Mozilla, Perfherder

Platform engineering project of the month: Perfherder

Mar 14th, 2016

[ originally posted on ]

Hello from Platform Engineering Operations! Once a month we highlight one of our projects to help the Mozilla community discover a useful tool or an interesting contribution opportunity.

This month’s project is Perfherder!

What is Perfherder?

Perfherder is a generic system for visualizing and analyzing performance data produced by the many automated tests we run here at Mozilla (such as Talos, “Are we fast yet?” or “Are we slim yet?”). The chief goal of the project is to make sure that performance of Firefox gets better, not worse over time. It does this by:

  • Tracking the performance generated by our automated tests, allowing them to be visualized on a graph.
  • Providing a sheriffing dashboard which allows for incoming alerts of performance regressions to be annotated and triaged - bugs can be filed based on a template and their resolution status can be tracked.

In addition to its own user interface, Perfherder also provides an API on the backend that other people can use to build custom performance visualizations and dashboards. For example, the metrics group has been working on a set of release quality indices for performance based on Perfherder data:

How it works

Perfherder is part of Treeherder, building on that project’s existing support for tracking revision and test job information. Like the rest of Treeherder, Perfherder’s backend is written in Python, using the Django web framework. The user interface is written as an AngularJS application.

Learning more

For more information on Perfherder than you ever wanted to know, please see the wiki page:

Can I contribute?

Yes! We have had some fantastic contributions from the community to Perfherder, and are always looking for more. This is a great way to help developers make Firefox faster (or use less memory). The core of Perfherder is relatively small, so this is a great chance to learn either Django or Angular if you have a small amount of Python and/or JavaScript experience.

We have set aside a set of bugs that are suitable for getting started here:

For more information on contributing to Perfherder, please see the contribution section of the above wiki page: