First Firefox 3.6 release candidate rolls out

Users longing for some bleeding-edge browser goodness will be happy to know that the first Firefox 3.6 release candidate has gone up for download. Mozilla offers versions of the  RC1 for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux directly from As always, the browser is available in a plethora of different languages, too.

The version number might not suggest it, but Firefox 3.6 brings a decent number of changes and additions over Firefox 3.5—including a new version of the Gecko rendering engine. Here are the highlights, straight from the Mozilla Blog:

  • Users can change the browser’s appearance with a single click using Personas.
  • Firefox 3.6 alerts users about out of date plugins to keep them safe.
  • Changes to how third-party software integrates with Firefox to increase stability.
  • Improved automatic form fill provides better options from your form history.
  • Open, native video can now be displayed full screen, and supports poster frames.
  • Support for the WOFFfont format.
  • Improved JavaScript performance, overall browser responsiveness and startup time.
  • The ability to run scripts asynchronously to speed up page load times.
  • Support for the HTML5 File API
  • Support for new CSS, DOM and HTML5 web technologies.
  • Mozilla has also made many additions that should benefit web and application developers. Among many new features, Firefox 3.6 supports multiple CSS backgrounds for a single element, can detect device orientation on systems with accelerometers, and lets developers change the appearance of taskbar windows in Windows 7.

    While this release candidate build could go on to become the final 3.6 release if Mozilla doesn’t track down any bugs, you might still want to play it safe and back up your profile before upgrading from a previous version of Firefox. Mozilla provides instructions for locating Firefox profiles on this page. Additionally, testing out Firefox 3.6 might mean living without some of your favorite add-ons for now. About 25% of the "thousands of Firefox Add-ons" haven’t been updated for the new browser yet, according to Mozilla.

    Comments closed
      • Skrying
      • 13 years ago

      What? I don’t want massive jumps. I want the incremental changes so my browsing can change steadily and improve steadily as they build in the new features. It’s not like this will bother you anyway. Firefox automatically updates and by the time they push the final release to public virtually every major extension has support. There’s no benefit to not doing incremental releases.

      • ew
      • 13 years ago

      Who’s we?

      • cygnus1
      • 13 years ago

      try this, backup your bookmarks and extenstions (i just re-download them) and wipe your FF profile. add your extensions back one at a time. I’d say 9/10 times, crazy extensions or a very old profile are the cause of FF cpu and memory issues.

      FF is turning into the browser version of Windows XP!

      • 5150
      • 13 years ago

      If Chrome gets all the extensions I need, I’ll switch in a heartbeat.

      • alternety
      • 13 years ago

      But have they fixed the incredibly annoying habit of FF using 99% of the cpu for a minute or few every X minutes? Puts the PC at dead stop until it finishes what ever Firefox is doing. It was still there in 3.6 b5

      It is the one feature that is going to cause me to switch browsers. I like Firefox, I do not want to stop using it; but this is just not acceptable.

      • Tumbleweed
      • 13 years ago

      MozBackup will also back up your extensions, no problemo.

      • BlackStar
      • 13 years ago

      Bah, Chrome is already on version 4. Those Mozilla guys can’t keep up any more!

      • mesyn191
      • 13 years ago

      Wow they did some nice speed improvements over 3.5, its noticeably faster on loading stuff, particularly those flash laden pages.

      • 5150
      • 13 years ago

      or just backup your profile directory. Done and done.

      • Dazrin
      • 13 years ago

      Another tool I found for this is FEBE. In the past I had to keep track of the extensions I was using and re-download all of them. FEBE will create a list with links to all the extensions you have installed and reinstall them for you. I reformatted and installed Win7 last night, and this made the transition fairly painless. There is also an extension by the same author that saves all your preferences for later import. I wish I had seen it beforehand.

      • Tumbleweed
      • 13 years ago

      Backing up your FF profile made easy: MozBackup

      Google it, download it, and use it.

      I also use FireFTP, a Mozilla-based FTP program, and when I backup via MozBackup, it also backs up all my FTP info, FTW. 🙂

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