During the release process of Firefox 3.0.7, we added a section on Partner Repacks to the Releases page on wiki.mozilla.org. The idea behind the addition was to make people involved with the release process aware of the repacks, which depend on, and are affected by, the general release process and schedule. The information presented was a summary only, and was never really intended to provide detail about the repacks themselves.
Partner Repacks are versions of Firefox that are customized for a specific distribution partner. These customizations can include modified preferences and/or bundled add-ons, and are used by both Mozilla and third-party distribution providers. We call them repacks because all of the customizations are made by adding files to the default installer we use in the general release. There are no changes to any of the original files included in the general release, and all changes are additive in nature.
With the inclusion of Partner Repacks page in the 3.0.7 release, there were a few questions from the community regarding the repacks, and we realized there should be more information about them available. To that end, starting with the release of Firefox 3.0.9, we’re publishing information about all of the partner repacks we release on the Mozilla wiki.
From the Status page you’ll be able to see what repacks we’re generating, the customizations we’ve made to them, and where in the release process they are. Repacks will also be tracked by release, with information that will include which repacks are generated for a specific release, along with tracking bugs, QA results, and any changes that are made to a repack between releases.
There’s still a fair bit of work to do to better document the process, and over the next few weeks I’ll be adding additional information about repacks, how they’re created, and the guidelines we apply to those customizations. I’ll post more later, but wanted people to be aware that we’ve started publishing this information, and we’ll continue to build on it.
If you have specific questions on the repacks, or are interested in finding out more about distributing customized versions of Firefox, please see the Partnerships section of mozilla.com. Please note that distribution of a customized version of Firefox requires Mozilla approval, and additional information about distribution of the official installers as well as customized versions can be found in the Mozilla Trademarks Policy document.