Pale Moon for Android public beta!

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Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby Moonchild » Mon Jun 23, 2014 7:45 am

Note: this build is for testing purposes only and is at all times used at your own risk. It may be unstable and may crash, do unexpected things, erase your files or set your hair on fire.

I've built a public beta version of Pale Moon for Android (ARMv7 or later). If you are feeling adventurous and want to give it a try, you can do so by downloading the package from the Pale Moon FTP server and installing it. I may add it to the Google Play store later on, but for now the installation method isn't much more difficult.

Note: if you haven't done so yet, you should enable the installation of Apps from "unknown sources" in your Android system settings, under Security, to allow Apps to install from other sources than the Google Play market.

How to install:
  1. Download the .apk from the Pale Moon FTP server using the built-in web browser. If your built-in web browser has trouble with the FTP link provided, you can alternatively download the .apk over http.
  2. Open it with the Package Installer
  3. Give it the requested permissions

This will add a Pale Moon icon to your Android device which you can tap to open the browser.

Known issues with this beta version:
  1. Installing mobile extensions from addons.mozilla.org doesn't work.
    To make it work, you will have to go to about:config and toggle general.useragent.compatMode.firefox to true

Constructive feedback appreciated! If you have an issue to report, please be descriptive, thanks!

EDIT: Sync should work to synchronize with your Pale Moon desktop version.
Last edited by Moonchild on Mon Jun 23, 2014 4:32 pm, edited 3 times in total.
Reason: Added http link + Note about "Unknown sources"
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby access2godzilla » Mon Jun 23, 2014 2:19 pm

The in-built browser seems to be unable to handle the FTP URL, at least on my device. You may need to serve it via HTTP.
BTW, you may also want to mention the "Enable unknown sources", otherwise people won't be able to sideload APKs.
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby Moonchild » Mon Jun 23, 2014 4:27 pm

Thanks, I didn't have any issues myself but I gather some mobile browsers are going to be very limited... Added HTTP link + Note about the unknown sources thing..
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby madriss » Mon Jun 23, 2014 5:28 pm

Awesome news! Downloaded it right away and it's working well so far on my Nexus 5. Will start using this as default and let you know if I run into anything funky :D

Thanks a lot for including the double tap to reflow option already :thumbup: Although, I'm struggling to see the difference between it being on or off to be honest. Hope you won't mind me mentioning that I wish there was an option to have it reflow when zooming in (e.g. how Opera or Dolphin do it), it makes things so much more readable. I hear it used to work like that in Firefox Mobile 23 but then it got taken away. Google took it away too so it doesn't work in Chrome either or any other app that uses Android's web view :( Don't know what they were thinking! Maybe you will be able to resurrect it from Firefox 23 into Pale Moon one day :shifty: it would be a near perfect browser for me with that feature!

Anyway nice job, great beta.
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby Moonchild » Mon Jun 23, 2014 8:06 pm

Scratch my previous (now deleted) post.
I had a closer look at the double-tap-to-reflow setting and it is, in fact, the reflow-on-zoom setting - just renamed. (browser.zoom.reflowOnZoom).
As far as I can tell it works properly. Keep in mind that text reflow will not occur on pages where the constraining element (e.g. a table, div or block) has a fixed width.
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby madriss » Mon Jun 23, 2014 8:19 pm

I didn't see your previous post but that's awesome if that's the case :D however it definitely doesn't seem to be working for me, I'm trying this test page I found:
http://david.von-oheimb.de/tmp/test-reflow.html

I've attached a pic of Opera's implementation of it, beside Pale Moon which does nothing.

Also, this shows the best I can get out of double tapping - all it really does is zooms in/out to a level that makes the text fit the screen width, which doesn't really help as it's still tiny:
http://i.imgur.com/wfLZeOK.jpg
(Firefox seems to do the exact same thing)

Thanks again for looking at this, I know it's not a Firefox feature anymore and that it's very early days :)
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby lobocursor » Mon Jun 23, 2014 8:37 pm

I am looking the Android version in my Polaroid 4.0.3 tablet. Finally I can browse on this thing!!! So far it need some brnding touches since the task of Health Report and some config screens still says Firefox. I will see if Ifind a tool for made screenshoots meanwhile I will kiss goodbye-farewell to Opera! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!! AT LAST!

EDIT: Screenshoots Added odd colors from lame screenshot app that want payment for made decent ones.

2014_06_23_15.55.51.png

2014_06_23_15.57.19.png
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby Moonchild » Mon Jun 23, 2014 9:38 pm

We'll just have to call it a limited feature then.
It does reflow text if you focus on one part of the text with double-tap, and surrounding text would flow off the screen. It does not reflow-on-pinch when zooming in, which is what you are looking for. The page you pointed to has already-flowed text, and of course double-tapping that text won't do anything because you're zooming to the width of the already-flowed text element. You can configure default text inflation as well, but that's not what you want.

I think there's a way I can make the text reflow on both zoom in and out (it currently only does so on zooming out), but I'll have to test that.
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby ashdav » Mon Jun 23, 2014 10:09 pm

I've found that pinch and expand doesn't work with any website.Previously used Opera mini which does do this.
Double tap reflow doesn't do anything.
I'm using Cyanogenmod 10.3 on a Galaxy S2.
This is just for feedback not criticism.
Would be nice to have the ability to set a homepage rather than the most used.
It's a bit too close to the Firefox browser at the moment.
Early days but keep up the good work.
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby madriss » Mon Jun 23, 2014 10:22 pm

Yeah I meant reflow as in, when you zoom into a block of text to make it bigger, it would force that text to fit the width of the screen at the zoomed size by applying some sort of text wrapping such that there's no sidescrolling needed to read it, (see the Pale Moon screenshot vs the Opera one). Neither Firefox or Pale Moon do this on tapping, zooming in, or zooming out right now.
(Double tap doesn't really seem to reflow anything, it just auto-zooms to a level where the text block happens to fit the width of the screen, which of course on that example page yes it means just zooming out entirely, or doing nothing if you're already zoomed out, like you say).

I've downloaded the old Firefox 23 version now and taken a screenshot to show you what it was exactly that I was referring to and hoping might get brought back. The implementation is far from perfect and not as good as Opera's, which is why it got removed I think, but having the option available was a lot better than nothing.

Not sure how hard it would be to get that code out of Firefox 23 but just wanted to make sure the suggestion was out there, I know a lot of people were disappointed when it got removed and it was a good feature for accessibility. Version 23 was from July last year and as far as I know Mozilla don't care about this or intend to improve it & put it back :(
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby Moonchild » Mon Jun 23, 2014 10:38 pm

madriss wrote:The implementation is far from perfect and not as good as Opera's, which is why it got removed I think, but having the option available was a lot better than nothing.

The implementation was problematic.
Bringing it back as it was in FF23 is not an option, I looked at the code and it just won't do anything but tarpit the browser if it's put back the way it was.

ashdav wrote:Would be nice to have the ability to set a homepage rather than the most used.

There's an extension to do this.

ashdav wrote:It's a bit too close to the Firefox browser at the moment.

As opposed to what? Pale Moon is Firefox-based. it's not a brand new from scratch browser ;)
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby Supernova » Mon Jun 23, 2014 11:19 pm

Moonchild wrote:
ashdav wrote:Would be nice to have the ability to set a homepage rather than the most used.

There's an extension to do this.

I'm not a PM for android user, but such a feature looks "basic" enough to justify to be done a core feature, no ? (Of course it isn't the priority now, when a stable browser with sync working and correct branding is, but for future it would be good imho)
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby Moonchild » Mon Jun 23, 2014 11:24 pm

There is no UI or setting for a custom home page in fennec. Even the extension available for it does it with an on-load redirect.
As such it's not "basic" to implement, and it's better to present people with a page on mobile that is known to "always work", preferably without network access.
i.e.: something internal.
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby lobocursor » Tue Jun 24, 2014 1:41 am

Let share the joy, this topic is now in Spanish! ;)

https://forum.palemoon.org/viewtopic.php?f=9&t=4975
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby access2godzilla » Tue Jun 24, 2014 6:33 am

Moonchild wrote:The implementation was problematic.

Would some kind of new implementation be worked upon sometime in the future, if not now? Text reflow is very important and the Firefox implementation SUCKS. (Do try using Opera and then come back to Firefox.)

Moonchild wrote:Pale Moon is Firefox-based. it's not a brand new from scratch browser

I understand that, but hopefully it will be something more than just a rebranded browser? I know it's early days, but just rebranding a browser and releasing it is just a magnet for 1-star ratings.

BTW, I would like to see the excessive branding (on the home page) removed. I know I'm using FF(PM), so no need to paste the FF(PM) logo and the text there; and maybe make it something clean like desktop PM's about:newtab.
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby Moonchild » Tue Jun 24, 2014 9:50 am

Understand one thing above all: I'm pushing for an Android version in an accelerated way because Mozilla broke sync, leaving Pale Moon desktop users dead in the water if they want to sync their mobile devices. This means it will be released as-is because people want something to be able to sync mobile with desktop, and Pale Moon for Android will be able to do that. Yes, it will be close to Firefox/Android. That probably won't change, unless we get a dedicated maintainer for this.
I honestly don't have time to go all-out on the mobile version, there is only so much one person can do, and the way Android is programmed is significantly different than desktop (it's java-based, uses XML, etc.). My personal focus will ALWAYS remain on the Windows version for desktop. That is what I have experience in, that is the biggest user base, that has the most weight for the entire Pale Moon project.

If you want to see changes to the PM/Android layout, want to improve on its presentation, or want a better reflow, you are most welcome to jump right in and submit patches. Yes you probably don't want to hear "patches welcome", but that is how it is, folks. I'm not a full-blown team in a single body, there are limits to what I can do.
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby x-15a2 » Tue Jun 24, 2014 12:20 pm

First and foremost... THANKS!!! This is a great step forward!

A few things I've noticed:
- If you have the previous test release installed, you'll want to uninstall it before installing this βeta. The previous release was called PaleMoon, this one is Pale Moon. If left behind, you'll end up with 2 identically named sync accounts

- The Pale Moon branding is much better in this version, but I still found some FF crumbs:
* Sync is still branded as Firefox Sync (but has PM icon)
* The small icon in the Android status bar is from FF

- I'm still having issues getting sync to work, but that may be something on my side... I'll test again when I have a minute
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby danielson » Tue Jun 24, 2014 12:51 pm

Working just fine here on Nexus 7!

Special thanks to Martin (GHacks) for the tip and to Mr. PaleMoon for this pleasant surprise! :clap:
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby JSB2000 » Tue Jun 24, 2014 5:13 pm

Working great on my Nexus 7 as well. Syncs up perfectly with the desktop versions (Linux and Windows).

I've been using it to death to look for bugs/quirks but so far, so good.
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Re: Pale Moon for Android public beta!

Postby silvermoonwolf74 » Tue Jun 24, 2014 5:35 pm

I'm testing the Pale Moon for Android. It seems to load pages faster than Firefox for Android did and I love that it supports Flash.

However, I can't install any Firefox extensions. It says I'm using the wrong browser and the Firefox install button is grayed out. Will Pale Moon for Android support Firefox for Android extensions in a future release?

Thank you so much!
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