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Well, as I finish off my last year here at Seneca College with my friends some would think that our time with Mozilla might be done.  Personally, I don’t think you can get rid of me that easily.  The more rigid release schedules may slow down but my involvement with the open source world is never done (at least not anymore).

After I see my code get into Tinderbox I think I’ll go lean towards a more interesting hobby of mine which is xen virtualization.  Start dabbling in that again as there are quite a few possibilities to explore like VMGL (OpenGL drivers which allow for native fps on virtualized images.  Currently only at OpenGL1.5) or there still being the lack of a management interface to control VMs.

All-in-all, I’ve had a great time working for Mozilla and I think I’ve found a niche for myself in this vast world of software.


Well another release comes with more waiting time from the review team from tinderbox.  Despite clearly stating in a few FAQs on bugzilla not to contact people directly with email I’ve reached an impass.. Looks like some of my code waiting for review on the Make showbuilds.cgi more informative bug hasn’t been touched in almost a month..

I have newer code that I’m debaiting just checking in at this stage.  I’ve held back mainly because I didn’t want to add futher complexity to my already questionable code review (you never know with Tinderbox really).

On another note I’ve updated/fixed/fine tuned another tinderbox release.  All information, as usual, is available at for review.  New features include:

  • Smoothed out UI by relocated links to make a more vertically compact layout.
  • Bugfix: build machine log files were only displayed for first build machine in tree.

I also introduce comment support today as well.. Look for it in a few hours.  I just have a few bugs to quash and all will be well.

Well.. After using cls’s demo as a starting point I’ve built up the tinderbox front end to look like my original designs release way back. Except now it’s not using json but is generated using Perl code directly in Here’s the work:


It looks good in elinks too (mind you there is no color though) so I’m hoping with a few more tweaks the changes will be close to done.

Though I’d still like to see a few more things added to the front page while I have it in my possession. For example, I’d like to add a link to log files generated during builds as well. The current setup of the front page also overwrites the existing showbuilds.cgi default. I’m not sure if this is a good idea up front because people may not want or may not be expecting a front page change.. Therefore I’m assuming putting a link from showbuilds.cgi to the new front page may be a better idea until the page is better adopted by the public.

This release also uses some CSS!  Therefore users will be able to craft their own stylesheets to  make tinderbox look as they please…

The fron tend for Tinderbox will now be based off of the first draft that I posted for it.  Ever.  I’m now using cls’s Tinderbox example and just shoving all of the good looks into that little package.  It’s even possible that CSS will make it into this release as long as it passes the tests.

Testing is done by browsing the site using elinks.  If all looks good then it’s possible I’ll be in the clear.  I’m also debating about dusting off my old home server and slapping Tinderbox on it so users can view my work.  The challenge isn’t the install as much as it is the relatively delicate and long install process of Tinderbox.  But it will get done.

After I have Tinderbox available publicly again I’ll have some easy contrib work to do!  Basically consists of elinks + browsing my work to ensure there are no bugs, errors, or the like.

Well, it seems that the over hasty plans for using JSON output on the Tinderbox application may not end up being realized.  The main reasons being the usual assortment: security issues, Tinderbox becoming too complex, speed issues, and demand being low for the feature.

The JSON feature will be dropped in hopes of accomplishing the primary goal of building the new user front end.  Since the HTML will not change that will not need to be rewritten.  However, the AJAX/JS will be dropped to provide a static front end.

Well, construction of the Tinderbox UI moves forward.. I’m still working out some details but all in all things more forward.

I should be releasing some new contribution ideas shortly so stay tuned for that as well.

Well, after a bit of silence due to the Christmas break I’ll finish rolling out my Tinderbox improvements.  There is not much left to do in terms of the front page aesthetics, however, there are still a few more ideas that I would like to apply.

One idea being the ability to parse Tinderbox information in a more efficient manner.  This could include placing Mozilla build information into tables, graphs, and other more readily readable formats.  As it stands now, gathering and analyzing large amounts of information is very time consuming.  There is no one location that a user could go to gather the information and is forced to check each build individually.  This should all change with the introduction of my concept which will localize information into a singular page or area.

My Tinderbox front end code has been slightly delayed for release because of the joys of UNIX! It’s always a surprise working with UNIX and I guess today was no different. After accidentally hibernating my computer running the regular Ubuntu kernel and rebooting it into the XEN Ubuntu kernel things got a little messy.  I’m surprised there was no safeguard against this as it caused all hibernated programs to immediately segfault and lockup my computer.  Upon restart the fdsk utility promptly repaired about four thousand broken files, links, and other things (which is NEVER good).  But as mentioned, the data was still solid and intact..

Well, for the final release of the semester I’m planning on having tinderbox work dynamically off of the patch that I’ve fixed up since my 0.2 release.  This will involve me reworking the code that I’ve written for the 0.2 release and shoving some more javascript into the tinderbox index page from the 0.1.

After a good 5 hours online with Rob Helmer I finally figured it out. I got Tinderbox working locally on my Ubuntu computer. The main pitfalls were finding which packages were needed to get the install actually working correctly. Afterwards, there were a few files that I needed to manually copy over by hand (thanks to broken makefiles) and it was golden.

I’ll post up a complete guide when I get the time to do so, otherwise anyone is welcome to come to me with questions. Note that I only got Bonsai (which is another required program) working just enough to get by.. So I won’t be of much help in that area.

Well, my tinderbox presentation on Friday went nice and smoothly. The class seemed to understand the project well and didn’t have too many questions. Despite my lack of contribution ideas I was presented with some good ones by Chris Tyler.

The main stumbling point for my project right now is getting a running instance of tinderbox on my home machine. This will allow me to test my new code that I’m trying to contribute to tinderbox that will make my front page possible. So far it’s been quite a challenge. The contribution idea was if anyone wanted to try their hand at setting up a Bonsai server or Tinderbox server then that would be greatly appreciated.