Firefox 88 on POWER

Firefox 88 is out. In addition to a bunch of new CSS properties, JavaScript is now supported in PDF files even within Firefox's own viewer, meaning there is no escape, and FTP is disabled, meaning you will need to use 78ESR (though you get two more weeks of ESR as a reprieve, since Firefox 89 has been delayed to allow UI code to further settle). I've long pondered doing a generic "cURL extension" that would reenable all sorts of protocols through a shim to either curl or libcurl; maybe it's time for it.

Fortunately Fx88 builds uneventually as usual on OpenPOWER, though our PGO-LTO patches (apply to the tree with patch -p1) required a slight tweak to nsTerminator.cpp. Debug and optimized .mozconfigs are unchanged.

Also, an early milestone in the Firefox JavaScript JIT for OpenPOWER: Justin Hibbits merged my earlier jitpower work to a later tree (right now based on Firefox 86) and filled in the gaps with code from TenFourFox, and after some polishing up I did over the weekend, a JIT-enabled JavaScript shell now compiles on Fedora ppc64le. However, it immediately asserts due to probably some missing defintions for register sets, and I'm sure there are many other assertions and lurking bugs to be fixed, but this is much further along than before. The fork is on Github for others who wish to contribute; I will probably decommission the old jitpower project soon since it is now superfluous. More to come.


  1. Thank you for this post! I really appreciate that you take the time to test every new Firefox release on OpenPOWER with the PGO-LTO patches and post here about it!

    Also really good to know that there is still progress on the JIT development! It would really add value to the OpenPOWER platform to have a fast an good working JIT-enabled web browser (and no, Chromium with all the needed third party patches that will never be merged upstream doesn't count for me)!

    1. It's not just testing -- I'm typing this reply in it, so I really do dogfood the browser with those changes. Mozilla in the past has been willing to accept PowerPC and Power ISA patches into the tree, so that's good news when we get this done.


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