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Firefox 4 Restartless Add-ons

Prior to Firefox 4, extensions (more commonly called add-ons) that modified or added to the browser user interface (UI) required one or more UI overlays which the browser loaded from the add-on and applied atop its own user interface. While this technology made creating add-ons that modified the Firefox UI relatively easy, it also meant that updating, installing, or disabling an extension required that Firefox had to be restarted. UI overlays for Firefox are written in XUL (pronounced “zool”), an XML-based markup language created by Mozilla for specifying user interfaces. XUL provides a number of largely platform independent widgets from