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[FX/TB] MacOSX Builders Unite!

Discussion of third-party/unofficial Firefox/Thunderbird/SeaMonkey builds.
elfurbe

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Post Posted July 20th, 2005, 12:36 pm

As many probably know, powerbook, a long time firefox builder for MacOSX has decided to switch to Camino, mostly stemming from consistently ignored bugs and seeming indifference from moz.org about making the Mac version as good as it's PC counterparts. I, however, as a fan of his builds, decided to take up some of his gauntlet and continue building speed-optimized firefox builds from the Trunk. However, powerbook was also compiling release builds with optimization as well as keeping track of bugs and tutoring poor lugs like me who just want the fastest Fox they can get. I have no time for keeping all those things updated, and so the idea popped up to organize the current trunk and release builders for MacOSX into a Firefox Mac Community Build Team.

I proposed that we create a unified web site where we can gather all our builds together and offer them to the curious Mac tweaker with explanations about what's different between builds, how to identify your processor type, how to build for yourself if you feel studly, those sorts of things. I've already started building the framework for this site as my own distribution site. While ugly at the moment, the important thing to realize is that the page updates automatically when I post new builds. That means that we won't be reliant on an editor or someone actively updating the pages, meaning that us builders can just be builders most of the time, and just upload our builds as they complete, and everything else works its way out. I've also got dynamic rss feeds going, which seems pretty choice. Linkage:

Site:
http://www.furbism.com/firefoxmac

RSS Feeds:
main: http://www.furbism.com/firefoxmac/rss_feed.php
-This feed shows just the newest build from each build type. It will always be four items long, but will always be the four newest builds, one from each cpu type, at least while it represents only my builds

Each of these feeds will show all the currently "available for download" builds for each cpu. As many as I have on the server for that cpu type will be in each list.
G3 only: http://www.furbism.com/firefoxmac/rss_feed.php?cpu=G3
G4 (older) only: http://www.furbism.com/firefoxmac/rss_feed.php?cpu=7400
G4 (newer) only: http://www.furbism.com/firefoxmac/rss_feed.php?cpu=7450
G5 only: http://www.furbism.com/firefoxmac/rss_feed.php?cpu=G5

My idea for adapting this to multiple builders is to make build type more of a build identifier rather than a cpu type, so that way I'll have a section for something like elfurbe-g3-trunk and (hopefully) ozjason-g4-trunk or drumstick-G5-release. These would replace the cpu designations in the feeds and the web page. So for each type of build from each builder there would be a separate, trackable site listing and rss feed, so that once a user settles on a builder they prefer, it's easy for them to track that builder's progress. That's not to say I'm not for merging some redundant building together into one person's charge. For instance, I and drumstrick are both building G5 builds at the moment, but he's done much more research into G5 optimization flags for the compiler than I, so if we get going, I'll gladly discontinue my G5 build in the interest of lessening confusion and focusing my work toward need. On the opposite end of focus is choice, and that's also something we want to promote. If there are good reasons for maintaining alternate builds for the same CPU, we'll maintain them. Options aren't bad, we just don't need a handful of guys compiling with nearly identical configs and posting builds. That's user confusion in a bottle right there.

I'm also looking into deploying a forum software of some sort so people can direct questions at the builders about building in general, errors in their own build attempts, those sorts of things. My hope is to gather the Mac Firefox builders and users together into a community that can perhaps focus more attention on Firefox problems on our platform. I mean, we're still fighting the <a href="https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=21296">modal dialog bug from 1999</a>. Organizing can only help more people find our builds and expand the MacOSX nightly testing community, and promote awareness of some of the issues.

Anyway, that's the manifesto at the moment, if you're a builder and you're interested, lets get this thread rocking and get some ideas tossing around. I'll continue to polish my automated system, I've already got some interesting ideas for object orienting the php to make life even easier, and as people come on board, we'll work out some method of uploading to the server to get their builds up on the automated feeds, and then work on page layout and whatnot. I've also been privately tossing around the idea of mirroring this effort for Thunderbird, as I'm also a TB zealot, with my TB zealotry only being eclipsed by my FX fanatacism.

So, discuss. :)
Last edited by elfurbe on July 20th, 2005, 3:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

drumsticks
 
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Post Posted July 20th, 2005, 1:33 pm

Note: G5 only link above is wrong.

The site sounds like a great idea to me. I don't have sufficient knowledge of php to build something like that. Good work! On the other hand, I'm just wondering if it would be better setting up a page like this under http://wiki.mozilla.org/Mac:Home_Page or similar? A forum would be nice on your site, so that we can chip in and provide support when we can. Count me in for both Firefox and Thunderbird G5 optimized!

mmoy
 
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Post Posted July 20th, 2005, 2:06 pm

We did have a forum for stuff like this at pryan.org but it died quite some time ago. The Mac builders developed sometime after pryan's forums died off. At the moment, the Windows builders could probably use their own forums for builder-related issues.

I think that MozillaZine should split unofficial builders into Windows and Others or Windows, Mac and Others if there's enough volume.
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drseuss9311

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Post Posted July 20th, 2005, 3:46 pm

I've got a g4 ibook from the beginning of the year, (still on panther)

I've been running powerbook's builds for a few months now and am a willing guinea pig...

One question while i'm at it: I've got a decent grasp of profiles, but the new DeerPark pre-release seems to install to a different directory. Is that true? and is there a good place to go for profile hacking?

thanks!
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drseuss9311

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Post Posted July 20th, 2005, 3:56 pm

Ok now i've installed the build from today and this little bug is bugging me.. I was hoping it would be fixed.

The page up & page down buttons don't work. Home and End send me all the way up and down the page, but the page up and down buttons are nonfunctional. Also if I use the arrow keys (which are the same keys, but without the FN combo) that will move the system caret thru the page, usually down to the bottom right away.

Now I've heard that to check this bug out I've gotta get the most recent nightly to see if it's in there... now i've got that, but i'm a little wary to install it. What is the best way to proceed? Uninstall this optimized build and then install the nightly, or can I have both installed at the same time?
<b>{UPDATE}</b>see my later posts about how I fixed this problem... it was a feature!<b>{/UPDATE}</b>


Thanks
Last edited by drseuss9311 on July 25th, 2005, 4:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
ABP : AiOS : Chatzilla : Customize Google : FireFTP : Flashblock : Greasemonkey : MrTech Toolkit : Coralize (not updated yet) : Context Search : Searchbar Autosizer :: iBookG4

drumsticks
 
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Post Posted July 20th, 2005, 4:04 pm

drseuss9311: What do you mean by install to a different location? Installation is a simple drag and drop, so you pick the install location, no? Because of this, you can have as many Firefox/DeerPark applications as you like, scattered everywhere and anywhere. You can rename them and put them all in the same directory even. Any of them will refer to the same profile. Probably best to run only one instance at a time, so you don't corrupt your profiles though.

Optimized builds and the nightlies are no different, except that it is optimized in the compilation process, the source code is exactly the same. So they should behave the same, except that optimised is faster. Bear in mind that the new DeerPark profiles are not backward compatible with the older 1.0.x release profiles. DeerPark, however can upgrade your old profiles.

Hope that clears somethings up!

elfurbe

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Post Posted July 20th, 2005, 4:10 pm

drumsticks wrote:Note: G5 only link above is wrong.

The site sounds like a great idea to me. I don't have sufficient knowledge of php to build something like that. Good work! On the other hand, I'm just wondering if it would be better setting up a page like this under http://wiki.mozilla.org/Mac:Home_Page or similar? A forum would be nice on your site, so that we can chip in and provide support when we can. Count me in for both Firefox and Thunderbird G5 optimized!


I fixed the G5 link, thanks! :)

I think it would be great to get Moz.org to add us to the Mac Wiki page as a link, but I don't think they'll be able to give us everything we, or at least I, would want, like the RSS feeds and whatnot, which I'm quite enamored of.

mmoy wrote:We did have a forum for stuff like this at pryan.org but it died quite some time ago. The Mac builders developed sometime after pryan's forums died off. At the moment, the Windows builders could probably use their own forums for builder-related issues.

I think that MozillaZine should split unofficial builders into Windows and Others or Windows, Mac and Others if there's enough volume.


That would certainly be an option, if MozillaZine wanted to pursue that. We could just use the web site for hosting and organizing builds. For the moment though, we could make due with a private forum, if necessary.


Also, I wanted to make sure it was clear that we'd get a different domain name for the build repository/forums. I'm not tying anyone to furbism.com, though the builds would be on my server for the moment. If anyone wanted to continue hosting their own, but had some php skillz and just wanted to be in amongst the listings, there are many ways to add external repositories to this listing method I'm using, and then turn that into build listings and rss feeds and whatnot, no problem. I'm pretty flexible on that sort of thing.

drseuss9311

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Post Posted July 20th, 2005, 5:23 pm

drumstick: thanks for replying... i was talking about the location of the profile, not the app. It seemed to have moved... maybe because it's not backwards compatable. Thanks for the other info about multiple installs... i'm going to check out the latest nightly for this scrolling/paging bug.
ABP : AiOS : Chatzilla : Customize Google : FireFTP : Flashblock : Greasemonkey : MrTech Toolkit : Coralize (not updated yet) : Context Search : Searchbar Autosizer :: iBookG4

drseuss9311

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Post Posted July 20th, 2005, 5:26 pm

{removed}this post was dumb
Last edited by drseuss9311 on July 25th, 2005, 4:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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crazyj
 
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Post Posted July 20th, 2005, 7:08 pm

I would like to see optimized versions of the incremental releases. For example, some people may feel comfortable runinng an optimized version of the new 1.0.6 release but maybe they aren't comfortable running the nightlies. These should be "static" links so that one can always go back to using the optimized version of the official releases if they do not want to or can't run the nightly builds.

drumsticks
 
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Post Posted July 20th, 2005, 9:12 pm

crazyj: There are already optimized builds of releases
G3/G4 by ozjason http://homepage.mac.com/ozjason/moz/
G5 by theNonSuch http://www.beatnikpad.com/archives/2005 ... firefox106
I assume you're talking about including these releases together in the one central location?

elfurbe: I don't have the PHP skills, but would be interested to join your listing somehow? Do you know how to go about it?

elfurbe

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Post Posted July 21st, 2005, 9:39 am

I definitely want to host release builds as well, I'm just not building them at the moment. I just don't feel like switching my mozconfigs out and switching compilers and whatnot. We'll have a special feed just for optimized release builds, for sure.

drumsticks wrote:elfurbe: I don't have the PHP skills, but would be interested to join your listing somehow? Do you know how to go about it?

Well, if your web server has php on it, just make yourself a php file called something like build_list.php, and have it just echo a listing of the directory where you keep your build files and the base url that they sit at, assuming you keep them in their own directory. Something like:
Code: Select all
<?
$builds = `ls -tm /path/to/your/builds`;
$base_url = "http://www.yoursitehere.com/path/to/your/builds/";

echo $base_url . "," . $builds;

?>

Which would print something like:
Code: Select all
http://www.yoursitehere.com/path/to/your/builds/,my_fx_build_1.dmg,my_fx_build_2.dmg,...

And then send me a link to that php file and I'll use that to create your listing. Be sure that the only thing in the directory you list is your build dmgs, otherwise the listing will get all the other files too. I could add a filter for dmgs only, but if you keep any other dmgs in the same directory, then I'd get those too. It's just easier if you keep your builds all in a big directory. :)

That's pretty much the general directions for anyone. For the moment, if you want to be added to the listings, drop me a line at:
<a href="mailto:elfurbe@gmaildotcom?subject=Add me to the FX Community listings">elfurbe@gmaildotcom</a> (be sure to change the word "dot" to a . in that e-mail address, and curse spammers everywhere for making that necessary) with a link to your page that follows the above format. Honestly, I don't particularly care how you get the listing out, as long as I get a comma seperated list starting with the url to the web directory where you keep your builds, followed by comma seperated names of your build dmgs with the newest build first and the oldest build last, you can code it however you like. :)

That's how I'm gonna do it for the moment, later I'll figure out a classy way to let people send me multiple build listings based on processor platform or whatever criteria they want. I've already got an idea, but I want to play with it a little first. Perhaps a little php page where you can submit the url to your page of the above type and your handle and a blurb about what you do in your builds... That'd be handy...

Keep in mind also, that I'm willing to host builds for team builders, so if anyone is interested in that, let me know, cause I haven't put much thought into how I would allow uploads and whatnot. Maybe I can come up with a way to make that safe, perhaps with a php upload mechanism of some sort. The ultimate goal is to make it scriptable, so that you guys can just add a line to your build scripts (if you're using a script...) and be able to upload a build to your repository automatically on successful build completion.

crazyj
 
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Post Posted July 21st, 2005, 11:44 am

drumsticks wrote:crazyj: There are already optimized builds of releases... I assume you're talking about including these releases together in the one central location?


Yes. It might as well be "one stop shopping" for all optimized Firefox downloads.

elfurbe

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Post Posted July 21st, 2005, 12:58 pm

crazyj wrote:Yes. It might as well be "one stop shopping" for all optimized Firefox downloads.

Amen to that.

drumsticks
 
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Post Posted July 21st, 2005, 2:51 pm


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