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Step 8: How to trim Mozilla 1.x

The Mozilla Browser (1.x series) has grown to become a complete Web Suite complete with a

  • browser
    • ctrl+1
  • html-editor
    • ctrl+e to edit viewed page, ctrl+shift+n to start editing from a blank page),
  • mail and news reader
    • ctrl+2
  • irc-client,
  • calendar program -ctrl+8,
  • address book
    • ctrl+5

You may not like some of these components. If you know how to compile software or use a Linux distribution with USE flags that allow you to configure your software as preferred you can signifficantly speed up Mozillas initial loading time by removing the unimportant parts and libraries.

0.1. Gentoo wins

Gentoo Linux users can choose between these USE flags when installing net-www/mozilla:

crypt debug gnome gtk2 ipv6 java ldap mozcalendar moznocompose moznoirc moznomail moznoxft mozsvg ssl xinerama xprint

Be aware, you will need the actual libraries for the support to work. ./configure will fail or omit libraries where the right headers are not found. Gentoo users can experiment with use on the command line (USE="ipv6 gtk" emerge -pv mozilla) to determine what new libraries will be installed as a consequence of various flags.

Library support:

  • crypt - Add support for encryption -- using mcrypt or gpg where applicable
  • debug - Bulid the package with debugging support
  • gnome - Adds GNOME support
  • gtkhtml - Adds support for gnome-extra/gtkhtml
  • gtk2 - Use gtk+ v2 over gtk+ v1 in cases where a program supports both. This is something you want, and not only for Mozilla.
  • ipv6 - Get with the program, IPv6 is old news already.
  • java - Adds support for Java
  • ldap - Adds LDAP support (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol)
  • ssl - Adds support for Secure Socket Layer connections
  • xinerama - Add support for the xinerama X11 extension, which allows you to stretch your display across multiple monitors

0.2. Compiling the hard way

Now, the actual parts of Mozilla

Gentoo USE ./configure --enable/disable- ?
mozcalendar (enable) calendar Mozilla calendar extension
moznocompose (disable) composer Mozilla's html editor / web page composer
moznoirc (disable) irc Mozilla's IRC client
moznomail (disable) mailnews Mozilla's mail client
moznoxft (disable) xft You need XFT support in mozilla (also firefox, thunderbird)
mozsvg (enable) svg Support for SVG graphics
xprint (enable) xprint xprint support for printing in mozilla (also firefox, thunderbird),

Gentoo users can place the USE flags in the file /etc/portage/package.use like this:

net-www/mozilla crypt -debug gnome gtk2 ipv6 java ldap mozcalendar -moznocompose moznoirc moznomail -moznoxft mozsvg ssl xinerama xprint

Or install a plain Mozilla like this (later emerges will use default use flags, the USE setting will be used for this emerge only):

USE="crypt -debug -gnome gtk2 ipv6 -java -ldap -mozcalendar moznocompose moznoirc moznomail -moznoxft mozsvg ssl xinerama xprint" emerge mozilla

Only experienced users should attempt to compile Mozilla from the command line like this:

./configure --enable-toolkit-gtk2 --enable-default-toolkit=gtk2 --disable-toolkit-qt --disable-toolkit-xlib --disable-toolkit-gtk --enable-xft --disable-calendar --disable-composer --disable-irc --disable-mailnews && make

Some hints on compiling Mozilla (./configure && make && make install)

You should use gtk2 to compile Mozilla. Enable it with these flags:


It is extremely important to make sure you are getting xft support.

It is also possible to use gtk:


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