Mozilla, Gecko Archive

Mozilla Releases Firefox 8

Mozilla has announced the release of Firefox 8 for Windows, Mac, Linux and Firefox for Android. This release appears to be a relatively minor update. Perhaps the main feature of this update is the ability for user control over third-party addons. "At Mozilla, we think you should be in control, so we are disabling add-ons installed by third parties without your permission and letting you pick the ones you want to keep." A detailed technical description of this new Firefox release can be found in the release notes.

Mozilla, Microsoft Launch Bing-ified Firefox

"In a move that will raise eyebrows, Mozilla is now distributing a version of Firefox that uses Bing as the default search provider instead of Google. Rest assured that this is a joint project, though: the creatively-named Firefox with Bing website is run by Microsoft, and both Mozilla and MS are clear that this is a joint venture. Now, don't get too excited - the default version of Firefox available from Mozilla.com is still backed by Google, and there's no mention of an alternative, Bingy download anywhere on the site - but it's worth noting that Mozilla has been testing Bing's capabilities using Test Pilot over the last couple of months, and the release of Firefox with Bing indicates that Mozilla is now confident in Bing's ability to provide a top-notch service to Firefox users." Test pilot or not, I'm stockpiling more baked beans.

Memshrink Helps Firefox Beat Chrome at Its Own Game: Performance

Mozilla Firefox has been listening to recent memory complains, and as a side effect tested the browser's scalability to the extreme with memshrink's improvements. The results are shocking: For 150 tabs open using the test script, Firefox nightly takes 6 min 14 on the test system, uses 2GB and stays responsive. For the same test, Chrome takes 28 min 55 and is unusable during loading. An optimized version of the script has been made for Chrome as an attempt to work-around Chrome's limitations and got an improved loading time of 27 min 58, while using 5GB of memory.

Firefox 8 for Windows x64: Has 64-bit browsing Come of Age?

"Over the last couple of weeks, Mozilla has finally stepped up its 64-bit testing process. There are now five slaves dedicated to building Firefox for Windows x64, which means that from Firefox 8 and onwards, you'll be able to pick up 64-bit builds that are functionally identical to its 32-bit cousins but operating in native 64-bit CPU and memory space." Th 64bit version is about 10% faster, benchmarks show.

Firefox Update Policy: The Enterprise Is Wrong, Not Mozilla

A remarkably well reasoned editorial by Peter Bright at Ars discusses the implications of the new Firefox release schedule. The Crux of the argument is that by complaining about the "new" Firefox release, corporate customers are fundamentally misunderstanding the web and their place in it. He also reflects on historical reasons for their attitude and what they should do in the future to maintain parity with the evolution of the web.

Mozilla Resists DHS’ Request to Take Down Firefox Extension

Hooray for Mozilla. That about sums this story up. Remember all those domain names ICE keeps seizing? There are countless ways to get around these silly seizures,like using your operating system's hosts file. To make this a less cumbersome process, several Firefox extensions dot he work for you. Well, since copyright infringement is naturally a threat to the security of the United States, the Department of Homeland Security contacted Mozilla, asking them to take down one of these extensions. Mozilla declined.

Mozilla To release Firefox 4 March 22

According to a post on the mozilla.dev.planning Google Group by Mozilla Senior Director of Engineering, Damon Sicore, the ship date for the stable version of Firefox 4, Tuesday 22 March, has been approved by Mozilla's IT and Marketing teams. Sicore notes that, should the developers discover any last-second blocker bugs that would prevent the final release, a second release candidate would be issued "as soon as possible" and the ship date would be reset. So far, the first RC has "received a very warm welcome", said Sicore.

Mozilla, RSS and Feedback

A mini-tempest has been raging across the web with anger at Mozilla for removing the RSS icon from the Firefox 4 toolbar by default (and moving it to the bookmarks menu). This has been going on for a couple of weeks now, and I had avoided writing about it on OSNews since the recent furore is often cited to have begun around a personal blog post I wrote, but now things have come to an impasse: "No matter how loudly you shout, what you see in the beta with regard to the feed auto-discovery button is what will ship in Firefox 4". When Mozilla can say they are open to input, but refuse to change in the face of near universal disagreement, we all lose, not just me.

No Hardware Acceleration Firefox for Linux Due to Buggy X Drivers

Yesterday, the ninth Firefox 4.0 beta was released. One of the major new features in Firefox 4.0 is hardware acceleration for anything from canvas drawing to video rendering. Sadly, this feature won't make its way to the Linux version of Firefox 4.0. The reason? X' drivers are "disastrously buggy". Update: Benoit Jacob informed my via email that there's some important nuance: hardware acceleration (OpenGL only) on Linux has been implemented, but due to bugs and issues, only one driver so far has been whitelisted (the proprietary NVIDIA driver).

Microsoft Brings H264 to Firefox on Windows 7

Both Apple and Microsoft are betting on H264 for HTML5 video, while Firefox and Opera focus on WebM and Chrome does both. Microsoft, however, is kind of an oddball; they first stated they would limit HTML5 video support in Internet Explorer 9 to H264, excluding all other codecs, but later made an exception for WebM, as long as the user installs the WebM codec. Now there's a new move by Microsoft: a Firefox plugin that allows the browser to hook into Windows 7's native video framework to provide H264 support.