F-Droid

Anything related to the Android/mobile version of Pale Moon.

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waddy

F-Droid

Unread post by waddy » 2014-09-25, 19:52

Moonchild, can you release this app on F-Droid? I feel that it would certainly meet the requirements and make it much easier to update for non-Google Play users!

dark_moon

Re: F-Droid

Unread post by dark_moon » 2014-09-26, 08:00

Welcome to the forum!

We ask Moonchild to do this but he say no :(
I would like it too, since it is easy for us users to update and i didn't have a google store on my handy.
Mozilla have Firefox in F-Droid too!

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Re: F-Droid

Unread post by Moonchild » 2014-09-26, 08:02

No, I will not release this on F-Droid. I actually looked into it and ended up wasting quite a bit of time jumping through the hoops of their submission process before realizing it was blocked by a conflict of interest. It's not for lack of trying.

Pale Moon may meet the requirements of Open Source distribution through it, but F-Droid doesn't meet the requirements of proper developer control over my own product to distribute through them. F-Droid is simply not for Pale Moon since:
  • I cannot sign my own packages (all developers there have to allow F-Droid to sign their software and publish it with F-Droid's signature)
  • I cannot control the build environment used to build the binaries (they build the program on their server)
  • I cannot test the binaries before release
  • If there is a problem with the binaries (either by accident or on purpose), it will immediately reflect on me while it would be F-Droid's fault. This puts F-Droid in a position of power over software developers that I am not comfortable with (nor should any other app developer be).
  • They don't accept pre-built APKs (with the single exception of MozCo's builds of Mozilla Firefox, because, well, I guess they are in some sort of agreement there - who knows why they have this one very notable exception...).
  • F-Droid operators are also not happy about the prerequisites for building Pale Moon since it has a lot of dependencies and is very complex to build. I can't go and redesign the build requirements just to satisfy their needs for building on their side (which I don't want to begin with)
  • At least some of the operators there seem to think MPL or FOSS = Public Domain... :roll:
They are explicitly forbidden to build Pale Moon with official name and branding from source, as a result.

More details in the pull request discussion: https://gitlab.com/fdroid/fdroiddata/merge_requests/260
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Supernova

Re: F-Droid

Unread post by Supernova » 2014-09-26, 08:02


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Re: F-Droid

Unread post by Moonchild » 2014-09-26, 08:05

I guess I'll make this a sticky since I expect more people to have the same question in the future.
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dark_moon

Re: F-Droid

Unread post by dark_moon » 2014-09-26, 08:21

I read it and wow i didn't know what is so strange.
Hope they change the way how apps are verified, so they just host your signed build.
But i didn't have much hope :(

Thanks for posting it, Moonchild!

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Re: F-Droid

Unread post by x-15a2 » 2014-09-26, 12:46

dark_moon wrote:I read it and wow i didn't know what is so strange.
Hope they change the way how apps are verified, so they just host your signed build.
But i didn't have much hope :(

Thanks for posting it, Moonchild!
I was so disappointed by F-Droid's methods that I removed their app from both of my devices. It seems like a good idea on the surface, but digging in deeper (like Moonchild did) reveals a dark side to the process.

waddy

Re: F-Droid

Unread post by waddy » 2014-09-26, 18:21

Moonchild wrote: More details in the pull request discussion: https://gitlab.com/fdroid/fdroiddata/merge_requests/260
Sad, but after reading that I can see your reasoning and don't blame you. Thanks for trying!

ddorian

Re: F-Droid

Unread post by ddorian » 2014-12-03, 12:10

F-droid allows you to create your own repo, so users can easily add it to there client and use binaries built and signed by you (Similar to ordinary linux repos). The requirement on the server side seems so be only a webserver. Eventually this an alternative for you, so people can install (and update) palemonn with f-droid.
For details see https://f-droid.org/wiki/page/Setup_an_FDroid_App_Repo

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Re: F-Droid

Unread post by Moonchild » 2014-12-03, 15:11

No, please see the discussion on F-Droid. F-Droid builds the binaries on F-Droid servers and requires those binaries to be signed by the F-Droid operators with their key. That is not acceptable. It doesn't matter how F-Droid is being fed the source code of the software, it's still built by them and signed by them, on their server and only under their control.
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ddorian

Re: F-Droid

Unread post by ddorian » 2014-12-03, 18:22

I have read the discussion here and on F-Droid before posting and I totally understand your points. But I think we are speaking about two different things.
It is true that they are building and signing the apps in the main repo and the whole discussion on F-Droid is about getting Pale Moon in there.
But one can easily set up an own repo. The user has to add it by himself to the client before being able to install software from it. Here is the part of there server doc that explicitly talks about it https://f-droid.org/manual/fdroid.html# ... Repository

However I can understand if getting Pale Moon to F-Droid (and by that most likely increasing the time you have to spend on other things than developing) is at the moment not really what you want. I just wanted to show up this option. If so, please consider this done and keep up your great work!

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Re: F-Droid

Unread post by Moonchild » 2014-12-03, 19:34

Binary repos is indeed news to me, must be some recent development.

Still there remains an issue as long as the software isn't in the main F-Droid repo: how many F-Droid users will actually go in and select individual repos for individual pieces of software? :) I think it'd be a lot easier for people to just download the APK and install it.
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ddorian

Re: F-Droid

Unread post by ddorian » 2014-12-03, 19:47

I think the biggest advantage would be, that the user hasn't to look for the updates himself. So bug and security updates would reach them faster. But I have no idea if the number of users that would use it makes it worth the effort.

dark_moon

Re: F-Droid

Unread post by dark_moon » 2014-12-04, 21:31

Pale Moon updates over F-Droid would be awesome. And for user is add a repo to F-Droid simply.
Anyway all users which install F-Droid can add such a repo.

So i would give feedback for the repo then :)

dark_moon

Re: F-Droid

Unread post by dark_moon » 2014-12-11, 21:50

News. I found today this:

F-droid-web is a simple and lightweight web interface to f-droid server. It provide a way:
  • via qr-codes to register automatically the repository in the fdroid app
  • to browse your f-droid catalogue by
  • app's name, summary and description
  • app's type of license
  • app's category
  • an atom feed with the last apps registered.
  • a JSON export of categories, licenses and all the result of search
Read more here: https://github.com/dervishe-/f-droid-web/wiki

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Re: F-Droid

Unread post by Moonchild » 2014-12-12, 10:37

A web interface to the F-Droid server is pointless. It's for things listed in the F-Droid main repo AFAICT, and not in user-added ones. It's just a different front-end using a web page.
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dark_moon

Re: F-Droid

Unread post by dark_moon » 2014-12-12, 10:44

Oh okay. Didn't know that.

xuhdev

Re: F-Droid

Unread post by xuhdev » 2015-03-13, 20:04

Moonchild wrote:No, I will not release this on F-Droid. I actually looked into it and ended up wasting quite a bit of time jumping through the hoops of their submission process before realizing it was blocked by a conflict of interest. It's not for lack of trying.

Pale Moon may meet the requirements of Open Source distribution through it, but F-Droid doesn't meet the requirements of proper developer control over my own product to distribute through them. F-Droid is simply not for Pale Moon since:
  • I cannot sign my own packages (all developers there have to allow F-Droid to sign their software and publish it with F-Droid's signature)
  • I cannot control the build environment used to build the binaries (they build the program on their server)
  • I cannot test the binaries before release
  • If there is a problem with the binaries (either by accident or on purpose), it will immediately reflect on me while it would be F-Droid's fault. This puts F-Droid in a position of power over software developers that I am not comfortable with (nor should any other app developer be).
  • They don't accept pre-built APKs (with the single exception of MozCo's builds of Mozilla Firefox, because, well, I guess they are in some sort of agreement there - who knows why they have this one very notable exception...).
  • F-Droid operators are also not happy about the prerequisites for building Pale Moon since it has a lot of dependencies and is very complex to build. I can't go and redesign the build requirements just to satisfy their needs for building on their side (which I don't want to begin with)
  • At least some of the operators there seem to think MPL or FOSS = Public Domain... :roll:
They are explicitly forbidden to build Pale Moon with official name and branding from source, as a result.

More details in the pull request discussion: https://gitlab.com/fdroid/fdroiddata/merge_requests/260
I do not agree with many of your points listed here, for the following reasons:

[*] If someone else builds a binary from the source, with or without modification, and publish it somewhere -- how would it be different in this case for your point 1, 2 and 3? Your license already permits people to do so;
[*] For point 5, your prerequites includes Google's proprietary components, which makes it impossible to build on a completely free (FOSS in your word) system, and may not be able to run on an Android system without Gapps installed;
[*] The last point: Public domain means different things. Public domain is copy free and there is no restriction at all to the extend by law, but redistribution with or without modification of the source code (may include a built binary) is permitted by the definition of free software (MPL is a free software license). I don't see how they think your project as public domain, maybe I missed your point here.

I understand your concern that you don't have control over your binary, but releasing it under MPL isn't a way to control the binary built upon your source code -- Linux distribution developers always build binaries by themselves, or on the users' system.

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Re: F-Droid

Unread post by New Tobin Paradigm » 2015-03-13, 22:17

Pale Moon branding may ONLY be redistributed with a built from source binary by Moonchild Productions or authorized 3rd party contributed versions as approved by Moonchild Productions.

Building the binary from source does NOT give you the right to the trademarked intellectual property of the Pale Moon brand, logo, or name and is forbidden to be redistributed with branding according to the terms of the licenses.

Setting aside the provisions for linux packaging distribution which grants some exceptions to this.. You cannot simply build the browser with Pale Moon branding from source and put it up on your website. You CAN however build the source code with any OTHER branding you want provided it does not use the trademarked intellectual property such as the "New Moon" unenforced branding or by calling it "Generic Browser Number 248".

Now Pale Moon binaries CAN be distributed by others if the conditions are met which are that the binaries are originally obtained from Moonchild Productions or an authorized and approved 3rd party contributed version AND are unmodified.

The MPL does provide provisions to sub-license as well as retain control over binaries with intellectual property in them. Please familiarize your self with the MPL and subsequent binary and 3rd party contributed terms and licenses.

As an aside, Moonchild Productions and the Pale Moon project does provide a standalone apk which does NOT require the Android Marketplace or Google Play Store or whatever they are calling their app store this week.

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Re: F-Droid

Unread post by Moonchild » 2015-03-13, 22:31

{{Mid-aired with Tobin, but touching on slightly different points, so posting anyway}}

First point: this is not allowed under the Pale Moon license when published with official branding. In that way it is materially different. if someone builds from source and publishes it with official branding they will receive a cease&desist from me as it's a rogue, unchecked copy with my copyrighted and trademarked material in it.

Second point: This is completely unrelated, and I'm not even sure what you are aiming at. There are no proprietary prerequisites other than those needed to build Android apps. You need the Android SDK to build an Android app. I don't know what other prerequisites you assume there are.

Third point; Public domain means only one thing. Neither Pale Moon binaries, nor the source code, are Public Domain, and they will not be. The point from F-Droid's people (at least some of them) is that they think they can treat any Free Software as if it was Public Domain. That sits extremely poorly with me for obvious reasons and adds a personal reason to refuse permission.

The difference is that F-Droid builds the app, then offers binaries THEY built with THEIR signature (not the software authors') for F-Droid users, pretty much having full control over the software and its distribution, update and continued publication, and treating the actual software authors as resources. Once an F-Droid version is installed on users' devices, only their version will be considered valid and users are immediately bound to F-Droid's operational practices (because a change in distributor, package name or signature would invalidate the install and people would lose their stored data when switching).

The MPL is a very good mechanism to prevent rogue copies and to have control over my binaries. The MPL specifically includes a clause that binary form may be distributed under a different license, which I am doing.
It allows free source redistribution and allows people to build their own binaries from source on their OWN system and adaptation to special needs, but prevent tainting of official binaries with modified copies in the wild.
I also give special permission to Linux distribution developers in the binary redistribution license to build their own binaries for their OS flavor in the redistribution license for binaries. Without that, only the user would be allowed to build their own copy from source (and only for their own use).

Since the Android platform works differently, and both the app signing and the fact that the binary can't be built on the target device require uniquely pre-signed binaries (which is a good security measure to prevent rogue apps from replacing genuine apps), what F-Droid is doing is taking binary ownership away from the software authors (since you can't just replace one with the other). It makes both the user AND the software author solely dependent on F-Droid as a continuous service and the integrity of its employees.

Bottom line is you may disagree with my decision, but it stands. F-Droid will not be a distribution channel for Pale Moon or any other Android software I may create in the future, because of the very core of their way of working and the hard disconnect between end user and software developer to be replaced with a middleman.
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