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Mozilla IT

Firefox Goes for World Download Record 344

Posted by samzenpus
from the record-for-the-lamest-marketing-campaign dept.
Kelson writes "For the upcoming release of Firefox, Mozilla is preparing Download Day 2008: a campaign to set a world record for the most software downloaded in 24 hours. Participants are asked to pledge to download Firefox 3 on the day that it's launched. The exact date hasn't been scheduled yet, but everything seems on track for June."
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Firefox Goes for World Download Record

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  • by Apatharch (796324) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:02AM (#23584415)
    Are they trying to kill their own servers or what?
    • by QuantumPete (1247776) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:29AM (#23584647) Journal
      It's like inviting a DDOS attack. I suppose it has the dual merit of setting world record and testing their server capacity.
    • by Thelasko (1196535)
      This reminds me of the story of a man who found himself in possession of tickets to the World Series. Instead of auctioning them off, he decided to sell them for $150 each to the first person to send him an email to his corporate account at 2:17 pm. He printed flyers and handed them out to everyone he knew. At the stroke of 2:17, guess what happened? The corporate email server went down after receiving over 800 emails in less than one second.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by CarpetShark (865376)

        The corporate email server went down after receiving over 800 emails in less than one second.


        Yeah, and that was just the normal Microsoft Exchange startup sequence.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by jc42 (318812)
      Are they trying to kill their own servers or what?

      Doesn't matter. On the Big Day, it's guaranteed that someone will announce it here, and within minutes we'll slashdot the server.

      Someone else suggested getting the current beta version, because it seems to work just fine. This won't help their server, though, because on the Big Day, your beta version will check, find that there's an upgrade, ask if you want to download it - and you'll join in the slashdotting.

      They should just put the server on a slow net c
  • Patch Tuesday (Score:5, Interesting)

    by pjt33 (739471) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:04AM (#23584439)
    What's the current record? I'd expect MS service packs to set a pretty high bar. Also, how are they counting? If Debian get Firefox 3 through into testing on the day (which I doubt), would an install via aptitude count, or are they only counting direct downloads from Mozilla?
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      Probably as in previous download counts, they are only counting downloads from Mozilla. As for Microsoft service packs, should a patch really count?
      • Re:Patch Tuesday (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Simon (S2) (600188) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:11AM (#23584483) Homepage

        As for Microsoft service packs, should a patch really count?
        They are Software. So if they want to set a world record for the most software downloaded in 24 hours of course service packs count.
      • by pjt33 (739471)

        As for Microsoft service packs, should a patch really count?
        Depends on the patch. Some service packs contain significant new software. How else would they pass 100MB in size? Of course, it's fair to say that those tend to be the early service packs and not so heavily downloaded on their launch day as later ones.
    • by Crock23A (1124275) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:09AM (#23584455)
      I bet WOW patches are high ranking.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        I bet WOW patches are high ranking.
        I bet not. How many Windows users are there? What percentage of those Windows users play WOW? (Hint: it's probably not even a majority.)
      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by shift3 (911297)

        I bet WOW patches are high ranking.

        One problem with this is, how many people actually download from ONLY the HTTP source? The wow Patcher uses a BitTorrent based P2P system. There is a rather high chance that you will get little, if any from their Direct HTTP Download source on any given patch day. Now, as the time that the patch was released and the time that you are downloading increases, this amount will increase as not nearly as many people will have the P2P Updater running.

    • Re:Patch Tuesday (Score:4, Interesting)

      by unlametheweak (1102159) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:16AM (#23584531)
      I would suspect "software downloads" would imply an independent application and not a patch or a service pack. I'm sure they have their servers prepared to get Slashdotted and Digged, etc for the marketing event. Though I wonder why Microsoft with it's money couldn't hire a marketing firm to think up something savvy like that for Internet Explorer.

      It would also be a great opportunity to promote bittorent as a mass downloading medium. Too bad it doesn't seem to be in the plan.
      • Not the goal (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Nerdposeur (910128)

        It would also be a great opportunity to promote bittorent as a mass downloading medium. Too bad it doesn't seem to be in the plan.

        Could they track the number of downloads if they used bittorrent? Also, if their goal is a record number of downloads for Firefox, do they want to set up an additional hurdle for people? "First, you have to download and install one of these other programs. No wait, we can explain why. Come back."

        • I don't know about tracking torrents, but in response to your "another hurdle" there's no reason they can't allow direct downloads AND a .torrent and let people choose which is easier / preferable.
        • by fbjon (692006)
          Hey, I use Opera, I don't need to download some torrent program!


          Oh wait...


          Disclaimer: I keep up with Firefox updates anyway, since it's very nice for development.

      • Re:Patch Tuesday (Score:5, Interesting)

        by elrous0 (869638) * on Thursday May 29, 2008 @08:14AM (#23585141)
        Bittorent doesn't allow for tracking downloads. It's one of the things that really holds it back for general use for a lot of companies. For example, a lot of internet TV shows would LOVE to use bittorent to reduce their download overhead (which is HUGE), but how are they supposed to determine their "ratings" if they're not sure how many donwloads they've had? They used to talk a lot about this over at DLTV [dl.tv].
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by manwal (648106)
      Anything goes; there is currently no world record in this category.
  • So guys... (Score:5, Funny)

    by thedrx (1139811) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:09AM (#23584457)
    Get your botnets ready :)
  • by Rogerborg (306625) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:10AM (#23584471) Homepage

    Since presumably my Firefox 2 will bug me to update to 3 as soon as it's released?

    Not to disparage Mozilla, but lately it seems like they've been a mite too concerned with press releases. They should release when it's ready, and we'll get it when we think it's ready. What's the big rush?

    • by jeiler (1106393)

      hey should release when it's ready, and we'll get it when we think it's ready.
      Ditto that--and AC's complaint about the asshat, I mean, the "awesome" bar.
      • Ditto that--and AC's complaint about the asshat, I mean, the "awesome" bar.

        I have a vague recollection of getting hammered at the Awesome Bar one night.
        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by Saint Gerbil (1155665)
          I have a vague recollection of getting hammered at the Asshat bar one night. Woke up with a sore arse.
    • I'm actually not sure if Firefox 2 will automatically update to Firefox 3. For one, Firefox 3 doesn't support older OSes like Windows 98, ME, and OS X 10.3.9. I'm sure the update manager can sense this though so maybe it's not a big deal. Secondly, Firefox 3 is slightly visually different, I'm not sure if they want to force it on users until they're ready.
    • Press = good (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Nerdposeur (910128) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:57AM (#23584947) Journal

      Not to disparage Mozilla, but lately it seems like they've been a mite too concerned with press releases.

      I think this is a cool idea. There are still lots of people who don't know there are other browsers in existence; when they open IE they say they're opening "the internet." Anything that makes the news and makes them aware of alternate browsers is good - especially if it's "hey this thing is really popular." For many people, that's the best argument for trying it.

      Mozilla seems to have done pretty well by harnessing the power of fanatic users so far - remember the big newspaper ads? And check out the "pledge map" on the site. Think how proud you'd be to see that you're one of a very few people in your country who has pledged to download it. Kind of a mix of national pride and geek pride.

      Every web developer's dream is a world where all users have more standards-compliant browsers, and IE is forced to follow suit. I say hooray for almost anything that makes that closer to reality.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by tobiasly (524456)

      Not to disparage Mozilla, but lately it seems like they've been a mite too concerned with press releases. They should release when it's ready, and we'll get it when we think it's ready. What's the big rush?

      Press releases, viral marketing, and publicity stunts like this are a big reason why worldwide Firefox market share is somewhere in the 30% range. Yeah, you've gotta have a solid product to begin with, but more open source projects would do well to emulate Mozilla's marketing and branding accomplishments.

      Also, your post implies that Firefox will somehow be rushed out the door before it's ready, but if you've been following along you know that's very far from correct. Even the "download pledge"

    • by cp.tar (871488)

      Since presumably my Firefox 2 will bug me to update to 3 as soon as it's released?

      I trow not.

      Firefox 1.5.x did not bug users when 2.0 was released, if my memory serves me right.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by gnick (1211984)
        Main Entry: trow [merriam-webster.com]
        Pronunciation: \'tro\ [long o improperly copypasta'ed]
        Function: verb
        Etymology: Middle English, from Old English trowan; akin to Old English trowe faithful, true
        Date: before 12th century

        1) obsolete: believe
        2) archaic: think
    • by Idbar (1034346)
      I can't remember Firefox 1 pushing to install Firefox 2. You kept having updates as 1.x, but never insisted to move to Firefox 2. So I don't know where did you get that idea from. (Perhaps my Firefox 1 was broken?)
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:11AM (#23584481)
    because many popular plugins are not 3.0 ready :-(
    • by thetoadwarrior (1268702) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:24AM (#23584595) Homepage
      I would say that's untrue at this point. del.icio.us released their updated version, Web Developer, noscript, adblock and firebug is on FF3. In fact, I'd say most popular plugins have made the move.
      • by at_slashdot (674436) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:32AM (#23584679)
        Who cares about "popular" plugins, the point is that the plugins that _I_ need don't work. For example Google Sync.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by hansamurai (907719)
          Then use the Nightly Tester Tool plugin to force it to work. Plugins will only work natively in Firefox 3 if the developer specifically typed that version in. I'm running Firefox RC1 at the moment and every plugin I need, large and small, works. Not all out of the box, but with Nightly Tester Tools, I can enable them and force them to work. As long as they're not dependent on an API that changed, which could be likely depending on the plugin, they will work.
        • by AikonMGB (1013995)

          Who cares about "popular" plugins, the point is that the plugins that _I_ need don't work. For example Google Sync.
          [...], Gmail Manager, Password Generator, [...]
          • by lilomar (1072448)
            Gmail Manager updated last night. It works with 3.0 now.

            (Which made me a happy, happy geek)
            • by lilomar (1072448)
              Oops, Sorry, I just checked, it's Gmail Notifier that I rely on so much, not Manager.

              Nothing to see here....
      • by elrous0 (869638) *
        I just wish someone would update Slashdotter [mozilla.org]. Between Firefox 3 and Taco feeling the need to change Slashdot's layout on a daily basis, Slashdotter has become flaky as hell.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by nem75 (952737)

      How the hell is this "+5 Interesting"? There are roughly a gazillion of FF2 extensions out there, many of them have not been actively developed anymore for months or longer. So of course many (I'd rather say most) are not available for FF3 yet - and will probably never be.

      The core extensions (yes, the definition of that term varies from user to user, I'm aware of that - but only to a point) are available though. Like Adblock Plus, Download Statusbar etc.

      Others are available for FF3 from the developer's

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Bombria (1100369)
      Most plugins do work in 3.0. You just have to disable version checking in FF.
  • ...who has Mozilla's petard ready for them to hoist?
  • big deal. (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:14AM (#23584511)
    ... these are the same idiots that thought that a beta of windows vista was the single largest software download: http://labnol.blogspot.com/2006/06/windows-vista-for-guinness-world.html [blogspot.com]

    show of hands: who downloaded a linux dvd iso larger than 3.5 gigabytes before vista beta was released? ... and apparently there is no "world record" to break anyway: http://blog.internetnews.com/skerner/2008/05/mozillas-latest-firefox-launch.html [internetnews.com]

    and, are they not going to consider the millions of copies of, say, internet explorer 7, downloaded the first day it was forced through as an automatic update? or how many downloads of itunes are there in a day when apple _requires_ an update?
  • Yeah! (Score:5, Funny)

    by SpanishInquisition0 (1297663) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:17AM (#23584533)
    Go for the record Mozilla! If you get it, you might even get a place right next to the Most Marshmallows Stuffed Into A Person's Mouth record!
    • Spam your friends, useless news which doesn't matter, omg lets get lots of hits for mozillas download page! Who needs missions to mars and particle colliders when we have awesome news like this!?!
    • by Per Wigren (5315)

      you might even get a place right next to the Most Marshmallows Stuffed Into A Person's Mouth record!
      Let me guess... This is the guy? [youtube.com]
  • Overall downloads of Devils0wn WinXP Pro Corporate the day it came out
  • by Jumperalex (185007) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:25AM (#23584605)
    The important one is how fast we can /. the web site :)
  • by artifex2004 (766107) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:25AM (#23584607) Journal
    I'm not getting the release until I know for sure it won't crash hard on my Macs, like the beta I tried did. And that it won't delete my cookies, like the beta did.

    I'd really like to see continued support for the old style of searching in the url bar, too, but I doubt that will happen. And the new look is just uglier.
    • Chicken. ;)

      Why don't you download and try it?

      The new bugs and memory leaks are half the fun with Firefox.
    • by Rurik (113882) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @08:47AM (#23585513)
      You know, that's why they have a "release candidate", which is now available. The betas are over and done with. And, I hope, as a beta user that you submitted your issues for them to be addressed and resolved.

      So... instead of wondering if it will crash, why not find out?
      • by Rallion (711805)
        The "release candidate" that fubared my bookmarks after upgrading from beta5, and also still chokes on the same AJAX apps that stopped working with beta5.

        I don't know why they're even calling it a release candidate when it still has some pretty significant problems that were already widely reported with the previous version.
        • You must have missed that 'common sense' instruction of backing up your bookmarks prior to upgrading.

          FWIW, RC1 has been very stable on my 10.5.3 mac. Much snappier, and the URLbar (whatever it's called now) is a definite improvement.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Completely opposite to the ideals of capitalism, those swines are trying to topple the world order with their no-cost merchandise.

    However, few can say that Firefox is a software which you shouldn't own a copy of. Let's show them that enterpreunist powers rule with a firm iron hand and instead of criminally downloading a free version, buy a CD version of firefox on that particular day.

  • Why should we? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by greenpete (1295397)
    I have used Firefox for a few years and love it's potential. But it has always been buggy and I was forced into v3 when I updated Ubuntu recently and I think it's got worse! It crashes more now, they have changed features that I loved (like the way you save U/N and P/W) and on top of that most of my plugins don't work anymore :-(
  • by sakdoctor (1087155) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:33AM (#23584691) Homepage
    Look, all 18 computer uses have pledged.
    • Personally, I was more shocked when I saw that Africa actually had computers at all.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by mollymoo (202721) *
        Yeah, it's amazing how Mark Shuttleworth made billions in IT and started the most popular Linux distribution without even having a computer.
    • by elrous0 (869638) *
      Actually, North Korea is a strong, technologically powerful country with a leader who is very tall, handsome, and manly. And I'm not just saying that because he kidnapped me and brought me here to make ripoffs of old John Wayne movies.
  • by poeidon1 (767457) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:38AM (#23584751) Homepage
    will be counted most probably. I dont know of many linux users who download directly from mozilla website. Most would use a package from their distribution which generally is not available on the same day (and even if it is, how will they count those downloads).
  • by Sturdy (1297351) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:41AM (#23584777)

    If they set a record - they'll be in the news.

    If they are so successful that the servers go down temporarily - they'll definitely be in the news.

    As you can see, just submitting the idea has put them in the news. This is a great idea for a company with growing market share.

  • by BForrester (946915) on Thursday May 29, 2008 @07:51AM (#23584889)
    I'm marking "Download Day" on my calendar right now.

    I have a big circle around 2008, and a thin one around 2009 too, just in case the news gets any more vague.
  • Come on Lesotho, wake up.

    Also, I'm sure it's been said, but I hope they torrent this thing, else we'll have the record for most smoked servers since CNN got simultaneously Farked, Slashdotted, and Dugg for the last Britney Spears media stunt.
  • As a precursor, maybe there should be an intentional attempt to slashdot their servers first! Although right now it appears to be running fine despite the link posted in the article.

    There's enough accidental slashdotting of sites, surely if we really tried even the firefox website might struggle :)
  • I want to meet that one person in Burundi who has pledged to download Firefox 3.
  • As long as the major plugin issues are resolved, I will download and use it. I have to remove it and go back to Firefox 2 because so many plugins I use didn't work.

"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler." -- Albert Einstein

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