there.

    For me, after years of putting up with one idiotic design decision after another, this was the last straw. I am now using Pale Moon, where 90% of my addons work, and will continue to work for the foreseeable future. They might even add WebExtensions in later on. Goodbye and good riddance, Firefox.

    1. Headley_Grange Silver badge

      Re: Supporting legacy addons is not the real problem here

      pip25 - have to agree with you. I've stuck with Firefox for ages because of a couple of add-ons that aren't available anywhere else. Once they're gone I'll dump Firefox and look for something else. I'm off to play with Pale Moon (HT) and spend the rest of the afternoon seeing what else is out there.

      1. Compression Artifact

        Re: Supporting legacy addons is not the real problem here

        "pip25 - have to agree with you. I've stuck with Firefox for ages because of a couple of add-ons that aren't available anywhere else. Once they're gone I'll dump Firefox and look for something else. I'm off to play with Pale Moon (HT) and spend the rest of the afternoon seeing what else is out there."

        From my point of view, I browse the internet with NoScript; and the browser is merely something that it plugs into. Whether that browser is Firefox, Waterfox, Pale Moon or whatever is no big deal to me.

        I've been testing several supposed alternatives to NoScript in the Chrome Catalog and so far have rejected them all; so for now I'm using both Waterfox and Pale Moon.

    2. Geoffrey W Silver badge

      Re: Supporting legacy addons is not the real problem here

      RE: "Considering its addons were pretty much the only edge Firefox had left compared to Chrome, that's the real tragedy right there"

      For me, at least, Firefox still has one edge over Chrome - It doesn't have Google lurking in its belly.

      I'm a little trepidant about this change but it will have to be a cold day in heck before I migrate to Google. Hopefully NoScript will be ported, and it does appear its in the works, and hopefully there will be alternatives to the handful of other addons I use. Luckily I'm happy with Firefox' appearance so have never used any appearance altering addons. Video downloaders is the other thing I need to find if my current ones stop working. I'm quietly confident.

    3. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: Supporting legacy addons is not the real problem here

      "the new API simply won't let you modify the browser to the same extent"

      "but at the end of the day, most of these issues were met with a simple shrug."

      They probably have this attitude because Mozilla "developers" are a HUGE part of the "RELIGIOUS CULT of the 2D FLATSO INTERFACE", and they are COMPELLED by their religious beliefs to CRAM! IT! UP! ALL! OF! OUR! ARSES! whether we want it or not [and then INSIST that we ENJOY it, too].

      Bend Over - Here Comes FF 57!

    4. JLV Silver badge

      Re: Supporting legacy addons is not the real problem here

      > because the new API simply won't let you modify the browser to the same extent.

      see, the funny thing is that I am thinking "reduced attack surface" when I read that.

      YMMV, but I'll add that I haven't seen fit to downvote a single poster critical of FF's decision here. I understand that removing legacy support is something that people have strong, justified, viewpoints about. I just happen to disagree with keeping the old come what may in this case, because a I want a simpler, leaner, browser more than compatibility. And if Pale Moon gains as a project from this... nothing wrong with diversity in browser codebases either.

      Downvote away, if you must.

      p.s. yeah, my position would be different if NoScript was really dead, but that's not true - it's coming soon and the author seemed happy with simpler FF baseline code.

  10. Jonathan 27 Bronze badge

    This was announced a year ago, developers have had plenty of time to port over their extensions. If they haven't done it by now, turning off legacy support is really the only thing that will make them do it.

    I know I'm not going to bother porting a fully working product to a new API unless I absolutely have to and I'm sure most other developers would agree with me. Although I would have at least tried to sync up the availability of my new extension with Firefox dropping legacy extension support, but you can't always make those deadlines.

    1. eldakka Silver badge

      developers have had plenty of time to port over their extensions.

      Did you miss the statements by others that not all APIs are available yet? Mozilla announced a year ago that this was going to happen, but they didn't release all of the APIs at that time. It's pretty hard to port to, to write the code that uses something that doesn't exist yet.

      NoScript requires specific APIs that as of a few weeks ago still didn't exist in the dev/alpha/beta versions of firefox. Maybe they are available now - maybe not - but it means that devs have not had a year to port their extensions.

      And considering most of the extensions are done by devs as a hobby - learning new code, implementing some feature that they find useful and releasing that in case others find it useful too - it's not like they need to port it. Maybe they've personally moved on to another browser, so don't feel the need to port an extension they now find unnecessary. Or they've passed that point in their life where they are interested in learning more development - at least web-development - skills.

      Maybe they are happy to find a spare 2-3 hours a week on this hobby to port something that will take 100 hours (best part of a year at 2-3 hours a week) to do - but the APIs they need still aren't available. Therefore users might still get the ported extension, 6 months after the necessary API becomes available. Which might be 6 months after those users (and the dev themselves) have moved onto other browsers because they are missing their extensions and couldn't (or wouldn't) wait around to get back something that they already had but was taken away from them.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Firefox 57 will be one of the largest pieces of software to tiptoe the edge of that conflict and I, for one, wish it the best of luck

    Well, I don't - at this point, all browsers (with the possible exception of the venerable IE) are fast enough. I do not need faster. What I need is usable - and Firefox has been moving backwards in this respect for several years now.

    Pointless changes to the UI, with every new version moving buttons and tabs around just enough to make my motor memory useless? Check.

    Removing or crippling key features - like the ability to easily control the size of the text (I am mildly visually impaired, and frequently need to have larger fonts with more contrast than the teenager website designers prefer)? Check - especially in the mobile version, which now completely ignores user's font-size preferences if the site declares itself "mobile-friendly".

    Adding opt-out telemetry, turned on by default, WX-style? Check.

    Dumbing-down or hiding key configuration options? Check.

    Adding built-in advertizing on the newtab page? Check.

    Pre-stuffing browsing history with sites FF developers think I should be using? Check.

    Breaking popular extensions - e.g. ublock zero was borked on the mobile firefox for several months this year? Check.

    As far as I am concerned, Firefox is welcome to its newfound speed. After being a user for more than 10 years, I am finally off to Chrome+ublock on the desktop, and Brave on mobile.

    1. Geoffrey W Silver badge
      Happy

      Good luck with your Googley BFF

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Good luck with your Googley BFF

        I am not sure how to break this to you, Geoffrey - but browser is not a religion. Hell, browser is not even a spouse or boy-/girl-friend, or in fact any kind of friend. There is no "till death us parts". You do not need to love or respect your browser. You have no duty of care to it.

        Browser is a tool. It either does that you need and want - or it does not. When it does not, you either repair it, or you dump it, and get a new one.

        1. davidp231
          Trollface

          Re: Good luck with your Googley BFF

          The Book of Mozilla would disagree with you.

          See also: about:mozilla

          1. davidp231

            Re: Good luck with your Googley BFF

            Also, users of vIM and Emacs would also tend to disagree...

        2. Kiwi Silver badge
          Joke

          Re: Good luck with your Googley BFF

          Hell, browser is not even a spouse or boy-/girl-friend,

          Speak for yourself, some of us have to take what we can get!

  12. Andy Livingstone

    Whoopee

    Does that mean the screwed up "about:blank" button will start working again?

  13. asdfasdfasdf2015

    FF54 already broke my addons...

    ... and xmarks is still broken despite them moving to webextensions.

  14. dhawkshaw

    LastPass updated

    It's worth noting that LastPass released an update in the last 24 hours that shows it's now compatible. NoScript and Web Developer Toolbar are the deal-breakers for me.

    Hopefully, as has been noted elsewhere, once the APIs have been fully released, NoScript won't be far behind.

  15. Tim Brown 1
    Holmes

    If you don't have a GPU...

    Most of my browsing is done on an old crappy laptop that sits next to my sofa and only has integrated graphics rather than a GPU.

    For years I ran Opera on it until they threw themselves over a cliff by moving to webkit and dropping most of the customisation stuff that I loved. That's when I moved to Firefox as I discovered textensions that allowed me to set it up just the way I wanted.

    It seems plenty fast enough for me (especially with Adblock dropping all the crap that really slows most pages down). So no I won't be upgrading this machine any time soon.

    I might give it a go on my gaming / work machine, which does have a nice fast GPU. But then again, Firefox already zips along on that machine anyway, so I'm not sure there's a point.

  16. Duncan Macdonald Silver badge
    Thumb Down

    Required extensions

    If AdBlockPlus, NoScript and Password Exporter are not all available then I will NOT be changing to Firefox 57. (I have just downloaded PaleMoon to give it a test.) I was already upset when a previous "upgrade" broke EPUBreader (the current version is far worse than the old version).

  17. detritus

    With some of the whinging on this page, one might think some of you have actually paid for this software, as you do with Chrome ("if you're not paying, you're the product.." {yes, I know FF is essentialyl free if you don't donate to Mozilla, but it is funded, so a bit of a different beast).

    After a month or so on Chrome (and its playmobil interface) not long after its initial release I came back to Firefox and have stuck with it ever since, because it does the job and isn't Google or Microsoft with whatever telemetry known or unknown they've secreted within.

    That latter point's really important to me.

    1. Headley_Grange Silver badge

      Freetards

      detritus - you're right - whingeing about stuff that's free to the user is a bit much - but where's the alternative? I'd be happy to pay for a browser that did what I want if I knew it wouldn't change significantly every couple of years. Problem is that I haven't got such an option, so I'll feel free to whinge about it.

      The 2nd problem is that even stuff I pay for changes and I have no option but to lump it. Tablets I spent a fortune on on 3 years ago are now not supported. Every OS or app update makes my PC/Tablet/Phone run slower, hotter or crapper. Features I used a lot disappear, while bugs are never fixed. IoT things I paid good money for only 18 months ago are now effectively bricked because the dev has binned the app. If Ford started taking the radios out of cars when they were servicing them then there would be an outcry, but the equivalent happens almost every day on my PC/tablet/phone - and often with stuff I've paid for.

  18. Elmer Phud Silver badge

    Arrrgh!

    I use Social Fixer to get Facebook to make sense, they have a constant battle with FB and FF tweaking code.

    Mozilla constantly screw with bits of code and just wait for others to sort out the fall-out.

    1. James 29

      Re: Arrrgh!

      This is one of the thing WebExtensions should improve. The browser shoudn't break addons anywhere near as much.

      I've just updated LastPass so all my addons now a ready for FF57 so can't wait for next week!

  19. EastFinchleyite

    Users vs Developers

    "Developers wanting to push forward, users wanting to keep things where they are"

    There in a nutshell is the problem.

    I dumped Firefox for Palemoon when the former started messing around with Australis. That FF market share has been dropping since 2009 shows I am not alone. Maybe Mozilla don't care what users want.

    1. fishman

      Re: Users vs Developers

      I also moved to Pale Moon - much faster and more stable. And uses half the memory - at least the way I use it.

  20. Jim 59

    Is this the end of Tiddlywiki ? Been using it in FF since 2007. No other browser supports it.

  21. James 29

    Palemoon isn't the answer. Its development is moving at a glacial pace, and Firefox which its based on is moving further away - Firefox is what people are developing and testing against... not PaleMoon

    Mainstream people care about speed and stabliilty and security. WebExtensions brings that. The old plugin archtecture wasn't fit for purpose. I know it will break some liked addons but Firefox needs to improve otherwise it will die.

    1. tiggity Silver badge

      The old plugin architecture was fit for purpose - the new one isn't as new one does not have all the same functionality.

      I typically use old hardware and do not suffer significant performance issues (though taht may be due to all my ad blocking, script disabling extensions meaning lots of junk never gets downloaded / executed)

    2. GoE

      Adoption of WebExtensions itself isn't the issue, the reduced functionality is the issue. Someone mentioned UWP earlier and it's the perfect comparison. Yes they addressed problems in the old system but they did it in a way that showed very little understanding of how that old system was used.

    3. JohnFen Silver badge

      "Palemoon isn't the answer. Its development is moving at a glacial pace"

      You say that like it's a bad thing... in this day where everything seems to want to subject us to "rapid release" awfulness, I call that refreshing.

    4. EastFinchleyite

      The direction of travel

      "Palemoon isn't the answer. Its development is moving at a glacial pace, and Firefox which its based on is moving further away - Firefox is what people are developing and testing against... not PaleMoon"

      Maybe Palemoon is going in the right direction but very slowly. Set that against Firefox going down the toilet at breakneck speed and you can see why I am off the Firefox train.

      Again, I am not alone in this Firefox market share is half/third of what it was at its peak (depending on device; mobile/desktop). It is all bad news.

      "People" may be testing against Firefox, but they get fewer year by year .....

    5. Updraft102 Silver badge

      "I know it will break some liked addons but Firefox needs to improve otherwise it will die."

      That's true, but FF 57 is not an improvement. It's an amputation of its defining and most important feature. FF needs to improve, and FF 57 needs it even more than FF 56...

    6. Kiwi Silver badge

      Mainstream people care about speed and stabliilty and security.

      You may've missed the memo, but "stability" means "things stay as they are".

      The old plugin archtecture wasn't fit for purpose.

      Does the new one allow me to use the addons I wish to use? No? Then how is it "fit for purpose" if it prevents me from using the web (main function of web browsers isn't it?). Does the old one allow me to browse the web? Yes? Then how is it "not fit for purpose"?

      Firefox needs to improve otherwise it will die.

      Firefox is dying, and it's because of the lack of stability.

      I use Pale Moon because it is stable. When I start it up today, it's going to look and function the same as it did yesterday. I know where things are and don't have to hunt for them. The addons I use will continue to be able to be used by me.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "Does the new one allow me to use the addons I wish to use? No? Then how is it "fit for purpose" if it prevents me from using the web (main function of web browsers isn't it?)."

        It prevents certain kinds of exploits due to buggy extensions, thereby improving security. I used to use the DNSSEC Extended Validator to play with DANE. Nifty feature, yet if extensions can change the SSL certificate's trust state, a malicious website could exploit this feature to fake a valid certificate. Same goes for extensions APIs to change the UI, they could trick the user into believing a fake address bar.

        1. Kiwi Silver badge
          Coat

          It prevents certain kinds of exploits due to buggy extensions, thereby improving security.

          I could prevent my car being stolen or in a crash by dropping it off a cliff. Security will be vastly improved, and I know I won't die in it.

          It'll be about as useful as the next FF though.

          I'm a big lad. I can make decisions about my security. I've already beaten most exploits simply by my choice of OS. If FF was to give something in about:config, perhaps even an addon of theirs, to allow me to use FF how I wish to use FF, then I would still be a FF user.

          Thanks to actually trying Waterfox, I am no longer a FF user. So I guess FF now has had an infinite security improvement on my system, as it will never be compromised. In a week's time, unless WF somehow turns out to be really terrible (playtime so far suggests otherwise) there will be no FF on my system.

          As more FF users follow my lead, it'll become more and more secure - simply by less people using it. When the last person leaves (maybe in a few months?) it'll become perfectly secure - no one using it means it cannot be compromised.

          I've supported and used FF for years. Pale Moon became my main browser a while back but I still used FF for a few things where PM didn't quite have the addon support. WF fixes that issue. No more being screwed around by FF being an unstable (constantly changing and stuff constantly breaking including security/privacy addons!) pain.

          --> Another long-term user saying goodbye!

          1. Charles 9 Silver badge

            "I'm a big lad. I can make decisions about my security."

            But MOST CAN'T. Remember this as a tenet of the Internet: there are more Stupid Users out there than you, and they can outvote you, in hits and in wallets.

  22. MJI Silver badge

    I have my do not proceed things as well

    1) Must have File Edit menu with bookmarks and history.

    I curently click on bookmarks then delect the site I want eg BBC new, Google Groups, The Register. I have no idea what a lot of the little icons mean, but I do have O level Engish so can read.

    The monkey face for Grease Monkey is obvious, but what is the equivalent to sysmbol there for?

    2) Square tabs.

    Neat and tidy, do not waste space, looks sensible, there is a reason been in WIMP since for ever, they work.

    3) Adblocking

    Absolutely essential these days is some form along with.

    4) Script control

    Some web sites can kill the core, this stops it handling, I use NoScript

    5) User scripts

    I use Greasemonkey to remove googleconsent shite from blocking my screen as the domain lives in hosts, not I am NOT giving them consent, also kills off adblock warnings when configured.

    1. MJI Silver badge

      Re: I have my do not proceed things as well

      My spelling aghhh!

      Select not delect

      BBC News not new

      1. EastFinchleyite

        Re: I have my do not proceed things as well

        MJI,

        I am with you on this. Do not worry about spelling. Shakespeare didn't. I am an engineer. I do not need to be able to spell with accuracy; I just need to know that it is possible for those who care.

        As for Palemoon extensions; I use "Color-That-Site". You can reformat much of the layout of your chosen website. I think it intercepts CSS scripts and changes them. I found it when The Guardian let "the hamsters" change the website a couple of years ago to mimic Hello! magazine. The big garish banner colors were, and still are, visually distressing. CTS takes a bit of learning but it pays dividends. The Guardian now looks almost adult in its presentation.

    2. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: I have my do not proceed things as well

      The menus are still there. A quick flick of the Alt key is all it takes.

      1. MJI Silver badge

        Re: I have my do not proceed things as well

        But I want them there all the time, not messing with alt!

        1. Geoffrey W Silver badge
          Meh

          Re: I have my do not proceed things as well

          So just select "View/ToolBars/Menu Bar" and there you go - There all the time. Your O level English doesn't seem to have helped you much.

          1. Kiwi Silver badge

            Re: I have my do not proceed things as well

            So just select "View/ToolBars/Menu Bar" and there you go - There all the time. Your O level English doesn't seem to have helped you much.

            Have to agree. I like to be able to have the menu always there, but I don't like to always have it there. For many users it's not ever touched - quite possibly the majority of users don't use it.

            As to others saying "not messing around with alt", how else are you going to type "alt-T" to bring up Tools or "alt-F" for File etc? :)

          2. MJI Silver badge

            Re: I have my do not proceed things as well - Geoffrey W

            52 ESR and CTR here and not moving until I have to.

            Why would I have to look up stuff like you suggest when I already have the menu?

            I have enough things to do without having to learn new GUIs all the time.

    3. Updraft102 Silver badge

      Re: I have my do not proceed things as well

      For me, it has to look native. I read a blog post from one of the "designers" out there, where he had said that years ago, most users expected applications to look like the OS, but people don't care about that anymore.

      [Citation needed] would have been my response. Do people really not care, or do you really mean that YOU, as a developer, don't care anymore, and the users just have to accept whatever you give them? Have you asked people if they care about this, or are you just assuming they don't because you have told them they don't?

      Whether in Linux or Windows, I've put a lot of time and effort into customizing the UI and the visual themes to my liking. It's my beacon to every program out there, expressing my idea of how a UI should look and act. To deliberately disregard this and substitute the designer's preferences for mine is to disrespect me as a user.

      I like classic title bars. I know a lot of "designers" have decided that it's okay to use them for things other than to hold the title of the window and the window controls (minimize, maximize, close), but it's not okay to me.

      Below that, the File, Edit, View... menu bar is essential. It offers a series of top level entry points into the menuing system, whereas its replacement, the abominable hamburger menu, offers only one, The classic menu bar offers far more "information scent" about what is possible, and it's far more intuitive. The hamburger menu at best is a kludge to make user interfaces work on tiny phone screens where the pointing device is a big fat fleshy finger that covers several thousand pixels at once, thus requiring huge UI elements that would take up huge amounts of screen space if they were not hidden most of the time. Disappearing UI elements are a bad thing, long eschewed in the annals of UI design, but the growth of mobile and its inherent limitations has made them the norm regardless. Having them on a desktop or laptop PC that does not suffer from those inherent limitations is a particular kind of stupid.

      In the next step downward, I like the classic layout of the main browser toolbar buttons. From left to right, they're back, forward, reload, home, stop. After that, the URL bar, the go button (for when I am lazily mousing and not using the keyboard), and then other stuff like the search bar. I know the "classic" appearance isn't in fashion anymore, but it works. I don't care what's in fashion.

      Below (!) the main toolbar/URL bar is the tab bar. On the left of the tab bar is the new tab button (always in the same place and easily found), and on the right is the close button (same deal, and also useful for closing bunches of tabs in series, which I often do).

      Under that is the content, and under that is a fully functioning status bar (not "addon bar").

      I won't accept anything less. From the release of Australis to present, these requirements have not been within the capability of FF out of the box, but Classic Theme Restorer and Status-4-Evar brought them back. If FF 57 had enough customizability to look like I want out without addons, I might find it to be quite satisfying, but as it stands, I know that addons that change the UI won't work with Webextensions. That, in turn, means FF 57 will not work for me.

      In open source software, forks are common. Often, the cause of this is that the core devs of a given program get a wild hair and decide to abandon the original trajectory they were on and go in some new direction. Those who liked the old direction often won't go along, and they create a fork. Forking is a mixed bag; it provides more choices for users than they would have had otherwise, but it also spreads a finite number of developers even thinner than they already were.

      In the case of FF, a fork already exists, and that's Waterfox. It's been around for years, but it's a one-man operation, and it remains to be seen whether the developer (who refers to himself as Mr. Alex) will be willing or capable of handling the task of continuing to maintain WF as the code base of FF diverges more and more from its XUL-using ways. I hope he is, but this is going to be a much larger task than anything in Waterfox's past.

      1. Kiwi Silver badge
        Trollface

        Re: I have my do not proceed things as well

        Disappearing UI elements are a bad thing, long eschewed in the annals of UI design, but the growth of mobile and its inherent limitations has made them the norm regardless. Having them on a desktop or laptop PC that does not suffer from those inherent limitations is a particular kind of stupid.

        You must've loved the classic IE days where on a 14" high screen (not wide or diagonal etc, high) you'd have 1/2" of menu/nav/status bars, 1/2" of content, and 13" of toolbars and other "UI elements".

        Me, especially on widescreen displays, I like to be able to make UI stuff disappear if I don't want to see it (and like to have it back, minimally, if I want it there).

        As most sites are like El Reg with 50% of the screen "wasted", I'd actually love to see a browser that could put the UI bits off to the side (both sides to keep things nicely even) rather than always having everything along the top. And as I do things that are better in widescreen then flipping the screen isn't really an option (though maybe when I am home and using the TV, I could just get a 2nd screen and rotate it 90deg for web stuff - sadly some games don't play well with dual screen (at least on Linux there may be an option with Xinerama?)

        1. Updraft102 Silver badge

          Re: I have my do not proceed things as well

          "You must've loved the classic IE days where on a 14" high screen (not wide or diagonal etc, high) you'd have 1/2" of menu/nav/status bars, 1/2" of content, and 13" of toolbars and other "UI elements"."

          Never had that problem. I've seen the funny pics around of browsers with lots of "useful" toolbars installed, but no self-respecting geek would ever allow such a thing.

          Of course, I never used IE for anything other than Windows updates either, except a test here and there to see if it was worth using (answer was always no).

          Maybe you don't agree with my demand for static UI elements... that's fine too, as long as we both have the option to have things as we wish. That's part of the point here, that we're not being given any options in many of these things. I was evaluating the Chrome browser on my Android tablet when an update came along that made the nav/URL bar disappear whenever it felt like it. No option... just "this is the way it is going to be." Instant uninstall, and that was the last time I tried Chrome.

          Later, the same thing happened with Android itself, so Android and iOS are both no-go for me.

          1. Kiwi Silver badge
            Pint

            Re: I have my do not proceed things as well

            Maybe you don't agree with my demand for static UI elements... that's fine too, as long as we both have the option to have things as we wish. That's part of the point here, that we're not being given any options in many of these things. I was evaluating the Chrome browser on my Android tablet when an update came along that made the nav/URL bar disappear whenever it felt like it. No option... just "this is the way it is going to be." Instant uninstall, and that was the last time I tried Chrome.

            I think we can very much agree on most of this except the contents of the check box - for you "menu bar" is normally ticked but for me it normally isn't :)

            And if I had've found Chrome to be better than FF before they removed the option of the menu, I too would've been uninstalling it as soon as the menu was gone, especially if things like normal keyboard shortcuts (eg alt-T not necessarily ^P) went with it.

  23. Marco van de Voort

    adblock plus and /56/

    adblock plus already upgraded itself on firefox 56, but the new (webplugin) form feels like pre-alpha. Nothing except the preconfigured blocking lists seem to work, manual configuration is next to impossible.

    I used Mozilla since milestone 18, but if this is not resolved soon, this is the end of it. The current combination is simply not functional.

    1. GoE
      Angel

      Re: adblock plus and /56/

      Switch to uBlock Origin. They've ported almost all of the functionality, plus it's more effective (no whitelisting of adverts that paid for access) and less resource intensive.

      1. Kiwi Silver badge
        FAIL

        Re: adblock plus and /56/

        Switch to uBlock Origin. They've ported almost all of the functionality, plus it's more effective (no whitelisting of adverts that paid for access) and less resource intensive.

        Ublock is pretty useless at protecting privacy though. It doesn't get rid of the LI/FB/Twatty etc tracking buttons. Just checked on Pale Moon by disabling AB+ (use it with UB), sure enough those horrible things appear on El Reg.

        I don't see any annoying ads with AB+, "paid for access" or otherwise. The few I may see - non intrusive static stuff - are non intrusive so I don't mind, especially if it helps the site pay the bills. (and they're so non-intrusive I'm not sure I even see them). Then again, UB+Noscript may be filling the gaps AB leaves open.

        UB may not allow "paid for access" ads through, but it does allow FB+LI through, which is a total fail.

        1. GoE

          Re: adblock plus and /56/

          uBlock blocks them too, it's called Fanboy's Social Blocking List and it's the same one ABP uses.

          1. Kiwi Silver badge

            Re: adblock plus and /56/

            uBlock blocks them too, it's called Fanboy's Social Blocking List and it's the same one ABP uses.

            Oh. Some menus to dig through to get stuff that AB makes obviously available. Very newbie friendly!

            Thanks for the pointer though :)

            1. GoE

              Re: adblock plus and /56/

              If you can't handle checkboxes, how can you install addons? Besides which, how many "newbies" are aware of those privacy concerns? Would they be any more likely to select the option in Adblock Plus (it's not enabled by default either).

              1. Kiwi Silver badge
                Facepalm

                Re: adblock plus and /56/

                If you can't handle checkboxes, how can you install addons? Besides which, how many "newbies" are aware of those privacy concerns? Would they be any more likely to select the option in Adblock Plus (it's not enabled by default either).

                ABP set the standard for giving you a start page with 3 simple and obvious sliders that alter this. Not quite turned on by default but there. Easy to see, right from the moment ABP is installed.

                The majority of addons don't have any configuration options, so it's not obvious that others will. Right clicking on UB's icon doesn't give any options (vs No Script which does) so the most obvious place to go looking for preferences (in many situations) isn't there. Also UB doesn't have anything in the preferences page to look at.

                From your post I went hunting. There's a black icon on a black panel with a black light tucked away (IRL very light grey on white background - same diff) that I only actually detected by chance hovering over the blank space above the "requests blocked" line. As I moved my mouse past another icon it changed colour making it visible, ie the settings icon is only visible if you actually know to hover over it.

                So, given UB has a fucked up UI and doesn't have settings/preferences in obvious places, how the hell is someone supposed to know there's actually more to it?

                At least with ABP there's the obvious "manage filter preferences" in an obvious location.

                If there is no intuitive way into changing settings (eg a visible icon) then people won't see how to fo it. ABP has "manage preferences" visible. Ublock does not.

                "Handling checkboxes" is only a matter when you can actually see them. Simples, no?

                1. GoE

                  Re: adblock plus and /56/

                  Considering the fact that you're criticizing the colour of a button while praising NoScript's UI of all things, I'm not sure your perspective is exactly objective.

                  1. Kiwi Silver badge
                    Facepalm

                    Re: adblock plus and /56/

                    Considering the fact that you're criticizing the colour of a button while praising NoScript's UI of all things, I'm not sure your perspective is exactly objective.

                    I'll try to use simple words here in hopes you can keep up.

                    NS's button has DIFFERENT COLOURS that contrast with the background so that you can see it. It has a WHITE S which is NOTICEABLY DIFFERENT to the background. That S has a BLACK BORDER to MAKE IT STAND OUT At times it as a RED CIRCLE to make it even more noticeable.

                    Contrast that with the settings button on UB which is light grey on light grey, and not visible unless you know where to go to.

                    Are you still with me or is this not quite simple enough?

                    When you click on the main NS button with your mouse it tells you things like that there's an options menu there. When you click on the main UB button it tells you things like there's a big blue power icon and some stats, and down the bottom some icons for turning on/off filtering for "large media elements".

                    With ABP and NS if you go to the Addons settings with the browser, and click on "Preferences" you get stuff about changing settings. With UB you don't. IOW, there's nothing obvious with UB to show that there are more settings available, and such settings are not found in the usual way.

                    I should stop here, in case we have to wait a while for you to catch up.

                    1. GoE

                      Re: adblock plus and /56/

                      You're still just arguing that a tool designed for advanced users doesn't accommodate novices. Your original argument was that UB doesn't do a thing that it does. When I point that out your argument is that it's not the right colour? Fine, you don't like the UX, but you're still arguing form over function and to suggest that someone shouldn't use a better product simply because its buttons aren't clear enough for you (the rest of us manage) is completely irrational, which you then compound with your immature attitude.

                      UB has better features and is more efficient than ABP, that's why I suggested it to the OP. If you can't figure out how a button works, then stick to ABP, but you should be aware of its functional limitations.

                      And you clearly didn't read the OP.

                      "Nothing except the preconfigured blocking lists seem to work, manual configuration is next to impossible".

                      1. Kiwi Silver badge
                        Paris Hilton

                        Re: adblock plus and /56/

                        You're still just arguing that a tool designed for advanced users doesn't accommodate novices. Your original argument was that UB doesn't do a thing that it does. When I point that out your argument is that it's not the right colour? Fine, you don't like the UX, but you're still arguing form over function and to suggest that someone shouldn't use a better product simply because its buttons aren't clear enough for you (the rest of us manage) is completely irrational, which you then compound with your immature attitude.

                        Right. Because an invisible button is such an obvious thing.

                        ABP makes settings obvious. It doesn't hide the buttons with the foreground and background colours being the same. You don't have to hunt this stuff with ABP.

                        Maybe UB is better maybe not. If they'd made the button a different colour to the background, it'd be something I'd have spotted and looked deeper at. But since the button is not visibly there...

                        If you can't figure out how a button works, then stick to ABP, but you should be aware of its functional limitations.

                        Not being able to change the settings of a program is a functional limitation. It doesn't matter if the settings menu simply does not exist, or if it's hidden behind an invisible button (which, btw, has 2 tooltips show up when you hover over it - 1 is "ublcok origin" and the other is, well actually I don't know because the ublock tooltip covers it

                        Now, if this is as logical and easy as you try to claim... I've uploaded a couple of screenshots to https://postimg.org/gallery/lujjyt8c/. Take them, modify them, and show me how the hell anyone is supposed to be able to see that there are icons there and what those icons are for. Browser is Pale Moon 27.6.0 and uBlock is 1.13.8 (I think, not easy to read -slightly lighter grey text on slightly darker grey background). One picture shows the normal extensions page (cf No Script, Ad Block and other extensions that have a preferences or settings button there), the other is a group showing the normal UB icons, the blocked tooltips, and the wonderfully helpful standard (NOT!) right-click options.

                        If UB can't make a visible icon, I can't be expected to be able to see it. Only though your posts did I even discover that there was anything extra there.

                        Should I hold my breath while I wait for you to explain how this is reasonable? Thought not.

                        I have been "figureing out to use buttons" for a long time. Even someone with your level of intelligence should be able to work out the simple logic that if I can post to El Reg, I can probably see and use their buttons. But knowing an invisible button is there for settings then the program has no other visible settings option - how is it that you think it's reasonable for people to know that?

                        And you clearly didn't read the OP.

                        You should learn to read what others write before you criticise them. Do you have to work at arguing like you do, or does it come natural to you? Paris, coz, well....

                        1. GoE

                          Re: adblock plus and /56/

                          Ah, now I see the problem. There's something wrong with your installation of Pale Moon, not UB. This is how it's supposed to look (Firefox 52 ESR)

                          https://postimg.org/gallery/2bcwsc43s/

                          1. Kiwi Silver badge
                            Pint

                            Re: adblock plus and /56/

                            Ah, now I see the problem. There's something wrong with your installation of Pale Moon, not UB. This is how it's supposed to look (Firefox 52 ESR)

                            I'll re-install both PM and UB later, once I export/save all my tabs. The one downside I've found to tabbed browsing, you can wind up with a lot of stuff open you wish to keep open!

                            Just had a look at UB on WF and yeah, looks much the same as in your pictures which makes things a tab more obvious.

                            Thanks and sorry for the grumbling. Must be my time of the month.. (which these days seems to be 24/7....)

                            1. Kiwi Silver badge

                              Re: adblock plus and /56/

                              Ah, now I see the problem. There's something wrong with your installation of Pale Moon, not UB. This is how it's supposed to look (Firefox 52 ESR)

                              I'll re-install both PM and UB later, once I export/save all my tabs. The one downside I've found to tabbed browsing, you can wind up with a lot of stuff open you wish to keep open!

                              Purged, reinstalled, fixed. There's a whole row of icons there! Still got the double-tooltip but clicking on the icon makes it's purpose pretty obvious. In fact I had set up a rule which was done largely manually, involving digging a little deeper into the page code using the developer tools (Pale Moon still has that cool 3D mode I've always loved!) to find the correct element (not something a few layers above which changed ID constantly) which looks like it would've been 2 of 3 mouse clicks had I seen the Picker icon there and tried it out!

                              (Sorry AB+, you've been a great help and opened my eyes to a world of annoyance-free browsing (cept some commentards anyway)

                              Actually El Reg, a way you could give us an option to "hide" certain commentards - set a div style/ID by the commentards name; we could then use Ublock or other toys to change their specific style or even hide them completely! (and if you've done it, thanks and slap me for not looking deeper into El Reg's page code! :) I'll chuck a request in the forum wishlist.

  24. Andy The Hat Silver badge

    Bye bye

    For a couple of reasons I can't live without Tabmix, Session Manager or similar. They will not be updated until at least after 57 is released and, if the API doesn't play, never will be.

    I loved Opera and used it for years until they crippled it, perhaps it's time to give Vivaldi a try ...

    1. Mage Silver badge
      Flame

      Re: Bye bye

      Noscript, useragent, and Classic theme restorer. None of these should be needed, The first two should have been built in years ago and CTR only needed because they buggered GUI. It should match my desktop GUI.

      Bugs / Flaws since for ages:

      Third party Cookies are illegal in EU. There is NOTHING that needs them. Why are they enabled by default and setting practically hidden.

      Domain guessing: Security flaw

      Search from URL bar (stupid).

      A few other things you have to disable in About:Config

      PDF viewing by default in Browser (should be off by default).

      Integrating Pocket (a security/ Privacy issue. It's not needed. Save As Webpage complete is better and will import into eBook creation, Pages can paste into MSWord, LibreOffice etc)

      Print selected section prints empty pages up to that point.

      Print selected often chops off bottom of last image.

      Scroll bars and other GUI elements supposedly inherited from desktop only correct with some Linux themes on some linux destops. Because they are messing with GUI and doing stupid "Mobile" stuff on larger tablets, laptops, desktop PCs of all OS, with the x86 Desktop download version.

  25. GX5000
    Happy

    Moved back to Modern Opera after last Firefox update trashed my speed dials and I haven't looked back.

    It faster, supports most addons (yes those) and Speed dials folders are just awesome.

  26. JohnFen Silver badge

    I'm waiting

    Personally, the only thing that makes the web usable for me is Firefox + NoScript. NoScript hasn't yet ported to 57, and there's no other extension that can adequately replace it, so I'm still waiting. Until/unless NoScript makes the jump, I'll stick with one of the Firefox forks that can still use traditional extensions. Waterfox is doing the job for me!

    1. Mage Silver badge

      Re: I'm waiting

      Or use Firefox 52 ESR (all desktop OS I think).

  27. Wily Veteran
    Meh

    Waterfox

    Waterfox (so far) seems to be the answer, at least for me. It keeps the more useful improvements Firefox makes, removes the Mozilla telemetry, and will support existing extensions as long as feasibly possible. Pale Moon is so far behind, it doesn't seem like a reasonable alternative and the pace of development seems to be on a geologic timescale, at least it isn't a reasonable alternative for me.

    Just a happy Waterfox *user* who has nothing at all to do with any project and hates Google with a passion.

    YMMV of course

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Waterfox

      That looks epic in theory, wil have a go migrating to Waterfox. I use Autocopy, ScrapbookX, uBlock Origin, Quickjava (turns off Javascipt, Java, RTC, CSS), Statusbar4Ever, Downthemall, Linky (opens all links at once), Imagezoom, Exif viewer, MouseZoom, Muter, Repagination (opens all pages at once in a search or sequence of pages), Remove Cookies for Site, TabMixPlus, Tabcounter, WebDeveloper Toolbar, Behind The Overlay, WebRTC Disable, FlashBlock and it HAS TO WORK WITH ALL OF THESE ADDONS DAMMIT!!!!!!!!!!!!! WHAT THE F&CK IS UP WITH FIREFOX???!?!?!? ??? NOW FILES OVER 1GB IN SIZE WON'T FRICKIN DOWNLOAD WITHOUT CORRUPTING!!! THE SO CALLED "AWESOME BAR" IS AND ALWAYS HAS BEEN UTTER SH*T AND THE FRICKIN THING GETS SLOWER AND SLOWER WHILE DOING LESS AND LESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    2. Compression Artifact

      Re: Waterfox

      The Pale Moon people are working on something called Basilisk (see basilisk-browser.org), which apparently has become available (beta-version) in the last few days; so I'm going to check it out. Whether this is intended to replace Pale Moon is not entirely clear. I read something from them last week that implied that their intent is that the Basilisk UI will be frozen and developments and advancements will be mostly under-the-hood, particularly in the realm of extensions.

      On the site cited, they say: "Basilisk as an application is primarily a vessel for development of the XUL platform it builds upon, and additionally a potential replacement for Firefox to retain the use of Firefox Extensions."

  28. BrianW

    Did they fix the memory problem?

    I'm typing this right now on 56.0.2 (64-bit). Four tabs are open and Task Mgr says it's using 2.6gb of RAM and will climb until I have to force-close and restart, then do the same thing again in 3 hours. Obscene that this has been a problem for so many years.

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: Did they fix the memory problem?

      Hmm....I have more tabs open and only hit around 600MB. Check what your tabs are doing. If they're large or media-heavy, they'll hammer ANY browser, unless you can prove otherwise.

    2. Kiwi Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Did they fix the memory problem?

      I'm typing this right now on 56.0.2 (64-bit). Four tabs are open and Task Mgr says it's using 2.6gb of RAM and will climb until I have to force-close and restart, then do the same thing again in 3 hours. Obscene that this has been a problem for so many years.

      Yep, the Pale Moon update fixes that :) (102 tabs (not all clicked/viewed in this session), 602Mb)

      For comparison : FF 56 with 14 tabs used 496Mb (opened for long enough to load the first visible tab)

  29. Charles 9 Silver badge

    I have to keep both Pale Moon and Firefox because each supports things that the other doesn't. Pale Moon supports web page archiving while Firefox supports the latest DownloadHelper. Seems I can't really win.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      If you are interested, Waterfox works with both DownloadHelper and NoScript.

      1. Charles 9 Silver badge

        What about a Web archive plug in that won't take the browser single-threaded?

  30. PiltdownMan
    Coat

    I switched to Vivaldi when Firefox got too slow (especially when loading bbc.co.uk!). Vivaldi is much quicker, and ALL my extensions work. I see no need to go back to Firefox. Think I'll uninstall it now, while I'm thinking about it...

  31. Wolfclaw Silver badge

    So long as I can block Google analytics and adverts that I don't allow, I'll be happy.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    My Missing Extensions

    Anyone got any recommendations for these:

    Abduction! https://addons.mozilla.org/en-GB/firefox/addon/abduction/?src=api - let's me take screenshots of areas of the screen directly into the clipboard for pasting into emails/IM etc

    FireFTP http://fireftp.net/ let's me access FTP sites within the browser with a FileZilla like interface

    Web Developer toolbar http://chrispederick.com/work/web-developer/ incredibly useful tool - I see there is a Chrome version - can I just install that on the new version of FireFox?

    Thanks!

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Final Version. This seems to be the final version.. under the nightly builds.

    https://download-origin.cdn.mozilla.net/pub/firefox/nightly/2017/11/2017-11-09-18-31-37-mozilla-release-l10n/

    The British UK version is "firefox-57.0.en-GB.win64.installer.exe" from the directory listing.

    (You can see here the url is owned by mozilla)

    http://whois.domaintools.com/mozilla.net

  34. inmypjs Silver badge

    Interesting tidbit

    "I'm fed up as an add-on developer, I'm fed up as a mozilla advocate, I'm fed up as somebody who used to help the other add-on devs, I'm fed up as somebody who contributed an enormous amount of volunteer time directly in many different ways, I'm fed up as a Firefox user."

    From the developer of the downthemall addon with 1.2 million users. Here

    http://www.downthemall.net/re-downthemall-and-webextensions-or-why-why-i-am-done-with-mozilla/

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Some bunch of t*ts at the top at Mozilla is screwing up Firefox forever

    I've been a Firefox user for well over a decade but now that Mozilla is led by OCD clean code freaks rather than people who care about why users switched to Firefox originally: speed and control (nobody asked for or wants cr*ppy features like the "Awesome Bar") ... sadly with this final wrong turn... I may have to ditch it for something else, or a set of something else.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Some bunch of t*ts at the top at Mozilla is screwing up Firefox forever

      This is becoming a common problem not only with Mozilla and Firefox but a number of other projects both Open Source and Commercial.

      My favourite arcade emulator MAME is suffering in the same way, large parts of the code being 'rewritten' and "cleaned" while leaving the UI broken and the authors too stubborn to accept workarounds to improve the user experience. There were something like 5 releases where it wouldn't even save the configuration properly because one of the head developers had his cranium so far up his own arsehole.

      I'm going to try Waterfox, at least until the authors of that become corrupted too.

  36. LeeH

    For the last 6 months I have only used Firefox for 2 reasons: 1, to get stored logins from Autofill Forms when I find I need them in other browsers, 2, to use the Web Inspector tools. All other times I use Opera as my main browser then Chrome for entertainment. This is because I know my favourite password manager extension is likely to die when 57 is released.

    Firefox is next to useless to me without a decent system to manage passwords. Opera at least provides a VPN and browsing is smooth.

    Unless FF 57+ offers Opera like features I will continue to use FF 56- for legacy services. If Opera gets FF quality website inspector tools and a good password manager then I'll likely not need to revert to FF in the near future.

    Looks like FF has killed itself.

    1. Not also known as SC

      After reading recommendations here I've downloaded WaterFox (for my Mac) and it looks good so far - in fact it looks identical to FireFox!

  37. YARR
    Megaphone

    Browser speed obsession

    Is this obsession with browser speed becoming a bit long in the tooth now, like a certain mobile phone maker's obsession with thin-ness?

    i.e. Most of the time, most browsers are fast enough, but the odd badly written javascript will slow any browser to a grind regardless, as used to happen with flash.

    Maybe some Jobsian strictness is in order to punish the offenders? In this era of slurped metrics, browsers could report home URLs / functions that cause slowdowns. The collated results would be published as a live league table to publicly humiliate the worst offenders.

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: Browser speed obsession

      "Most of the time, most browsers are fast enough, but the odd badly written javascript will slow any browser to a grind regardless, as used to happen with flash."

      fixed by NoScript

      1. Charles 9 Silver badge

        Re: Browser speed obsession

        Not if it's a LOCAL script, meaning unless you run it, you're not going to see anything, and if it's the ONLY source of what you're looking for...

  38. mike.kane

    Firefox 57 seems fine to me it's just the bookmark manager I don't like. I use Bookmark OS which helps a lot

  39. Tom Chiverton 1

    echo "firefox hold" | sudo dpkg --set-selections

  40. Updraft102 Silver badge

    Of the 24 extensions I use, 20 are "legacy." Among them are Classic Theme Restorer, Tab Mix Plus, and Status-4-Evar, which are all extensions that modify the UI, which means they won't work (at least in current form) on FF57. I won't be migrating.

    I moved to Waterfox a few months ago in anticipation of this Firefox change. I don't know if Waterfox will become the "main" Firefox fork for those of us who want to continue in the original direction and not towards Google-land, but it's been around for years, and it's already fairly well known. If Waterfox isn't able to do it, I am sure that something else will come up.

    Waterfox (and the matching Firefox pre-57) is fast enough for me. Even on my Core 2 Duo laptop, it's quite responsive on Windows and Linux (using NoScript and uBlock Origin probably helps too) with e10s enabled. It's a nine year old laptop! More speed is always nice, but it's not worth the loss in utility and the terrible UI (IMO) that can't be fixed anymore. Opinions vary about UIs, which is why customization is good. The norm these days is for devs to "simplify" and remove choices, unfortunately, with the excuse that "most people don't use x feature" or whatever it is. It may be true that most people don't use X, but if you take X and the 20 other features you removed as a whole, you'd probably find that many, if not most, of the users use at least one of the 21.

  41. Carl D

    Moved to Pale Moon a couple of months ago and haven't looked back... got tired of Firefox with their rapid release schedule and Add-ons shenanigans (after using Firefox for nearly 13 years).

  42. AdamWill

    Lastpass and HTTPS Everywhere are ported

    Lastpass and HTTPS Everywhere both have web extension versions already. They were made available outside of the official addon site initially, but both have stated they would be available from the official addon site by the day Firefox 57 is officially released.

    I just checked, and HTTPS Everywhere was updated to the WebExtension version in the official store on 2017-10-30: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/https-everywhere/ . Lastpass was updated to the WebExtension version yesterday: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/lastpass-password-manager/ . (It's also worth looking at Bitwarden, which is a fully F/OSS password manager...)

  43. Doctor Evil

    Users don't have any control?

    "The users do not and have not ever had control of the tiller, not at Mozilla and not anywhere else."

    Read through the comments above and you'll see all kinds of users voting with their feet. I'm on the ESR branch but when my essential extensions stop working, I'm gone too. Unless a company like Mozilla truly has a death wish, it does need to be responsive to its users. Or die. Jury's really out, this time.

    1. BOB JOHNSON

      Re: Users don't have any control?

      But without user they are all nothing but code sitting in a back room with nothing to do. In 2017 as a user I did use the power of my feet and walked away from FF. I have made Opera my go-to browser again and it is fast enough for me.

  44. gitano

    Firefox ESR

    Can allways switch to Firefox ESR (Extended Support Release)

    www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/organizations/

    And keep using all old extensions

    1. Richard 12 Silver badge

      Too late

      Your Firefox profile is no longer compatible with the ESR, as of about three or four months ago.

      So you'd need to start over and import what you can.

      Might as well switch browser.

  45. tempemeaty
    Boffin

    Google called, they want their Chromeplatedgoogleturd UI back.

    Every time I see the Firefox P. O. S. Chromeplatedgoogleturd™ UI rip off, I wonder who reached down the toilet to retrieve that turd.

    Other than that, I look forward to having a faster Firefox.

    (´ ▽`).。o♥♡

  46. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Wish Firefox would focus on 5 simple things instead:

    #1. For family / friends etc... In the early days of Firefox [Tools -> Options Enable-Javascript / Show-Images] was easily available. However special interests at Mozilla obfuscated the Settings.. Why not instead add Javascript 'Website Exceptions' to Firefox.... We have this for Cookies. Why not extend that to Include JavaScript and Image 'Website Exception Lists' too.... Chrome offers this, so why not Firefox???

    ....Yes you can block it using Add-ons, but not if your work machine is locked-down, or there's many devices at home / away you're not responsible for. Plus, Add-ons can come with toxic baggage too, especially if the hosting site / distrib mechanism gets hacked etc. (ccleaner etc)

    ~

    #2. ALWAYS accept 3rd party Cookies is the default when allowing cookies. Why do that, what's wrong with NEVER as a default? Can't think of any website that insists on explicit 3rd-Party-Cookies anymore to work (if they do dump them immediately). Where's the advantage to the End-User here, unless Mass-Tracking & Slurp is the goal... WTF Mozilla?

    ~

    #3. I'd like to see 'about:config.javascript' etc shortcuts for toggling JavaScript etc. Having to Type 'pt.e' as a shortcut seems dumb. Same goes for toggling images etc. like having to set dom.image.srcset.enabled to FALSE after every install to block image loads, WTF???

    ~

    #4. Please Mozilla remove nannying like 'Do you want to refresh Firefox'.

    ~

    #5. Add editable exception-list for sites that need 'full-screen' like Youtube.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Wish Firefox would focus on 5 simple things instead:

      #6. Browser Spying & Tracking: Offer built-in 'EFF Panopticlick' option to prevent browser fingerprinting. (Sending fake Browser ID-strings / info to websites to mask real browser-version or OS-signatures). Similar to Privacy leveraging features like this:

      https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/10/30/firefox_canvas_privacy_tor/

  47. KH

    Forks are already out. Try Waterfox

    "Will someone fork Firefox to support the old extensions? Probably"

    There's already two forks of Firefox that allow the old extensions. One is based off Firefox v38, and is called Pale Moon (haven't tried), and the other is based from Firefox v53, called Waterfox. Using Waterfox right now, and it's great. All the "reporting home" stuff is stripped out (see their site for feature list: https://www.waterfoxproject.org/). Some sites that wouldn't work properly in Firefox actually work under Waterfox too! eg, Logging into Ebay frequently froze in Firefox, due to interactions with LastPass. Under Waterfox, all is great again!

    1. Trilkhai

      Re: Forks are already out. Try Waterfox

      Seconded — and logging into eBay with LastPass also works perfectly fine in Pale Moon. I had no idea that it wasn't working in Firefox; then again, I switched to PM full time when Australis came out.

  48. conscience
    Stop

    Waterfox has proved a good enough replacement for me so far, and it runs all my favourite extensions like NoScript, DownloadHelper, etc. Highly recommended.

    If only Mozilla had any sane leadership maybe they would not be in this mess. Obviously they have vastly underestimated WHY people actually still use their browser: choice. Without the extra functionality and customisation offered by the old API and add-ons there is simply no reason to keep using Firefox at all for many users, especially as each update seems to make the browser worse.

    The best thing Mozilla could do here is realise their mistake, change their minds about binning the old extensions and API, and apologise to users and devs alike. But even in the unlikely event that they did do a reverse, how many users who now have alternative browsers installed that can do everything they need with add-ons would even consider going back to Firefox? I'm not sure I would.

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      If that were true, why is Chrome the dominant browser now, in spite of Firefox's history of customizability? And how is Mozilla going to win back those users and justify its needed sponsorships?

      1. BOB JOHNSON

        Chrome? Open any Android phone and what is so often on that phone is Google PlayStore . Aside from rooting the phone guess what else is on that phone....Chrome. So if you think the masses are using Chrome because they picked it out of a basket, I would disagree with that. Plus there is a young generation that will choose the path of least resistance and if Chrome is on their phone, that is what they will use. Heck there are people in their 20's that think it is a wonderful idea if the government does their taxes for them. Guess who will come out on the winning financial end of that one?

        Then there are the people who have been around a while, that spent time trying out new browsers, that said to themselves, "hey I can customize this browser to my taste and there are add-ons that I find helpful." Those are the people who supported the growth and they are the people you lost and continue to lose. The generation that I mentioned that only know what is on their phone screen will probably never leave Chrome.

        So if FF loses the small footprint of supporters, where will it be in 5 years?

  49. Michael Maxwell

    vim keystrokes indeed

    @Scott Gilbertson, you mentioned an add-on that provided "vim-like keystrokes" to Firefox. Years ago (I think it was Windows 3.1) I modified some code I found on-line to add vim-like cursor control to all apps in Windows. It hooks the keyboard, so Ctrl-H is left arrow, Ctrl-J is down arrow, Ctrl-D is 7 lines down, etc.; and Ctrl-Q puts you into "shift" mode, so the same keys now select. I've always wondered why Windows didn't just provide such a mechanism built-in. It still works with Windows10, except for some reason in Edge (which I didn't want to use anyway, so no great loss).

    1. Richard 12 Silver badge

      Re: vim keystrokes indeed

      This is actually built into Windows. There is a set of keyboard scancode remappings that extend your locale, so you can rearrange - or disable - keys as you wish.

      I used to kill capslock.

      However, it's a fundamentally bad idea because it makes it impossible for any application to use (eg) Ctrl+J for anything.

      Most content creation applications have a myriad of useful keyboard shortcuts, and losing them can make the program almost unusable.

  50. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Alas poor Web Developer by chrispederick

    I knew him well

  51. DanceMan

    It's the Extensions, damnit

    Been on Pale Moon for quite a while now, because of GUI and support for some extensions.

    The control of the GUI and how the browser works via extensions is why I use a particular browser. If the new FF can reduce the memory leakage and in time gain extension support to give me what I have with Pale Moon I might come back to FF.

    Tab Mix Plus, losing the useless and space wasting title bar, Shrinking the bookmarks down to an icon with text only on mouse-over are essential along with Ublock and NoScript.

  52. raving angry loony

    Fuck Mozilla and its "bend over and let us fuck you" attitude

    The second that Mozilla decides to fuck over any of the extensions I use (specifically, Ghostery, Privacy Badger, uBlock Origin, and above all NoScript) is the second that I have zero more use for Firefox. Those extensions are the ONLY reason I use Firefox (now ESR version). If they force me to have to put up with an unusable web full of shivering and flashing images or text or popups or other crap that can and does trigger migraines and nausea, that some bozo in marketing thought was a good idea, then Firefox, Mozilla, and the rest can go jump in the manure pit. The ability to block that shit is the only reason I still use Firefox.

    No idea what I'll use, I might just have to just stop using the web. Which will probably do wonders for my productivity, assuming I can get around the lack of access to information sources I need.

    1. Trilkhai

      Re: Fuck Mozilla and its "bend over and let us fuck you" attitude

      No reason to stop using the web — there's enough browsers that either support legacy Firefox extensions or have equivalents in their own ecosystems these days. A quick rundown, since the names always pop up without explanations:

      SeaMonkey: Firefox's still-updated parent; XUL extensions (maybe JetPacks?)

      Waterfox: Australis fork; XUL & JetPack extensions

      Pale Moon: pre-Australis fork; XUL extensions & PM rebuilds of many JetPacks

      Vivaldi: fully customizable unique UI; Vivaldi & Chrome extensions

      1. raving angry loony
        Pint

        Re: Fuck Mozilla and its "bend over and let us fuck you" attitude

        Well colour me blue and tickle me a wallaby, Waterfox works with all the extensions I need! I'd tried Pale Moon but it didn't work well on my system. Hadn't even heard of Waterfox and hadn't thought to look. Have a beer on me (and if you're ever on the west coast of Canada, I'll make it a real one... although letting me know might be problematic...)

  53. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I actually quite like quantum and think it's very good with the only thing missing is Noscript but I believe this will be fully baked soon for FF57 and the newer API.

    Mozilla had to do this to modernise FF and gave plenty of warning. I hope this change however doesn't mean the final death of Thunderbird and Thunderbird continues to thrive.

    1. GoE

      They didn't give plenty of warning on which APIs would be available and which wouldn't, in fact they gave no warning whatsoever. Some are unavailable and at any moment they can decide to add one, they don't give advance notice that one is going to be included so developers had no idea whether a feature they need was going to be available.

    2. Updraft102 Silver badge

      "Mozilla had to do this to modernise FF and gave plenty of warning."

      Warning is not good enough. They should have at least provided new APIs that allow the full functionality of the old XUL APIs before declaring Webextensions ready for prime-time and giving "plenty of warning." Otherwise, giving warning doesn't help, as there's no way to do what we want to do no matter how much time we have.

      It's kind of like warning fish in a lake that you're going to start draining the water in a year, with the eventual goal of eliminating the entire lake. Assuming the fish were capable of understanding the warning, what are they supposed to do with the information?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Get to the river because sometimes there's no alternative. Odds are at least some of the APIs that aren't available are potential pwnage avenues that can't be patched because of their essential function. IOW, its mere existence is too risky, so the only secure solution is to not use it at all. What do you do then?

        1. GoE

          I'm not sure you're really familiar enough with the history of this to judge it. For starters, some of the features *have* been added but without any warning or adequate time for developers to react. As for features they can't add due to security or practicality, tell us then. There was no reason for the cloak-and-dagger approach Mozilla used.

          Even when features were explicitly requested or queried, Mozilla's response was usually just 'we're not talking about that'.

          1. Charles 9 Silver badge

            UI changers can be hijacked to create click baits and false displays. SSL sniffers and the like can also be hijacked to show fake data. And you can never fully take the threat away as long as they exist. If it can be used, it can be abused, and always look at it from the perspective of Joe Ordinary. They are not us, AND they outnumber us. And those numbers are important to Mozilla or order to justify continued sponsorships. Otherwise, how will the coders get paid?

            1. Kiwi Silver badge
              Pint

              Yes yes, not everybody can drive cars so we need someone walking in front of them waving a red flag yadda yadda yadda yadda.

              So give us the choice. Oh wait, those of us who want to use our browsers our way have left FF behind (actually in my case thanks to you personally - thanks again for pointing out waterfox I am finding it much better than FF!).

              BTW, the validity of your argument is put in doubt by the sheer fact that IE/Edge have had such a huge portion of the malware yet such a small portion of usership. Also, given some of the stuff like No Script that are there to protect privacy won't initially be there for FF57, well that kinda at least partly kills arguments about security/privacy. Given what NS can protect people from, FF57 will be less secure than FF56 until suitable script blockers are in place.

              1. Charles 9 Silver badge

                "So give us the choice. Oh wait, those of us who want to use our browsers our way have left FF behind (actually in my case thanks to you personally - thanks again for pointing out waterfox I am finding it much better than FF!)."

                And yet none of them shine a light on Chrome, and that's the conundrum Firefox (and its sponsors) face. You're not the priority for them; it's the Chrome users who vastly outnumber you.

                PS. IE got most if its malware when IT was near the top of the list. Notice how little attention is paid to it these days...

                As for security and privacy, consider that these WILL NEVER be the focus of a browser with ties to commercial interest. Heck, I can't even recall ANY successful piece of software that did not have any commercial ties to it at some point.

                Frankly, the browser issue is really a symptom of a bigger problem: that being the Web as a whole is becoming way too complicated and growing to be more than it should, especially in terms of interactivity. If something like VNC had taken over the interactive elements that the Web does now, we'd probably be in a much better position than we are now. And I think it's bout time we rustled up the bolted horse, vacuumed up the genie, or whatever it takes to get the Web back under control again.

  54. Colonel Mad

    It's gone

  55. Mage Silver badge
    Flame

    Firefox

    Mozilla is bonkers.

    They broke the GUI to make it fashionable.

    They are breaking functionality and not fixing bugs.

    I switched to 52 ESR* after 54 and when that expires I will go to something else if Mozilla are still delusional.

    [* on all my Linux gear, Win10 Tab/netbook, Win7 etc and even the XP games machine (not used for anything except ancient Windows games) ]

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: Firefox

      Because they were losing people left, right, and center to Chrome. How else do you propose they get them back when most of them are the type who don't pay much attention to security?

  56. ecofeco Silver badge

    Most extensions are useless crap

    Most extensions are useless crap anyway.

    I checked the website referred to for the updated extensions and I see all my security extensions have carried over as well as most of the utilities is use. (thanks for that El Reg!)

    I have noticed that someone seems to know what they are doing at FireFox as each of the recent updates has significant improved performance.

  57. Jonathan Schwatrz
    Meh

    Not touching it with a barge pole.

    The whole Brendan Eich vs the Gaystapo affair - "we want to be treated equally and not victimised, just as long as we're allowed to victimise those we disagree with" - still rankles.

    1. dbtx Bronze badge

      barge pole? let's get pollin'

      It's hilarious how they still ram his scripting language into practically everything and it gets used against pretty much all of humanity all the friggen time, even though they could have drank even more Haterade and shunned it along with him. But that would have been... almost a little bit sane. Is a defensive semicolon for guarding my colon? J/K, I don't want to know.

  58. Kiwi Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Maybe they could make an addon?

    Make an addon that lets you run the older addons?

    I stopped using Firefox because Firefox stopped me using it the way I want. Now I use Pale Moon, and someone else benefits from the $thousands I donate every other week ! (I wish)

    Firefox lives on the system because there is 1 addon I use every now and then which PM doesn't have yet (should hunt for an equivalent). The next update will probably break that addon anyway. Anyone know a good replacement for Video Download Helper?

    1. Trilkhai

      Re: Maybe they could make an addon?

      I switched to Pale Moon for the same reasons a few years ago, after spending a year or two with SeaMonkey.

      As for Video Download Helper, the Modified For SeaMonkey 1.x version can be used under PM, though I don't know if it's still fully compatible with all current websites. You might also read/ask the Alternatives to JetPack/SDK Extensions thread on the Pale Moon Forums, since (unlike me) they actually know what the hell they're doing. :o)

      1. Kiwi Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: Maybe they could make an addon?

        As for Video Download Helper, the Modified For SeaMonkey 1.x version can be used under PM, though I don't know if it's still fully compatible with all current websites,

        Thanks, will have to dig further though as the one version I've found thus far doesn't work with YT.

        I see the main version has a "not compatible with FF quantum" marker on it. Good thing I won't be using FF quantum. In fact if I can find a decent way to get the few YT vids I want, I won't be using FF at all.

        (my connection is to slow to stream them, so I need to DL them to watch. Very little worth the hassle these days)

        1. Updraft102 Silver badge

          Re: Maybe they could make an addon?

          Have you tried the "Moon Tester Tool" addon for Pale Moon? It allows most "Not compatible with Pale Moon" addons to install and work anyway.

          1. Kiwi Silver badge
            Thumb Up

            Re: Maybe they could make an addon?

            Have you tried the "Moon Tester Tool" addon for Pale Moon? It allows most "Not compatible with Pale Moon" addons to install and work anyway.

            Thanks, will have to play some more with it. I still get a "not compatible" with VDH but will look a bit closer at it a bit later on.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Maybe they could make an addon?

      > Anyone know a good replacement for Video Download Helper?

      youtube-dl

    3. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: Maybe they could make an addon?

      Seems WaterFox is the best solution if you need the latest DownloadHelper. I'm using it now and it supports the latest sites.

      1. Kiwi Silver badge

        Re: Maybe they could make an addon?

        Seems WaterFox is the best solution if you need the latest DownloadHelper. I'm using it now and it supports the latest sites.

        Haven't yet taken a look at WF, but since I'm at a mate's with a fast net connection, I'll take a look. Thanks for the suggestion!

      2. Kiwi Silver badge
        Pint

        Re: Maybe they could make an addon?

        Seems WaterFox is the best solution if you need the latest DownloadHelper. I'm using it now and it supports the latest sites.

        WOW! I've been using WF for not even a minute and I am way impressed! The look I want, the stuff I want (plugins), the history alive and well (even "restore previous session" opens my FF tabs).

        Downsides : Didn't keep the search settings (open in new tab + no searching from URL bar) and turned on accepting 3rd party cookies. (ok, 5 mins in by now).

        It'll almost certainly replace Firefox and should I need to replace Pale Moon as my main browser (I actually do prefer to have everything in one place) it'll probably do so.

        Thanks again for the heads up :)

  59. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

    "It'll also trash your add-ons"

    How many times is that now?

    1. Kiwi Silver badge

      Re: "It'll also trash your add-ons"

      "It'll also trash your add-ons"

      How many times is that now?

      I suggest you look at what many consider to be the "version number", then remove anything that looks like a decimal point.

    2. kcblo

      Re: "It'll also trash your add-ons"

      Why not keep 2 versions of the browser in order to retain the addon(s).

      That what I do to solve the problem. I run both FF ver 56 and ver 58 Nightly built (it is really fast).

      1. illiad

        Re: "It'll also trash your add-ons"

        so how do you stop FF force upgrading?? lots of hacks???

        1. Updraft102 Silver badge

          Re: "It'll also trash your add-ons"

          "so how do you stop FF force upgrading?? lots of hacks???"

          For FF56, Options menu -> General tab, then select "Never check for updates."

          1. tempemeaty
            Flame

            Re: "It'll also trash your add-ons"

            I don't know what exactly transpired with illiad's encounter with forced upgrades but I have a story of my own about that.

            I found myself saying WTF when I had thought I had it set not to and I still got hit by an upgrade. Then thought maybe I just forgot to set it. So I went and made sure it was set. I was even paranoid and rechecked to assure it was in fact set. Then got hit yet again by another one. You don't even want to know how pissed I was. I honesty think FF did issue some forced upgrades at least a couple times.

            1. Kiwi Silver badge

              Re: "It'll also trash your add-ons"

              I found myself saying WTF when I had thought I had it set not to and I still got hit by an upgrade.

              Just OOI, do you run Linux - and if so could the "upgrade" (a word turned on it's head (and repeatedly stomped on!) have come through your OS's package manager?

              With Windows, does the FF update manager (whatever it's called) actually follow the automatic check, or does it do it's own thing independently?

              Either of these may be the issue here.

  60. Graham Perrin

    Lazy generalisations about instability with legacy exensions

    > … It doesn't take much imagination to see the tech press headlines coming: …

    OK, Register, I'll bite. Don't forget existing copy:

    > … Legacy extensions … cause stability problems …

    With respect: that's a lazy generalisation.

    https://twitter.com/grahamperrin/status/925522450410037249 1,200 tabs a few days ago.

    Now, whilst writing this comment:

    - 1,400 tabs

    - eighty-five extensions enabled, more than half of which are legacy

    – and the vast majority of those legacy extensions are tried, tested, trusted, mature and stable. Certainly my own environment is stable, the presence of forty-eight legacy extensions is not detrimental. I'm aware of, and can easily avoid, just one stability-oriented bug.

  61. Mario Becroft
    Go

    Pale Moon

    I just hope there is a large exodus to Pale Moon, which continues to support XUL, with associated UI customisation etc. With an influx of FF refugees, Pale Moon, which is already well-maintained, could gather a decent number of new (core and extension) developers and become the new FF, in the spirit of what FF used to be.

    Onwards and upwards!

  62. Middleleaze

    Afew years ago I was an ardent user of Opera. Then they started changing stuff and my add-ons stopped working, My key add-on was a Session Manager and when that stopped I looked for an Opera replacement and found Firefox with a great Session Manager. I was happy again and Firefox was also a better browser. Now Firefox is going the same way; my Session Manager is incompatible so, as woth Opera, I looked for an alternative and found that Waterfox imported all my bookmarks and add-ons and everything worked very well indeed. In fact, Waterfox seems to be faster too - an unexpected bonus. Accordingly I have now abandoned Firefox and am very happy with Waterfox.

  63. PVR

    well Firefox finally did it browsers like this 57 dime a dozen those like prior Firefox versions stood apart from all others RIP Firefox it has been good while it lasted :(

  64. TheSkunkyMonk

    Faster? its using more memory/cpu than ever! Plus the new look is absolutely hideous, and I only see a hindrance to the new layout no extra benefits to it all. All in all they dragged me away from Microsoft over ten year ago and now they have just pushed me right back with this godawful update! well until a fork comes along then I might have another look. Hope NoScript gets ported to IE it was Firefoxes biggest selling point for me(yes I know firefox will have it back soon as well).

    1. Kiwi Silver badge

      well until a fork comes along then I might have another look.

      Pale Moon or Waterfox might suit your needs.

      1. Compression Artifact

        Basilisk just released

        The Pale Moon developers put out the first public release of Basilisk (basilisk-browser.org) a couple days ago. I used it all day yesterday with no problems. It runs all of my desired extensions, including the HTML Validator (users.skynet.be/mgueury/mozilla), which I haven't been able to run on Pale Moon or Waterfox. Basilisk will be in beta/experimental mode for some time; so while I'm exercising it I'm using Pale Moon and Waterfox as backups.

  65. mika7367

    Quantum

    Works great for me none of my addons were affected, Lastpass, UBlock Origin, Stumbleupon and yes not such a memory hog anymore. Although at 64Gb was never a real issue anyway. I don't mind the square tabs either... nice and clean so thumbs up from me!. Video Download Helper is working on Linux Mint 18.2, not tried on Windows 10 yet but should be ok?

  66. Kiwi Silver badge
    Coat

    Tried it...

    I decided to try it out briefly.

    First, the interface is actually quite ugly. Beyond belief ugly. The chosen colour scheme of things like tabs clashes with everything else on screen (my chosen theme, the pages I'm reading). It looks like someone messed up the development and missed the tab bar when setting colours etc.

    So I then found Mozilla's home page, where to leave a comment, thanked Mozilla for their past use but told them that after a few mins of using 57 it was so bad I had a headache and was using it to download a better browser (waterfox in this case, since it imports everything so nicely), downloaded WF and installed.

    My time with Firefox is done. Thanks guys, you had a great browser, but it's like the relationship where he starts out young and hot and energetic and just great fun to be around, then lets himself go and becomes a fat lazy abusive pig - time to move on.

    1. ralphc

      Re: Tried it...

      It is simply horrible. The appearance is awful, takes away things I use, and as noted above, it trashes add-ons. I got the add-ons for specific reasons, because I use them. There are not substitutes for these things I use every day, who knows if there will ever be. But in addition to losing all this functionality, it does NOTHING to solve the problem of multiple pop-up windows that happen with basically every website there is now, FF has gotten worse than IE for that. Don't tell me they are not aware of this or that there is nothing they can do to prevent this. So FF updates have become worse than useless. Rolled back FF 57 immediately until I can find another browser.

  67. WhatNow

    Like many I have been a Firefox user almost since they started. The later Quantum release whilst keeping most of my add-ons functioning, has been causing everything to simply freeze for up to 45 seconds.. Yep, no matter what I'm working on the screen now freeze every few minutes. That ain't too good when working on WP and making site updates then needing to either put the kettle on while Firefox decides to unfreeze and allow me to continue..Worst of all is that I have been forced to now use Chrome with WordPress simply to allow me to make site updates. Then we have Forefoxx on Android, something I have always used on my phone and annoyingly which I also installed on a friends' phone as she had reached the end of her wits with Google monster constantly adding news reports and traffic in her area updates despite turning them off. Then 3 days after I installed Firefox and whicch had no news updats,, no traffic updats, no what's happening in areas that you never even wante dto know about..Just a simple clean browser, they update and now the browser is packed with unwanted nonsense like a demonic stalker of Chrome wanting to copy. Speed yes, of course, but come on...I'm not the only one whose browser is now freezing on a regular basis and will be searching for alternatives.

  68. bansh

    They have killed Firefox

    Why the new Firefox Quantum is a total s**t? I have googled this question since this awful update, but no luck. All those *strange* sites says that it's so fast and may even beat the Chrome! Well... it's a nonsense. First of all, why are you talking about the speed? Really? In 2017? Who cares?! Any browser out there, even on mobile platforms, works as fast as light, end users never even notice this ridiculous difference. How often anyone of you did experience the slowness of the browser? Again, in 2017? Well... Second, that is the most important... They've ruined everything. Our team use only 3-4 extensions, and now all of them don't work, and there are no replacements. And won't be in the future, all of the developers say that they don't support them anymore. Our employees can't use firefox anymore. Rolled back to 56.0.2, but I understand that it's a temporary solution. Unfortunately, after the ten years of a successful work with firefox we need to switch to another platform... I think it should be Chrome (( Bravo

    1. Kiwi Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: They have killed Firefox

      Our employees can't use firefox anymore. Rolled back to 56.0.2, but I understand that it's a temporary solution. Unfortunately, after the ten years of a successful work with firefox we need to switch to another platform...

      Try waterfox. It'll install, grab your history and addons and so on, and keep working for the foreseeable future.

      Or Pale Moon, but that doesn't support some addons. Both based on Firefox.

      1. bansh

        Re: They have killed Firefox

        Thanks, I've tried Waterfox, but one of my addons doesn't work properly with it. For now I'll stay with the old Firefox.

  69. hbmax

    I want my old Firefox back ....

    about 2 years ago at one time Firefox was slow and found that i opened too many tabs in fact while closing it asked me if i wanted to close all 4250 tabs

    then after many many updates i found it similar slowing down when i had about 1000 tabs open

    now after the upgrade to 57 and i have 200 tabs and it does not slow down but it crashes ...

    it became just like stupid chrome.

    because in the past although Firefox was slow or crashed it didn't effect the rest of the computer but now i really have to restart the whole computer

    before i was just restarting Firefox ...

    i want my old Firefox back ....

  70. surlyandold

    bookmark toolbar

    Until the bookmark toolbar can be compacted, I'll not install the new FF.

    Instead of relying on add-ons, why not include a bookmark compactor in your browser package?

    "Speed" pretty much doesn't mean much in most of America. Most ISPs are discouragingly slow, so browser speed is meaningless. And now, that Ajit Pai has allowed ISPs to further screw us over, well, who cares about speed?

  71. CaptObvious

    Unlikely ever to use Quantum

    Quantum is a train wreck. It's fugly, unusable, and gives me a migraine. It breaks most of my must-have add-ons. It's a dealbreaker. When I want Chrome, I know where to find it. If it's true that "If you can't beat 'em, join 'em," Mozilla just waved a white flag and quit. Fortunately in 56, I can still disable lock MZ out of my system and keep the browser as I need it and not as they would have it.

    1. conscience

      Re: Unlikely ever to use Quantum

      If you've not tried it, try Waterfox as it's more or less the same browser as Firefox but all the add-ons still working.

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