Switching to Mozilla Extended Support Releases

At first I wasn’t impressed with Mozilla’s plan for Extended Support Releases for Firefox and Thunderbird, and after sites complained that Firefox 10 was too old it made me switch to the normal release schedule. But now with Firefox 17 being the current ESR and release 24 around the corner it made me rethink everything again. Updating your browser every six weeks sounds fun, but in the end it should just work.

So first stop was Debian that appears to adopt the new ESR strategy and updated their own spin of Mozilla Firefox, Iceweasel, for version 10 to version 17 in their stable release of Debian. The same for Icedove, the Debian spin of Mozilla Thunderbird. Hopefully their testing release will have version 17 soon, but you can grab it from the unstable release without any real issue. I have been using Iceweasel 17 for about three weeks again and experienced no issues browsing the web. So the first step to Firefox ESR has been taken.

The next step it to switch a portable apps installation of Mozilla Firefox to ESR, but for that I have to wait for the next Extended Support Release which is be planned September 17, 2013 and then change the release channel from “release” to “esr” by hand in default\pref\channel-prefs.js. Or I should reinstall the ESR version of PortableApps Firefox now, but for that I need to do some import and exporting of data and settings. We will see what will come first.

Published by Hans Spaans

Unix & security consultant with a passion for Linux, Solaris, PostgreSQL, Perl and network services, but also a strong believer in open and free source, standards and content.