User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-GB; rv:1.7.8) Gecko/20050511 Firefox/1.0.4 Build Identifier: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-GB; rv:1.7.8) Gecko/20050511 Firefox/1.0.4 Because Firefox and Thunderbird share the same extensions for extensions, installing extensions on Thunderbird requires more work than the simple click in firefox. I closed bug 285889 to open a more generic bug here to discuss better ways of handling this issue. Current ideas revolving changing extension extensions are up for discussion as well as any other ideas. Reproducible: Always
The main problem is that a browser simply can't decide what to do with an .xpi: if it is usable by both Firefox and Thunderbird, how should it know where you want it to be installed? In FF, in TB, in both? So, you'd need a way "Install this .xpi in TB" - this may be an idea for (yet) another FF extension. OTOH, the TB extension install dialog *does* support external URIs, you can simply enter the URI to the .xpi in the file location dialog. (Well, you /can/ even just download extensions using TB: set the URI to the .xpi as the mail start page and open that. Yes, this is really gruesome. ;-)
Hi My idea of renaming extensions can work. Different extensions for each product. This would obviously leave the need for two copies of the extension if it worked in both Firefox and Thunderbird but would remove this problem completely.
Of course it /can/ work, but basing anything upon file extensions instead of MIME types is quite bad, IMO. (Why should a file extension have anything to do with a file's content, anyway?) And having n different MIME types for the same kind of file is pretty awful. Having m different extension files that only differ in their file extension but not in their content is quite ugly and useless also.
Maybe the better solution would be if there was a way to call the Thunderbird extension installer instead of the firefox one from the updates site. As noted, the TB extension install dialog *does* support external URIs - but it's not clear from the interface that you can type in a URI in the 'Select an extension' dialog box. The other thing I hadn't realised was that you can drag a link from firefox into the thunderbird extensions manager.
why not do like other things (aim, yahoo, irc) do and fake a protocol handler? tbird://gettheme?http://www.site.com/theme.jar or tbird://getextension?http://www.site.com/extension.xpi that way it knows to let things (tbird) handle things with that protocol, and tbird does things right. of course tbird is subject to change (moztb?).
Flagging blocking-aviary2.0 as ? This should definitely be fixed and have a better method for handling extensions across Thunderbird and Firefox.
Related: bug 313468.
Maybe there needs to be some per-system 'XUL app registry' in which you can look up an executable name (or a execution line, e.g. "/path/to/myxulapp --install-extension $ext" with $ext set to the extension filename/URI) against the em:id value you find in the XPI. And if you have multiple em:id's there's be a listbox for selecting which app to install the XPI in.
I don't think we are going to be able to change how extensions get installed for 2.0. Could be an interesting topic for 3.0 though.
My suggestion in Bug 442550 was a duplicate - sorry for that. Here's my suggestion: When Thunderbird is installed, it installs an extension to Firefox, which changes the Firefox add-on installation process. Before Firefox-compatibility is checked, the add-on checks if it's compatible with Thunderbird (or both). If it is only compatible with Thunderbird, it shows a dialog that allows to install the extension to Thunderbird. If it is compatible with both (Firefox and Thunderbird), it shows a dialog that allows to choose which application it should be installed to. --- This isn't a Thunderbird-specific problem, though - it would be great if this worked for other Mozilla-based applications that can have add-ons, so it would of course be preferable, if Firefox included this functionality by default, allowing applications like Thunderbird, Sunbird, Songbird etc. to add their application data (GUID, profile/extension directory, application name, etc.) to a list of "also-XPI-using-applications" in Firefox, making this feature easy to use for others, too.
related bug 214319, and description at http://wiki.mozilla.org/Thunderbird:Extension_Installation This would be a big UX win and is in the list of goals for TB3, but unsure if this got pruned from the list of priority items. http://wiki.mozilla.org/Thunderbird:Thunderbird3
FWIW We now have (on trunk) the Get Add-ons pane in the Add-on manager, which should help a lot.
As much as i agree that we want a smoother experience than we have now, I don't think we'd block tb3 for this bug.