back to article Mozilla signing vetted add-ons as thoughts turn to security

Mozilla developer Jorge Villalobos claims the web king has begun signing vetted add-ons in a bid to improve security. The move means Mozilla-signed add-ons hosted on its servers will be maintained through automatic updates, while those lacking the signature of approval will be jettisoned into the internet ether. Villalobos …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I thought the lazy and unscrupulous developers

    worked for Mozilla these days!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I thought the lazy and unscrupulous developers

      Apparently they were fired and then some were hired as commentards on The Reg.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I thought the lazy and unscrupulous developers

        You get paid for commentarding? Awesome! Where do I put in my claim for back pay?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: I thought the lazy and unscrupulous developers

          @moiety.

          This being The Reg, you get paid in horse manure.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: I thought the lazy and unscrupulous developers

            Really? Bugger. I may have to report an overpayment on my tax form.

  2. FF22

    Firefox in the footsteps of Chrome

    So Mozilla will go down the same path Google did with Chrome. This is just the first step. Next, they require all add-ons signed by them, so users will not be able to install add-ons outside of Mozilla's add-ons shop. Then they will change the rules and make it an app store. Then they will remove add-ons that hurt their business model by claiming they violated the store rules (which they indeed will, even though the store rules will be obviously set up arbitrarily by Mozilla). Last step: profit!

    1. Irongut Silver badge

      Re: Firefox in the footsteps of Chrome

      RTFA

      How hard is it to read the full article before posting moronic crap?

      1. msknight

        Re: Firefox in the footsteps of Chrome

        I think there is a point here. One's definition of "unscrupulous."

        Is it unscrupulous to design an application which blocks or interferes with the content stream between web site and end-user? (ie. ad blockers) ?

        This has the "potential" to end badly. I'm not saying it is bad at the moment, but there is a possibility that it will head that way, especially with advertising funding being behind so much of the net these days. Even Firefox has to pay its staff somehow.

        1. Tom Chiverton 1

          Re: Firefox in the footsteps of Chrome

          If Mozilla stopped wasting time on a pointless mobile O/S and maintaining Adobe's DRM ecosystem they need a lot less staff !

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          @msknight - Re: Firefox in the footsteps of Chrome

          "Is it unscrupulous to design an application which blocks or interferes with the content stream between web site and end-user? (ie. ad blockers) ?"

          I'd say not. Now if an application interfered with the content stream contrary to the user's wishes, or interfered with the web site itself, then yes it would be.

          I take your point, though - it's all a matter of definition, and interfering with a revenue stream might be considered a no-no.

      2. Ken Hagan Gold badge

        Re: RTFA

        If reading the fine article is indeed too difficult, there's still the option of engaging brain. Firefox is FOSS, so if you don't like it you can fork off. Debian have done (for different reasons) with Iceweasel.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: RTFA

          > so if you don't like it you can fork off.

          Ken, saying that you can "fork off" Firefox is like saying you can just run your own search engine if you do not like Google. Both are theoretically true but practically infeasible for most people.

          Aside from the disparity of resources (and maintaining a fork of a project like Firefox is decidedly non-trivial), it still does not excuse the incumbent from behaving honestly and honourably, and respecting its users.

          With that said, I wish Iceweasel was more widely available on distributions other than Debian (even packaging that for a different distribution is a somewhat significant undertaking).

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Firefox in the footsteps of Chrome

        > How hard is it to read the full article before posting moronic crap?

        To be fair, it appears he did read and understood the article, hence his opining that "[t]his is just the first step. Next, [...]".

        In other words, he posits that Mozilla have ulterior, profit-making motives behind this decision.

        Mozilla have tried to profit from Firefox's large installed user base before (tab advertising and "hello", or whatever their venture with Telefónica is called, are just two examples), so it is not difficult to see why the previous poster may treat the announcement with a dose of suspicion.

  3. Detective Emil
    Paris Hilton

    What walled gardens?

    Both Safari and Chrome allow me to download extensions from any old where. I just tried it with something (I hope is) innocuous. Safari gives me a limp "only download from sites you trust" click-through; Chrome does not warn at all — although, unlike Safari, it does tell me what privileges the extension has grabbed. I poked around the files for signs of signing, and found none.

    So, if Mozilla enforces a walled garden, I think they'll be in the vanguard.

    1. Craigness

      Re: What walled gardens?

      Chrome is moving away from this. You can install a packaged extension on Chrome for Windows but it will be disabled automatically when you restart Windows. There's even a warning if you have a non-packaged extension installed (ie. running from source code), suggesting you disable it. And when you install a non-store extension it won't automatically install on all your computers (I'm not sure if it ever did).

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This won't apply to me...

    With the advent of DRM in Firefox v38, it has been uninstalled from all our machines.

    I don't think I will be the only one taking such action.

    Dear Firefox, What happened to your notion of support for Open Standards?

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: This won't apply to me...

      Yeah, only you can completely disable the DRM in Firefox if you don't want it.

      And you're going to uninstall it and storm off in a huff to Chrome which has a Widevine plugin or Safari which has a Fairplay plugin or IE which has a PlayReady plugin and none of them have any option to disable DRM.

  5. Old Handle
    FAIL

    First DRM, now they're trying to lock in control of who can make plug-ins. I wish I could say I'm surprised.

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