Buggy Mozilla 1.2 Re-Called
Mike Angelo -- 29 November 2002 (c)
Plans are to replace Mozilla 1.2 with a yet to be produced Mozilla 1.2.1. Please see Figure 1.
Mozilla 1.2 was released for public downloading late in the night of 26 November 2002 and nearly three-weeks late in the release schedule. The Mozilla Roadmap called for Mozilla 1.2 to have been released on 6 November 2002. However, un-fixed bugs prevented Mozilla 1.2's release. Moreover, even after a nearly three-week release delay in order to fix bugs, Mozilla 1.2 still was not of release quality. Nevertheless, Mozilla management released it anyway.
Apparently a bad job of backing out some buggy code in preparation for the Mozilla 1.2 release caused a bunch of problems for Mozilla 1.2. According to David Baron of Harvard University in Comment #21 for Bugzilla Bug 167493, It looks like the 1.2-branch backout was done incorrectly. The 9 was not changed to an 8. (Bug links in the Resources section at the end of the article.)
This problem is so bad that the Mozilla Organization has set up a special meta-bug for tracking the problems caused by the bad back out of Bug 167493. That tracking-bug is Bugzilla Bug 182500 [1.2 branch] parser bugs due to bug 167493 . . .
This is a meta-bug whose dependencies will be problems caused by the incorrect backout described in bug 167493 comment 21. Some of these bugs have been reported as Windows-only, but I've also been able to reproduce them on a gcc 3.2.1 Linux build with -O2.
In Comment #2 to Bugzilla Bug 182500 Malcolm Rowe says, We may have to do something with the 1.2 branch anyway. Some of the checkins to the 1.2 branch disappeared from the 1.2 release - see bug 182506.
According to Bugzilla Bug 182506 (MOZILLA_1_2_RELEASE is missing some checkins from MOZILLA_1_2_BRANCH):
Fixes for at least the following bugs were made into MOZILLA_1_2_BRANCH, but have 'disappeared' from MOZILLA_1_2_RELEASE. That is, these bugs were thought to have been fixed in 1.2, but the 1.2 release tag does not include the fixed versions, though the 1.2 branch tip does.
Bug 178722: calling Array.sort() on an empty array returns undefined instead of an empty array
[venkman fix only]
Bug 124556: Crashing on random pages in 8-bit StaticGray class X11 server [nsImageGTK::DrawCompositedGeneral] [bug is critical, crash]
Bug 180339: Can't send message if receiver contain Chinese character
Bug 167663: [OS X]window disappears when clicking the maximize button (green +) [checkin similar to third attachment, but not identical]
Bug 173195: Changes in the Mozilla/Netscape Installer to run Palm Conduit Installer
However, in Comment #6 to Bugzilla Bug 182506 David Baron notes:
For the record, I'd think this probably doesn't affect the release builds, since the (major-platform, anyway) release builds are done from the branch before the release is tagged (and then tested to see if they're working correctly before they're considered the release). (Or has someone tested that it does?)
The problem is that the Mozilla project mangers are unable or unwilling to bring Mozilla development builds within quality control parameters within project release-time schedules. And that happens in part because the Mozilla code-base has become too darn clumsy and too darn buggy. What has happened here with Mozilla 1.2 is a glaring example of these things.
Moreover, this is not the first time Mozilla releases have been made with glaring problems that should have been fixed before the releases. Consider the Oingo browser and e-mail bugs in Mozilla 1.0. Don't forget the known privacy and security bugs that were not fixed prior to release of Mozilla 1.0 -- and so forth. Mozilla is not a quality product!
The points here are simple ones. The Mozilla developers are not getting bugs fixed on schedule. Bug counts are increasing. New code, such as new features and improvements, is being written to an increasingly buggy code base -- thus compounding the bug problems. Mozilla is a poorly managed project! Please see Table 1, below.
If you want to test Mozilla 1.2 for yourself, you can find the download links in our Mozilla 1.2 Release story.
Please see our Mozilla 0.9.9 release article for more information about, and a breakdown of, the targeted new, assigned, and reopened Mozilla bugs complex. For more information about how Mozilla bugs impact on the user experience please see our articles A Quick Look at Some Mozilla 1.0 Browser-Suite Annoyances, Bugs, And Issues, Mozilla 1.0 Browser Quick Look, and Mozilla 1.0 Browser-Suite's E-Mail & News Quick Look .
Incidentally, please check the MozillaQuest Magazine front-page (mozillaquest.com) sidebar every now and then for bug-count updates and for upcoming Mozilla Milestone progress updates.
Please see our article, Mozilla Roadmap Update: Mozilla 1.0 Set Back to April 2002, for more information about the October 2001 Mozilla Development Roadmap and development schedule revisions. There is lots of bug information in that article too. For the revised post-Mozilla 1.0 development roadmap and plan please see our articles, Moz 1.0 April Release Confirmed & Post-1.0 Development Plan Announced and New Mozilla Roadmap Sets 1.1 for 9 August 2002 and Effectively Kills Mozilla 1.0.x