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FOSDEM 2008: Mozilla Europe

First Brian King was giving a small intro and asked everybody to introduce himself in the room (quite a lot of people). So there have been lots of Mozilla/Gecko/Firefox/SunBird/ … developers, lots of Q&A people, lots of people from all over the world localizing Mozilla, some people from TomTom, some from Joost and even 1 from Microsoft (working on IE)!

Tristan Nitot, president and co.founder of the Mozilla Foundation then gave a little update on what happened and the status:

  • 150+ Million users worldwide
  • 3,000+ community contributed extensions
  • 47 languages
  • 20% worldwide market share
  • 28% in Europe
  • US have 29,5% active users
  • after that mostly Europe: Germany, France, Poland, UK, Canada, Brazil, …

Mozilla Europe is hiring:

  • Jane Finette, Marketing Director Europe
  • Stas Malolepszy, Metrics and Community surveys
  • and more…
  • Still searching for people

Mozilla reached 500 million downloads a few days ago.
Also 10th anniversary! Party tonight with bowling, dinner and drinks!

(here somebody else took over but I didn’t get his name)

Market Share numbers

Europe is strongest market, all over growth from 21% to 28% (I think, couldn’t see it well).
New metric: Active users not sorted by locale but by location (IP addresses). US: 29%, Germany 13%, France 6%, Poland 4%, …
There are at least a few Firefox users in every country in the world (Vatican uses Firefox).

Firefox 3

  • nearly everybody in the room uses a nightly or beta.
  • over 2.5 years of development
  • 13,000+ bugs closed
  • 8 alpha releases, 4 beta releases (tuesday is code freeze for beta4)
  • 1st browser with offline, x-site XMLHttpRequestand other web features
  • Memory and performance enhancements

User Growth

  • 10,000-20,000 with nightlies
  • now nearly half a million daily Firefox3 users.
  • They don’t seem to deinstall it, numbers are not going down. So people seem to be excited about Firefox3

New things

  • New Download manager with resume
  • Awesome bar
  • New Security UI
  • Addons are directly searchable from the browser.


  • 1 year back there were 3000 automated tests running when you check in,
  • Now there are >50,000 automated unit tests are running (several times a day)
  • New is also a crashtest (555) and reftests for layout (1700). Additional mochitests (47366), chrome and browser.
  • Problems are catched almost everyday.

All this makes Firefox faster in development over the long run.


Now measured on a regular basis. It’s displayed graphically and measures a branch against trunk so you can compare these.

They have 80 Mac Minis as a performance test farm. Mac Minis because they run all the „normal“ operating systems. They all have the same hardware and they all run different variations of OS and Firefox. Additionally they are underclocked so it’s also a test for lower end computers and some tests are better to measure.

„They are also cheaper than buying real hardware“

Performance on Linux depends a lot on distribution, kernel, etc. There is a slight better performance on Linux with modern distributions but not really. Mac was somewhat slower but that was fixed.

In other news

In cooperation with Google the Talkback system was replaced. Talkback was all closed source and this new solution is now open source. If other Open Source projects are interested in automatic crash reporting, they should contact Mozilla (if I understood it right, they might be able to run it for you).

Hard part: Aggregation to see what’s a common crash etc.

Beyond Firefox

Mozilla over time has supported a lot of other open source projects. He mentioned Cairo, SQLite, dojo and others. They do this because they have a self-sustaining financial model and thus can do these things. They plan on doing more of this in the future.

Built on Mozilla Platform

He mentioned Skyfire (mobile solution), Songbird (music/video media player), Open Komodo (IDE), TomTom, Joost and others.


He says that thanks to the work on memory and performance it makes it one of the best applications for mobile platforms.

There is a new mobile team and some producer (Samsung) replaced Opera by Firefox on their mobile phones.

A lot of progress is happening very quickly.

How to get involved

(all info without any guarantee of correctness, was sitting quite in the back so it was hard to see and understand).

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