[gccsdk] Are you happy for me to package Firefox?

Peter Naulls peter at chocky.org
Tue Mar 20 21:36:08 PDT 2007

In message <d22276c54e.James at ntlworld.com> you wrote:

> I would like to create a package for Firefox using the current binary, 
> and I'm just checking with you first. I'd basically be creating 
> packages for the binary and the ELFLoader, as Tinct and SharedUnixLib 
> are already packaged.

I've taken the liberty of responding to James' private email on this
list, since the answer is of most relevance here.

What you need to understand is that packing Firefox really isn't that
much about Firefox at all.  Sure, that's one of the end goals, but you
need to have something of a holistic view about what problems we're
trying to solve.  Some of these are presently being hashed out on the
RiscPkg mailing list - finally there is significant traffic there after
many years - but there's more.  Alan Buckley has made some good progress
on others, such as automated packaging, and you will need to coordinate
with him also.

The specific problems are:

 - I don't think that manual packaing of the existing binary is a
   solution.  It needs to be an automated, scalable part of the
   existing autobuilder process.

 - The same applies to the other components.  Yes, some of those are
   packaged on the NetSurf site, but these need to be hosted on
   riscos.info as a complete solution.

 - To make it worthwhile, and get some kind of momentum, there needs
   to be other stuff packaged too.  There's no reason why some of
   the games ports couldn't be targets for this.

 - It's critical that handling of stuff in !System is done properly.
   This is much of what the current RiscPkg debate is about.

Also you mentioned on the Wiki coversion to an AOF.  This is all very
well, but pretty soon, everyone will need ELFLoader anyway, like they
needed the 32-bit SCL.  Any further development of Firefox will also
mean use of shared libraries, so will demaned ELF.

So, don't let me stop you, but it's important that you take in the
larger picture.

Peter Naulls - peter at chocky.org        | http://www.chocky.org/
RISC OS Community Wiki - add your own content   | http://www.riscos.info/

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