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back to article Firefox 3 Download Day falls flat on face

Firefox 3 Download Day began with a PR fiasco. For almost two hours after it was supposed to kick off servers were down and Mozilla Foundation websites either unavailable or publishing html error messages. The Mozilla Foundation had called on the world to start downloading the latest version of the browser at 10am PDT today - …

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Yep

WAY faster... Very nice.

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innovation?

ff is so innovative etc et al. WtF?!? "a bigger back button" as a new feature? how innovative.

anyhow, some things just run under the heading "it's good enough" for me. does ie7 have some drawbacks? yup. do ff, opera, safari have drawbacks? i'm sure they do. (don't use any of em regularly, so can't say for sure)

ms has married the browser to the os in no uncertain manner. a lot of the os'es activities involve parts of the browser in some way. this is why i am happy with the way ie7 and its predecessors worked. i do not see the point of installing another piece of software to replace one that comes with the operating system and performs in an adequate fashion, especially since i can not remove the included browser from the system as the system needs parts of it to run...

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Paris Hilton

@Sim: re addressbar

"firefox 3 Url-bar Rubbish Behaviour " was solved with the use of the 'oldbar' add-on.

Paris, cause I'd try her too :)

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Paris Hilton

I am lonely here

I am not a geek like vast majority of you posters .

You seem to prefer Opera-so why not just use it.

The choice is yours.

Strangely though , Opera is very low on the popularity scale from what I have seen.

I am on Ubuntu, and my browser says "Firefox version 3.0".

Had it for a couple of months now.

Peace and joy to you all.

My icon is another very friendly ,warm , cuddly thing.

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@Sim - autocomplete

Agree about the URL bar. That for me is a deal breaker and absolutely horrendous. I really loath that feature, it doesn't make it easier, it makes it harder. It lasted all of 5 minutes, and most of those hunting for the option to turn that feature off. I'll stick with 2 as long as that feature remains. Or perchance I may peruse other options.

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Anonymous Coward

It's still good...

Firstly, to all the ones who come out with "download opera, it's better"...i'd say firefox and opera are aimed at different kinds of users...personally, I like firefox because it’s just a web browser, I only use it to browse websites. Opera is feature packed and for me is just bloated and a waste of space since it has so much I just don’t need or want. So it's pretty pointless to troll an article about a web browser different to one you use (really, why do people have to act like that ALL the time?)

Now onto things that matter...

Shortly after the release I had no problems getting firefox (one of the lucky few?), downloaded fast and installed fast...and then suddenly I went from a slow running firefox with multiple windows open to one that has been lightning fast for nigh on 10 hours. The program itself loads faster than firefox 2, pages load a lot faster and I haven’t experienced any slowdowns that I often got with firefox 2.

What really pleases me is the download manager doesn’t slow down to snails pace when you have a lot of downloads that you haven’t cleared off the list (that annoyed me greatly when I was trying to download something and had to wait for that thing to decide to do something.)

The only thing I don’t really like at the moment is the "awesome bar"...I prefer good old fashioned auto complete, and they've integrated the "go to address" button into the address bar which just annoys me as it disappears once it's reached the website unless you start typing something else it...slightly annoying.

But all in all I think firefox have done a good job. Still, it's early days so we shall see.

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Stop

@Nordrick

Yes, but it'd be a bit more interesting to see how many people, like you downloaded it multiple times for no apparent reason other than to donate to a meaningless stat. Toodles.

I done a little digging around - apparently as of March 2008, adobe estimate 864,000,000 users have flash player. That's about 9.6 million downloads a day?

I can't find many more stats though about it, and Adobe seem near impossible to get in touch when you have a non-software related query.

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Anonymous Coward

Out and Out Browser War?

A browser war can never be a fair contest, not when IE 8 will be pushed to the majority of Windows users without them specifically wanting it.

Nor when companies (financial institutions) write web interfaces that only work on one browser...IE

Nor when Apple sneaks Safari into the machines of people using iTunes and Quicktime.

Shrug... All the browsers can view El reg - I'll take my pick.

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Unhappy

firefox version?

When I click the download firefox 3 link it downloads version 2.0.0.14? huh?

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ROLF...!

Maybe they should be hosting on IIS7/Win2k8?! :-)

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Happy

Ubuntu,(?) Vista and XP sp2 versions downloaded

Forgot about this until last night. A message popped up on Ubuntu 8.04 saying there was a new version of Firefox. It told me it was Version 3. I saw no mention of RC2. Installed automagically, quickly and painlessly and works great.

I then went downstairs and loaded FF3 onto my Vista laptop. (over WiFi, so a bit slower) Again painless.

This morning at work, despite having to find a backdoor in the company firewall, I downloaded onto my company XP SP2 laptop without issue. (I need it for testing our website developments - honest, Guv.)

In all cases all personalisations, bookmarks, etc were preserved, and add-ons updated.

I have been using RC2 on my Vista laptop, so no surprises. I love the speed of rendering. Pages with complex CSS still render better than IE7, but I can't see that they are better than FF2 yet.

I am a happy bunny

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Go

Fine for me

Firefox 3 works fine for me and the addition of the automatic spellchecker really dopes make life easier for me, but the disappearence of the forwards and back butons as standard was annoying me, although these can be manually readded which I have done and does help improve the use of the browser having them there.

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Linux

Firefox getting better...

Never been a fan of Firefox, but have to admit this one does

seem better.

Prettier than before, although I think IE7 is still tidier.

It does seem pretty darn quick to load pages, although still

a bit slow to load.

Other than that... still seems like a web browser to me...exciting as mud.

www.spreadmud.com

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Better than Opera 9.5...

Installed it last night and love the rendering speed. Everything else is fine, and a step up from Opera 9.5, which looks nice but seems to drag my PC to a halt every time I use it.

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Flame

@Anonymous Coward Tuesday 17th June 2008 18:48

<quote>

I dont understand why the intelligent would choose (Opera) a classic example of bloat ware (ala Office) that has so much crap inbuilt that most people won't use or care about.

I'd say the intelligent would choose a light weight browser then install one or many of the thousands of plug-ins that are of some use to them!

<\quote>

If Opera is so bloated, then why is is the classic installer download, with many of the most useful features that you need to install an add-on for already included, less than 70% of the size of the latest Firefox download ? Even the MSI installer takes the download up to only 95% of the Firefox one, and then you have to find, download and install the addons for Firefox when they are ready to go in Opera.

My own installs of Opera 9.5 and Firefox 3, I do like Firefox as a backup browser, are for Opera, 16 MB of program and 7 MB for profile, including cache. For Firefox it is 30 MB for program and 11 MB profile, for all the extensions that I needed to get some of the same functionality I have in Opera, such as closed tab history, user agent switching, content blocking, setting the close tab button where I want, but not all of the functionality, for example I can't have 2 pages open side by side within the same instance of Firefox, I can in Opera.

So even if you don't want all of the included feautures, email client, usenet client, IRC client, Torrent client, are some of the things I don't use myself but are installed in the smaller footprint, you have used less space and taken less time to get to the same place.

I'll leave others to decide which they think of these options is the intelligent and lightweight one.

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How to update?

I'm running FF2. I go to Help - Check for Updates. It tells me there are none available.

I'm guessing they haven't made it automatically update yet, but wouldn't that be an obvious way of hitting 2 bazillion downloads or whatever they're aiming for? If everyone running previous versions of FF had been faced with a message saying 'download FF3 now' yesterday morning, they would have been sorted.

PR stunt, nothing else. And like all PR stunts, it's all fluff and no news. A bit like the 'save the earth by turning off your lights hour' - in Southampton the council and shopping centres announced they would turn off their lights for an hour during the night (as if that would make the slightest iota of difference) - then didn't actually turn them off. FAIL.

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Coat

The record is dead long live digital

Perhaps moz realised that records are oldskool and everything is digital now so deicied instead of breaking a world record to break the world(wideweb)server instead.

the one with 'kick me' on the back. (and moz on the front)

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Coat

They wouldn't have this problem ...

... if they used IIS on those servers <g>

Mine's the one being jumped up and down on by scores of Apache fans.

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@Firefox RC2 was still buggy for me...

"...as in it stopped responding quite frequently on my Windows Vista running laptop"

Internet Explorer also freezes now on all my computers running XP pro SP3 every time a page is slow to load.

I finally managed to download Firefox 3 last evening, very slowly though. For me it runs very nicely and I appreciate the choice.

However, I think Mozilla did manage the record attempt very badly by failing to disseminate useful information/instructions in advance and hence were not really prepared.

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Coat

yawn yes but no but er what

what does this do that IE Doesn't exactly? if you get excited about this boaring piece of me-too-ware then you have far too much time on your hands in which case install slackware it will be far more eventful.

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Gates Halo

...and?

"Features in Firefox 3 include nearly 5,000 add-ons to customize a page, a bigger back button, and the ability to store browsing history for up to three months."

Whoop-de-fucking-doo... Oh be still my beating heart....

ZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzz............

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Anonymous Coward

FF3

It's now running here (and at home). I can see some cosmetic differences, but, err, not a lot else. Which isn't surprising as most of the change are all under-the-hood stuff.

It seems to be better than FF2 and is leagues ahead of IE. As I don't use Safari or Opera I can't comment. All the minor 3 are (to greater or lesser degrees) standards compliant, only IE is the issue.

It's such a shame IE 6 is still in the wild. *sigh*

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tim

Render speed

I was intrigued by peoples reports or fast render speed so I thought I would give it a look. However I can't see any difference between it and IE7. Most of the time when pages are slow its the download not the browser speed.

Plus I had forgotten how much better ClearType makes everything look in IE7, without it FF looks like something from the 20th Century. (someone will now tell me you can use it as an Add-on, well whats the point of that?)

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Hmmm, not sure its that much of a fialure....

... I read about the download day was curious and downloaded it. As a non tech fanboy, I probably wouldn't have noticed a new version had come out unless they'd created some kind of spin to get headlines. So I'm now reading The Reg using their new browser, now my default, and IE has been effortlessly usurped. Forget the 5m download target, just having a significant number of people doing what I've just done is probably the end game for Mozilla, so I expect they're happy.

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Paris Hilton

I like it very much...

I use it quite a while now and had no noticable problems..

And with the Drag & Grab AddOn and my graphics tablet I never want to use a mouse again for browsing ;-)

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Silver badge

Shome mishtake shurely?

The advertised release time was 1000 PDT yesterday (June 17th). That is 1800 here in the UK. Yet the article was dated 1613 June 17th! At the time it was posted, nearly two hours were yet to elapse before the planned release hour.

I was mildly disappointed to find the servers unavailable last night. So I waited till this morning to download my copy - still easily within the 24 hours. No biggy.

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Paris Hilton

Hmmm

Hmmm , I am starting to like Opera 9.5 it is quick and has a nice feel and is relatively secure , although lately Java scripting is really pushing single core CPU's to their limit stops merely to render a web page or maybe I need a bigger more powerful graphics card on a four year old system !

Although I have come across a nice Opera/Mozilla/IE browser security test site at this link here =http://bcheck.scanit.be/bcheck/

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How long will the record stand?

There are more IE users than Firefox users, MS has a lot more web servers than FF, so it's almost certain that on launch day IE8 downloads will far outstrip FF3 downloads. I think that FF have started something they will regret with this one.

As a PR stunt I think there are numerous ways for this to backfire.

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Got it

And am very happy with the rendering speed BUT - I don't like that most of my add-ons no longer work and I really hate the new 'awesome bar'. I hate the fact you cannot disable it even more.

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Go

working great

Running it on two XP machines, OSX and Windows 2000 without any issues, certainly faster then Firefox 2.0 imho :)

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Re: Only 2 Million?

>> What I can't understand is the claim of 2 million users of Firefox. 200 million

>> maybe. A slip of the journo's pen I suspect.

I read it as 2 Million users of Firefox 3 (or pre-releases of). Although when I went back to the article to quote it, it appears to have been edited.

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Happy

Firefox 3

Got it last night (around 8pm London time), works very well, I use Opera 9.5 as well, and it gives Opera a run for its money speed wise. Both however are now fine browsers! (I had been turned off Firefox in later updates of V2, but now back again)

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Happy

So what became of...

Posted last night following the start of this debacle. For the record, FF3 was fine on Windows, even if it did announce itself as "Hendrix" (the last RC). Seems OK.

Couldn't get the bugger to run properly on Linux, however. I could get it to run, but it refused to install properly, insisted in using an internally installed theme which looked so washed out that some of it was impossible to read and wouldn't run unless I specifically issued the command /usr/lib/firefox/firefox, which was just wrong. Rolled back to FF2 and there it will stay for now. Mozilla had nothing of any use to suggest on the site that the README file directed me to, so sod it!

Just waiting until Thursday and the openSUSE 11 release! ;)

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Happy

Give The Devil His Due

RE:Firefox 3 Download Day falls flat on face

The site boasts over 6,500,000 downloads. Looks to me your shaft .. uh staff sort of E-jackulated a bit early. Do you guys know Jack? I know Jack. I don't think you guys know Jack.

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A nice sun style thread to gather up all the shills

Nicely done, el Reg.

All the Microsoft and Opera shills, all squealing in one place.

Especially love all the AC's who think Microsoft's ability to force its standards ignoring browser on unsuspecting non-technical users compares to the Mozilla Foundation getting people to voluntarily take up their wares.

And to the supposed 'linux users' complaining that it doesn't install correctly, or that they couldn't find the correct install procedure for their distro.

If you were so excited that you couldn't be wait for it to be pushed out through your own distro's package management system, then it's your own fault. As others have shown, you were to stupid to find the correct instructions on the site, and thought you were better than the packagers of your distro. Some might even wonder if your Microsoft shills trying to drive a little wedge, with a 'it doesn't work on linux' play ...

Me, I'm happy to sit on the RC2 that got pushed out on kubunto recently, till they get around to pushing the final build out. After all, the only changes should be the version name and possibly the removal of some debugging info.

I suppose I could have made the effort and joined in the record attempt by upgrading from FF2 on my XP partition at home, but as I've hardly booted into it since I invested in a PS3 for gaming, it didn't even cross my mind last night.

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Opera

Having tried them both now I will probably stay with Opera 9.5, which is a nice bit of lean and fast code.

And, besides, why go for the plagiators when you can have the original?

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Coat

Pay for a browser?

After about 5 hours there are over 2 million copies downloaded. This evening I will be downloading a copy for each of the computers I have direct control over.

Why the hell would anybody pay for a browser? I used Opera back in the day when it was free and wasn't impressed. It wasn't bad, per se, but it was no better than anything else out there. Now it's new and improved after all these years and they want people to pay for it? There are so many free browsers there I can't see any reason to pay for one.

Mine's the one with the "freetard" sticker on the back.

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Go

Firefox 3

The server overload was anticipated and welcomed ...it got people all over the world blogging about......If everything went smoothly ...we wouldn't be talking about it here..

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Paris Hilton

Pay for Opera?

John,

Do you live in a parallel universe. You haven't had to pay for Opera for a good long while now. I think you've got your Opera history arse about face.

Paris because she's got more idea about web browsers than John...

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Hmm

Think I'll stick with Firefox 2, I did have one of the betas of FF3 and didn't notice much of a difference. I can also say that I have downloaded both Safari and Opera and used each for a few days before running right back to FF2 as Opera didn't show any noticeable advantages for me, and the same with Safari. I will keep them installed as they are both still better that the feature theiving IE7 as an alternative to FF2.

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Alternatives

Well, there's Opera. It's apparently "much better", as in "faster", and "better designed". But wait, I can't do a site-by-site javascript denial as I can with Firefox and NoScript. I can't selectively block advertising the way I can with AdBlock. Those two functions alone make Firefox worth much more than other browsers to me.

So Firefox itself might be old and outdated, that's true. But it seems to me that it's more than happy to let the community add necessary functionality. Unlike Opera, that has taken the attitude that "this is what we're going to give you, and you'll like it". Much like another company I know of.

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one hour and 50 minutes of Fired! Fox jokes

and I was finally able to get the DL. After that, no glitches for the other three boxes I needed to set it up on. Works pretty well on Vista even, which says a lot considering the handicap Vista puts on everything anyways.

For all the haters, the one reason I recommend FF over IE even in a business environment? When there's a bug, exploit or flaw, it is reported immediately (often by the M$ and @pple people) and usually before I finish reading the article, the update button is flashing for a fix. M$ at best makes you wait till their patch tuesday, and sometimes takes weeks or months to make a fix, even though they were aware of the exploit even earlier than reported. @pple simply denies anything could be wrong with the Holy Browser and refuses to work on the flaws they and their acolytes claim do not exist-and try to legally oppress those who report the flaw or try to repair it themselves.

Now, the true benefit of the open-source movement-let the plug-in developer wars begin! For all those whinging about their favorite plug-in not working, if it's even remotely popular, the fix is already in the works, if not already available for download. For mine, IEtab was disabled and one of my favorite skins-but FF3 allows you to check for updates, which it did, found the updated fix, and installed so all my plugins are back the way they were.

And as for those complaining about missing features in FF3, let's look at how these are handled:

IE: wait a year or so until the next version of IE (which may require the next version OS) and it may contain your desired feature.

Anything by @pple: Everything you need or want is already there. If it's not there, you don't need it or want it, only the Unfaithful and Unartistic/Uncool would want it.

FF: check the plugins, it's probably already there. If not, wait a week. If it's still not there, obviously no one but you wants it, so commission someone to make it for you.

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Boffin

'Tis Good

Seems a lot quicker than Firefox 2

Just a bit annoyed that I cant seem to run the Netcraft toolbar on it (apparently it doesn't support a secure update mechanism)

Hopefully Netcraft will sort this (and yes, I am sad enough to want to know who owns the IP address of the server whose pages I'm looking at) athough El Reg just comes up as individual IP space which isn't that informative now is it?

The Geek guy because, well I am one and proud of it.

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I'm sorry to have to report:

I've downloaded and been running this new improved FireFox now for over 24 hours. Its is riddled with CSS rendering and JavaScript bugs which were not there in V2.

Not any better than the beta. At ALL.

IE7 renders the same pages without a glitch. I say IE7 — its actually IE8 Beta in IE7 compatibility mode. So does Safari.

FF3 is a turkey, at least in this incarnation. I'm not at all impressed with Opera 9.5 either.

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Flame

@ yeah, right. Re: Alternatives

<Quote>

Well, there's Opera. It's apparently "much better", as in "faster", and "better designed". But wait, I can't do a site-by-site javascript denial as I can with Firefox and NoScript.

</Quote\>

Site Preferences allows you to disable/enable Javascript, even only disable certain specific javascript functions, set popup preferences, whether cookies are allowed, whether Java or any other plugins are used, whether frames or iframes are allowed, set the style sheet used, set whether referrer info is sent, set whether autoredirection is allowed, set the user agent used and other things, on a site by site basis and is included without installing anything else

<Quote>

I can't selectively block advertising the way I can with AdBlock.

</Quote\>

The Block Content function, which can be set to allow otherwise blocked content to be viewed if on a specific site, does this quite happilly, again built in with no extra add-on to find, trust and install.

<Quote>

Those two functions alone make Firefox worth much more than other browsers to me.

</Quote\>

So Opera has the same features with extra functionality in them, in a smaller package, (with the same 5 pages open in both Firefox 3 and Opera 9.50 on my machine, Opera uses a third to half the RAM that Firefox is using, other size differences are mentioned in my other post), without the need to go and find extra things, and you think that this is worth less than and is not "better designed" than Firefox? It sounds like you haven't even installed Opera let alone looked at what it can do on its own.

And of course, if you so wish, you can make further changes in either ini files or through Opera:config to get other custom settings as you like, and easily swap back to the defaults if it doesn't work out. With the Opera Community and opera.* newsgroups for advice on how to do these things.

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Stop

Wait

Like any good IT person, I'll wait until 3.1 comes out.

Let the users find the bugs the developers couldn't.

Firefox 2 is perfectly fine ATM.

Some of us are not version junkies.

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