By May 15, 2009

Fennec Alpha 1 for Windows Mobile available

image The Alpha 1 of the Fennec browser fro Windows Mobile is now available and has been designed at this stage specifically for the HTC Touch Pro. Full details below:-

We are pleased to announce that Fennec Alpha 1 for Windows Mobile 6 is available for download by developers and testers. This is an early developer release intended for testing purposes only. We would like to invite interested Windows Mobile developers and users to join with Mozilla’s developer and user community to help develop, test and refine the product.

Since we started getting Fennec compiling on Windows Mobile a few months ago, we’ve made good progress:

  • JeMalloc, the memory management library developed by Jason Evans and used by Firefox, has been ported to Windows CE and turned on for Fennec. This allows Fennec to manage memory much more efficiently.
  • Fennec’s user interface controls have been rebuilt to be entirely CSS based. This will allow us to more easily adjust our UI for various screen sizes and resolutions in the future. Its also demonstrates how web technologies can be used to create compelling user interfaces. The look and feel will continue to evolve as we develop the product, but this release should give uses a sense of the direction its going in.
  • Finally, this release also supports Add-ons. Add-ons are integral to promoting openness and innovation on the web and are unique to Fennec in the mobile space. Its been amazing to see how many great Add-ons have popped up already. Take for instance the gestures module created by Felipe .



This release has been targeted and tested on the HTC Touch Pro. We will be adding support for more devices in future releases. To install on your device, you can either navigate to this cab installer from your phone’s current browser or download it to your desktop and copy it to your device via ActiveSync. Once on your device simply click on the cab and it will install to your device. For more detailed installation instructions, look here and of course, please read the release notes.

Again, please note that some carriers filter web traffic to prevent their users from downloading cab files. If downloading the cab simply hangs or you get a message reading “This page contains erros and cannot be displayed,” this is probably what’s happening. In this case you will either need to be connected via WiFi or use the ActiveSync method.

The first time you run Fennec it will spend some time creating your profile. This may take a minute or two, please be patient.

Known Issues

It is not yet recommended to use this release for daily browsing tasks. Certain performance problems will become immediately apparent to the user. Panning has a noticeable delay between the user first touching the page and the page moving. We are certain that other less obvious bugs exist and we invite you to help bring them to light. You can find detailed information on how to file a good bug in bugzilla , our bug tracking system, here .

Looking Forward

Following the same path we took on Maemo, where the browser now performs quite well, development will now focus on performance improvements. There are known and suspected performance hot spots that need to be investigated and optimized. There are very talented people working on the core Mozilla platform who will continue to speed up things like JavaScript, graphics and the DOM. We are excited about a set of optimizations for drawing that take advantage of graphics processors, which will help Fennec’s graphics performance (i.e. panning and zooming). We are also looking at enhancements to our networking layer to optimize for high latency networks.

Now that we have gotten to this point, the fun really begins. If you would like to help us by testing or developing the product, please visit the Mobile Firefox wiki . There you will find some information that we hope is useful in helping you find where to “plug in” to the effort. As always, you can find us on irc in the #mobile channel .

via Brads Blog

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