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A Few Firefox 3 Followups 407

Posted by timothy
from the that's-f3-buddy dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Using data generated by the Mozilla Firefox download pledge page, the map on this blog post ranks countries, not by absolute number of pledges made, but rather on a per capita basis. This analysis yields some interesting conclusions about where open source is strongest and weakest." Anonymous Warthog writes "That didn't take long. In a blog posting from the TippingPoint DVLabs security team (of Kraken and CanSecWest hacking contest fame), they confirmed that they reported a vulnerability in Firefox 3.0 to Mozilla a mere five hours after it was released. Additionally, there was a posting on the Full Disclosure security mailing list from someone that purports to have another vulnerability in the works as well. In the grand scheme of things, this probably means nothing to the general security of Firefox, but you can be sure the browser zealots on all sides will be watching carefully." Finally, from reader Toreo asesino: "Microsoft have congratulated the Mozilla team by sending them their second cake (minus recipe) to Mozilla's Mountain View headquarters to congratulate them on shipping FireFox 3, which went live right on time last night." Congratulations are indeed due on both the browser and the release process — looks like the Firefox fever (despite some seriously taxed servers) resulted in more than 8 million downloads in 24 hours.
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A Few Firefox 3 Followups

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  • by WaltBusterkeys (1156557) * on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:02PM (#23846215)
    I gave up yesterday after a few too many server errors.

    That said, the map of countries is pretty cool. Ignoring the island micro-nations (the Falkland Islands won with 2% of 3000 people pledging to download), it's interesting to see how high Firefox penetration is in Eastern Europe. I wonder if that's a function of very connected economies without a lot of love for Microsoft and a strong desire for free software?

    Oh, and good luck to the Firefox team trying to save the "E" logo from this year's cake! That thing is HUGE!
    • by GarfBond (565331)
      Well, now that this download record attempt is over, there's probably millions of places to get it from now. It looks like mozilla.com has returned to normal, and BitTorrent's a solid option :)

      Oh, and good luck to the Firefox team trying to save the "E" logo from this year's cake! That thing is HUGE!
      Maybe that's the point :P
    • by evilviper (135110) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:27PM (#23846559) Journal

      it's interesting to see how high Firefox penetration is in Eastern Europe. I wonder if that's a function of very connected economies without a lot of love for Microsoft and a strong desire for free software?

      I wouldn't be surprised if it's both directly and indirectly fueled by the far superior native language support included in Moz.

      Way back when Mozilla was still early milestones, I directed a Russia exchange student to try it, when IE wouldn't allow the proper entry of Russian characters for a URL.

      No doubt he went back home, spread the word about Mozilla, and is single-handedly responsible for the popularity of Firefox across Eastern Europe... *cough*

    • by superyooser (100462) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:35PM (#23846663) Homepage Journal

      Oh, and good luck to the Firefox team trying to save the "E" logo from this year's cake! That thing is HUGE!

      Really, if you didn't have the story behind the photo, you'd think that the IE Team was congratulating itself for shipping IE.

      Memo to MS: When you give someone a cake, it only makes sense to put the RECIPIENT's name on the cake. I mean, you're recognizing the shipping of Firefox. Why didn't you put a Firefox logo on the cake? That's the object of the celebration.

    • by Roadkills-R-Us (122219) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:37PM (#23846677) Homepage
      One of the strengths of Firefox for some time has been that right out of the box, the binary just ran on lots of Linux versions. With FF3 (starting with betas) they broke this.

      A non-trivial portion of the commercial and research Linux user base has to stick with EL4 or a source rebuild from CentOS, Scientific Linux or whatever because of third party tool support requirements. And not everybody wants to upgrade their OS just because a new browser is out.

      FF3 requires a pretty new library (libpangocairo 1.0). I spent an hour trying to come up with it this afternoon for my 100+ users. No luck so far.

      The firefox team really let us down big time. We've been anxiously awaiting this release because it's supposed to solve the memory bloat problems (several of us here have to restart the browser several times a week because it's consumed insane amounts of RAM).
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Darkness404 (1287218)

        A non-trivial portion of the commercial and research Linux user base has to stick with EL4 or a source rebuild from CentOS, Scientific Linux or whatever because of third party tool support requirements. And not everybody wants to upgrade their OS just because a new browser is out.

        But so far most of the "mainstream" distros have done a great job in providing Firefox 3 (Ubuntu even has it included in 8.04). I wouldn't necessarily blame Mozilla for this, but rather the distro makers for failing to include a package. However, I think you are looking at this all wrong, it is more or less as huge as a leap forward as KDE 4 was for the desktop, as such some of the more "stable" distros such as CentOS are reluctant to include it as it is so new just as KDE 4 is still unavailable for so

        • by Roadkills-R-Us (122219) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @07:37PM (#23847469) Homepage
          They got a fair number of complaints about this in beta. As far as I can tell from searching their site, they pretty much blew it off. I certainly couldn't find anything helpful WRT resolving this, other than "upgrade, dude".

          An upgrade cycle is a major effort in an environment like ours, requiring testing with dozens of EDA tools and a variety of desktop apps. An upgrade that breaks a vendor tool or even access to critical docs, or that requires us to rebuild tools, modify user configs, etc, impacts schedules in a negative way, which means major headaches for everyone. 150+ desktops, 150+ compute farm systems. And don't even get me started on fixes that require users to restart X or reboot. High powered engineers working 80 hour weeks, some running things that require hours to set up? You have no clue what you're talking about when you blithely suggest upgrading.

          And switching is not an option. Our app vendors support their apps on very few OSes. Typically one or two versions of EL and one or two SUSe. That's it. Ubuntu and Fedora aren't even in the picture.

          When we upgraded most of the company from EL3 to EL4, we lost about a week. That's extremely expensive.
      • by prockcore (543967)

        FF3 requires a pretty new library (libpangocairo 1.0).


        "Pretty new"? As close as I can tell, that library was first released in 2004.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          The RPMs for the version required by FF3 are only available for FC7 and newer. EL4 is based on FC3. In the world of stable OSes, that's pretty new.
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by prockcore (543967)
            Well, crappy support from RH is one of the reasons so many people left RH in the first place. EL4 came out after libpangocairo 1.0 did... why didn't they include it even though it would become an integral part of GTK2? Who knows.

            Won't be added now though, Redhat Full Support for RHEL4 stopped May 15, 2008. The only thing you'll be getting is security fixes.
          • by lewp (95638) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @09:15PM (#23848619) Journal
            If we had to wait for "stable OSes" and corporate adoption nothing would ever move forward. FF3 is a cutting edge browser using cutting edge libraries to get the best functionality available right now, like it should.

            It's your vendor's job to live in the past with you. That's what you pay them for.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Eil (82413)
        One of the strengths of Firefox for some time has been that right out of the box, the binary just ran on lots of Linux versions. With FF3 (starting with betas) they broke this.

        I downloaded Firefox3, untarred it it to my desktop, and it ran just fine.

        A non-trivial portion of the commercial and research Linux user base has to stick with EL4 or a source rebuild from CentOS, Scientific Linux or whatever because of third party tool support requirements. And not everybody wants to upgrade their OS just because a
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by trip11 (160832) *
        I fought with the libpangocairo issue as well. Running on a lesser used redhat variation at work, I didn't want to start doing major upgrades only to break everything and have to reinstall (boss would be less than thrilled about the loss of a day). But I found a nifty trick on one of the forums.

        Install the package frysk and you get libpangocairo free. And frysk is small enough I didn't mind.

        For me at least it was as simple as switching to root, and doing:
        yum install frysk

        Hope that helps you!

    • by anaesthetica (596507) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:47PM (#23846809) Homepage Journal
      Comparing pledges against raw population I think is misleading. 1) Pledges don't reflect the actual download numbers, and 2) In many countries, the internet-using % of the population is actually quite low due to poverty.

      A better gauge of Firefox's penetration would be to look at actual downloads [spreadfirefox.com] against number of internet users [cia.gov] in a given country.
      • That thing was laughable, the whole pledge thing. I mean, if I recall, there were hundreds of users in Western Sahara pledging. Svalbard and Jan Mayen, too (if you know anything about Svalbard, 2,000 people living on about three small islands near the North Pole. I think there were some for British Indian Ocean Territory. Hundreds in countries with GDPs less than $1000 a head. I'm curious where they were getting their computers, in between putting a roof over their head (not an example of prejudice, more at
    • by kjart (941720)
      A lot of people tend to read lot from Firefox usage numbers. I use Firefox because I find that it works better; if IE, Opera or Safari, for that matter, ever surpass it, I will switch. Most people I know use it because of this same reason (i.e. it's a good browser, or it being recommended as such by someone else), not out of some desire for free software.
    • Warning, if you are using firefox 2 clear your history before upgrading to firefox 3. Tools->clear private data does delete the "history" but seems to keep everything from my FF2 history in the awesomebar. I have everything checked in clear history options except for passwords.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Acer500 (846698)
        Is the awesomebar and the URLs it quick-fetches(?) customizable?

        Sounds nice but it could be annoying (and potentially embarassing).

        From what you say, I'd actually want to keep my history so it already recognizes my surfing habits (if I understood correctly...).
    • by ProfessionalCookie (673314) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @10:37PM (#23849517) Journal
      That's weird, I downloaded it 7.5 million times with no problems at all ;)
  • Hey timothy: (Score:5, Interesting)

    by larry bagina (561269) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:03PM (#23846235) Journal
    What happened to backslash? [slashdot.org]
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:08PM (#23846305)
    Adobe has routinely hit greater than 10 million [eweek.com] downloads per day.

    There are other companies as well. Hell, what about MS updates? How many of those bastards get downloaded on Patch Tuesday?

    This is a fake attempt at a record.
  • by NoobixCube (1133473) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:09PM (#23846319) Journal
    The map referred to in the summary is already slashdotted - that, or I'm having troubles with my internet connection. Both are equally likely...
  • by Toreo asesino (951231) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:09PM (#23846335) Journal
    ...and indeed everyone that contributed towards FireFox project. You have set the bar very high for others to follow, and more importantly, you have proved that OSS model can be both financially prosperous and highly desirable to normal users too.

    And at the end there was cake too!
  • Would they have gotten to their goal if they hadn't had so many server outages? Seriously, how hard is it to make sure you have the iron to support your stated download target?
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by dingen (958134)
      Obviously, the Firefox team wanted the servers to go down by all this. "Firefox Servers Down Because Of Massive Downloads" is a great headline to give the project more exposure. Getting in the news is what this whole action has been about from the start.
  • The more grim news is at the bottom of the list. Perhaps unsurprisingly, but still another sad reminder, virtually every country on the bottom 20 is African (Bangladesh and Myanmar are the exceptions). In short, the countries most in need of this software, software that is freely available, still are least likely to have the capacity and infrastructure to download it.

    To me, it means people have other things to think about that downloading a browser. Plus, we are actually looking for those who made a pledge.

  • The cake (Score:2, Funny)

    by I kan Spl (614759)
    "The server is temporarily unable to service your request due to maintenance downtime or capacity problems. Please try again later. "

    I guess the cake is a lie ?
  • by rocjoe71 (545053) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:31PM (#23846617) Homepage

    Microsoft have congratulated the Mozilla team by sending them their second cake (minus recipe)...

    Well of course there was no recipe-- that cake was a proprietary, closed-source dessert.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:37PM (#23846689)

      Microsoft have congratulated the Mozilla team by sending them their second cake (minus recipe)...

      Well of course there was no recipe-- that cake was a proprietary, closed-source dessert.

      ...and possibly full of bugs!
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by eh2o (471262)
        On the other hand, if one was to eat a Firefox cake, one would undoubtedly become bloated and fat after just a few bites, and finally fall to the floor, become catatonic and die. I'm not sure which fate is worse...
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Joe Jay Bee (1151309) *
      It was also a lie.
    • by tobiasly (524456) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @07:57PM (#23847717) Homepage

      Microsoft have congratulated the Mozilla team by sending them their second cake (minus recipe)...

      Well of course there was no recipe-- that cake was a proprietary, closed-source dessert.

      Yes, thank you for explaining the joke to us, it was way too difficult to understand.

  • by AllIGotWasThisNick (1309495) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:39PM (#23846697)

    It was also revealed today that Mozillians keep the IE logo piece frozen since then!
    Looks like Mozilla can have IE's cake, and eat it too!
  • by BountyX (1227176) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:44PM (#23846765)
    Speaking of internet browsing, Opera 9.50 just came out as well. Has full text history search and my favorite feature...Opera Sync. I opened 10 of the same internet sites with Opera and Firefox 3 and compared the memory imprint, FF3 was 10 mb greater. Opera was already configured to grab a ton of my RSS feeds, so I believe without RSS feeds bein pulled 9.50 could have had a good 20 mb on ff3.

    Just wanted to shed some light on a lesser known, but in my opinion, very good browser.
  • Awesomebar? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Toonol (1057698) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @06:55PM (#23846917)
    I'm very tempted to switch; I am particularly eager to get the enhanced javascript performance.

    But I installed the Beta on my son's machine, and was shocked at the 'awesomebar'. What a monumentally bad idea, implemented in the most annoying of fashion! It is seriously the one factor keeping me from switching.

    Evidently there used to be configuration options to turn it off in the about:config window, but those have been removed, in a nearly microsoftian attempt to force users into behaving how the designers wish. There is an ad-in I found that reduces the awesomebar so that it looks similar to the Firefox 2.0 version, but it still searches 'intelligently', i.e. unpredictably and unintuitively.. Is there any fix for this due out?

    The other thing holding me back is firebug... does that have a 3.0 enabled version out yet?
    • by k1e0x (1040314)
      One size does not fit all. Get the oldbar add-on.

      "Oldbar makes the location (URL) bar look like Firefox 2. Specially designed for those that dislike the AwesomeBar."

      https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/6227 [mozilla.org]
    • Re:Awesomebar? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by springbox (853816) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @07:36PM (#23847457)
      I actually really like the new address bar. Now I know how those people who like Vista must feel.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by drinkypoo (153816)
        If by awesomebar they mean the drop-down menu that gives you actually useful information instead of some URLs I may or may not have typed once, I like it too. (On the other hand, I tried Vista, and I don't understand how the people who like Vista feel. Sorry.)
    • A lot of the complaints about the Awesomebar have been that bookmarks which have not been visited show up in the results. Luckily, there is now an extension [mozilla.org] to make the Awesomebar show history only.

      Also, if you are not sure what the point of the Awesomebar is, Mike Beltzner recorded an informative 2-minute screencast showcasing what the Awesomebar can do. [mozilla.com]

      Finally, Support Firefox Day [mozilla.com] is this Friday, which will include interactive video workshops and Q&A about the new bookmarks features. Several Mo

    • Re:Awesomebar? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by CopaceticOpus (965603) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @08:49PM (#23848297)
      I don't understand the complaints about the awesomebar. You can still type in URLs like you always did. The only difference is that now as you start to type the URL in, it's more likely that the place you wanted to go will pop up for you to select.

      To those who don't like it, please explain this to me: What could you do with the old address bar that you can't do now? Honestly, I don't get it.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by amaupin (721551)

        Now as I start to type "s" for slashdot, instead of a list of URLs like slashdot.org, somethingawful.com, etc. I get a huge list of pages where "s" appears anywhere in the URL or title of the page. Flash MX Design, CBS News, gamesocks.com, etc. ... all apparently culled from my bookmarks or pages I visited recently. It takes much longer to scan through the list (partly because the page titles are now shown along with the URL) and find the actual page I want.

        The location bar is for URLs. Not page titles.

  • Maybe slightly OT (Score:2, Interesting)

    by sunami88 (1074925)
    Has anyone else had the mysterious "cookies disappearing" problem?

    Neither of the RC's, or the Beta 5 that I tried had this problem. I have googled and it seems a few other people are having the same problem, but I've yet to find a fix.

    It's really quite annoying. I've tried loading up in Safe Mode (no extensions), but even then my cookies just "vanish", seemingly after a random amount of time. I'm also having a problem with Foxmarks (endlessly syncing but not actually syncing), but I guess the Foxmarks
  • Told You So! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Nom du Keyboard (633989) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @07:03PM (#23847023)
    I told you so! [slashdot.org] So now we have what? 8 million suddenly vulnerable machines?
  • First.. (Score:4, Funny)

    by whereiswaldo (459052) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @07:21PM (#23847245) Journal

    First they ignore you.
    Then they laugh at you.
    Then they fight you.
    Then they send you a cake.
    Then you pay your ISP for 8 million downloads.
    Then you profit???
    What are we doing again?
  • by julie-h (530222) on Wednesday June 18, 2008 @08:32PM (#23848103) Homepage
    Please understand why MS sends the cakes!

    The cakes doesn't mention Firefox or Mozilla in any way, but very clearly IE. Hence, MS sends the cakes not to congratulate Mozilla, but to get Mozilla to advertise for IE.

    Very clever move by MS!

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mattwarden (699984)
      Oh come on. It's a friendly gesture by the IE team. It's the higher ups and the marketing people who are evil.
  • by ArsenneLupin (766289) on Thursday June 19, 2008 @07:44AM (#23853127)

    "Microsoft have congratulated the Mozilla team by sending them their second cake (minus recipe) to Mozilla's Mountain View headquarters to congratulate them on shipping FireFox 3, which went live right on time last night."
    Well, even without the recipe, we can guess one key ingredient...

    laxatives!

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