View Full Version : Firefox 3.0

June 17th, 2008, 07:16 PM
Firefox aims for download record

From BBC

Version 3 of the popular Firefox web browser is going on general release on 17 June.

Wide take-up of the new version would further boost the market share of the browser which is currently used by about 15% of net users.

With the release, Firefox developer Mozilla is attempting to set a record for the most downloads over 24 hours.

"It's a global effort to make history," said Paul Kim, head of marketing at Mozilla.

Net gains

The attempt to break the record will begin at 1800 BST.

"There is actually no record for the greatest amount of software downloaded in one day, so for 24 hours from the moment we push the bits live, that's when the countdown starts," he said.

Mr Kim said Mozilla had no specific target for the number of downloads it would like to achieve on the day but racking up five million would be "awesome".

By comparison, Firefox 2.0 registered 1.6 million downloads on the day it was made available on 24 October, 2006. More than 1.3 million people have pledged to download the new version on 17 June.

Internet Explorer - 83.27%
Firefox - 13.76%
Apple Safari - 2.18%
Opera - 0.55%
Netscape - 0.14%
Source: OneStat

Behind the scenes of Firefox 3.0

New features in Version 3 include automatic warnings when users stray onto webpages booby-trapped with malicious code.

Also in Version 3 will be "Smart Location Bar" that lets people return to places they have visited even if they have not bookmarked them or cannot remember the full web address.

Firefox 3 will work with Windows 2000, XP and Vista and some non-Windows operating systems including Linux.

Mozilla is not alone in marking the release of the new software. According to the Mozillaparty website more than 566 celebrations are planned for when the software becomes available.

Market battle

Firefox first appeared in early 2004 and since then has steadily eroded Microsoft's hold on the web browsing world.

Although firm statistics are hard to gather Firefox is currently thought to be used by about 15-17% of web users.

In some territories the percentage of Firefox users is far higher. For instance, according to market analysis firm OneStat, 27.23% of German web users browsed the web with Firefox in February 2008. Most of the rest (67.63%) used Internet Explorer (IE).

"Firefox is making very steady encroachment in to the market," said Adam Vahed, managing director of OneStat UK partner Apache Solutions. "It's a very serious contender to the world domination of IE."

He expected there to be great interest in Firefox 3.0 because most users of the browser tend to upgrade to the latest version as soon as it comes out.

By contrast, he said, many people were still using very old versions of IE. According to browser stats gathered by Chuck Upsell about 35% of IE users are on version 7 and 35% use version 6.

Mr Vahed said Firefox was generally popular with more "tech-savvy" web users and they turned to it because using it meant more webpages appeared as their designers intended.

"It's still very much the case that Firefox is way ahead of IE when it comes to standard compliance," he said.

IE's lack of compliance with web standards can make some webpages look very odd, he said.

But, he added, IE7 was better at respecting standards and IE8 is expected to go further.

The second test or "beta" version of IE8 is due in August. The improved standards compliance means that anyone using it might find that pages tailored to work with the quirks of IE7 will now seem broken.

June 17th, 2008, 07:17 PM
Behind the scenes of Firefox 3.0

By Maggie Shiels
Technology reporter, BBC News, Silicon Valley

There is a clear sense of anticipation building at the Mozilla Foundation's headquarters in Mountain View, California where engineers have been working for the past 34-36 months perfecting Firefox 3.0.

"This is the biggest release by far of Firefox," says Mike Schroepfer, vice president of engineering at the non-profit that drives the web browser's development.

"We couldn't have done it without the two million people around the world already running it and the other 20,000 helping give us feedback, working out the bugs and constantly refining it," he said.

Version 3.0 of Firefox is set to debut on 17 June and the Mozilla Foundation aims to try and set a world record for the most downloads in a day when the software is unleashed.

It will have to do well to beat Firefox 2.0 - that version racked up 1.6 million downloads on the day it was first released in October 2006.

Mr Schroepfer said Firefox 3 promised to be faster, easier to use and more secure than rival browsers.

He claims that Firefox 3.0 loads webpages three to four times faster than Firefox 2.0 and more than seven times faster than Microsoft's Internet Explorer (IE).

However, with all manner of factors beyond Mozilla's control affecting browsing speed those claims may prove hard to sustain.

Alongside the speed improvements goes the "Smart Location Bar" - a feature known as the "Awesome Bar" internally at Mozilla.

Mike Schroepfer and Paul Kim
Schroepfer: "This is the biggest release by far of Firefox."
Mr Schroepfer calls this novel feature: "The biggest user experience change... since tabbed browsing."

The feature gives the browser's address bar a mechanism for quickly returning to web pages without bookmarking them, even if a user doesn't remember the address. It can also search "tags" - keywords that users associate with a particular page.

"Arms race"

Security was also high on the development team's list of improvements for the new version.

Mr Schroepfer told the BBC: "It's an arms race between the good guys and the bad guys. This is not scare tactics or boogie man kind of stuff.

"We have seen a huge uptick in malware attacks because they are financially motivated," he said.

"This is billions of dollars a year. There are clear incentives for people to do this because they make money so you need some good guys on your side to block them out."

Included in Firefox 3.0 are malicious software spotters that tell users when they are on a website that has been compromised. A red box will pop up in the middle of the screen warning users of the danger.


Firefox 3.0 warns when users stray on to a booby-trapped page
Mr Schroepfer said: "This new type of attack where people are hijacking legitimate websites and using them as mechanisms to try and install software on your machine is truly worrying.

Behind the warning system is a list of infected sites that is updated every 30 minutes to keep up with the pace of web attacks.

When Firefox 2.0 was launched, said Mr Schroepfer, its security focus was phishing attacks, where fake websites ask for personal details such as bank account or social security numbers to aid identity theft and give access to a user's financial accounts.

"I think people adapted and thought phishing isn't working and then they switched to malware attacks," said Mr Schropefer.

Other features include almost 5000 add-ons to customise a page, making the image on the back button bigger than the forward button because that is the one used more often, and extending how long history stores page information to three months.

Since Firefox launched in 2004 it has gained a steadily increasing share of the web browsing market. Now, on average, about 15% of web users browse the web with Firefox.

"Our goal because we are non profit isn't world domination," said Mr Schroepfer. "It's just to make sure the internet is open, collaborative, competitive and innovative."

June 17th, 2008, 07:19 PM
I downloaded it!

June 17th, 2008, 09:20 PM
Just installed it myself, seems quicker than version 2 and internet explorer 7. However; i still prefer IE7.

The Benniest
June 17th, 2008, 09:46 PM
When you install a new version of Firefox/IE, does it remove your bookmarks or does it all stay the same?

I've had some bad experiences with installations and bookmarks before.:o

June 17th, 2008, 09:56 PM
Stays the same. Dont know about IE, havent used it since i solved my WNY issue.

June 17th, 2008, 10:37 PM
The only things you might lose are add-ons and extensions that aren't compatible with the new version.

I lost the browser theme I was using, so I reverted back to the default. Usually within a few weeks, the developers update their add-ons, and Firefox will send a message that the upgrade is available.

"Colorful tabs" works on 3.0, so I'm happy.

June 18th, 2008, 12:39 AM
yup, I had about 10 themes from version 2 and only about 2 actually were compatible. It's up to the 3rd parties to release updates for this new version. Besides that though, the new version looks great and it's responsive, quick load times compare to IE.

June 18th, 2008, 07:40 AM
"Colorful tabs" works on 3.0, so I'm happy.

I used to use this extension but I found it annoying, so I uninstalled it. I just use Tab Mix Plus now. I really hope that, plus Download Helper (for downloading flash videos etc.) and duimShow (displays photos in the top right-hand corner of the screen) still work. duimShow disappeared temporarily after one upgrade of Version 2 :(. I've also become very attached to my theme.

I'd be very surprised if the new version is any faster with the ISP I'm using :mad:.

Should I or shouldn't I...decisions, decisions...

June 18th, 2008, 08:02 AM
Tab Mix Plus not yet compatible with 3.0

June 19th, 2008, 05:49 PM
Firefox claims download success

From BBC

In the first 24 hours the web browser was available the software was downloaded more than eight million times, says its creator Mozilla.

Statistics from the download servers are being scrutinised to produce an official figure that will be passed to the Guinness World Record organisation.

But the launch was marred by news from computer security firms who have found the first flaws in the software.

Big figures

The attempt to set the download record was scheduled to begin at 1300 PST (2000 GMT) on 17 June.

However, the record attempt was almost wrecked from the start as the servers handling the downloads collapsed under the weight of visitors checking to see if new version was available.

Once the servers were up and functioning normally the record attempt began.

At their busiest the servers were handling more than 9,000 downloads per minute. Within five hours the number of downloads for Version 3.0 exceeded the 1.6 million set by Firefox 2.0 in October 2006.

In total Firefox 3.0 was downloaded 8.3 million times over the 24 hour record setting period. The figure beats the five million Mozilla predicted before the day.

Logs from the download servers have been handed to the Open Source Labs at Oregon State University for auditing. The scrutiny will ensure duplicate and unfinished downloads are not counted. The verification process could take a week to complete.

The surge of interest in Firefox 3.0 has continued and Mozilla has reported that the software has now been downloaded more than 10 million times.

However, some of the shine of the launch was removed by reports that a security firm had already found a flaw in the browser.

DV Labs/Tipping Point reported a flaw only five hours after Firefox 3.0 debuted. The flaw potentially lets an attacker take over a PC if a user clicks on a booby-trapped link.

July 3rd, 2009, 11:46 AM
If you use Firefox, you should download and install Firefox 3.5 (http://www.mozilla.com/en-US/firefox/upgrade.html). New JavaScript engine, much faster than 3.0. Some add-ons you have installed may not be compatible (I have a "tab clicking options" that doesn't work), until developers release updates.

There are three bugs that weren't resolved before the release. A patch (3.5.1) will be out in a few weeks.

July 4th, 2009, 12:05 AM
I finally took the plunge a while back and my theme and extensions, except duimShow (which was unstable anyway), are all compatible :). I 'm only using version 3.0.11, so I'm a bit behind by the sound of it.

Ever since I had a new hard drive installed in my laptop, though (possibly just a coincidence), Firefox crashes on a regular basis, sometimes several times in one session :mad:.

July 4th, 2009, 12:47 AM
Merry, that's the latest update you can have- for Firefox 3.
To get the latest version (not a mere update, but an upgrade),
You will need to go to the Firefox site (clik on Zippys link)
and download the new 3.5 version there. ;)

July 4th, 2009, 08:49 AM
Merry, that's the latest update you can have- for Firefox 3.
To get the latest version (not a mere update, but an upgrade),
You will need to go to the Firefox site (clik on Zippys link)
and download the new 3.5 version there. ;)

You don't say? :rolleyes:.

July 4th, 2009, 12:29 PM
I'm sorry - I had two explain to more than one person this week,
that the updates were different than the upgrades.
Just got into the habit of thinking most people didn't know....
In your case...
Just call me capt. obvious;)

July 26th, 2009, 03:28 AM
^ No probs, Scumonkey :).

I've just got around to upgrading to 3.5.1. No more support for Tab Mix Plus, it seems (no new versions since October 2008), and FF still crashes regularly :(. Can't tell the difference speed wise.

July 31st, 2009, 01:19 PM
3.0 would sometimes crash if I stacked up multiple downloads (like 4 at a time). Dropped me like a bad date. Hasn't happened at all with 3.5.

You should have noticed a significant speed increase. It's the same with all the new generation browsers (like Chrome).

I'm just guessing, but you may have a Registry error that's inhibiting the browser software. Try downloading Chrome.

July 31st, 2009, 01:28 PM
Does anyone have an opinion on Chrome? Id rather use Firefox as I presume its more secure but I love the fact that the url bar is a google search in chrome.

July 31st, 2009, 01:59 PM
I like FF 3.5 and noticed a speed increase. However, sometimes Firefox still crashes on me for no apparent reason. All of a sudden links stop working and I have to restart the browser.

July 31st, 2009, 10:43 PM
I took one look at Chrome a while ago and immediately uninstalled it. Perhaps I didn't give it enough of a chance, but I just thought it was way too minimalist. I guess that may be the intention, though??

FF consistently (but not always) crashes when I'm copying/pasting articles from the New York Times :confused:.

August 1st, 2009, 05:27 AM
I like the uncluttered style of Chrome, it much easier on the eyes. It also has a few small but great time saving features. For example if I highlight a word with a right click I can search Google for that word.

August 1st, 2009, 01:16 PM
You can do that with Firefox.

Left-double-click highlights one word. Left-hold down-drag highlights a phrase. Then right-click opens "Search [X] for [word or phrase]"

X = whatever search engine you have set on the toolbar.

August 1st, 2009, 01:18 PM
Interesting. Am I right to say Firefox is more secure than Chrome?

August 1st, 2009, 04:14 PM
I don't know, and I don't think there's one answer that covers all situations. There's a load of material on the subject, but a lot of it is written by people with a bias one way or the other.

There will always be new vulnerabilities discovered, so I base it on how quickly and adequately the vendor responds.

I rely more on protection software than the browser for security, and Norton has worked well with Firefox. Even so, Norton had to send out a fix for the toolbar which was incompatible with 3.5.


August 1st, 2009, 04:30 PM
Im trying out Firefox at the moment. Its definitely more cluttered than Chrome and it feels slower so far.

August 2nd, 2009, 09:10 AM
Tab Mix Plus extension just updated :).

August 2nd, 2009, 11:43 AM
I just accidentally typed a search into the URL bar in Firefox (still used to Chrome) and it performed a AOL search. Surely I can change this to make it use Google?

August 2nd, 2009, 09:17 PM
Tab Mix Plus extension just updated :).Yay. I can again close a tab with a double click.

I just accidentally typed a search into the URL bar in Firefox (still used to Chrome) and it performed a AOL search. Surely I can change this to make it use Google?I'm not sure it's the reason, but I have the Google toolbar installed.

The URL (Location) Bar can be optioned: TOOLS > OPTIONS > PRIVACY tab. But there's nothing there to specify a search engine. So it's either forced by the toolbar, or I forgot where I optioned it.

The toolbar is good to have. So is the Firefox search box

August 3rd, 2009, 05:56 AM
^ I just clicked on the arrow to the right of the icon in the search box (located on the right of the URL box) and there's an option Manage Search Engines that you can use to change the default etc. It's similar in IE7, I think. Is that it?

I love the Google toolbar, which has its own search box (Google, of course). I've added links to often-used searches to it, e.g. Emporis, WNY :), Amazon, Wikipedia, etc. You just need to navigate to the search you want, right click within the search field and click on the Generate Custom Search option which will add the link (icon) to the toolbar. Excellent.

^That is the only thing, unfortunately, that the FEBE (http://customsoftwareconsult.com/extensions/febe/febe.html) extension doesn't restore. I still found this add-on very useful when I installed a new hard disk in my laptop. All my extensions, themes, favourites, registrations, etc. back in a flash.

August 3rd, 2009, 10:51 AM
Been using Firefox for two days now. It is definitely slower than Chrome. Somethings don't even load for example some avatars.

August 3rd, 2009, 11:50 PM
^That is the only thing, unfortunately, that the FEBE (http://customsoftwareconsult.com/extensions/febe/febe.html) extension doesn't restore.
If you are referring to search plugins, FEBE does indeed backup/restore those. You just need to check "Backup search plugins" in Tools > FEBE > FEBE options > Options > Backup items > Additional items.

August 4th, 2009, 06:30 AM
If you are referring to search plugins, FEBE does indeed backup/restore those. You just need to check "Backup search plugins" in Tools > FEBE > FEBE options > Options > Backup items > Additional items.

No, they're just shortcuts/links added to the Google toolbar.

August 5th, 2009, 07:42 AM
Spell Check has gone haywire.


I intentionally misspelled haywire, and it worked, but when I misspelled intermittently, I got


Clicking on the red highlight gives the correct spelling, but the correction comes out as


Sometimes, the correction runs across two words.


August 5th, 2009, 10:42 PM
Didn't have the latest toolbar version.

Werks reel gud now.

June 11th, 2010, 10:22 PM
Damn, when is Mozilla going to release a 64-bit version of Firefox for Windows 7 :confused:.

My current version (3.6.3) crashes all the time. I've read that other users are having the same problem.

It sure gets stucks a lot when I want to search for something in Google :mad:.