Firefox2

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Requirements

  • Development version (devel) of OLPC system, or
  • G1G1 OLPC XO
  • At least 50 MB of free space on the XO's boot disk.
  • Patience. Firefox can be a bit sluggish on the XO at times.

Installing Firefox 2.0

Here are the instructions to install Firefox. It isn't as complicated as it looks. Take your time and read each instruction carefully. Be sure to note the spaces in the commands, and that the "slashes" slant forwards, not backwards like under Windows.

  • Get the XO's WiFi connected to a wireless access point so the XO can download Firefox from the internet. Read more about how to do this at Wifi Connectivity.
  • When you see a prompt that looks roughly like "[olpc@xo-NN-NN-NN]$", start typing the following commands, pressing the <enter> key after each one:
wget http://ff2011.notlong.com 
  • This command may take a while, but be patient.
tar -xzf firefox-2.0.0.11.tar.gz 
su -
yum install compat-libstdc++*
exit
  • To run firefox, simply type:
./firefox/firefox
  • It will take quite a while to start for the first time, since it has a lot of setup tasks to perform.
  • FireFox may ask if you want to import any settings. You can select "None" and continue.
  • FireFox will display this error message:
Firefox can't find the file at /usr/share/doc/HTML/index.html
  • You can ignore this error.
  • Click on the "Home" icon to go to the "Firefox Start" homepage. You're on your way!

Installing Flash 9 plugin

  • Get the XO's WiFi connected to a wireless access point so the XO can download Firefox from the internet. Read more about how to do this at Wifi_Connectivity.
  • When you see a prompt that looks roughly like "[olpc@xo-NN-NN-NN]$", start typing the following commands, pressing the <enter> key after each one:
  • First, use the 'su' command to go into "superuser" mode. Be careful in this mode, as you can mess up your XO if you make a mistake.
su
  • Download the plugin file using wget:
wget http://fpdownload.macromedia.com/get/flashplayer/current/install_flash_player_9_linux.tar.gz
  • Unpack the file using tar:
tar xzvf install_flash_player_9_linux.tar.gz
  • Run the flashplayer-installer and follow instructions:
./flashplayer-installer
  • Exit from "superuser" mode:
exit

Running the Firefox browser after installation

  • Get the XO's WiFi connected to a wireless access point so the XO can download Firefox from the internet. Read more about how to do this at Wifi_Connectivity.
  • When you see a prompt that looks roughly like "[olpc@xo-NN-NN-NN]$", start typing the following commands, pressing the <enter> key after each one:
./firefox/firefox
  • Firefox will display a blank (gray) screen by default. Click on the "Home" button to go to the "Firefox Start" page.
  • If Firefox displays an error, the XO's WiFi is likely not connected. Check the Wifi_Troubleshooting_Guide.

Running the Firefox browser outside of the Terminal Activity

  • In a shell outside X (ctrl+alt+F1, ctrl+alt+F2, ...):
    • As root, set an environment variable:
      • export DISPLAY=127.0.0.1:0.0
    • Execute the firefox with the user olpc:
      • su olpc -c "/home/olpc/firefox/firefox &"
  • Through a shell in X (alt+=):
    • just type firefox from there

Opening PDF using the Read activity

Open the Terminal activity and run:

wget http://zoehep.xent.com/~bsittler/Read

Then when you click on a PDF link tell Firefox to always open with /home/olpc/Read

Note: this launches the Read activity with full access to your account. Be sure you trust the activity completely before doing this!

Known Problems

  • firefox is excluded from the repository on G1G1 machines. You must edit (as root) /etc/yum.repos.d/olpc-koji-ship2.repo to remove firefox from exclude list before installing with yum
    • One way to do edit the file is to use the built-in Vi editor as follows (type commands without the quotes):
  1. Start the Terminal activity (this gives you a line like "[olpc@...]$ )
  2. Click in the window
  3. Type "su" and Enter for super user mode
  4. Invoke the Vi(M) editor: "vi" and Enter
  5. (You might find the Vi cheatsheet at: http://www.tuxfiles.org/linuxhelp/vimcheat.html to be of use)
  6. Load the file: ":e /etc/yum.repos.d/olpc-koji-ship2.repo" and Enter
  7. Use the arrow keys to move to the "f" of "firefox"
  8. Use the "x" key repeatedly to delete "firefox" and the following comma
  9. (If you get into a mode like insert that won't let you issue a command, use the circle-x key in the upper left corner of the keyboard to exit that mode.)
  10. Write the file out and quit: ":wq" and Enter
    • Installation of Firefox 2 appears to use about 42 MB. The installation downloads about 35 MB.
  • Performance issues
  • It is not "sugarizable"
  • Right-clicking in a flash closes the browser window