I’ve finally released Easy Passwords as a Web Extension (not yet through AMO review at the time of writing), so that it can continue working after Firefox 57. To be precise, this is an intermediate step, a hybrid extension meant to migrate data out of the Add-on SDK into the Web Extension part. But all the functionality is in the Web Extension part already, and the data migration part is tiny. Why did it take me so long? After all, Easy Passwords was created when Mozilla’s Web Extensions plan was already announced. So I was designing the extension with Web Extensions in mind, which is why it could be converted without any functionality changes now. Also, Easy Passwords has been available for Chrome for a while already.
The trouble was mostly the immaturity of the Web Extensions platform, which is why I chose to base the extension on the Add-on SDK initially (hey, Mozilla used to promise continued support for the Add-on SDK, so it looked like the best choice back then). Even now I had to fight a bunch of bugs before things were working as expected. Writing to clipboard is weird enough in Chrome, but in Firefox there is also a bug preventing you from doing so in the background page. Checking whether one of the extension’s own pages is open? Expect this to fail, fixed only very recently. Presenting the user with a file download dialog? Not without hacks. And then there are some strange keyboard focus issues that I didn’t even file a bug for yet.
There is still plenty more bugs and inconsistencies. For example, I managed to convert my Enforce Encryption extension so that it would work in Chrome, but it won’t work in Firefox due to a difference in the network stack. But Mozilla’s roadmap is set in stone, Firefox 57 it is. The good news: it could have been worse, Microsoft Edge shipped with an even more immature extensions platform. I complained about difficulties presenting a file download dialog to the user? In Edge, there are three bugs playing together nicely to make this task completely impossible: 1, 2, 3.