New Firefox schedule will bring the good stuff faster

Following the release of Firefox 5 on June 21, a standard 18-week development schedule will kick in.

Mozilla's Firefox 4 may still be fresh from the oven and cooling on millions of users' computers, but Mozilla has already set an aggressive schedule with specific dates for the release of the open source browser's upcoming versions.

Indeed, making good on the promise back in February that it was planning to step up the pace of its browser releases, Mozilla has now made plain that it plans to ship the final release of Firefox 5 on June 21, likely followed by Firefox 6 in mid-August.

Beginning with Firefox 6, in fact, Mozilla will adopt a standard, overlapping 18-week schedule by which each new version spends six weeks in each of three different stages: the "central" or "nightly" phase, which is "just like the current repository," Mozilla notes; the "aurora" phase, where work done previously is stabilized; and then the beta phase, in which any remaining issues are fixed. A draft outline is posted on Mozilla's site.

'Releases Are Not Delayed'

Whereas previous Firefox releases have taken many months to develop, Mozilla's new timetable will impose a much stricter schedule that's akin to the one Google follows for its own Chrome competitor.

"Each release happens regardless of whether a given feature is ready, and releases are not delayed to wait for a feature to stabilize," Mozilla explains in a separate draft document. "The goal of the process is to provide regular improvements to users without disrupting longer term work."

According to Mozilla's schedule, Firefox 5 will enter the aurora phase on Tuesday. At the same time, Firefox 6 will enter its central, or nightly, phase.

(More) Instant Gratification

Firefox 4 has propelled Mozilla's browser to the forefront of the pack with enhancements including greatly boosted speed, a widely touted "Do Not Track" mechanism, a "tabs on top" layout and more.

That version of the browser -- which blew away expectations with some 7 million downloads in its first 24 hours -- may have taken a relatively long time to bake, but it's clear future versions won't.

I love Firefox 4, but I can't wait to try out the next version, which promises to feature a more responsive interface, an updated search bar, site-specific tabs and more. It's exciting to see that Mozilla is committing to make the browser even better sooner -- and more often.

Follow Katherine Noyes on Twitter: @Noyesk .

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags open sourcebrowsersinternetsoftwareapplicationsFirefoxmozilla

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Katherine Noyes

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?