Mozilla

Thunderbird 2.0

Mozilla's flagship e-mail client, Thunderbird, is now available under version 2.0. I've been running the Thunderbird 2.0 nightly development versions for almost six months without any problems. I expect Thunderbird users will have little problem with upgrading from version 1.5 to version 2.0. Straight from the release notes I've listed at the bottom of this post are the new features users will find in Thunderbird 2. None of the new features are earth shattering for e-mail clients but I do find comfort that Mozilla can always teach its software new tricks.

One of the new features that is listed for Thunderbird 2 is the use of Nullsoft Scriptable Install System as the new Windows installer. The message reads that the new installer "resolves many long-standing issues". For anyone that might know, I'd be curious as to exactly what the long-standing issues were? Were the issues merely technical or were there some political open source issues involved with the decision? Just curious as I haven't had the time to dig through some of the developer blogs/notes for the advantages of using the Nullsoft installer.

Using Firefox 2 with Content Mangement Systems

As you can tell from the screenshot below, I am using a release candidate of Mozilla's Firefox 2 while viewing and editing content in my Drupal site. If you look closely at the image or click on the image to enlarge it, you will also see that I don't always focus my browsing on Drupal. Take a look at the tabs and you'll see me taking a look at a number of other open source projects (such as Joomla and e107). I have been known to have 20 tabs open referencing just as many different portals, forums, and blog applications as I can find. What can I say, I'm obsessed with Web content management systems (CMS).

David Baron: New Firefox 2 theme and lessons learned Bryan Ruby Fri, 09/22/2006 - 15:55

I just got done reading an interesting and important post by David Baron of Mozilla. Although his initial focus is on the Firefox 2 browser, he makes some valid points that easily carry over to lessons learned involving software development and general project management.

The post in focus from Mr. Baron is "New Theme, Old Problem" and as titled centers to some problems with the new Firefox theme. Mr. Baron states that he doesn't "really care one way or the other about most of the changes". But what does care about are the changes done to the tabs in the new theme. Mainly that the new tabs no longer blend well from the operating system it is running on. He likes the "old way" better where:

Headaches from security updates for Firefox and Thunderbird Bryan Ruby Thu, 08/31/2006 - 01:02

Sigh...another round of security updates coming from the folks at Mozilla. It looks like version 1.5.0.7 will be at our doorsteps soon.  Now at home, updating Firefox and Thunderbird on the Windows PC is a snap since it is all automatic. However, updating in a secure enterprise environment is a different matter.

In most enterprises, most users don't have administrative privileges and without those rights Firefox and Thunderbird in most cases will not auto install the new version. What would really help is if Mozilla would provide their software in a MSI package. Until MSI packages are provided by Mozilla, it is difficult for me to accept Firefox and Thunderbird as "enterprise software". In a Windows Server 2003 environment, MSI packages are a must for easy deployment, management, and auditing.

Is It Enough?

I have not written too much about technology or IT related issues. In part, this is due to spending most of my work day dealing with IT problems. Shoud not that be enough?

However, increasingly I am finding the need to be more creative outside work in applying what I know. At work I have been working quite a bit with the Mozilla products, Thunderbird and Firefox. Thunderbird is an e-mail client and Firefox is a browser. I was the team leader for deploying the Thunderbird e-mail client in my organization's region. This was not too much of a stretch since our previous official client was the Netscape 4.7 suite. For those that don't know, Firefox and Thunderbirds roots are with Netscape.