Next week, Nightly will switch to the 57 branch, beginning the development cycle of what will be the last train leaving the station towards Firefox 57. Around 5 months ago, I started writing the first one of these newsletters, which of course was well past when the Quantum Flow project got started. It's probably a good time for a retrospective on the way that we have come so far. During this time, many small and medium size performance projects were started.
Ehsan Akhgari is a programmer living in Toronto working for Mozilla. He has over 10 years of experience on browsers and the web platform and Firefox. Learn more about him here.
It has been almost a month and a half since the last time that I talked about our progress in fighting sync IPC issues. So I figured it's time to prepare another Sync IPC Analysis report. Again, unfortunately only the latest data is available in the spreadsheet. But here are screenshot of the C++ and JS IPC message pie charts: As you can see, as we have made even more progress in fixing more sync IPC issues, now the document.
Last week many Mozilla developers attended the Mozilla All Hands at San Francisco. I didn't attend the All Hands myself but from the activity on Bugzilla it looks like it was a productive week. :-) The intention behind the work week this time was to do focused work leveraging the face to face time that people have together with the goal of improving the 57 release. In the areas that I watch daily these days (mostly Speedometer V2 and [qf:p1] bugs) the focus was really great, and you will see the details in the acknowledgement section at the bottom.
We have about 13 more weeks before the train of Firefox 57 leaves the station. Next week many of you will be at the upcoming work week, so I thought it may be a good time to have some retrospection over our progress so far, just so that you can get a good sense of how to extrapolate when you are planning things next week. One difficulty with the Quantum Flow project is that since it touches many different areas of the browser, it doesn't lend itself very easily to drawing nice charts for it.
I'm back with some more updates on another week worth of work on improving various performance aspects of Firefox. Similar to the past weeks, Speedometer remains a big focus area for performance work. In addition to the many already identified bugs to work on, we are also still measuring the benchmark quite actively looking for more optimization opportunities. Another item worthy of an update is Background Hang Reports. Nika Layzell earlier today enabled collection of native stack traces on Win64 (and Mac) using the Gecko Profiler stack walking backend (Linux support soon to follow).
It has been a few weeks since I have given an update about our progress on reducing the amount of slow synchronous IPC messages that we send across our processes. This hasn't been because there hasn't been a lot to talk about, quite to the contrary, so much great work has happened here that for a while I decided it may be better to highlight other ongoing work instead. But now as the development cycle of Firefox 55 comes to a closing point, it's time to have another look at where we stand on this issue.