Partnering/Repacks/Policy and Process
This document outlines the high level policy for Firefox custom bundles, applicable to all custom distributions of Firefox produced by Mozilla for partners. Some of these requirements may be in conflict with existing written agreements, otherwise all existing distributions are expected to come into compliance with these requirements as soon as possible, and no later than June 30, 2015. Some requirements will come into place over the first half of 2015, in order to allow time for any required changes to products or processes.
For more information on becoming a Mozilla distribution partner, please refer to Becoming a Mozilla Distribution Partner.
Review Process and Timelines
- Changes to custom configurations must be submitted no later than three weeks prior to the next regularly scheduled release, in order to be included in custom builds for that release.
- After this time, only significant bug fix changes will be considered for that release.
- Beta builds are produced twice weekly, and upon approval reviewers will advise as to the next set of builds which will contain the approved changes.
- Release candidate builds will generally be available one week prior to the target release date.
- Partners are not permitted to distribute custom builds prior to the official Mozilla release.
For an overview of the change submission process, please refer to the instructions below.
- Each unique configuration must be identified separately through a unique distribution ID.
- For each new custom distribution, partners must clearly identify the target market(s) and languages for the desired configuration, as well as any other reasonable information necessary to understand the scope for any potential distribution.
- Mozilla will review and approve all changes to custom configuration. Mozilla does not do formal Quality Assurance testing on custom bundles. Distributors are expected to verify that all of their customizations are working as intended in the provided builds.
- All preference changes not explicitly required under existing agreements must be approved by Mozilla.
- No preference changes will be permitted that negatively impact the security or user experience of end users.
- Except where expressly covered by the distribution agreement, search default changes shall not be approved.
- Bookmarks must be clearly labelled, and should link only to relevant content from the partner in question.
Effective as of Firefox 39
All bundled add-ons to be included with a custom distribution must already be signed in accordance with Mozilla's add-on signing policy. This will require that all bundled add-ons have passed full review through the AMO review process, whether that add-on is or is not distributed on AMO itself.
The process for submitting add-ons that are not to be hosted on AMO will be announced in the near future, and should be live in May 2015. If an add-on is already hosted on AMO at that time, signing will happen automatically. Distribution partners will have priority for reviews, please contact Partner Support for more details.
Effective as of Firefox 38
Firefox has a number of features that have revenue-bearing components, generally in the form of partnerships or paid placements. These features include Search, Tiles, and other potential features. Except where otherwise agreed under a formal custom distribution agreement, no changes shall be permitted that negatively impact the revenue potential of these features. This includes changes that would be otherwise permitted within the scope of an add-on under the AMO policy.
Mozilla keeps all of our partner repack configuration files under version control in GitHub.
When a partner build is created, you will be given access to a repository that corresponds to your repack.
Creating a patch
This section assumes that you are already familiar with the basics of GitHub.
Here is a generalized workflow:
- fork the repository
- create a patch
- submit a pull request
After a pull request has been merged, you can request a build on Bugzilla if the update is urgent, otherwise you should wait for the normal Mozilla build cycle.
To expedite the bug filing process, I've created a template that partners can use to quickly file bugs under the correct product & component:
- Product: Release Engineering, Component: "Releases: Custom Builds"
- Or use this convenient template: Partner repack config change bug template
Please remember to change $PARTNERNAME in the bug summary to reflect the partner you requesting a build for.