Sunday February 05, 2017

Mozilla to Drop Support for All NPAPI Plugins in Firefox 52

We all knew this was coming, but NPAPI support in Firefox will officially be dropped on March 7. Since some users might confuse plug-ins with extensions, as Mozilla files both under "add-ons," I will point out the fact that this decision has no effect on the latter. What is actually being terminated is stuff like Java, Flash, and Silverlightآ—plugins that probably won’t be missed.

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Mozilla announced initial plans to deprecate the NPAPI plugins backbone in October 2015, as most of the plugins weren't needed anymore. Its main argument was that the NPAPI codebase dragged Firefox development and that most plugins introduced unnecessary security risks. Initially, Mozilla planned to remove support for all NPAPI plugins except Flash at the end of 2016, but a second announcement made in July 2016 pushed the cutoff date to 2017, as Mozilla focused on other more important tasks, such as the launch of e10s and WebExtensions. According to Firefox software engineer Mike Kaply, the NPAPI cutoff official date is now March 7, 2017, when Mozilla will release Firefox 52.