The system is working. We found a crash bug soon after it was introduced, and saved Firefox users pain and aggravation.
Yesterday, dbaron was looking through data from crash-stats.mozilla.com and found a spike in crashes on nightly builds. Because this was a bug related to delivering stream data to plugins, an area that I rewrote for Firefox 4, dbaron cc’ed me as he filed bug 646839.
It turns out that a new feature in Adblock Plus was eating some error codes, leaving our plugin code in a bad state. This resulted in crashes. And the new version of Adblock Plus was schedule for release to Firefox release users soon! Because of dbaron’s quick discovery, a nightly user base who runs beta versions of extensions, and quick thinking all around, we were able to avert a problem for users of Firefox release builds.
This kind of success story is possible because of many tools and systems which interact, but it is mostly possible because Firefox development is an open community where everyone works together and we don’t hide our flaws. And that’s why I love working on Firefox.
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