ailon's DevBlog: Development related stuff in my life

Oh, The Dramz: Mozilla blocks WPF

10/19/2009 8:52:31 AM

As someone who has been unpleasantly (but not critically) affected by the drama that ensued during the weekend after Mozilla’s decision to forcefully block .NET Assistant add-on and WPF plug-in on ALL Windows/Firefox installations around the world, I’ve been following a Bugzilla thread on the subject. Quite a fascinating reading.

A comment from Peter Schaefer perefectly summarizes how I feel about this unfortunate situation:

As understand the issue, Mozilla could have used its blocklist mechanism right if Microsoft had been smart enough to update the version number or name of the installed plugins along with their security patch. A solution would be to do this now and thus make the functionality work again for those who want it.

If you want to assign blame, which doesn't help anyone, Microsoft first messed things up, but now when trying to fix it both Mozilla and Microsoft have made suboptimal decisions, IMO.

As I see it the only reasonable way to resolve this satisfatorily and ASAP (which is really needed in the world utilizing affected technologies) is for Microsoft to release a dummy WPF plugin update with an updated version number that wouldn’t install on unpatched Windows and for Mozilla to unblock that version and leave the old one blocked.

I can only imagine what admins and helpdesks of affected companies are going through Today. My deepest condolences to you guys.

Update: the block on .NET Assistant (ClickOnce enabling add-on) has been removed on Sunday, so the problem is partially resolved. However WPF in-browser (XBAP) apps are still affected.

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