Categories: News

These Weeks in Firefox: Issue 49


  • The DevTools team has added XMLHttpRequest (XHR) Breakpoints! You can break for any XHR, or for XHR’s to a particular URL.
    • Showing the XHR Breakpoints checkbox in the debugger side panel

      XHR breaking your code? In the Firefox Debugger, XHRs break on you!

    • Lots of other goodies coming soon from the DevTools team. See their Project Update section for a taste!
  • Erica gave the content blocking exception button in the identity popup a style refresh.
    • Showing the Identity panel in Firefox, where the "Turn on blocking for this site" has had its style changed to more closely match the styles used in Private Browsing mode.

      Rocking that Private Browsing shade of purple!

  • AwesomeBar changes

Friends of the Firefox team


  • mconley introduces Andrew Creskey (:acreskey)

Resolved bugs (excluding employees)

Project Updates

Activity Stream

  • We’re investigating about:newtab page changes through Telemetry pings, to identify malicious takeovers.
  • There is a new way to turn off recommendations from CFR
    • In about:preferences, in General, in the Browsing section.
    • Showing the checkbox in about:preferences that disables the add-on recommendation feature soon shipping in Firefox.

      Extension recommendations not your thing? That’s okay – here’s how you turn them off.

Add-ons / Web Extensions

Application Services (Sync / Firefox Accounts / Push)

  • The team is working on Android components for syncing and storing bookmarks 📚 and history 🕒. The library is written in Rust, with an FFI for Java and Kotlin, and a schema based closely on Places 🦀.
  • Edouard is working on a device pairing flow for Firefox Accounts, for a better sign-in experience that lets you scan a code on an existing device instead of typing your password everywhere 📱🔒.

Browser Architecture

Developer Tools


  • The Fission-aware messaging simulation landed, and can be enabled by flipping the browser.fission.simulate pref to true. This only covers code in browser/actors and toolkit/actors now.
  • <browser>.browsingContext is landing soon.
  • A pref to return null on cross-origin iframe access is also landing soon.



  • We shipped Android Components 0.30! Here’s the changelog.
    • Added an implementation of concept-storage which is backed by the Rust Places library provided by application-services
    • Firefox Accounts component improvements
    • We started work on a new component to implement the Awesome Bar, both the UI and the underlying infrastructure for multiple search result providers


Policy Engine

  • Policies for certificate installation, locale switching, and the browser startup page landed in 64!
  • Working on ESR uplifts for new policies.


Search and Navigation

Search Shortcuts
  • One-off buttons are now hidden when using a shortcut (Bug 1498023)
  • Separated shortcuts telemetry from generic search telemetry (Bug 1499193)
  • Shortcuts stay in the address bar when selecting search suggestions (Bug 1500516)
Quantum Bar
  • Heads-up, address bar changes!
    • The browser.urlbar.history.onlyTyped preference has been removed (1500108)
    • The browser.urlbar.matchBehavior preference has been removed (Bug 1500138)
    • We plan to remove the browser.urlbar.autocomplete.enabled pref (Bug 1502392)
  • Added one-off buttons stub (Bug 1502455)
  • Landed initial code to filter matches (Bug 1502385)
  • Moved various functions from the window scope to UrlbarUtils.jsm (1502039)
  • Moved isTabEmpty() to tab.isEmpty (Bug 1502069)
  • Added APIs to allow porting more easily existing address bar tests. (Bug 1494334, Bug 1501270)
  • Fixed identity popup opening (Bug 1499652)

Test Pilot

  • Two new experiments shipping next week: email tabs, price-wise (comparison shopping)
  • Side View headed to Shield

Web Payments

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