we have a tremendously popular plugin checker and its getting better each release. the current incarnation figures out what plugins you have, then recomends plugin updates you should get. expanding on this idea firefox knows about a list of crashes you have encountered, and we have data in crash-stats, on sumo, and other nooks and crannies that connect up the users to possible plugin updates, malware removal, or firefox configuration changes or updates that might fix the crashes that you are seeing. we could create an addon that interacts with the web service to make recommendations on how to make your firefox more stable. https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/11217 might be the start of this addon but it needes UI so I can always get back to a presenation that shows what I can do, and not just be shown at crash time or session restore.
the client side addon piece could also look beyond the list of recent crashes, but also find modules running in the browser, or items in the system process list that might have conflicts or be doing evil stuff on your system. the web service could also be a repository for this list of bad actors that our outside the scope of addons and plugins and things we have difficulty in disabling or uninstalling. in these case we could just present the diagnositic info and a warning that bad stuff appears to be running.
If this all sounds like what anti-virus software does, then yeah, it might be. but the intention is that its a very light weight [as in extremely], and its populated with things that we discover as direct attacks on Firefox or things that we discover are creating Firefox instability. Its things that we can't reach though plugin or addon blocking, but we still want to communicate with users about possible danger we can see that they are under. they are things that we learn out of crash analysis and spot in press and user comments like under these tracking bugs. https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/showdependencytree.cgi?id=512788&hide_resolved=1 and https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/showdependencytree.cgi?id=423968&hide_resolved=0
http://support.mozilla.com/en-US/kb/Crash+signature+-+RtlpCoalesceFreeBlocks+or+RtlAllocateHeap?bl=n is an example of the support information that is hosted on sumo for any particular crash. the client addon would figure out how to get the user navigated to that content if they encountered a crash with the signature RtlpCoalesceFreeBlocks or RtlAllocateHeap
basic protocol might look like after crash report gets submitted the client contacts the crash-stats to get the signature client contacts the web service to find out what help is available for a given signature... maybe this list is just grabbed periodically client uses the link for a signature to point at where the help info lives we might not be able to build this out until we start processing all the crash reports
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