I really think we should just keep shipping Firefox from mozilla with the
Why? Let's review the options.
We could ship ESR firefox, but it will only delay the problem and we will
have to face it again anyway. And it will also mean Fedora users will not
get the latest and greatest firefox, which is against what Fedora stands
for in being "First", but also conflicts with our Workstation PRD - we want
to ship an OS for *developers*, and specifically web developers are one of
our main target audience. Developers needs a recent browser with all the
new HTML5 features firefox adds every release.
We could switch to Epiphany, but this is also a bad idea, because, again,
we are targeting web developers... and epiphany is not good for web
developer. Its developer console is not very usable and doesn't look very
good, and the debugger barely works. Firefox (and Chrome/Chromium) on the
other hand ship with very powerful developer tools built in, and the
ability to install Firebug which is always useful. While a web developer
should be knowledgeable enough to
install a browser which actually fits their needs, it adds another task to
the ever-so-long list of tasks you need to do to get your brand new Fedora
install into a usable state.
And I don't know about you but I don't feel comfortable using a browser
which doesn't have adblock with custom filter lists, the HTTPS Everywhere
extension, Firefox's tracking protection, and an option to sync with my
phone. Epiphany has non of that.
We could ship IceCat, but that has weird GNU restrictions (and LibreJS)
which will frustrate users.
Or we could ship IceWeasel, which will confuse users because it looks like
Firefox but with a different brand, which means users will see it as a
Firefox clone and think we ship a "lesser" product.
This is why I think shipping Firefox as we ship it today is still the best
option. Considering the other options (and that afaik we can't ship
Chromium) I think unbranded firefox (such as IceWeasel or whatever branding
people would use) is our second-best bet.
This entire discussion is full of too much hyperbole already. People call
Mozilla's decision a "lock in" or "DRM" and that's just silly.
this isn't the case. The reason Mozilla is doing this is to prevent malware
addons from being added to its browser either by malicious applications
which install shady Firefox addons or by websites offering unsuspecting
users to download Firefox still branded as Firefox but shipped with
This decision was not made to force you to use Mozilla's addon website for
their profit or whatnot which is usually the reason for actual vendor
lock-in, and it's not DRM - it doesn't limit your "rights" since you
still download the developer edition if you need custom addons. It is a
mechanism to protect users, similar to secure boot.
While it might be preferable that Mozilla would add an option to allow
trusting additional keys, I can understand why they are not keen on doing
so - if it's a runtime configuration it can be easily abused by malware. If
it's a compile time option while still allowing people to use the original
branding, it could be a way for malware authors to keep (legally) shipping
their malware-filled Firefox installers.
So can we please stop with all the hyperbole and silliness and focus on the
technical/political discussion here? That would be more productive for