Stub installer and installer unreadable for ar, he, hi-IN, ja, ko, mr, th, zh-CN, and zh-TW builds on WinXP due to the font not being installed by default

RESOLVED WONTFIX

Status

()

RESOLVED WONTFIX
6 years ago
2 years ago

People

(Reporter: amir.aharoni, Unassigned)

Tracking

Firefox Tracking Flags

(Not tracked)

Details

(Reporter)

Description

6 years ago
I tried to install Firefox in Marathi on a Windows XP computer in an Internet cafe in Mumbai (Marathi is the main language of Mumbai). It failed at the first stage: the installer showed squares instead of Marathi (Devanagari) letters, because support for Marathi was not installed on that computer.

This problem is very common: Windows XP does not install almost any non-Latin fonts by default, and a lot of people don't know how to install them.

Luckily, there are freely-licensed fonts for many languages. For Marathi, for example, it's Lohit Marathi. The localized build should have include this font by default, or to download and install it on the system if it detects that no font is available for characters that are used in the installer.
Note: we don't require admin to install but fonts do require admin to install.
OS: Linux → Windows XP
Hardware: x86_64 → x86
Summary: a localized build cannot be installed if there's no matching font on the computer → Installer unreadable for mr builds on WinXP due to the font not being installed by default.
(Reporter)

Comment 2

6 years ago
I don't mean to nitpick about the title, but this issue obviously affects many languages and not just Marathi. All the languages of India are definitely affected, as well as Khmer and some others.
Understood and that was considered. The problem is without the specific languages affected this bug will not get any traction towards getting fixed since there is no generic fix for all affected locales that Windows doesn't provide font support for.

Comment 4

6 years ago
(In reply to Amir Aharoni from comment #2)
> I don't mean to nitpick about the title, but this issue obviously affects
> many languages and not just Marathi. All the languages of India are
> definitely affected, as well as Khmer and some others.

Confirm this problem is reported by other locales as well. It would be great if we can figure out a solution for this issue. 

Perhaps bundling open licensed fonts with localized builds a possible solution?
(In reply to arky from comment #4)
> (In reply to Amir Aharoni from comment #2)
> > I don't mean to nitpick about the title, but this issue obviously affects
> > many languages and not just Marathi. All the languages of India are
> > definitely affected, as well as Khmer and some others.
> 
> Confirm this problem is reported by other locales as well. It would be great
> if we can figure out a solution for this issue. 
> 
> Perhaps bundling open licensed fonts with localized builds a possible
> solution?
See comment #1.

Axel, I don't think there is a clear path forward to resolve this since we allow non admins to install. Perhaps these locales could include a message on the intro page in English (there currently isn't room though UX should be able to come up with something) with a brief message and a link to a web page with details on how to resolve this for the affected windows versions and locales? It isn't pretty but it is better than just using en-US for the entire installer as we did previously.
This is kind-of intentional. It's hard to know if we need a font to begin with, let alone permissions to actually install one.

The idea why we're offering the localized installer is that we assume that people interested in using Firefox in that particular language can work on the specific OS with that specific language already.

I also think that this doesn't just affect the installer, but also the UI, as, IIRC, that's using the system font rendering, and not ours. At least it used to.

Fixing other people's font issues on Windows and OSX isn't really our problem, let alone that we don't have even descent fonts for some languages available in licenses that we could use.

Also, I wouldn't want to install some font on people's machines that then performs less good than for example a proprietory font already installed.

Can you see the localized download page on a windows system that doesn't support that language to begin with?
Can you see the localized download page on a windows system that doesn't support that language to begin with?
Flags: needinfo?(amir.aharoni)
(Reporter)

Comment 8

6 years ago
(In reply to Robert Strong [:rstrong] (do not email) from comment #7)
> Can you see the localized download page on a windows system that doesn't
> support that language to begin with?

Probably not, and investigating this question made me find some issues with that page, which I shall report separately, but the question is not so relevant.

It is unlikely that a person will land on a localized page in the first place, because it is shown only if a non-English Accept-Language is defined. I don't have hard data, but very few people bother to change their Accept-Language setting. (Maybe it's possible to find statistics about Accept-Language in mozilla.org's access logs.)

But the "other systems and languages", from which links to all languages are available can be read by anybody. If I understand correctly, it's in English anyway.
Flags: needinfo?(amir.aharoni)
(Reporter)

Comment 9

6 years ago
(In reply to Axel Hecht [:Pike] from comment #6)
> This is kind-of intentional. It's hard to know if we need a font to begin
> with, let alone permissions to actually install one.

It should be possible to check it by using the relevant font APIs in each system. Try to see whether any glyphs are available for required characters.

> The idea why we're offering the localized installer is that we assume that
> people interested in using Firefox in that particular language can work on
> the specific OS with that specific language already.

That assumption is quite likely not-so-correct. Most people that I meet in all countries, and particularly in India, have no idea how to install and configure fonts even if they are tech-savvy.

> I also think that this doesn't just affect the installer, but also the UI,
> as, IIRC, that's using the system font rendering, and not ours. At least it
> used to.

Of course. The installer is just the first thing that they see, and installation is also a good chance to set fonts up.

> Fixing other people's font issues on Windows and OSX isn't really our
> problem, let alone that we don't have even descent fonts for some languages
> available in licenses that we could use.

The "not our problem" issue is a question of policy. Mozilla can decide to use Firefox's ubiquity to make the web in more languages more accessible. Mozilla can also decide the other way.

Font availability is also not much of an issue. Fixing this only for languages for which fonts are available is much better than nothing. Fonts with Free licenses are available for most languages of India - the large Lohit family, as well as Meera for Malayalam, and some others.

> Also, I wouldn't want to install some font on people's machines that then
> performs less good than for example a proprietory font already installed.

If a font is already available, then don't install it.
Duplicate of this bug: 943836
Summary: Installer unreadable for mr builds on WinXP due to the font not being installed by default. → Stub installer and installer unreadable for ar, he, hi-IN, ja, ko, mr, th, zh-CN, and zh-TW builds on WinXP due to the font not being installed by default
Andrei, could you check if this bug also affect Windows 7 for these locales? Thanks!
Flags: needinfo?(andrei.vaida)
(In reply to Robert Strong [:rstrong] (use needinfo to contact me) from comment #11)
> Andrei, could you check if this bug also affect Windows 7 for these locales?
> Thanks!

Hi Robert! This bug does not affect Windows 7 for the following locales: ar, he, hi-IN, th, ja, ko, mr, th, zh-CN, zh-TW.
Flags: needinfo?(andrei.vaida)
This bug is for the ar, he, hi-IN, th, ja, ko, mr, th, zh-CN, and zh-TW locales on Wind XP and since we no longer support XP except on the esr52 branch this is wontfix. If Win 7 has a similar issue please file a new bug and specify the locale(s) affected.
Status: NEW → RESOLVED
Last Resolved: 2 years ago
Resolution: --- → WONTFIX
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