Open Bug 1542402 (WE-activityLog) Opened 3 years ago Updated 1 year ago

[meta] Add extension activity logging

Categories

(WebExtensions :: General, task)

task
Not set
normal

Tracking

(Not tracked)

People

(Reporter: aswan, Unassigned)

References

(Depends on 6 open bugs)

Details

(Keywords: meta)

Chrome has a similar feature:
https://developer.chrome.com/extensions/activityLogPrivate

Chrome also has a built-in UI for viewing these logs, though it is only in a non-release channel right now (and not documented anywhere)

This is a tracking bug to cover building something similar (though probably not interoperable) in Firefox.

Depends on: 1542403
Summary: Add extension activity logging → [meta] Add extension activity logging
Type: defect → task
Depends on: 1558366
Depends on: 1558367
Depends on: 1574566
Depends on: 1574568
Depends on: 1574599
Depends on: 1574626
Depends on: 1575537
Alias: WE-activityLog
No longer depends on: 1575537
Depends on: 1593236
Depends on: 1601357

Hello, can you please specify, how will this feature be different from about:addons ?

Flags: needinfo?(andrew.swan)

(In reply to Ajitesh from comment #1)

Hello, can you please specify, how will this feature be different from about:addons ?

They're completely different. about:addons is the primary way all Firefox users manage their addons (listing, enabling, disabling, setting preferences, etc.) This bug is about a feature for developers, reviewers, and sophisticated users to trace the detailed activity of individual extensions. This feature is not meant to provide information in a format that's useful for the average user, just for people who already have a thorough understanding of how extensions work.

Flags: needinfo?(andrew.swan)

So basically, we will try to track all the activated extensions in the browser in real time, like their network requests, altered browser setting etc. And display all this to user.
Am i correct? Please let me know, if i am wrong.

Flags: needinfo?(andrew.swan)

Also, Are there any planning for the UI development ?

Hi Ajitesh,
This is a meta issue, which means that it is used to collect all the issues related to the feature it is tracking (the Extension Activity Logging feature in this case).
The issues currently linked to this meta are related to implementing the ActivityLog API (which also required changes to the WebExtensions internals to notify to the ActivityLog API the extension activity served by the WebExtensions internals, e.g. Bug 1542403, and in the future it may require more changes to the DOM API internals to be able to notify other kind of activities, Bug 1558366), more issues will be filed and linked to this one to track the additional work needed to expose the feature to the users (e.g. the work on the UI side).

(In reply to Ajitesh from comment #3)

So basically, we will try to track all the activated extensions in the browser in real time, like their network requests, altered browser setting etc. And display all this to user.
Am i correct? Please let me know, if i am wrong.

yes, as part of some new bugzilla issues linked as dependencies of this meta issue, an "Extension Activity Logging" UI should be created (e.g. prototyped as a privileged extension), which should allow the users of this UI to decide what kind of activity to collect, and then allow the user to further analyze/filter/save/load these logs.

(In reply to Ajitesh from comment #4)

Also, Are there any planning for the UI development ?

Providing the ActivityLog API is clearly only one part of the entire "Extension Activity Logging" feature, to make these logs useful we also need to expose it to people (e.g. to allow a reviewer or a security researcher to analyze this logs) and/or other services (e.g. to be also analyzed and processed automatically in other ways).

Some UI development will definitely be necessary, e.g. to expose these logs to the "class of users" that are going to be interested into it (developers, reviewers, and sophisticated users as aswan pointed out in comment 2)

Flags: needinfo?(andrew.swan)

Chrome has similar feature but only for developers(activity logging is only available in Chrome Canary) but since we're publishing "Extension Activity Monitor" as an add-on we'll have to make it more user-friendly, right?? A lot of normal users will also end up using it

Does the activityLog API still have any official documentation? Referring to the JSON schema alone can be quite the task? Creating some sort of documentation will make it easier to work on the Extension Activity Logging, right?

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