Monthly Archives: July 2012

Parsing Apache-like configs in Python

While working on partial updates for multiple old versions I had a need to parse our patcher config files with Python. These files are close to Apache-style configs except more liberal with the naming of nodes. I was pretty surprised when I couldn’t quickly find a library that parsed them. I tried various XML/HTML parser (BeautifulSoup, lxml, minidom) but they all choked pretty quickly. Eventually I came across apache_conf_parser which sounded pretty promising! It complained at first about some of our node names, but a small code change allowed it to parse them correctly. I’ve published my changes to a git repository at in case anyone ever needs them.

B2G Desktop builds now (mostly) available

Hot on the heels of the Armv7a Gingerbread builds for B2G, we now have Mac and Windows Desktop builds of B2G+Gecko available for download. On TBPL, they show up as “Ng” cells in the existing OS X64 opt and Win opt rows, and you can download the builds from FTP in the nightly directories.

Please note that these are NOT full B2G builds. These are developer-targeted builds which only run on desktop machines, and cannot be flashed onto a phone or tablet. These builds are primarily useful to developers, QA and localizers working on Gaia. They can also be used by anyone who wishes to test out their websites or apps through a B2G-like client..

Linux versions of these builds are in the works, and will be available as soon as we fix an infrastructure issue preventing them from successfully building. We hope to have it fixed by the end of the week.


Edit: If you’re confused about what to do with these builds even after they’re running have a read over and

Our community is awesome (or, Mac builds now signed even better)

A few weeks ago a bug regarding the way we are signing our Mac builds was reported by a user of the Keychain Integration Services extension. I think this bug is an amazing example of how great our community is, and why they are so valuable to us.

This bug talks about a problem that exists on Snow Leopard and earlier where OS X will ask the user over and over again for permission for Firefox to access the system Keychain. The initial bug report has tremendous analysis of the problem, isolating it to specific OS X versions and comparing the signatures on them. Steven Michaud quickly jumped in to try to confirm and find a fix, but it wasn’t until Julian Fitzell (the Keychain Integration Services developer) jumped in that the problem was fully understood. After he went to the effort of figuring out exactly what we needed to do it was relatively simple to fix the bug in a timely manner.

The reason this stands out so much to me is that because this is a problem that would only affect Keychain Integration Services users, it was (correctly) prioritized as low priority. (As much as we would like to fix every bug that is critical to everybody, it’s not feasible.) Because Julian cared and was capable of helping us find the fix it was possible to fix this bug before Firefox 14 was released. Without his help it’s very unlikely this would’ve been fixed so quickly.

So: thank you Julian and spinifer. You rock!