Q&A With Mozilla’s Security Community Hints At Electrolysis Re-Evaluation

By | April 18, 2013

Q&A With Mozilla’s Security Community Hints At Electrolysis Re-EvaluationSeeing that today is a slow news today we’ve decided to dig around the web and see what kind of glittery magic you can find there. As it turns out, Mozilla has recently did the IAMA session on reddit, which can be found on the following page.

Interestingly enough, the open source organization has revealed that they are re-evaluating Electrolysis (e10s), the multi-process architecture that they canned back in 2011. What was the point of it (other than process isolation)? Offer better UI responsiveness, stability and performance on multi-core machines.

Q: Chrome does a lot with privilege separation and process isolation to create a bit of a fail-safe setup. How can Firefox’s monolithic process model compete from a security standpoint? Have any/are any steps being taken to isolate components more (other than plugins)? What’s happening with e10s?

A: There is a new effort underway to evaluate e10s, again. The biggest issue was that addons, which make Firefox so useful and extensible, at the same time were mostly incompatible with process separation. One way to solve that is to have “Proxies” and “Wrappers” that pass different operations between the processes. This is however not a very clean solution, so the new Addon SDK (“Jetpack”) was built with sandboxing in mind.

You can learn more about Electrolysis here.

[Via: gHacks]

About (Author Profile)

Vygantas is a former web designer whose projects are used by companies such as AMD, NVIDIA and departed Westood Studios. Being passionate about software, Vygantas began his journalism career back in 2007 when he founded FavBrowser.com. Having said that, he is also an adrenaline junkie who enjoys good books, fitness activities and Forex trading.

Comments (4)

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  1. sarjoor says:

    Jetpack addons/extensions has been proposed by Mozilla for a long time. The only difficulty is getting addon developers to buy-in to to. Implementing Electrolysis as Mozilla would like to means breaking most “original style” addons. And Jetpack addons cannot do everything / do not have as complete browser access as original style addons. The question is can Mozilla get enough crucial developers to form a basis for Jetpack addons before they kill most original style addons when implemention e10s? And that will for sure happen with most users on auto-update now. Any e10s enabled release will kill most original addons a user has installed.

    • Przemysław Lib says:

      Probably Mozilla would develop new set of API’s for old-style extensions.

      Anyone who just can use Jetpack would be encouraged to, and others who need dipper integration would have to rewrite their extensions.

    • Prevacator says:

      At least a quarter of all of my add-ons are JetPack add-ons now. They haven’t just been talking about them – they’ve been around for a couple years now and they’re only getting more popular.

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