Firefox moves toward cross-browser extensions with Chrome and Opera

Chris Burns - Aug 21, 2015, 11:36 am CDT
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Firefox moves toward cross-browser extensions with Chrome and Opera

Mozilla takes a giant step towards Firefox’s total compatibility with browser extensions from the Chrome and Opera extension ecosystems. The plan is to switch out the extension API used for Firefox with one by the name of WebExtensions. With this API, developers will be able to create extensions that work with multiple browsers at once, bringing Firefox back into the mix where once they were excluded. This is all part of Mozilla’s move toward a more user-friendly browser on all platforms.

This new WebExtensions API will be good for developers as well as users as previously developed extensions will be able to be ported to the new version of Firefox. Developers hoping to get in on the ground floor with this update will need to have their extensions validated and signed by Mozilla starting on the 22nd of September for Firefox 41.

The new Firefox will be coming with Electrolysis (aka e10s), a system that’ll improve both security and performance for the Firefox browser. Sandboxing processes will allow for a safer environment for users at the same time as it allows the browser to move faster.

The new Firefox will also be implementing research done with Servo. Servo is a project being executed by Mozilla in an effort to develop a new web browser engine built in a language called Rust. Rust provides the groundwork for “memory safety and data race freedom” – in layman’s terms, basically the same two features mentioned with Electrolysis above.

According to Mozilla, the future of Firefox is bright. We’re inclined to agree.


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