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Trying to iron out what we need to get a localized milestone for Fennec.

localized product

We do have the strings exposed to l10n, and we can run compare-locales, but we don't yet have a testable localized product. There seem to be three distinct deliverables that we want to create for Fennec on Maemo:

  1. A multi-locale build, deb packaged
  2. Language packs, xpi
  3. Single-locale builds, deb packaged

The multi-locale build is something that we haven't done before, so there's a few things to be sorted out.

Multi-locale build

The multi-locale build is supposed to do a hybrid of automatic locale detection based on matchOS, and explicit locale selection based on user selection in the fennec preferences. This means that we need to get the localized pieces of our product right, which includes (may be more, hopefully not)

  • UI strings
  • search engines
  • protocol/content handlers
  • default bookmarks
  • dictionaries

The actual locale chooser is done in bug 516492.

We also need to determine the list of languages to be included in the multi-locale build.

How to create a multi-locale build??

Here's the rough sketch on how to create a multi-locale build of fennec:

use a mozconfig that specifies

ac_add_app_options mobile --with-l10n-base=/home/axel/src/central/releases/l10n-mozilla-1.9.2
  1. patch mobile-browser/ to include the toolkit locales/Makefile files
  2. build fennec as usual
  3. for all locales
    1. make -C mobile/locales libs-$loc
    2. cp dist/xpi-stage/locale-$loc/chrome/$loc* dist/bin/chrome
  4. make package
  5. make deb

Language packs

The install experience of language packs isn't exactly great, to get a fennec only available as a lang pack you need to:

  1. install fennec
  2. surf to AMO, to the languages&dictinaries
  3. install the add on
  4. restart
  5. go to the preferences in fennec, select your locale
  6. restart

Single locale builds

Single locale builds will not make it on the nokia deb repository, so folks need to enter a repository url by hand into the package manager. It needs to be determined if we make one repo with all debs, or if we make a repo per locale. In case of the latter, the description of the installation process needs to explain how to modify the repo url to include the desired locale code.

Outstanding work

  • Getting strings in the selected language should just work.

Making sure that the selected language is actually the right one is tricker.

matchOS testing matrix

We need to define which locales that we have for fennec should be picked for which Maemo OS locale setting. This testing matrix needs to be actually tested then, this might uncover bugs.

language matrix, build with all locales installed (not necessarily a multi-locale build, afaict)

Filed bug 518809 to review matchOS logic.

search engines

Search engine selection needs to work by currently chosen locale. Search codes need to be right, engine set needs to be right. Probably google-updated plugin needs to work, bug 511017.

bug, multi-locale build to test

protocol/content handlers

need testing, but they're likely going to work as is

build with multiple locales installed to test, no multi-locale build afaict

default bookmarks

The default bookmarks are created on profile creation, need to make sure that we're doing the right thing.

bug, multi-locale build to test


I haven't found UI yet to choose a dictionary language in fennec. This might need to get coupled to the locale selection mechanism, but I'm not sure that's automagic.

We need to evaluate download size, too. Most dictionaries are a few MB uncompressed, the biggest is sr with 12MB, which compresses down to 1MB with gzip. fr goes from 1MB to 200k.

bug, multi-locale build to test, triage of download size