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Firefox Usage Climbing 443

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the hey-thats-nothing dept.
kbox writes "According to the Amsterdam analytics firm onestat The Firefox browser has jumped from a global market share of 8.7% to a whopping 13% since April 2005. The national usage of Firefox make some interesting reading, too, with Firefox making up 16% in the USA, 24% in Australia and a huge 39% in Germany." Unsurprisingly, on Slashdot we skew the averages somewhat, with Firefox weighing in at 65% of our traffic... but sadly 18% of our Firefox users need to upgrade to the latest version ;) Go do that now.
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Firefox Usage Climbing

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  • by hackstraw (262471) * on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:22AM (#15704698)

    Netscape was good, or at lest the best of the day. It ran on every obscure platform under the sun. It was like java before even java. Runs and is able to be debugged and crashed everywhere.

    I've heard from Netscape developers that the highlight was when they realized they were _the_ browser for the web, and they were seeing web addresses (complete with the http:/// [http] part on them) on the side of trucks and all that. I also heard that the secretary is quite wealthy now due to stock options, the whole nine yards.

    Well, they stagnated. And IE came and IMNSHO, ruined the web experience in the late 90s to early 00s. And during that time Netscape released their code into the Mozilla project. It then got worse. AOL bought Netscape, and Netscape is just a memory.

    But then, guess what happened?

    Because of the open code and open standards, we got the web back! My browser of choice is Safari. I really like it. It does almost 100% of what I think a browser should do. And it too is based on open standards and OSS (KHTML), and Apple has given patches back to the KHTML people.

    And then Mozilla grew into Firefox, and things are getting better on the web again. I recently ran into two websites that required IE. One was for my taxes, and I told them that sure this time I can use IE on the Mac, but IE on the Mac is dead and if they want my business, they need to support standards. At work, there is one system that requires IE _on windows_, and we had to get a new computer, with windows just to view one website, and I had a word or two with them. And guess what? They told me that they are now targeting Firefox as the target browser, and for that to be cross platform.

    Hey, as sucky as IE was, it did help the scene a little bit. It focused the other guys to care about security and for standards compliance, and today I have a number of good choices for browsing the web on a number of platforms, and its getting better every day.

    Thank you Mozilla team, and thank you Microsoft.

    • One problem... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Mr. Underbridge (666784) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:36AM (#15704801)
      ...One could also say that MS has gone *six years* without updating their browser, and Firefox is only at 16%. I mean, I'm as happy as anyone. I'm using it now. But I really see that market share getting cut in half within 2 years of IE7 coming out. MS just won't put up with this, and when you can put your product on every PC that's sold, and the competition can't, you don't have to be great to win.
      • Re:One problem... (Score:5, Interesting)

        by fishdan (569872) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @10:01AM (#15704962) Homepage Journal
        ...and the competition can't...

        That's not true any more -- OEM manufacturers can build firefox (or any other software they want) into their windows builds without fearing retribution from MSFT. That's what the anti-trust thing was all about.

        And the last time I was at MicroCenter (a large computer chain) in Boston, a local entrepeneur (kid had to be 14) was distributing for free a CD with FireFox, Open Office, SpyBot, Gimp and Trillian (I told him Trillian wasn't open) on it -- as well as html document that had a link in it to his Amazon donation page, where he was asking for $2.50 which seemed pretty reasonable to me. I asked him about his traffic, and he said he passes out about 200 CD's a day on Saturday and Sunday. Obviously he must have access to a multiple image burner to crank out volume like that (or he was pulling my leg), but seems like a good way to make a bit of $$$ for a kid, and at the same time help spread the love

      • by weeb0 (741451)

        Would'nt be possible to use the spyware knowledge to install incognito firefox on every internet explorer user's computer on our own website ????

        Since the microsoft loving dumb users don't even know how to install software, it would be helping them to know a beautiful world ? And show them there is other software company than microsoft

      • Re:One problem... (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Nadsat (652200) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @10:43AM (#15705311) Homepage
        I don't think it will drop in half. People are burnt out on the company, as it has lost its reputation and the trust of its users.

        Aside from that, Microsoft isn't particuraly innovative anymore, and I doubt that their latest browser will shock and awe net users.
      • Re:One problem... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by misleb (129952) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @10:59AM (#15705450)
        In 2 years XP will still be the the majority of Windows installations. You'd have to wait longer than that for Vista and IE7 to have a real impact on Firefox. And we don't really know how the security of Vista + IE7 will pan out. I'd say it is too early to tell when IE7 will do to Firefox.

        -matthew
        • Re:One problem... (Score:5, Interesting)

          by jonbryce (703250) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @02:33PM (#15707106) Homepage
          IE7 is a major improvement on IE6, but it isn't anything like as integrated into the OS. Secondly, if you chose Firefox as your default browser, then all your other MS progs will respect that decision and use it.

          Pretty much all the MS websites out there now support Firefox, including their ajax enabled sites such as live.com. The only site that doesn't as as far as I'm aware, is windowsupdate, and Vista won't be using that, as it has its own program for doing updates.

          This all gives firefox a major opportunity to take market share from ie.
    • by QuaintRealist (905302) * <quaintrealist.gmail@com> on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:45AM (#15704857) Homepage Journal
      It's easy to forget that not too long ago I was waiting for the latest upgrade to IE, downloading and installing it manually, because it was the best browser out there. I appreciate the efforts of the developers, too.

      But I can't thank Microsoft. Because they quit trying to be the best and tried instead to lock out and eliminate competition, through means familiar enough to everybody here that I'm not going to repeat them.

      And I don't think I'm just saying "what have they done for me lately" - Microsoft's war on the competition went some way towards undoing the good things that came from their competition with Netscape.

      I agree with you, otherwise (for whatever that's worth). Just a thought
      • Because they quit trying to be the best and tried instead to lock out and eliminate competition

        Another thought: you can't quit doing something you never started doing in the first place.

      • Microsoft didn't build IE to begin with.

        They licensed the core code from SpyGlass after Netscape told them to get lost (when they tried to buy Netscape).

        The contract went something like paying a minimal royality fee and a percentage of profit of every IE sold.

        Then MS sold it for free which meant that spyglass got 0% profit from each IE and all thier other customers dumped them because they found they could just use MSIE which had the same codebase but they didn't have to pay.

        It almost put spyglass out of bu
    • by fishdan (569872) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:46AM (#15704862) Homepage Journal

      Safari pisses me off though because lack of design mode [google.com] is a major flaw, but one that is obviously fixable. I'm an ardent mac supporter, but the long and slow response to this makes me feel like Apple is sticking it to us (the mac faithful) because they can -- they know they've got a captive audience.

      I've taken the Writely path now -- we (my company) no longer support Safari on our web applications -- we just can't. And I don't see us ever going back to that when we can code to one standard -- Firefox -- and have it work everywhere.

      So I agree with you -- thanks Mozilla, and thanks OSS for having projects in which the developers are responsive to the customers needs. If I need something I can sponser someone to make an extension or tweak. We've done that several times with Thunderbird, we have some custom work we paid for in a few other OSS projects that went back to the community.

      So I'm in the weird position of being a mac lover and an apple hater. Which is weird, but I think some people will know what I'm saying. Apple has contributed back where they've been required, but with the promotion of DRMs, ITunes, etc, they're not really an ally of Open Source, except in that they see OSS as an ally of convenience against MSFT. If there were now Microsoft, Apple would be doing exactly the same things MSFT has done.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @10:22AM (#15705132)
        when we can code to one standard -- Firefox -- and have it work everywhere.
        You've got that backwards that should be "when we can code to one standard -- W3C compliance -- and have it work everywhere. At the very least that should be your startingpoint. Having everyone code for firefox isn't really that much better to having everyone code to IE
      • by JWW (79176) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @11:09AM (#15705538)
        Speaking of Apple and browsers. What I find truly amazing is that on my iMac I have _five_ different browsers installed (none of which is IE). Now mind you some of them share quite a bit of code (camino, firefox) but still the amount of activity and innovation going on with browsers is amazing. Amazing everywhere that is except at Microsoft. IE exists and has always existed for the sole purpose of locking people into Microsoft products. It was Microsoft's best reaponse to regain control after the world wide web broke out.

        You always have to remember that when the web became big, it wasn't where MS wanted the fuure to be. In fact the delays on the way to IE7 are all about MS not wanting the web to be the future either. Microsoft fears open standards and systems like the plague. Embrace, extend, extinguish exist soley for the purpose of trying to defeat open standards.

        Its good to see MS losing ground on this battle in the browser space and hopefully ODF will help them lose it in the document space.

        You always have to remember that if in the 90's Microsoft could have in any way caused the web to not exist they would have done anything to make it so. But the best they could do was try to monopolize the market with _their_ browser.

        Go Firefox!
      • by poot_rootbeer (188613) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @11:12AM (#15705560)
        Safari pisses me off though because lack of design mode is a major flaw, but one that is obviously fixable.

        I don't have a bathtub in my kitchen. It would be very easy to hire a plumber to have one installed, but I won't. Why not? Because a bathtub does not belong in a kitchen.

        Apple doesn't seem to be of the opinion that it's appropriate for a web BROWSING application to incorporate the features of a web AUTHORING tool. I find this to be a reasonable design decision, even if I don't particularly agree with it.
        • And until recently iChat didn't support auto-replies because of some asinine theory that a messaging PRESENCE application does not need to handle the AWAY situation. Somewhere in my comment history is an Apple dev replying to me that they won't ever support it because it's not a chatting feature. Same with buddy profiles - it's chatting, not hosting profiles!

          They support it now. Someone finally realized that if they're going to make an AIM client, they'd better support almost all of the AIM featureset. I su
      • I've just added Safari to our to-be-supported browser list because I noticed that it does support design mode. If you're using Safari, see for yourself [exsitewebware.com].

        It will tell you that your browser is unsupported, but follow the link to force the editor to load anyway. It's buggy as hell, because the software knows nothing about KHTML, but you can definitely edit (at least I can using Safari 1.3.2 on OSX 10.3.9). Although it works the first time when I load it, Safari will often crash if you load it again, so ma

    • "At work, there is one system that requires IE _on windows_, and we had to get a new computer, with windows just to view one website, and I had a word or two with them. And guess what? They told me that they are now targeting Firefox as the target browser, and for that to be cross platform."

      Some advice please? my university work place has an expenses system which required me to use IE if I want to claim for travel expenses etc. Doesn't work on Firefox or other browsers. I have to keep IE on my computer s

    • and they were seeing web addresses (complete with the http:/// [http] part on them) on the side of trucks and all that.
      Good old times!
    • Stagnating (Score:5, Informative)

      by Otis2222222 (581406) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @10:10AM (#15705026) Homepage
      Well, they stagnated. And IE came and IMNSHO, ruined the web experience in the late 90s to early 00s. And during that time Netscape released their code into the Mozilla project. It then got worse. AOL bought Netscape, and Netscape is just a memory.

      Yeah, Netscape definitely stagnated back around version 4 or 5 - when the browser was a bloated mess and was in danger of collapsing under its own weight. When IE 4 came out it was quite simply a better browser. It rendered pages faster and had a much better user interface. I think it's a bit of an exaggeration to say that IE "ruined the web experience in the late 90s". They were the best game in town back then.

      I made the move to Firefox a few years ago when pop-ups were a huge problem, and discovered that Firefox was about a LOT more than just blocking popups. IE had started to stagnate bigtime. IE5 and IE6 offered no meaningful improvements (although a pop up blocker appeared way late in the game). People knew that IE sucked but the word hadn't spread about Firefox yet. The momentum is clearly shifting towards Firefox now.

      I just hope that they don't start to stagnate or bloat up with unneeded features too much. Fortunately they let extensions take care of any "bloat" that a user may want, which I think is good. Just keep a small core set of features and let people add enhancements on as they see fit. So far the history of web browsing has shown that through many generations of innovation come long periods of stagnation. From Mosaic to Netscape to IE to Firefox to ???
    • by MtViewGuy (197597) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @10:29AM (#15705199)
      Actually, what make Firefox pretty good is that the vast majority of web sites render correctly under this browser, which was not true of many previous non-IE web browsers. That plus the fact the basic download is only around 4.5 MB helps, too.
      • Actually, what make Firefox pretty good is that the vast majority of web sites render correctly under this browser

        Correction: all of them render correctly, and if they don't, it deserves a bug report.

        However, "correctly" may not be the same as "what the designer thought they were making" due to a seemingly infinite number of bugs and incompatibilities in IE's render engine. If a designer used a hypothetical "<splitscreenthreeways>" tag, IE splits the screen four ways, but Firefox only splits it t

  • by baadger (764884) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:23AM (#15704701)
    Would Taco like to furnish us with those stats? :P
    • > Would Taco like to furnish us with those stats? :P

      Please include the OS as well. My guess is that Windows is dominating,
      contrary to what the posts indicate ;-)
    • Here are some (Score:5, Interesting)

      by linvir (970218) * on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:29AM (#15704749)
      These are my percentages for June, with spiders and wget-type things stripped out. Nearly two thirds of my hits are referrals from Slashdot.
      Firefox - 69
      MSIE - 10
      Konq - 5
      Opera - 4
      Safari - 3
      Mozilla - 3
      Camino - .4
      Galeon - .3
      Epiphany - .1
      Links - 0
      Firebird - 0
      Omniweb - 0
      Dillo - 0
      WebCollage - 0
      K-Meleon - 0
      Multizilla - 0
      Lynx - 0
      Shiira - 0
      Motorola - 0
      w3m - 0
      GetRight - 0
    • The one where you had up the numbers and there's 0.1% or so left? Yeah. THAT's their stats.
    • I'm kind of curious about that, too. It seems like I'm the only person in the world who uses Konqueror as their primary browser, but I'm not sure why. Firefox is nice and I use it as a backup, but I really love Konqueror for reasons too numerous to list in a short post. Since KDE is the most popular desktop for Linux, I'd think that more people would be using its flagship product.
    • Follow the trail of links!

      Here's OneStat's press release [onestat.com], which cites these worldwide stats:

      1. Microsoft IE 83.05%
      2. Mozilla Firefox 12.93%
      3. Apple Safari 1.84%
      4. Opera 1.00%
      5. Netscape 0.16%

      Country-by country stats are at the link. Among the countries surveyed, Opera is most popular in Australia (4.69%) and Safari is most popular in the USA (3.28%).

      It's not clear whether they lump Konqueror in with Safari or "other," which doesn't appear on the list.
  • Work (Score:3, Insightful)

    by bilbravo (763359) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:24AM (#15704708) Homepage
    That number might be higher (for /. users), but some may do a bit of viewing while at work. Some employers do not allow Firefox for some reason.
    • Re:Work (Score:5, Funny)

      by T_ConX (783573) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:30AM (#15704756)
      Indeed. I'm a summer student working on an internship right now.

      At the orientation, they had a woman from IT give us the rundown on how to log into our computers blahblahblah. A student asked if they had Firefox. The IT staffer said that they don't allow instant messanger software on the computers...

      Ya... switch to Firefox was one of the smartest computer choices I ever made.
      • Re:Work (Score:3, Funny)

        by cerberusss (660701)

        At the orientation, they had a woman from IT

        So... which organization do you do your internship? I mean, I'm just showing some interest here, from one geek to another and all that.

    • Re:Work (Score:5, Informative)

      by The MAZZTer (911996) <megazzt@@@gmail...com> on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:33AM (#15704782) Homepage
      And most probably don't know about USB thumb drives. Put those two together and hey! You got Portable Firefox! :)
      • So how exactly am I meant to use a thumb drive on NT 4?

        Come on tell me!!!!!!

        Only thing that makes me cry at work is the inability of ie 5.5 that we are forced to use to work on google maps. BAH!

        • Re:Work (Score:3, Informative)

          by pla (258480)
          So how exactly am I meant to use a thumb drive on NT 4?

          You tell the BIOS to provide legacy support for USB drives, then NT sees it as just another HDD.

          Of course, you can't hot-plug it if you do that, but assuming you shut your machines down at night, you can attach it in in the morning and take it home at night with you.
    • Yeah, that's why my connection now would be logged as Firefox on Windows, instead of Firefox on Mac OS or Linux. (Luckily, even though we're "officially" supposed to be using IE, enough of us like Firefox that it's de-facto permitted.)
  • I'm doing my part (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Mabonus (185893) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:25AM (#15704714)
    Here at my office, Firefox is the default encouraged officially sanctioned browser of choice. After all those javascript/buffer overflow/remote code execution errors we gave the heave ho to IE and made sure that everyone had a copy of FF installed. So, put me down for 0.000000000000001% of those users!
    • Dang, that must be nice. Where I work all they have is IE and we aren't allowed to install any additional programs. On the one Windows machine I have at home, IE isn't even an option anymore (unless someone really knows what they're doing), as I've deleted the iexplore executable and all of the shortcuts. Granted, you can still get to it via Windows Explorer, but generally that's not something that someone will think of unless they know what they're doing, and if they know what they doing they aren't goi
    • Where I'm at, the techs have insisted on firefox be installed on all new machines. There's only a few of us that need to use IE for one web app (meaning it's the homepage ;), but other than that, it's all FF goodness :)
  • Firefox (Score:4, Informative)

    by mrak and swepe (799450) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:25AM (#15704715)
    It's 'Firefox'. Not 'FireFox'.

    Thanks for reading.
  • More Data (Score:5, Interesting)

    by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohnNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:25AM (#15704717) Journal
    Well, this is one firm's results and we all know how sometimes findings can be biased. If you want the full report from onestat, it is here [onestat.com] with all browsers covered.

    Interestingly, Adtech [adtech.info] found similar results (~12% in Europe [adtech.info]) while The Counter [thecounter.com] put Firefox at more around ~9-10% for those months. Net Applications [hitslink.com] placed Firefox at around 10% also. Of course, Wikipiedia [wikipedia.org] has a decent article on this with combined data at the bottom.

    I guess 13% seems like kind of a stretch and 10% seems a bit more realistic. I don't know what makes any one source more reliable than the other though as none of them really talk about their strategy for attaining these statistics.

    The big question shouldn't be "where is Firefox's percentage" but instead "how do we make Firefox more appealing to non-technical users?" Because it's clear that the technically savvy people have adopted Firefox but you'll never make it past 15% of the population with that attitude. I hate to say it, but introducing some functionality that Internet Explorer doesn't have might be the only way to accomplish that. And when you do that, you lose the stability and security that made it so popular in the first place. Solution? Perhaps a MySpace plug-in in light of recent news? :)
    • The big question shouldn't be "where is Firefox's percentage" but instead "how do we make Firefox more appealing to non-technical users?"

      How about taking cues from Microsoft and getting Firefox preinstalled on new computers? Or follow AOL's plots and have the installer CDs available for free with new computers (or even free for the taking) at major retailers (CompUSA, Best Buy, Wal-mart, etc.).

      The hard part is not the appeal of the browser. The hard part is getting people to try it. Once Firefox has

      • Re:More Distribution (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Xzzy (111297)
        The hard part is not the appeal of the browser. The hard part is getting people to try it. Once Firefox has its foot in the door, people will let it in the whole way.

        No, the hard part is that people don't care. Valid technical reasons for doing something don't encumber the mind of most people. They just look for their bottom line, and in the realm of browsing the internet, that bottom line is getting to a web page with the least effort.

        If you got Firefox installed on hard drives as they shipped from manufac
        • Re:More Distribution (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Dannon (142147)
          No, the hard part is that people don't care.

          It's all a matter of timing. I've made a nice bit of pocket change cleaning spyware and viruses for my non-technical friends. A friend whose computer has just been saved from uselessness can be very open to the idea of trying Firefox...
    • how do we make Firefox more appealing to non-technical users?

      Having it bundled and configured as the default browser on OEM computer sales would help ;)

      • Re:More Data (Score:3, Insightful)

        by xtracto (837672)
        Yes and no.

        I agree with that but in the other had, the 85% of the population that doesnt use firefox already have a computer and are using another browser. The aim would be to get marketshare from IE who is the one that has an uneven marketshare.

        How to do that? well, you have to convince the people that is using them to migrate to firefox. As another person wrote one of the ways to convince them is showing the advantages Fx has compared to IE6. On that note, you should show the people what Fx can do right n
    • sorry, I replied to the ""how do we make Firefox more appealing to non-technical users?" before I continued reading.

      introducing some functionality that Internet Explorer doesn't have might be the only way to accomplish that.

      Are you kidding? The extensions bring so much extra functionality to the table that there's no comparison. True, the potential for security vulnerabilities increases if you install extensions willy-nilly, but the most popular ones are vetted for security. Perhaps the average browsing

    • Why don't manufacturers bundle Firefox with new computers? It seems to my that it would be in their best interest to ship a more secure product to keep their tech support calls down. And since they can modify the source code, they could make a Dell branded version or fix bugs that their users are experiencing.
  • but sadly 18% of our firefox users need to upgrade to the latest version ;) Go do that now.

    Do you mean version 2? But I just remember reading a story on slashdot that was tagged "donotdownlad" and there was a highly moded comment stating that Mozilla did not wanted us to download that version...

    I am running 1.5.0.4 (now that I see it, it is funny the quantity of digits in that version number, what does the .0 is suppose mean?)

    Is it the latest version? according to the Help/update it is :) yay!
    • Re:Upgrade? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by EnderGT (916132)
      I think they're referring to people like me who still run 1.0.7 and need to upgrade to 1.5.0.4. I choose not to upgrade because I think the 1.5 interface is too sloppy compared to the 1.0.7 interface. A bit too much wasted whitespace in the menus, specifically - doesn't feel as clean and polished.

      I do use 1.5 on my home machine, and one thing I've noticed is that managing bookmarks in 1.0.7 is easier - I can drag and drop items as necessary, whereas 1.5 makes me use a "move up" button.

      Sorry, /. editors,

      • by The MAZZTer (911996) <megazzt@@@gmail...com> on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:38AM (#15704819) Homepage
        • Dragging bookmarks works fine for me in 1.5
        • The interface is only as sloppy as you make it, thanks to the right click | customize menu option.
        • Extensions can be used to tweak the interface further if you wish. Stylish can be used to apply styles to the interface (although I ran into problems when trying to limit the height of the toolbars, but I probably wasn't doing it right).
        • I don't see a "move up" button anywhere anyways. But then again I'm using 2.0 at the moment.
        • If Firefox seems screwy, disable all extensions using Safe-Mode and see if the problem goes away. If it does, you have a bad extension somewhere. Not Firefox's fault. This also applies to memory usage (although a large part is still due to Firefox's memory cache... which people like to refer to as a leak, despite the fact they take no steps to limit the memory cache size using about:config) and overall load time and stability.
      • Um... Firefox 1.5.0.4:

        1) Navigate the "Bookmarks" menu
        2) Select Manage Bookmarks
        3) Drag bookmarks around to your hearts content
        4) ?
        5) Profit!
      • Re:Upgrade? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by lspd (566786) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:46AM (#15704863) Homepage Journal
        I think they're referring to people like me who still run 1.0.7 and need to upgrade to 1.5.0.4.

        The results are probably skewed by people like me who use the version of Firefox that came with their distro. I'm using Debian Stable with Firefox 1.0.4
      • I can drag and drop my bookmarks just fine in my copy of Firefox (Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US; rv:1.8.0.4) Gecko/20060508 Firefox/1.5.0.4)
      • I'm still using 1.04 (on this machine).. because upgrading has proved to be too much of a pain in the ass... I just leave whichever version of FF was originally installed.

        Sorry, but downloading a completely different installer (NOT an upgrade), which doesn't uninstall the previous version, and doesn't take into account previous preferences (ie. install location, etc.).. which also breaks previous functionality (particularily extensions) is a no-go for me. Apparently, this is fixed with 1.5.. but that requi
    • Do you mean version 2?
      Or version 3 [mozilla.org]? I'm using it right now, though it's still a little unstable.
    • Re:Upgrade? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by bradbury (33372)
      Users should *not* upgrade, or for that matter, probably even *use* Firefox 1.5.0.x unless they plan to routinely stop it and restart it. Firefox 1.5.0.4 does have memory heap, aka memory cache, fragmentation and usage problems! I am runing Linux 2.6.16.1 on a 512MB Pentium 4 and I routinely have to restart Firefox every 1-2 days because its memory usage grows endlessly. Once Firefox is consuming 60-70% of the RAM on the machine (in the resident memory set) the machine performance as well as Firefox will
  • Operating systems? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Tx (96709) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:28AM (#15704738) Journal
    I assume the majority of that growth must be on Windows, but I'm wondering if Firefox usage is growing at the same rate on different OSs, since they have different alternatives. Mac and *nix users have some pretty decent non-Firefox browsers that arent available to Windows users. Just curious, anyone got relevant stats?
  • My Firefox is out of date because I switched to Opera when Beta 9 came out. I still use Firefox on occassion for testing my web site and for the ocassional page that just refuses to play nicely with Opera (or when I need to use the IE tab for one of the few pages that STILL refuses to work in anything except for IE). So I just don't bother to stay current on the latest updates. Of course then there's the version of Firefox I'm using now at work (version 1.0.7) and that's pretty out of date... but I'm not th
  • If by coming out of the obscure browser category to the significant market share browser category will increase the amount of exploits used by hackers, spammers and adware people out there. It would seem that much of the IE security breaches result from, aside from it's crappiness, its ubiquitous presence on the web. I wonder if Firefox will start to see more security breaches as it gains market share... We will see!
    • Re:I wonder... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Jane_Dozey (759010)
      Yes we will, and I hope that it does. The more people finding holes the more the devs can fix. I'm thinking though, that the sheer volume of problems won't be as bad as IE as it's not stupidly tied into the OS.

      I could be wrong mind you :)
    • I think most of the security breaches in both Firefox and IE come from user stupidity. Don't install or run unknown executables. That's the end of it. Before I started running firefox, I ran IE for many years, and never had a problem with viruses, even though I visited some pretty shady sites. I think that most of the viruses you see in the wild are because of user stupidity. I realize that there are some viruses out there that don't require any user interaction, but from what i've seen, they are the ext
    • But IE has so many more vulnerabilities, and more serious vulnerabilities, than other browsers that it acts like a honeypot for malware authors. But, as you say, we will see...
  • From the article:

    It's to be expected that a coding or Linux forum would have a higher number of users using FireFox than a more general website such as BBC (which requires WMP to play media) or myspace.

    Not so, the BBC offers vid/audio content in either Real format or offers a choice between Real and WMP.

    Link to the One Stat statistics mentioned [onestat.com].

  • Fire who? (Score:2, Interesting)

    That's pretty good numbers considering the vast majority of web users have never heard of Firefox. All my IT/tech-head friends are on Firefox and have been for some time but pretty much all the 'normal' users, mums, dads, people at work etc. have never heard of it and even when shown it simply don't understand why they would want to change from IEx. Web standards? Reliability? Safety? They just don't care. They fire up their PC and get browsing with IEx. It works for them, that's all they're interested in.
    • Re:Fire who? (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Magnor (611476)
      Actually, now both my parents and most of their friends are now using Firefox because I'm fixing their systems. I've found that most of the time when I'm asked to help, it's due to some form of spyware taking advantage of the lax security in IE and installing itself on their system. As part of the clean up, I install Firefox, remove most of the default IE shortcuts, set Firefox as the default browser, and set IE to not ask. Then I explain why they should use Firefox instead. While I'm sure that my words are
    • Re:Fire who? (Score:2, Interesting)

      by ManoSinistra (983539)
      Actually, a good way to get Firefox out there to the common "Joe Ordinary" is to help them fix their computer. Give them a copy of Firefox, (and Thunderbird) and tell them what it is. I've cleaned up several computers in my time and always recommended that if they didn't want their browser to be clogged up with 20-odd search toolbars (shudder) then they should really consider using this browser. All the folks I've helped out are now Firefox supporters...

      So spread the word . . . help out your friends.
    • Re:Fire who? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by The Cisco Kid (31490) * on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:59AM (#15704942)
      You dont need to stop fixing them - you just need to start changing the *way* you fix them - eg, you fix them by removing (or at least hiding and removing from the default) IE, and installing FireFox. When they see its 'different', just tell them its a new version. Most people don't even understand the difference between software, the OS, and the Internet anyway.
    • Re:Fire who? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by dhasenan (758719) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @10:04AM (#15704981)
      Nah, they'll just get annoyed that their computer is slow. They don't link their behavior with the computer's state unless the relationship is clear and immediate. Programmers and techies are used to that sort of thinking, but then, they already use Firefox for the most part.
  • Maybe Microsoft can build a widget for Firefox that pegs the CPU usage to 100% while a little Explorer icon keeps spinning in the corner deciding if you are worthy enough for it to load the page. Ah, just like old times...
  • Fine! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by SlappyBastard (961143) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:46AM (#15704867) Homepage
    I'll make my own browser, and it will be supercool and it will support CSS 4.0 and the ACID test will totally look awesomer in CSS 4.0 because it will support 3-D web browsing!!!

    Actually, I still miss Firebird. Birds are way better than Foxes. Especially when they're on fire. And 16% use in the US counts as being on fire.

    50% of people will always use IE, because they're too dumb to use IE to download Firefox. Makes you wish MS would just give it up and adopt Firefox, huh? It would save a boatload of cash.

    Anyhow ... my browser is gonna be better than both!!!

  • Strangely enough, for no reason we could figure out, our usage stats showed an increase from 12% to 20% of visitors to our site using Firefox. We've assumed since we are getting more traffic from europe, and reading this article that europe is using Firefox at ever greater levels it looks like our assumptions were correct. I for one welcome our firefox overlords.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:55AM (#15704916)
    Mozilla has the ability to switch the text zoom from 100% to 200% or 300% or even more IN A SINGLE STEP.This feature is essential for me, that is why I use Mozilla and not Firefox.Is there a Firefox plugin for doing that?.If the answer is yes I may switch, otherwise I'll stick with Mozilla. Unfortunately they stopped the depelopment of Mozilla to version 1.7 something. Why dont they implement this feature in Firefox? Both Netscape 4.7 and higher and Mozilla have it, but not Firefox. I switch from 100% to 2-300% and back hundreds of times everyday and Firefox is too awkward for this task.
  • by master_p (608214) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @09:58AM (#15704936)
    A friend of my father called me to fix his computer because he had spyware problems. He did not know Firefox existed...I have met many people over 40 that use the Internet and have no idea of what Firefox is.
  • by cyclocommuter (762131) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @10:05AM (#15704990)
    Another tip for Slashdot readers using Firefox... get the Firefox Slashdotter Extension [mozilla.org]. It expands hidden comments inline using AJAX, allows you to change skins, informs you via an icon on the status bar if you got mod points, displays links to Coral Cache, plus more.
  • Work (Score:3, Insightful)

    by CMan0 (191677) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @10:32AM (#15705219) Homepage
    Remember that some people still use I.E. at work and have FireFox at home. So probably there are more firefox users that 65% in the /. crowd
  • by TeknoHog (164938) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @10:32AM (#15705223) Homepage Journal
    18% of our firefox users need to upgrade to the latest version
    I wouldn't suggest everyone to upgrade to the actual latest version [mozilla.org], as it's a little unstable... but it sure is fun to use a 3.0 version (with improved Acid2 test compliance, for example) while everyone else is puttering along with 1.x or 2.x ;)
  • by Petersko (564140) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @10:42AM (#15705296)
    I've traditionally used IE. I keep up with the patches, so I haven't had spyware or virus issues in a very long time, and IE always just seemed to fit how I liked to operate. I've got Firefox installed, and sometimes I use it, but until the last update I found it would periodically cause my network connection to fail. I'd reset it via the control panel and it'd be good for a while, but inevitably it would happen again. It was the only application to exhibit this quirk.

    Recently I downloaded a copy of Opera, and I find it far more to my liking than Firefox. It's well-behaved, fast, and everything feels intuitive, which is something I never got from Firefox. I'm very happy with it, and I use it about half-and-half with IE.

    I de-installed Firefox last night, after realizing I'd probably never start it again.
  • Unfair (Score:3, Interesting)

    by elzurawka (671029) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @10:53AM (#15705398)
    These statistics do not filter out things such as Business users. Large companies have millons of employee's who browse the internet every day, and i would assume the majority do NOT use firefox, as their system is locked down, and IE is default, and only browser Available. It would be interesting to see what the usage stats are for HOME users. I think that Firefox growth will continue until Vista comes out, at which point it will slow for a short period while people adjust to the new OS. Lots will try out IE7, and simple see that it is a clone of firefox(and other browsers), years behind in joining the game. But soon after its release, new versions of FF, Opera, and other browsers will emerge with even better features, and we will see the numbers start to raise again.

    Hopefully larger companies will begin to make the switch, and people will then adopt what they learn at work, to their home environment as well.

    Most people i know, have adopted Firefox at home, but that is because the know me, and i did it for them, or told them to make the switch.
  • Alternative browsers (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ToasterofDOOM (878240) <the.bizman@gmail.com> on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @11:09AM (#15705537)
    The advent of firefox has definitely been a good thing. For me at least, it not only is a good browser, but it has raised awareness, and subsequently usage of other alternatives. I no longer use firefox, as I switched to opera, but without Firefox and all that I loved about it i would have never known about other browsers (or /. for that matter, I was a tech n00b)
  • by MasaMuneCyrus (779918) on Wednesday July 12, 2006 @11:16AM (#15705591)
    Everyone seems to be hoping that Firefox will replace IE... I just don't see that happening.

    I'm a happy user of Firefox. I use Firefox because it does things that IE doesn't, and I really like the ability to customize it to how I like. The thing is, though, that for most casual web users, IE does suit their needs. They want a browser that can browse the web and will keep them safe. IE6 isn't the safest browser in the world, but IE7 will definitely be safe. IE will continue to be the dominating web browser because A.) companies will use it because it's easier to use the built-in browser, and it should be just as safe as Firefox B.) Casual users don't need anything more.

    I think the future will have IE and Firefox co-existing (and Opera!) because IE is what the normal people will use and Firefox/Opera will be what the expert web-users use. It's the same reason most people still use Windows Media Player. I use Winamp because of plugins/customization, but most people just want to use what works, and since they don't want any more functionality than that, they have no reason to change.

The trouble with opportunity is that it always comes disguised as hard work. -- Herbert V. Prochnow

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