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Firefox Mozilla Upgrades News

Mozilla Announces Long Term Support Version of Firefox 249

mvar writes "After a meeting held last Monday regarding Mozilla Firefox Extended Support Release, the new version was announced yesterday in a post on Mozilla's official blog: 'We are pleased to announce that the proposal for an Extended Support Release (ESR) of Firefox is now a plan of action. The ESR version of Firefox is for use by enterprises, public institutions, universities, and other organizations that centrally manage their Firefox deployments. Releases of the ESR will occur once a year, providing these organizations with a version of Firefox that receives security updates but does not make changes to the Web or Firefox Add-ons platform.'"
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Mozilla Announces Long Term Support Version of Firefox

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  • Good (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @09:55AM (#38662638)

    This is a nice solution to the problem everyone has been complaining about.
    I really see no complaints to this move.

    (inb4 shill)

  • by americamatrix ( 658742 ) on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @09:57AM (#38662652) Homepage
    This will be good news for Enterprises that want(ed) to deploy Firefox but didn't because of Mozilla's release schedule.

    Now if there was only a way to control/deploy this through group policy, then Firefox in the Enterprise will really take off.

  • Who is paying? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by G3ckoG33k ( 647276 ) on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @10:01AM (#38662682)

    Who is paying for Mozilla products?

    Do they have any paying customers in Europe or Asia?

  • Re:Good (Score:5, Insightful)

    by freedumb2000 ( 966222 ) on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @10:02AM (#38662694)
    I hope they will do the same for Thunderbird.
  • Did they fire Asa? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by xenoc_1 ( 140817 ) on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @10:18AM (#38662840)

    This is still reactive damage control to foolish arrogance by Asa "we don't give a crap about enterprises" Dotzler.
    That's what you get why you hire a fanboy to become the voice of your company.

  • Re:Good (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Hadlock ( 143607 ) on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @10:41AM (#38663058) Homepage Journal

    ESR's support is only for a year though, it seems? It might take institutions 2-3 months to decide it's worth upgrading to. A 2 year solution seems like a better, long term plan. In 2002-2009, having your web browser being a year out of date meant losing out on a lot of features and security fixes, but in the last 2 years innovations have really slowed down and I think 2 years support (as opposed to 1) would give institutions a lot more reason to stick to Firefox. Think of it - the many 4 year undergrad students (perhaps the less technically inclined student) would only have to experience one change in the web browser in their college career in school computer labs, etc. By changing this yearly, you're just adding another thing to the pile of the "annual make sure it all works together without crashing checklist".

  • Re:Good (Score:5, Insightful)

    by BZ ( 40346 ) on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @11:18AM (#38663498)

    Er... Browsers are adding security improvements and features at a much much faster rate now than in the 2002-2009 timeframe. This is true at least for Microsoft, Mozilla, and Google.

    In the specific case of Mozilla, it has about 60x more employees now than in 2002 (and 3x what it had in 2009). It would be _really_ odd if improvement rate were actually slower as a result, since the codebase was already quite mature in 2002.

  • by owlnation ( 858981 ) on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @11:26AM (#38663592)
    Absolutely correct. However, I wonder why Mozilla is trying to prevent the ESR version from having widespread access.

    There's no commercial gain in so doing, it's built anyway -- so people may as well use it, it won't affect support particularly -- just move questions perhaps. So where is the harm in giving people freedom of choice? Is freedom of choice not intrinsic in the philosophy of open source software?

    I suspect the only reason for limiting the ESR version is vanity and arrogance. FF's arrogant developers know fine well that the ESR version would quickly become the default version of FF out there. It is exactly what everyone wants, a stable version of the software without new, worthless, feature-bloat ever two weeks.

    FF developers, why not just have balls to admit you fucked up? Give people a free choice between ESR or the rapid-deployment constant-flux FF versions. See which people prefer -- and then run with that, and concentrate more on that version.

    Really, what is the fucking point on forcing your idiotic ideas on users who really want something else? That's why you are too cowardly to make ESR freely available. And we know it.
  • by BZ ( 40346 ) on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @11:34AM (#38663670)

    Then you would be hurting those regular users, since the ESR will almost certainly be less secure than the regular version; the longer into its year of life you get the more this will be true.

  • by jdgeorge ( 18767 ) on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @12:10PM (#38664068)

    The reason for limiting the ESR version as much as they propose is almost certainly resource (people) limitations.

    By the way, insults to the actual developers who work on code for software that you evidently like (or presumably you just wouldn't care about this issue), only discourage those developers from being interested in your opinion.

  • Re:Good (Score:1, Insightful)

    by hairyfeet ( 841228 ) <bassbeast1968 AT gmail DOT com> on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @12:21PM (#38664194) Journal

    I don't think its "improvements" folks are complaining about friend, its the constantly breaking shit. For example I have 9 tabs open in Dragon (Chromium based) ATM AND a video downloading on a 1.8GHz Sempron nettop and I still have a good 30% CPU free. I USED to be able to do the same on FF but once it hit FF 4 I found FF was completely unusable on any AMD short of a dual core and at FF 9 its barely functional at all. Oh they improved, if you call going from 100% to 95% CPU with one tab an improvement, but I don't.

    Mozilla has been all over the place with regards to QA and don't pretend like you don't know what i'm talking about as you ALL do, the Linux version? Its okay. The Windows version? Shite on a crusty roll. If they just want to be the browser for Linux not a problem just say so but when I gain 30% battery life on my AMD netbook just by switching away from FF to quote the old K's Choice song "Something's Wrong". Now i'm not a coder so i can't tell you why but I CAN tell you that using AnVir Task Manager to monitor CPU and memory usage FF runs better with less resources on a first generation Pentium 4 than on a brand new AMD multicore which tells me they have a problem in their build somewhere. The 3.x versions weren't like that, they seemed to be about equal, but something they did after 4 made FF take a massive dump on any non Intel CPU and I've been told they don't use the Intel cripple compiler but it sure as hell don't act like it. Opera, dragon, Safari, I don't see this weird CPU preference with ANY other browser I've tried, just FF.

    As someone who was on FF before it was called FF and the Moz suite before that I vainly try each release hoping they'll fix the problem but so far its been 5 versions and no dice. In the same period Dragon went from version 8 to version 16 and the only change was it actually uses less memory now...oh and the little Dragon Eye button is on the left instead of the right. Man I miss NoScript so I truly hope things get better but I'm not tossing a machine just because the browser is a piggy, not when it works perfectly fine with more than a half a dozen tabs open in dragon and opera.

    As for TFA businesses won't use FF after they got burnt with their number jumping stunt and they still can't get proper GPO support except through a third party which just won't cut it. you have to give admin rights to Mozilla and good luck keeping the users from installing any damned thing they want in FF, so I doubt we'll see businesses use it. The business market will be split between IE and Chrome which gives GPO support and doesn't need admin rights. Sadly the numbers don't lie and if FF was on the right tracks their numbers wouldn't be taking a nosedive.

    I really wish the devs would just sit down with some focus groups and ask their opinions instead of aping chrome, if I had wanted Chrome I would have been using Chrome, yes? Cut out the bling, strip it to the bone and let the USERS decide through extensions what is in there and what ain't, and work to be the fastest, lightest, most nimble browser out there, remember when that was your mission statement? Back before you went nuts with adding crap and trying to copy chrome, back when you first split off from the suite, remember? Come back Mozilla, we miss you and don't want to see you crater okay? there are many of us that would be happy to come back if you'd just make a product we could use, so come on back Mozilla and start being the best Firefox you can be instead of a Chrome ripoff.

  • Re:Good (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @12:29PM (#38664314)
    Could you care less?

    How much less could you care?

    How important is this topic to you?

    Personally I couldn't care less, even if I tried. I have no interest.
  • Re:Good (Score:4, Insightful)

    by BZ ( 40346 ) on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @12:49PM (#38664528)

    The LTS would include critical security fixes. It wouldn't include all minor security fixes or general architectural improvements that improve security-in-depth, because typically those have visible effects and the whole point of the LTS is to avoid such effects. Or put another way, "does not make changes to the Web or Firefox Add-ons platform" excludes a wide range of security improvements.

    To be more specific, fixing an exploitable crash is LTS material. Adding JIT hardening or process separation or something like HTTP Strict Transport security or UI changes to improve the ability of users to make informed security decisions are all not LTS material.

  • by bendodge ( 998616 ) <bendodge AT bsgprogrammers DOT com> on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @02:08PM (#38665524) Homepage Journal

    a chrome ripoff

    That. I wish I could buy a billboard in front of wherever Mozilla's people work and put up:

    If we wanted Chrome, we'd use Chrome. Bring back Firefox.
    Everyone who used Firefox before the versions numbers went haywire

    in MASSIVE text as a daily reminder of the old glory days.

    Seriously, I shouldn't have to rearrange and twiddle with everything to get Firefox as much like 3.6 as possible every time I install it. What true UI improvements have we had since then? I can think of two: tabs that don't resize while I'm hovering on them, and tab groups. Why was the rest of it randomized?

    Also, what's with the stupid launch defaults? I close Firefox when I want a clean slate, not a glorified minimize. "Restore my windows and tabs from last time" is antithetical to the whole idea of closing all the tabs! Can you imagine if Windows restored all your programs and junk from last time? People would come unglued.

    Also, we live in an age of large LCD displays. I can spare a few pixels of screen space to keep the bookmarks and buttons I use all day long visible instead of burying them somewhere underneath gloss and shiny.

    One last gripe: Tools > Add-ons should take me to Extensions, not the "Wonderful World of Stuff You Could Bloat Your Firefox With." I go to Add-ons to remove extensions other programs installed without asking far more often than I feel the urge to add bloviated toolbars. Speaking of which, can we finally make Firefox ask before allowing programs (like nearly every AV, Skype, whatever) to hang their useless (or worse, Google-search-invading) lampshade in Extensions?

  • Re:Good (Score:2, Insightful)

    by BoberFett ( 127537 ) on Wednesday January 11, 2012 @04:33PM (#38667228)

    If my Time and Attendance web based software stops working because the browser decides to upgrade itself and my thousands of employees are unable to clock in and out, then yes, it is a life and death decision.

    You little kiddies and your narrow POV from your mom's basement are amusing, I'll give you that.

Exceptions prove the rule, and wreck the budget. -- Miller