Firefox 3 ROCKS!

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Get Firefox!My brother told me about the new beta release of Firefox first, but I just discounted it and told him that I’ll wait until it’s officially released. I’ve been bitten by betas before and as Firefox is my main browser and I depend on it for my work, I didn’t want to take an unnecessary risk by installing a still unofficially released product.

I know the limitations of version 2, especially in the Arabic rendering, which is a major annoyance. So when I got some free time, and as I am completely protected by Time Machine, I thought what the heck, let’s install it and see what happens.

Once the download and installation finished, though, I was utterly blown away! It was a true “wow” moment. The first thing I did after that was check out which is one of the worst designed newspaper sites I have come across, but certainly one of the best for their content. I was blown away there too, no more question marks in the Arabic script and even the hamza was rendered perfectly.

I’ve just downloaded and installed Release Candidate 2 which was a painless exercise. I encourage you to try it out, you would be doing yourselves a favour. So go grab a copy of Firefox. You can thank me by commenting about your experience with it here.

  • Ahmed
    5 June 2008

    Totally agree. I too was afraid to try the new version but FFX 2 has become so clunky. FFX 3 is faster and much better overall, but the problem is that some of my favorite extensions don’t work yet. Well, I guess I can wait 🙂

  • Abu Arron
    5 June 2008

    Early days, hours, minutes, but it seems OK – apart from:-

    The default font, which I’ll have change.

    McAfee site warning icon on search engines (Yahoo, Google, etc) not displaying correctly against the site name

    It’s certainly fast, but will continue checking.

    Thanks for the tip Mahmood.

  • Sam
    5 June 2008

    Mahmood, you totally forgot to mention the Firefox Download Day campaign and the attempt to set the world record!

  • mako
    5 June 2008

    I’ve been using it for months. It’s much faster than ff2 and much more stable. It uses much less memory as well.
    …Not perfect though.. 🙁
    I still can’t keep it running continuously for more than two days if I browse the web the way I usually do

  • Abu Arron
    5 June 2008

    Interesting comment about memory. Displaying EXACTLY the same page on both ie and ff, which includes graphics, the results are:-

    ie = 79,204 K

    ff = 88,432 K

    I’ve tried matching quite a few other pages and ff ALWAYS comes up with higher memory usage. The biggest difference I’ve found so far is 12K. It is a lot quicker tho’. 🙄

  • mahmood
    5 June 2008

    Firefox Download Day

    Ah, thanks for pointing that out Sam, much appreciated. The more people download a standards compliant browser like FF3 the easier it is for me to maintain this site!

  • BuZain
    5 June 2008

    I’ve been using it for sometime now as a second installation without replacing version 2. It rocks on windows. Much faster, and as you mentioned, better Arabic rendering. However, on Ubuntu 8.04, it sucks. It slows down the whole system especially we I access a flash based page. If I dare to open another tab with flash content, it brings the whole system to its knees and I have to kill the process.

    Can’t wait for the final release.

  • mahmood
    5 June 2008

    I haven’t used Ubuntu yet and it is unlikely that I will. The Linux I use now is purely for servers, and sometimes I drop into the shell and root around a bit there (pun intended!)

    Stick with Mac OS X, in it you get to play around with GUI as well as drop to shell if you feel like it and FF3 runs like a breeze! 😀

  • Ashraf
    5 June 2008

    i donno what ya guys are talking abt i have FF2 and dont have ne sorta probs with arabic fnts o txt

  • mahmood
    5 June 2008

    On a Mac you would have a problem. Anyway, try 3RC2 and you’ll be impressed.

  • jameed
    5 June 2008

    i have no problems on Ubuntu 8.04 but FF3 crashes regularly when visiting some sites like I would like to think this is because of me forcing some plugins to work with the new version. Overall, it works great and does render Arabic fonts correctly unlike some of the FF2 releases.

  • H.
    5 June 2008

    I got cheated out off a few add-ons which were not compatible with FF3RC2. I blame you.

  • mahmood
    6 June 2008

    It’ll only get better, just wait a few days. It’s worth it.

  • mako
    7 June 2008

    The feature that most of us were waiting for in ff3 was support for threads… It’s unfortunate, but firefox still runs as a huge monolithic thread.. Certainly not an easy task, but it would’ve been nice to have in this major release.

    H & Mahmood: you can disable plugin compatibility checking in ff3. that way you’ll be able to run older plugins on ff3. That doesn’t mean they’ll run as expected if at all. I use some that work perfectly though. YMMV.
    Do this if you want. I’m not responsible if you get a heart attack because of this 😉 :
    1)type “about:config” in your ffox address bar. and proceed to the configuration page.
    2) rightclick -> new -> boolean -> use “extensions.checkCompatibility” as a name.
    3) use “false” for the value. You can toggle the preference value by double clicking on the value or rightclick->toggle.

    at your own risk. 🙂

  • Sharaz
    21 July 2008

    FF3 is alot faster than FF2 and IE. Recently, I
    downloaded SAFARI (for PC) and like that even more.
    Worth a trial……….

15 seconds of fame = 1 billion?