Mozilla Retires Add-on Collector

8 Mar/12

Remember the Firefox collections feature? No? Then you are not the only one. Back in 2009 Mozilla introduced collections to the official Firefox Add-ons repository. With this feature users could create their own add-on collections, and publish them  publicly on the Mozilla website. A collection usually listed between 5 and 30 different add-ons that other Firefox users could then install more comfortably in the browser.

There was no option to install all add-ons in one go though, but a third party add-on Massive Extender made that possible.  The collections in theory were quite useful, as many were curated by Firefox users in the know.  Mozilla itself created a few, for web developers and travelers for instance, and other users added theirs which soon became popular as well.

One of the issues here was that the creator of the collection had to maintain the list. Add-ons that were not updated anymore or even entirely removed by their author or Mozilla from the Add-ons repository had to be removed, new add-ons had to be added and so on.

firefox collections

Mozilla yesterday announced that it has made the decision to retire the Add-on Collector. The core reason for retiring the extension are the following:

The add-on is not popular, only “a few hundred people have used the add-on in the past few months”.The Add-on Collector would need a rewrite of all APIs once Mozilla goes forward with plans to improve the collections feature.Some of the features that the add-on offered were already integrated into the site natively.

Firefox users should not confuse the Add-on Collector add-on, with the collections feature itself. From the announcement it is clear, that Mozilla plans to retire the former and improve the latter.

Have you used collections in the past? If so, which features would you like to see to make the feature more attractive and usable? (via Techdows)

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