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Build Your Own Browser is a web-based application that simplifies light customizations of Mozilla Firefox. You can give it a whirl at

Weekly Project Update

  • Each Wednesday at 12:00 Pacific / 14:00 Central / 15:00 Eastern
  • +1.650.903.0800 x92 Conf# 283 (US/INTL)
  • #byob for backchannel

Meeting Minutes



Production Notes

Milestones / Schedule

Q4 2010


  • setup triggered, automated build creation via buildbot on the pool of BYOB slaves [CARRYOVER]
    • will use a shared NFS mount to store config information
  • setup signalling between the web app and the buildbot automation system [CARRYOVER]

Q3 2010


  • Move web application to cluster
  • Transition repack process to buildbot cluster
  • Transition hosting to independant/clustered file store


Week-by-week milestones, which need to be copied to meeting notes each week as discussion points and updated as required.

  • First cut at timelines based on work progression, discussions. Needs review in meeting for 15 Jul 2009. (the Gantt Project source file can be found here)

Design / UX

Webapp Implementation

Repack Build Process




  • Primary: Affinity groups, charities, non-profits, small to mid-size organizations that previously were not considered for distribution partnerships and custom builds.
  • Secondary: Larger organizations that are willing to create a distribution within the customization guidelines of the BYOB program.
Web Site
  • Needed emails (can find updated suggested copy here: File:Byob-ui-comments v2 JS-dr.pdf )
    • Signup/account verification email
    • Lost password email
    • submit build email
    • build is ready for download email
  • Need to include CAN-SPAM requirements on all emails (unsubscribe? (may not have to if considered services emails only), Mozilla address
  • Latest-draft of pitch deck (updated 4/5/10): File:BYOB pitch-deck v7.pdf
  • Older version of pitch deck: File:BYOB pitch-deck v5.pdf
  • Goal of pitch deck: have material that can be presented to potential "beta" partners
  • To-do: create a one-sheet (use the pitch deck as a model)

Metrics/Tracking Requirements

  • Add in Webtrends tracking to capture the following:
    • Pageview/visitor data
    • Conversion funnel data
    • Download data (record download with user click on the create BYOB button
    • Affiliate tracking data integrated into BYOB (e.g., Boy Scout troup creates an affiliate button and has group members post it on their personal website/blog, etc. --> be able to capture this BYOB capture data within WebTrends)
  • Other Metrics/ADU/Download Stats to be entered here

Proposed Enhancements

Bug Fixes

Pilot to Beta/Release

  • [DONE] Automated version updates (e.g. on release of a new version of Firefox, automatically generate new versions of all BYOB distributions) bug 526691
  • [DONE] Add ability for distribution creators to hide their distributions from the public search and "recently added" pages (and equivs) bug 526700
  • Add additional locales to supported installers list bug 526701
  • Add per-locale support for bookmarks (and other customizations as required), similar to the localization support in AMO. bug 538883
  • [DONE] Add ability to upload and add a limited number of search engines to the default set of search plugins bug 538607
  • [DONE] Support bookmark folders in the bookmark toolbar and menu (e.g. define a folder of bookmarks which can then be placed on the bookmark toolbar and/or menu) bug 538888
  • Add ability for admins to add ad-hoc entries to each of the Global, Preferences, Localizable Preferences sections in the distribution.ini file bug 538615
  • Include a selection of recommended add-ons that can be included in the browser
  • Simplify the default persona selection process (e.g. Personas browser, etc.) bug 538889
  • Simplify the default collections selection process, and add preview image to personas customization
  • Add additional Labs projects (i.e. jetpack and ubiquity) to supported customizations (needs input from labs)
  • Support the inclusion of Personas in Firefox 3.6 (may not be a requirement; preference seems to be to continue to include the extension. for discussion)
  • Simplify/shorten the registration process (requires discussion and req defintiion)

Proposed Q1 2010 Work

Administration (non-user facing)

  • [DONE] bug 538603 Modify functions that call split(), which is deprecated in PHP 5.3+
  • [DONE] bug 526691 Add "Update all repacks" for administrators - required for when we launch a product update to re-generate all repacks while maintaining release status.
  • [MISSED] bug 538615 Add ability for admins to add ad-hoc entries to a BYOB repack's distribution.ini
  • [MISSED] (bug needed) Add ability for an admin to add an extension to a given repack (need to discuss model/reqs for adding extensions to ensure ability to scale, and how we'd flag extensions as public)
  • [DONE] bug 516439 Change details link does not show the customizations - would be great fro admins/editors to have a link to a summary page of customizations
  • [DONE] bug 510527 Failed releases are kicked back to user instead of editor/admin
  • [DONE] bug 521252 Only set a custom first-run page in the browser if a customized page is required

Additional Functionality

  • Simplify registration form to minimize info collected, speed up process. Bug needed, dependant on UI work
  • bug 526701 Add support for all locales to be repacked (but no "all" button, please! :)
  • [DONE] bug 538883 Enhance bookmark support to include folders and localized bookmarks
  • [DONE] bug 538607 Add support for adding custom search plugins to a BYOB repack
  • [DONE] bug 526700 Add ability for repack authors to hide their repacks from public searches and "newest" lists

User Interface

  • Re-design home page to incorporate education/instructional information and simplify messaging
  • Re-design config wizard/process to better accomnmodate additional features/functionality
  • Re-design registration to simplify and speed up registration process
  • Review use of modal views with BYOB on lower resolution screens, error pages, etc. Re-design/tweak as necessary.
  • Re-develop copy to incorporate messaging from marketing efforts, simplified text.
  • bug 511146 Improve "Contact Us" form with per-category recipients and auto-response messages

Job Jar (not a priority, but generally smaller nit items/bugfixes)

  • bug 521242 Change recpatcha links to use SSL
  • bug 512665 Use local images for OS icons (causes mixed content warnings)
  • bug 516425 Make the byob HTML 4.0.1 Transitional
  • Various bugfixes


  • Run over all site functions with a fine-toothed comb and file bugs :) There's a bunch of little issues I've run across, and we should document them all and get them into bugzilla.

Medium Term goals (planning for Q2)

  • Medium and long-term planning for additional product integration (fennec, unbranded builds), enterprise support, end-goals
  • bug 503328 Planning localization support w/involvement of l10n team.
  • Discuss addition/value/effort for adding demo account or preview functionality so people can see what the process is like without a need for registration
  • Discuss with RelEng (coop) on setting a clear path/workplan on integrating BYOB with linux cluster for front end and byob buildbot and signing back-end.
  • Requirements definition for adding statistics fed from metrics/log analysis

Medium/Long-Term Enhancements

  • Transition BYOB from OSX to the cluster environment
    • Deploy repack environment w/releng
    • Deploy BYOB on Linux cluster
  • Add l10n support (e.g. BYOB in multiple languages)
  • Add support for the Mozilla MySQL cluster (separate read/write dbs)
  • Add support for the /bundle extension installer


Product objective

To create a simple, self-service web application that allows an interested organization or individual to create a customized version of the Firefox browser.


Project objective



Affinity groups, charities, non-profits, small to mid-size organizations that previously were not considered for distribution partnerships and custom builds.


Larger organizations that are willing to create a distribution within the customization guidelines of the BYOB program.