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PowerBook two-finger scrolling has major issues in Firefox

Discussion of bugs in Mozilla Firefox
thully
 
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Joined: November 3rd, 2005, 10:22 am

Post Posted November 3rd, 2005, 10:54 am

On all currently shipping PowerBooks and iBooks, there is a neat "two-finger scrolling" feature - moving two fingers up, down, left, or right on the trackpad scrolls much in the same way as a scroll wheel. However, this feature has some fairly severe breakage with the Firefox 1.5 release candidate (and all previoous betas as well) - although somehow

First of all, on FF 1.5 with OS X 10.4.3, the scrolling is WAY too fast as compared to Safari and Camino on the same setup, and that makes it somewhat difficult to use. You can decrease the trackpad scrolling speed in System Preferences, but then that makes other apps' scrolling very slow. This seems like a problem that should be addressed before the release, as it could prove to be very annoying to PowerBook/iBook users. I have reported this bug on Bugzilla (#314856) if anyone wants to contribute further to this bug report.

Also, and more severe, is the fact that browsing to ANY page with a Java applet on it causes the browser to instantly lose the capability to two-finger scroll until you close and re-open the window. I, along with many others, have reported this bug (it's #309344) - and it turns out it's a weird interaction between Tiger's trackpad driver and the Java Embedding Plugin. Currently, this is being considered to be a non-blocker, as it has to do with something done to the trackpad driver between Panther and Tiger.

However, it really seems like this, along with the other scrolling bug, really should be worked around in the final release, as PowerBook and iBook users are not going to be happy if they can't reliably use trackpad scrolling and the finger will be pointed at Mozilla, not at Apple. This isn't exactly an oddball configuration, either - as of now, all Apple laptops ship with this scrolling trackpad - and owners aren't going to be that fond of Firefox if scrolling is broken on it but not on Safari. Personally, I've ended up switching to Camino, as it doesn't experience the issues to the same degree (although I miss the Firefox interface and customization).

I realize that this is a pre-release that will have bugs, but I'm just a bit concerned that these fairly severe bugs aren't considered high priority to fix for the final release. I don't mean to come across as a troll here - I appreciate the effort that has gone into Firefox, but I'm just a little concerned about a few fairly majoir bugs possibly going unfixed for the 1.5 final release.

Anyone care to comment?

Unarmed
 
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Joined: July 31st, 2003, 1:26 pm

Post Posted November 3rd, 2005, 12:39 pm

I think it’s too late in the cycle to make it for 1.5, especially since neither bug has a patch available. Perhaps you could make a case if someone identified the problems and created a low-impact, low-risk, vouched-for fix.

Scrolling speed can probably be manually adjusted via about:config by setting mousewheel.withnokey.sysnumlines to false (so that the system setting is ignored) and then adjusting mousewheel.withnokey.numlines to suit.

thully
 
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Joined: November 3rd, 2005, 10:22 am

Post Posted November 3rd, 2005, 2:01 pm

If these bugs can't be fixed for 1.5, I'm probably going to have to switch to Camino - unfortunately I have neither the time nor the skills to fix them myself, and Camino has none of the scrolling issues. Also, I don't want to stick with 1.0.7 as the Gecko 1.8 engine is so much better than the 1.7 engine on Mac OS X. The only issue I have with Camino is that it isn't Firefox (interface-wise, I prefer Firefox - even though Camino looks better) and some things are slightly slower.

thully
 
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Joined: November 3rd, 2005, 10:22 am

Post Posted November 5th, 2005, 12:01 pm

This bug has been duped on Bugzilla like 4 or 5 times in the past 3 days - seems like it should be considered a blocker.

Unarmed
 
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Joined: July 31st, 2003, 1:26 pm

Post Posted November 5th, 2005, 1:00 pm

If duplicate bug filings were enough to block a release, then we’d still be waiting on Firefox 1.0 to have the Find-As-You-Type focus bugs fixed.

krmathis

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Post Posted November 5th, 2005, 1:16 pm

The major problem here is that Steven Michaud dont have access to a scroll-pad PowerBook.
Steven Michaud is the author of the JEP (Java Embedding Plugin), which bring Java 1.4/1.5 support to Firefox and Camino. He is probably the only one, except Apple themselves, who are capable of fixing this.

Seeing that the Firefox 1.5 release is closing in, there is most probably not enough time to fix this( If Steven had access to the needed hardware to reproduce this that is...).


For those who have not got it, this is the bug we talk about:
309344 - Autoscroll/scrollwheel doesn't work when an java applet is displayed

thully
 
Posts: 17
Joined: November 3rd, 2005, 10:22 am

Post Posted November 5th, 2005, 1:40 pm

Well, I suggested in Bugzilla that this bug be mentioned in the 1.5 release notes, along with workarounds (disabling the JEP, disabling Java, or downgrading the trackpad driver).

krmathis

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Post Posted November 5th, 2005, 1:50 pm

One more thing;
Since this really seems to be an Apple bug, you should send a feedback to them about it.

Mac OS X Feedback

thully
 
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Joined: November 3rd, 2005, 10:22 am

Post Posted November 5th, 2005, 3:26 pm

I've already done so, and I've also asked in Bugzilla if someone at Mozilla with some "push" might be able to ask Apple about the issue.

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