31 ديسمبر 2009 ~ 0 تعليق

Firefox 3.6, 3.7 and 4.0 in 2010

Firefox 3.6, 3.7 and 4.0 in 2010

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An interesting year awaits Mozilla, with the company’s plans for the evolution of its open source browser beginning to take contour. If until recently it appeared that two, maybe three releases of Firefox were planned for 2010, it now seems that Mozilla has bumped this number to three or four, with the addition of Firefox codename Lorentz. This because the company has outlined the features it absolutely wants to ship the coming year.

“At the Firefox work week I sat at a whiteboard with [Mike Beltzner, Mozilla’s Director of Firefox]and some others thinking about the features that the Firefox team wants to ship in 2010: Crash-safe plugins (OOPP); Transition to jetpack extensions; New UI “stuff”: the new menu/toolbar structure and platform integration; Weave; Updater which doesn’t interrupt the user; More responsive UI (async I/O, primarily); better startup time and integrated developer tools ,” revealed Mozilla developer Benjamin Smedberg.

Fact is that, according to Smedberg, some of the features enumerated above could end up in Firefox 3.6, but only after it will be officially launched. Mozilla intends to make available the first Release Candidate (RC) for Firefox 3.6 in January 2010, and to wrap up the minor update to Firefox 3.5 by the end of the first month in 2010. Additions such as Crash-safe plugins (OOPP); an updater which doesn’t interrupt the user; more responsive UI (async I/O, primarily); and better startup time are expected to be introduced with Lorentz in Firefox 3.6.2 or 3.6.3.

“There are two major release vehicles available for these features: a stability release in Q1, and a major feature release which will preview in June/July and ship later in the year,” Mozilla notes. “In order that out of process plugins can get widespread testing while not disrupting our ability to ship regular security updates, a special project branch will track mozilla-1.9.2: weekly betas with multi-process plugins will allow for quick iteration and widespread testing.”

Obviously, the features that won’t make it in Firefox 3.6, even with the Lorentz evolution, will be delivered in Firefox 3.7, which is expected by mid-2010. It will be only after the delivery of Firefox 3.7 that Mozilla will deliver the first taste of the next major version of Firefox. A preview release of Firefox 4.0 will be offered to early adopters around the start of the summer next year, with the final release planned for the end of 2010, but most likely early in 2011.

It is important to note that Mozilla considers the list of features enumerated above as the major user-facing focus points. This changes little the fact that Firefox 3.6, 3.7 and possible 4.0 will only be offered to customers starting with the coming year.

Firefox 3.6 Beta 5 (Beta revision 5) for Windows is available for download here.

Firefox 3.6 Beta 5 (Beta revision 5) for Mac OS X is available for download here.

Firefox 3.6 Beta 5 (Beta revision 5) for Linux is available for download here.

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