Friday, January 25, 2013

Don't throw tomatoes ... but there's an Intel version

UPDATE: to whomever posted this to root86, do us all a favour and either link this post or the IntelBuild wiki page. It's uncool to offer an unsupported product without comment and not allow people to read about the support level first. I really don't want to get people complaining down the road if this port goes off the rails. Fix your link, please.

Remember in 1997 how Bill Gates appeared at Macworld with Steve-O and got booed because the enemy was now within the gates? Well, this is like that.

At least one of you has discovered the work of our newest contributor Claudio, who contributed patches in issue 204 for enabling TenFourFox 17 to build on Intel 10.4. This is a common question I get ("why is TenFourFox not universal? why doesn't it work on my MacBook?"), so Claudio has graciously consented to handling the Intel fork for the moment. Beforehand, however, let's get a few things straight:

  • PowerPC remains the primary architecture of development for TenFourFox. The Intel version is a sideline maintained by an interested contributor. This is, as Apple says about AppleTV, a "hobby." The Intel version will never delay the PowerPC version, which is the primary focus of development, nor will unnecessary limitations required for an Intel build be applied to a PowerPC build (we have enough of our own limitations to worry about), nor will it be offered on the main page for the foreseeable future.
  • If you own an Intel Mac running 10.4 or 10.5, your best option is still to upgrade to at least 10.6 and run real honest-to-JWZ Firefox. This is only for those people who for some reason can't or won't upgrade, and understand the risks of staying with 10.4 or 10.5 (which are much higher in practice than the risks to Power Mac users with the same versions).
  • I don't build the Intel version (I have a single solitary 10.6 Intel Mac); Claudio builds it himself. I haven't even tried running it yet, but the patches look good.
  • The Intel version, as well as trying to run the PowerPC version under Rosetta, is unsupported. Let me say that again. The Intel version, as well as trying to run the PowerPC version under Rosetta, is unsupported. Do not report bugs to Tenderapp. You may report them to the Google Code project (as you may for unstable releases), but bugs reported to the Google Code project are under the same limitations: you must test them under Firefox on a Tier-1 architecture before you make any report to demonstrate the bug is not Mozilla's or the bug will be marked invalid. And, even if you do report it, the Intel fork is not release quality. It's an experiment. Bugs, even major ones, may not be repaired quickly or at all, and releases may not be timely. If you want a real release quality Firefox on Intel, do yourself a favour and upgrade to 10.6.
  • The Intel version may cease development at any time. Right now it works with 17. We have not tried getting 19 to compile, though it probably will, but you shouldn't assume that nor that there will be even another ESR release of the browser. There. Is. No. Support.

The long and short: don't make me or Claudio regret offering this, okay? If you are expecting the same level of quality or service you get from Firefox or from mainline PowerPC TenFourFox, do not download this browser.

Having scared the entitled cheapskates off to OmniWeb, those of you in this very, very, very small demographic can get the download link and a refresher course on the very many limitations attached to it from the "official" Intel build Wiki page.

Back on regular development, 19 has had a lot of display and graphics issues, as expected. The good news is most of these will be corrected. More on that as the final release approaches.

14 comments:

  1. I can't get the Intel version to run on my PowerMac G5! WTF?!

    (...just kidding ;))

    ReplyDelete
  2. Just want to say thanks, that took a while :D Works nicely with 10.4.11 and Pentium M.

    ReplyDelete
  3. "Having scared the entitled cheapskates off to OmniWeb,..."

    Optimist!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hey Classic, I am the guy who was asking you about an Intel version some months ago. So happy I checked here tonight. I have been using TFF 8.01b 7450, the only version that works on my iMac Core Duo with Tiger Intel 10.4.11. I am also using the current version of OmniWeb 5.11.2 which runs way faster than TFF 8.01b but has some page display problems. My iMac has a 2gig processor + 2gigs of ram. I just installed the Intel version of TFF, even though I am not much of a techie, just FLIES, ABSOLUTELY FLIES!!, so far everything works perfectly!!, just what I was looking for, now I can install some extensions that require more than 8.01b. My thanks to the creator of this Intel version, is there anyway we can write to him personally to thank him? Now I can enjoy TFF again. Many thanks to you Classic for allowing this, now TFF is truly universal.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Glad it's working well. All of the feedback has been positive, but remember, it's best-effort. Do not expect the same level of service the PowerPC version gets, and the PPC version remains the highest priority. That said, enjoy.

    ReplyDelete
  6. (Also, Claudio does read this blog, so just post as appropriate.)

    ReplyDelete
  7. Classic, spoke too soon have to revert to 8.01b again. Can't type anything into the URL bar just get "Going to a Website". Also on many websites, this Intel versions freezes mot only TFF but my whole computer, have to turn it off manually, reboot. The "pitts" because this Intel version is so FAST, so I am back to OmniWeb 5.11.2 as my default browser, it's like Safari 5 because Tiger can only use Safari 4. Hope you can fix these Intel bugs. Thanks, Ken.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. To be perfectly frank, a serious bug like that would have been immediately obvious to Claudio, and the Intel users I know of report no such problem. I'd look at your add-ons and/or try restarting in safe mode to see if the issue persists.

      Delete
    2. Same here, Dock, Finder, the menubar freeze, so you can't click on it anymore, working Apps in Dock still work, but after closing the App windows, it's like the windowserver isn't anymore touchable.

      Delete
  8. Classic, just forgot to mention that the version of TFF PPC I am using with 8.0b1 is the G4 7450, the only one that will work on my iMac Core Duo. Before settling on 8.0b1, I was trying to get Version 17 of 7450 to work but got the same typing in the URL bar problem + "non-responsive scripts" but not the freezing situation. So the problems seem to occur on both platforms. Ken.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I actually ran into that deep freeze problem myself the last time I tried running TFF on Tiger. I honestly have no idea what could be causing it. I'll see if I can track it down.

    I will hold off on providing a 17.0.3 build until I have some better idea what's going on here.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I've also been getting these freezes in the latest version of Tiger, and I can say for sure it is TenFourFox because it will not freeze unless it is running. I love the browser, and since it is the only browser I can use in Tiger that's up to date, I have no choice but to suffer through the occasional complete system freeze.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Eventually when Firefox drops support for Mac OS 10.6, then will the Intel version of TenFourFox be maintained?

    ReplyDelete
  12. Hi I just looked at this thread, and I'm excited about an Intel version of TenForFox. I'm just wondering if this is written in C or C++ (gcc / g++)? I'm asking that because I solved the big-endian little-endian problem with C++ user-defined data-types called "xlong" and "xshort". If there's any endianess issues involved, take a look at my solution. You'll find it at:

    http://www.stanford.edu/group/spires/uspires/xlong/

    ReplyDelete

Due to an increased frequency of spam, comments are now subject to moderation.