Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby bat758 » Sun Oct 19, 2014 3:21 pm

Luxferre wrote:
bat758 wrote:
fanboy wrote:Every release since Australis has been rolled out its tuned the interface, personally I don't mind it. But Pale Moon deciding keep an older code ESR24 will become a security issue and personally I think Adblock Plus shouldn't support it.

100% agree and you are absolutely correct about the security issues.
IMHO the current version of PM should not be supported by Adblock Plus.


What security issues ? You don't know what you are talking about. Inform yourself.

I do know what I'm talking about and I am informed.
Fully agree with what fanboy has quite accurately pointed out.
fanboy wrote:If its not coming from the Mozilla, and not using the current/most recent source it will fair game for any security bugs. I trust 100's of Firefox developers over a handful of Palmoon devs.

I'm in IT and test browsers on a daily basis for companies and universities.
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby bat758 » Sun Oct 19, 2014 3:38 pm

fanboy wrote:As Firefox improves code over time this will could benefit all extensions and developers, why would Adblock Plus support an older source code base unnecessarily? If Palemoon developers wants to stick with an older codebase they should do the hard work to make those all those extensions compatible themselves.

100% agree with you and very aptly said.
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby fanboy » Sun Oct 19, 2014 8:07 pm

I'm guessing the only reason why they're sticking with the older sourcecode is due to Australis; but Palemoon has options to them.

1) Use ESR 31 and remove the Australis Patch(s)
2) Use ESR 31 and include Classicthemerestorer Extension as a default
3) Use ESR 24 but maintain their own extensions

If they decided to stick with Firefox 24, ESR 38 comes out early next year and why would anyone want to be running on a such an old Firefox fork? And it will only get older..
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby Gingerbread Man » Mon Oct 20, 2014 6:36 am

bat758 wrote:https://addons.palemoon.org/extensions/privacy-and-security/adblock-plus/
They have created a Pseudo-Static version of adblock plus.
Are they permitted to do this?

I asked on the aforementioned bug report. No response yet.
https://issues.adblockplus.org/ticket/1331#comment:11

It looks like ultimately the Pale Moon developers intend to fork Adblock Plus (under a different name), because they consider the issue wasn't addressed in a timely manner.
https://issues.adblockplus.org/ticket/1331#comment:12
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby dr_st » Mon Oct 20, 2014 8:24 pm

Gingerbread Man wrote:It looks like ultimately the Pale Moon developers intend to fork Adblock Plus (under a different name), because they consider the issue wasn't addressed in a timely manner.
https://issues.adblockplus.org/ticket/1331#comment:12

To be honest, it really wasn't addressed in a timely manner.

This ticket was opened a month and a half ago. Based on my understanding, all that was required is adding the new Pale Moon GUID to the add-on code, with zero functional changes (which is exactly what was done in the pseudo-static version). Surely, a month in a half is way more than enough to do something like this.

Instead, the request was apparently completely ignored until 10 days ago, where Pale Moon V25 was released and the behavior was actually broken. And it still wasn't addressed, moreover the attitude of the responders made it clear that it won't be addressed, out of principle that the add-on should not support "outdated browsers".

I specifically do not want to get into the argument of whether Pale Moon is outdated. The team here claims that it is, because it does not use latest Firefox code. The Pale Moon team claims that it is not, because they backport all the security fixes. I am not familiar with the code and the process, and therefore I don't want to make a stand on it. Clearly, however, at this point it is not outdated. Even if it was based "as is" on Firefox ESR24.

I do understand the decision of the ABP developers to focus on the mainstream browsers. It is totally conceivable that in the future, the UI changes and other differences between FF and PM will make it impossible to support both in a single trunk with only minor technical changes like the GUID. It would be totally understandable that at that point the ABP team would say "Guys, we're sorry, we don't have the bandwidth, you are on your own".

But that is not what was said.

The attitude of the responders here feels obnoxious, elitist and snobbish. Perhaps I am misjudging the intent, but it's basically looks like "Who do these weirdos think they are making their own browser? Do they really think they can do anything better than Mozilla? And look at their arrogance - having their own GUID now, not adopting Mozilla's latest UI changes! And now they are asking us to support them? Screw them! The add-on is now broken in their browser because of some minor technical issue? Good! Serves them right!".

I understand that Pale Moon is a minor browser at this point, with nowhere near the client base of Firefox, however it is not totally obscure either. Perhaps the ABP team is not sufficiently familiar with the project to know immediately what's behind the hood, what code it uses, what the development plan is, and what it means to support it. Totally understandable. But again - the request was opened a month and a half ago - and at least on the surface, I have not even seen an attempt to respond and find out the answers to all these questions, or to reach some form of agreement. Just complete disregard.

Very disappointed with the attitude of the team here, to say the least.
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby bat758 » Mon Oct 20, 2014 8:39 pm

The add on developer at Pale Moon created a pseudo-static version of Adblock Plus. (without even changing the name)
And before receiving a concrete response from Adblock Plus whether it was going to/or not add support for the Pale Moon browser.
IMHO that shows disrespect to the developer here of the Adblock Plus add on.
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby dr_st » Mon Oct 20, 2014 8:58 pm

Is that what it's about, you think?

1) It was made very clear that it is a stop-gap temporary solution (while the PM team was still hoping to receive a positive response from the ABP team).
2) Unless I am mistaken about the timeline, the pseudo-static version was only released after the release of PM25, so after the request for support was ignored for more than a month. Therefore I am not certain I agree with you on the direction of the disrespect flow in this matter.

I edited my earlier post which was perhaps a little harsh, but I still stand by my opinion that the response to the request by the PM team (or lack thereof) is very disappointing.
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby Gingerbread Man » Tue Oct 21, 2014 6:31 am

dr_st wrote:To be honest, it really wasn't addressed in a timely manner.

This ticket was opened a month and a half ago.

Why yes, it was. Even though Firefox 29 was released on April 29, 2014. At that point, it was clear that the next ESR would feature Australis.
And it was obvious that changing the GUID would break add-ons as well. Informing add-on developers of this after it has already happened is laughable. In contrast, Mozilla may introduce breaking changes every once in a while, but they have the decency to give ample advance warning beforehand.
A month and a half seems like a long time, except when you have other things to do.
dr_st wrote:Based on my understanding, all that was required is adding the new Pale Moon GUID to the add-on code, with zero functional changes (which is exactly what was done in the pseudo-static version). Surely, a month in a half is way more than enough to do something like this.

I'm positive the Adblock Plus developers won't add support for a browser without actually testing it. Pale Moon 25 and onward diverges from Firefox in unknown ways, so it can't be assumed it works the same as Firefox. For future support, Pale Moon would have to implement Firefox features that landed after Firefox 24 (see comment 5).
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby dr_st » Tue Oct 21, 2014 8:36 am

Gingerbread Man wrote:And it was obvious that changing the GUID would break add-ons as well. Informing add-on developers of this after it has already happened is laughable. In contrast, Mozilla may introduce breaking changes every once in a while, but they have the decency to give ample advance warning beforehand.
A month and a half seems like a long time, except when you have other things to do.

No matter how many things one has to do, I believe that a month and a half is enough time to add a GUID in a way that will function exactly as the existing GUID. Perhaps I'm wrong. How much time do you think is reasonable for something like this? How much time does Mozilla typically give?

Or, if as you say, an addon developer decides not to do this without testing other aspects of the browser (which is a reasonable decision), it should at least be enough time to respond to the ticket and voice these concerns that you are voicing right now.

It doesn't seem like it was done. Maybe there was some communication behind the scenes that is not represented in the ticket, in which case I will take my words back.

Perhaps the PM team should have been more persistent in tracking the ticket and keep pressing for a response in the weeks before the release of PM25 to customers. This is a lesson which I hope PM team will learn.
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby fanboy » Tue Oct 21, 2014 11:33 am

The moment Adblock Plus supports Pale moon any new features or code reductions done in Adblock Plus (as Firefox improves) it then need to support Pale Moon and this will create essentially 2 code bases to maintain.. why make extension developers job harder unnecessarily? Personally the refusal of upgrading the source for the benefit of their users is based on small-minded ideology.

My question still is (and it still stands), why not re-base it with the latest ESR source? Why is it so hard? I'm neither snobbish nor elitist, I'm realistic, the Mozilla code has greatly improved between each ESR release. Why shouldn't PM not take advantage of this? And why shouldn't Adblock Plus take advantage of these improvements in javascript engine without needing to support an older forked browser?
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby dr_st » Tue Oct 21, 2014 3:14 pm

I believe you may have some misconceptions about the code Pale Moon is currently based on.

I have just presented this very question to Moonchild, on the PM forum, and you can see the response. I will quote the relevant parts here (hope it's OK), for the full answer and discussion you can go to the source:
https://forum.palemoon.org/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=6191

Moonchild wrote:
dr_st wrote:My questions:What is PM25 really mostly based on? FF24 or FF31? What does it advertise to websites when FF user agent compatibility mode is turned on, and what does it advertise to extensions? What is the rationale behind this, and what do you plan to do in the future as the divergence continues?

Neither, really. Pale Moon 25 includes code from 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, (not so much) 29, 30, 31, 32, 33 and 34. More from all these versions will be cherry-picked if found desirable in the future. In addition, there is plenty of Pale Moon-specific code. As stated elsewhere it is a hybrid. It is its own thing, hence the absolute need to stop carrying the Firefox GUID because it would enforce this kind of comparison and would prevent us from individual development if we at all times have to keep a parallel with a specific version of Firefox.

It currently advertises Firefox/24.9 to websites if compatMode is enabled - but that will be changed in the near future.
It advertises the same to extensions, although from an extension point of view this only applies to the installation routine. Pale Moon's front-end is "most compatible" with 24ESR as far as UI elements go. This is a temporary situation though, and only in place to allow Mozilla Firefox extensions to continue running on Pale Moon in an "extension compatibility" mode.


It's not that PM is tied forever to FF24, because the developers think that source is superior to the new FF source. It is clear that it already incorporates many elements from the new FF (not even just security fixes), and this trend is planned to continue. You can actually see the comment on the Mozillazine forums which I linked to - "Based on digging around the supported features in the Release Notes page for PM 25, as well as the very silly Gecko build-date in your UA string, it is clear to me that PM 25 is based on Firefox 31 ESR" - and which prompted me to address this question to Moonchild.

It is true that a decision has been made to keep Australis out of PM.

Yes, the version number is confusing. The above answer explains why FF24.9 is being "advertised" as the compatible FF version, for now.

So, no one plans to continue running PM on an outdated source that is no longer updated. No one asks that ABP supports an old and obsolete browser.

It is however true, that the divergence between FF and PM will increase. It is possible that at some point it will be non-trivial to support both (at this point it is since it really is just the GUID) and I think Matt had made it clear on the ticket that no one asked for a long-term commitment from ABP team to support PM, indefinitely.
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby bat758 » Tue Oct 21, 2014 7:50 pm

dr_st wrote:
Moonchild wrote:
dr_st wrote:My questions:What is PM25 really mostly based on? FF24 or FF31? What does it advertise to websites when FF user agent compatibility mode is turned on, and what does it advertise to extensions? What is the rationale behind this, and what do you plan to do in the future as the divergence continues?

Neither, really. Pale Moon 25 includes code from 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, (not so much) 29, 30, 31, 32, 33 and 34. More from all these versions will be cherry-picked if found desirable in the future. In addition, there is plenty of Pale Moon-specific code. As stated elsewhere it is a hybrid. It is its own thing, hence the absolute need to stop carrying the Firefox GUID because it would enforce this kind of comparison and would prevent us from individual development if we at all times have to keep a parallel with a specific version of Firefox.

It currently advertises Firefox/24.9 to websites if compatMode is enabled - but that will be changed in the near future.
It advertises the same to extensions, although from an extension point of view this only applies to the installation routine. Pale Moon's front-end is "most compatible" with 24ESR as far as UI elements go. This is a temporary situation though, and only in place to allow Mozilla Firefox extensions to continue running on Pale Moon in an "extension compatibility" mode.


Yes, the version number is confusing. The above answer explains why FF24.9 is being "advertised" as the compatible FF version, for now.

So, no one plans to continue running PM on an outdated source that is no longer updated. No one asks that ABP supports an old and obsolete browser.

It is however true, that the divergence between FF and PM will increase. It is possible that at some point it will be non-trivial to support both (at this point it is since it really is just the GUID) and I think Matt had made it clear on the ticket that no one asked for a long-term commitment from ABP team to support PM, indefinitely.

Why the version number of 25 for Pale Moon and Firefox 24.9?
And from the version numbers themselves it would appear to be an older browser version in the UA string.
It is indeed very, very confusing.
Perhaps, Matt should have the coding of Pale Moon made clear to the add on developer of Adblock Plus clear in the first place in the bug ticket.
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby bat758 » Tue Oct 21, 2014 8:16 pm

Found this very dis-respectful from the add on developer at Pale Moon towards the developer of Adblock Plus.

http://forum.palemoon.org/viewtopic.php?p=39727#p39727

Matt A. Tobin wrote:Psuedo-Statics are a temporary measure only. Those devs that won't play ball will simply have their add-ons forked as is the case with adblock plus. I am literally preparing a full proper maintained fork of it right now.

This also applies to Adblock Edge where unlike ABP they didn't even respond .. ABP simply said no.. That's ok.. As I said in another thread both users of ABP and ABE will be supported by what I am branding.. Adblock Latitude. The silly split between the Adblock extensions will come to an end because.. I have removed that acceptable ads option.

Similar things will happen for other add-ons that refuse to become fully Pale Moon compatible. HEY, we did it with Firefox.. Why not add-ons...

Also.. Why Adblock <insert name> first? Because that is simply the most used and most critical from a legals standpoint. I am sure you saw the nine hundred threads and posts that sprung up every point four of a femtosecond on v25 release day right? Yeah, because of that! And because I am not gonna pseudo-static update ABP to 2.6.5 when THEY released a new version just the other day and didn't BOTHER to take FIVE SECONDS to add Pale Moon.


IMHO add on developers should be treated with courtesy and respect, even when they decline support for a browser.
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby fanboy » Wed Oct 22, 2014 12:13 am

More from all these versions will be cherry-picked if found desirable in the future.


So everything was diserable from Mozilla up to ESR24, then what happened? Why the need to cherry pick in the first place?

dr_st wrote:It is true that a decision has been made to keep Australis out of PM.


Why not just remove the Australis patches from Firefox, and use that for PM? Seems a bit backwards using older code, with a few selected patches. It wouldn't take much effort to dissect where Australis was enabled to create a patchset from that.

This "Hybrid" system seems to be lacking any upgrade of Javascript; http://i.imgur.com/jCekkIU.png and very selective html5 option upgrades: http://i.imgur.com/AyVZLQr.png So going by this PM is not ESR31, its ESR24 with very selective patches. Also the javascript benchmarks Octane/V8 weren't very kind to Palemoon.
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Re: Changes to Pale Moon GUID and XUL Overlay Adjustments

Postby dr_st » Wed Oct 22, 2014 9:15 am

bat758 wrote:IMHO add on developers should be treated with courtesy and respect, even when they decline support for a browser.
I agree with your point here.

It is a pity that miscommunication (or lack of communication) has seemingly brought this to the point of explosion, over what appeared to be a simple request. Perhaps the nature of this request was also misunderstood due to the underlying communication problem.

I would hope there is still a way to reconcile the parties, but not sure at this point...

fanboy wrote:So everything was diserable from Mozilla up to ESR24, then what happened? Why the need to cherry pick in the first place?

Why not just remove the Australis patches from Firefox, and use that for PM? Seems a bit backwards using older code, with a few selected patches. It wouldn't take much effort to dissect where Australis was enabled to create a patchset from that.
You'd have to address these questions to Moonchild, or someone else on the dev team. Let there be no further misunderstandings - I am not, nor have ever been, part of the Pale Moon development team. I am simply a happy user of said browser, and wish to see it succeed.

Edit: Here are a couple of posts related to the questions you raised:
http://forum.palemoon.org/viewtopic.php?p=27320#p27320
http://forum.palemoon.org/viewtopic.php?p=33087#p33087

fanboy wrote:This "Hybrid" system seems to be lacking any upgrade of Javascript; http://i.imgur.com/jCekkIU.png and very selective html5 option upgrades: http://i.imgur.com/AyVZLQr.png So going by this PM is not ESR31, its ESR24 with very selective patches. Also the javascript benchmarks Octane/V8 weren't very kind to Palemoon.
Which is in line with Moonchild's answer, that it's a hybrid, and not some Firefox ESR + epsilon. How selective were these patches from other versions, and why - once again, I am not the person to ask.

In any case, interesting as it may be - I don't think any of this has really anything to do on whether ABP can/should support the browser or not. Because, evidently, ABP does support all the mainstream browser and all of their variants in your table, regardless of how many JavaScript/HTML5 features they have.

Furthermore, supporting Chrome/Safari/Opera/IE, compared to just Firefox is likely to require more effort than supporting Pale Moon, as no matter how it diverges, it will still be at its core Mozilla-based. (here I am speculating, and may be wrong - feel free to explain how if I am)

Perhaps it is just a matter of cost/benefit ratio - it may not be worth your while to invest effort into a browser which (at this point at least) has a small client base compared to the others. This reasoning is obvious and understandable.
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