Add-ons Review Update – Week of 2011/05/12

I post these updates every 2 weeks to inform add-on developers about the status of the review queues and any other important stuff going on in the add-ons world.


  • Nominations for full review at the moment are being processed slower than usual. The new review system required hundreds of add-on developers to renominate their add-ons, which has placed a large workload on the editor team. Nominations are currently taking several weeks (~8) to review.
  • Most updates are being reviewed within a week. An avalanche of updates were submitted following the final Firefox 4 release, so we have been spending extra time keeping updates in line.
  • Most preliminary reviews are being reviewed within 4 weeks.
  • We posted a call for new reviewers on our blog recently and many new reviewers have already joined our team. If you’re interested, please read on how to apply.

The Review Queues

  • These stats are taken from the last queue report.
  • 58 new nominations that week. 439 nominations in the queue awaiting review.
  • 123 new updates that week. 118 updates in the queue awaiting review.
  • 102 new preliminary review submissions that week. 351 in the queue awaiting review.

Firefox 4

Firefox 4 is out! If your add-on is already compatible, you should update your maxVersion to 4.0.* to cover all future 4.0 releases. Most of the necessary documentation to upgrade your add-on for Firefox 4 is readily available:

Firefox 5

Yeah, it’s time to begin thinking about Firefox 5. The development cycle for future versions of Firefox will be very fast, moving changes between 4 different update channels, as explained here. There will be a new major Firefox release roughly every 6 weeks.

On our side, we will automatically upgrade the compatibility of your add-on to Firefox 5 unless we have reasons to believe the add-on is incompatible. Since major releases are produced faster, it also means they’re milder in terms of breaking changes. The discussion about this new add-on compatibility process is happening in this newsgroup. If you want to get more details or have any feedback, please dive in.

The Firefox repo has already branched into the Aurora track, meaning that no major changes will happen until final release. Here are the documents you should follow to know what’s going on:

  • Firefox 5 for developers. As far as I can see, there is only one change that is worth noticing: navigator.language no longer corresponds to the UI language, but to the value of the Accept-Language header. If you want to get the locale of the browser UI, you should use the general.useragent.locale preference instead.
  • Features wiki. This link is useful for long-term planning. It’s a feature development plan for the Firefox team (and others), and it includes several prioritized lists of what is being planned for future versions of Firefox. It’s a new approach to planning, so it’s bound to change rapidly.

Notes for Developers

  • Our add-on performance initiative was launched recently, beginning with a page that lists add-ons that have been identified as slow by our Talos testing system and backed up by real world usage data and manual tests. Some developers have responded negatively to the release, pointing out a number of bugs in the testing system as well as problems in the wording of the slow add-ons page. We take these bugs seriously and thank these developers for filing bugs and being responsive. Many of them have been fixed already. We have also scaled down the slow add-ons list until we correct the issues that we consider critical to move forward.
  • The AMO Editor Guide. This is a comprehensive guide to the work performed by AMO Editors. If you want to have a clear idea of how we test add-ons, or you’re interested in joining us, this is a good place to begin.
  • Useful Information for Add-on Authors. How to improve review times for your add-on, information about the review process, etc.

4 comments on “Add-ons Review Update – Week of 2011/05/12”

  1. Alan Baxter wrote on

    >There will be a new major Firefox release roughly every 3 months.
    Every six weeks, not three months.

    1. Jorge Villalobos wrote on

      You are correct, I forgot to update that part of the post.
      It’s fixed now. Thanks!

  2. firefox wrote on

    Are you going to give t-shirts to people who update their add-on before the final Firefox 5 release like you did with Firefox 4?

  3. Tony Mechelynck wrote on

    What about making ready for Firefox 6? And talking of that, having a “major” release every 6 weeks (so that by this time next year we will be testing nightlies of Firefox 15, imagine!) makes the whole notion of feature-completeness meaningless: if the whole API can, even if only in theory, change from A to Z every 6 weeks, I imagine some extension authors won’t bother keeping up with an interface which can always be swept away from under them six weeks later.