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Mozilla Firefox 2.0 Alpha Peeking Out (Or Not) 216

anadgouda writes "Mozilla Firefox 2.0 alpha is released. The links for download were not available directly on website. Being Alpha, all features might not work and most of the plugins might not be compatible." Reading thru the comments, it appears there's some disparity as to whether or not this is actually just a naming scheme that they use; but let me reiterate that there has been no official announcement from Mozilla, so take with a giant grain of salt. Some good screenshots at OSdir.
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Mozilla Firefox 2.0 Alpha Peeking Out (Or Not)

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  • by yagu ( 721525 ) * <> on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:06AM (#14956052) Journal

    Okay, seemingly little to no information about what comprises the new Firefox. For those who also might be curious, I have found these features [] described in a Firefox 2 Roadmap, but don't know if and how many of these made it to the new release.

    Anyone else have any links to release notes?, what's new in FF 2?

  • NOT released. (Score:5, Informative)

    by Myen ( 734499 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:09AM (#14956063)
    Mozilla Firefox 2.0 alpha NOT released.

    The nightlies are now branded 2.0 alpha because... well, for some odd reason they like to brand their CVS builds before things get released, to make sure the act of rebranding breaks nothing. IIRC that actually hit them way back and they got scared.

    Firefox 2.0 will be considered released when you see it on / /
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:09AM (#14956064)
    Quote from Asa Dotler's blog []:
      When we make a new release, we'll say so. Please don't report new releases because someone checks in a change to the user agent or similar. If we're actaully doing a release, we'll announce it. Thanks.
    • Isn't this all a community written thing? Can't someone just take all the source-code and say "It's released"? This is my version of the released Firefox. isn't holding any code back are they? I thought everything was out in the open...everything had to be released as it's being worked on and anyone can contribute and re-write anything they want with the source.

      So how can they say "When WE make a new release, WE'LL say so"? I mean, who are they to say anything on what happens to this open code?

      • It's called quality assurance. There needs to be someone in charge to avoid the scenario you describe: someone takes a buggy pre-alpha nightly, and distributes it as "Firefox 2.0".

        That would obviously be devastating for the project. I'm glad is in charge, albeit the only thing really preventing the previous scenario is community respect.
      • by Kjella ( 173770 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @10:30AM (#14956449) Homepage
        Isn't this all a community written thing? Can't someone just take all the source-code and say "It's released"? This is my version of the released Firefox.

        First off, the source code is there. But claiming it is a release (as in's) when it is not is just misinformation. A minimum of honesty in advertising would say you've made your own fork of Firefox.

        Secondly, you don't need to give out source unless you give out binaries. So you could (though this is only realistic on smaller projects or those controlled by one company) say "When we make a new release, we'll release the source". I think Apple did that with their Safari browser.

        Third, the GPL doesn't change trademark law. You can take the code, but you can't release under the same trademarked name. You can make a clone like CentOS is of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, but you can't release under the name itself.

        So when YOU make a release YOU'LL say so (presumably under another name, since Firefox is trademarked). It only gets stupid when other people is making release statements on behalf of someone else.
      • by Anonymovs Coward ( 724746 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @10:48AM (#14956552)
        So how can they say "When WE make a new release, WE'LL say so"? I mean, who are they to say anything on what happens to this open code?

        You're welcome to make a release, but you can't call it Firefox. Firefox is a protected trademark [], as is Mozilla.

        Besides, that's not what the article said.

      • I'm not a developer as you can all see...and thanks for enlightening me about all this. Very interesting.
  • I was looking for the same thing as you, documentation about the features. You provided an interesting link, here's another one from the latest status meeting [] which includes the features, but a lot more :-)
  • Where's the link?

    Where would we be today if Linus came along and said, "Well guys, I'm working on a Minix clone and it's going to be totally k-rad, and I'll keep the development open to anyone who wants to help out, but you can't download it anywhere. Sry, kthxbye!" ?

    Not that the Firefox team is all that willing to let anyone just start developing the core stuff, but note the nick and try not to concentrate on that.
  • "Mozilla Firefox 2.0 alpha is released. The links for download were not available directly on website. Being Alpha, all features might not work and most of the plugins might not be compatible."
    This is about half a step above gibberish.
  • by suman28 ( 558822 ) <> on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:15AM (#14956085)
    I tried it on my computer. I didn't see any significant changes, and as others have pointed out, there was not much information on what exactly went into this release, but great job in making advancements.
    • Obviously you didn't actually try it. The entire bookmarks and history systems have been rewritten, backend and frontend. Tabs have changed slightly to improve UE for new users. Plenty of other things have changed as well. That's not "no significant changes".

  • Why does each version of Firefox break plug-in and theme compatibility? I can maybe forgive SOME plug-ins but all of them? and THEMES!?!? WTF? There are plug-ins I used to use that ar still not compatible with 1.5. This is a MAJOR flaw with Firefox in my opinion. If you're going to tout the expandibility of Firefox as a major feature then youneed to make sure there's going to be at the very leat backwards compatibility for most plug-ins.
    • by Alphager ( 957739 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:33AM (#14956149) Homepage Journal
      .. i can tell you that there is one thing that "breaks" most extensions: In the extension, you can specify a maximum version number under which the extension works. Normally, the extension developer sets it to a version he has personally tested (the actual release). Whit each version-bump, he retests and changes just the maximum version-number. If you want to do it yourself: get into the manifesto of the extension and search for this String "1.5" and replace 1.5 with a higher number.
    • Some of your extensions will continue to work properly in new versions. Others will not. That gives you a choice:

      1. Disable them all
      2. Let them all keep running and have some of them work, and have others break the browser entirely because they interact poorly with new features

      Which do you choose?

    • In this particular case:

      1) it is not even clear whether anything breaks. The submitter warns us that it *may* break, because it is alpha release.

      2) Even if things do break, it is to be expected. This is not even an alpha release, it is some random developer build that the submitter for some unknown reason calls an "alpha release". There is no reason for it to be compatible with anything at all, or even to do anything at all.

      In short, this summary is one of the most idiotic things submitted to slashdot I
    • Yeah that really fucks me off too, in fact I have pretty much given up on using extensions (except web developer toolbar at work) and themes because I got annoyed with backwards compatibility being broken.
      On the other hand FF now has enough features as standard that I don't really feel the *need* for extensions.
  • Opera 8.5: []

    Opera 9 Technology Preview 2: []
    Weekly builds of Opera 9 TP2: []
    Changelog for Opera 9 TP2: []
  • by urdak ( 457938 ) on Monday March 20, 2006 @09:27AM (#14956122)
    I can't believe that after Firefox actually implemented tabbed browsing *well*, people insist on ruining it in the name of "progress".

    The fact that firefox has just one "x" button that closes the current tab, rather then a close button per tab, is a *feature*, not a bug. Users of Lotus Notes, like myself, are all too familiar with what happens when each tab has a close button: you often click on the wrong one, and destroy the wrong tab! With Firefox 1.5's single tab close button, you can never accidentally close any tab: you can only close the tab you are now seeing.

    So I hope that if the "improvement" of having many close buttons makes it to FireFox 2, it will at least be configurable, so that users made miserable by the new feature could at least disable it.
  • There's a "portable" version available here: []

    Definitely a plus b/c it let's you avoid dealing w/profile incompatibilites/conversion between the different versions of firefox and instead stores it in the directory with the portable firefox program
    • Sir, you just made my day. I already had portable FF 1.5. All I did was copy the profile folder to the 2.0a1 one, and presto...all settings...all extensions were migrated. Of course, to make them "compatible" I had to use Nightly Tools Extension. The only one that "broke" so far was tabbrowser extensions, and I'm sure it's going to be updated pretty soon...
      • meh...I'm having works perfectly from a folder on the c drive...when I move the folder to my portable drive it refuses to work/extensions will not load/they will become disabled/other ill side effects....
  • What I would like to see in 2.x is some MNG support. It's about time people moved away from animated GIFs as the situation is rapidly getting out of hand. On some forums, animated sig images can be up to 500KB in size. There's demand for a better animated standard, and why MNG support was dropped from Firefox 1.5 is beyond me.

    Also, Javascript needs an overhaul. If XUL is ever going to take off, it can't rely on a language that doesn't even have a "class" keyword or equivilent.

    It would be nice if the Mozilla
  • by Zitchas ( 713512 )
    Now, I'd expect this amount of excitement over, say, a BETA release, but for an Alpha? Why bother? I like checking out new things and having the latest and greatest, but I think I'll wait for one that the developers at least hope will be functional enough to release. I'm not a developer, I don't need to be digging out a Tinderbox version to satisfy my needs.

    Oh, and for informational purpsoses:

    Firefox = official public release

    DeerPark = developer's copies, optimized and/or individualized bulids, and al

  • I mean, this is an organization that used to offer product releases of .001 increments over the course of years, now they went from 1.0 to 1.5 and already talking about 2.0 versions of Firefox.

    Is Mozilla looking to become Microsoft?

    Slow and steady is what has founded Mozilla and Firefox, don't blow it by having version upgrades that coincide with the frequency of changing underwear.
  • Based on the screenshots, there isn't much new. While they readily admit the GUI isn't in place, I'd expect even an alpha build to reveal more of the functionality (otherwise it isn't alpha yet).

    One thing in the GUI that really catches my eye is the History menu, and the search option in particular. While you can search History via the sidebar in FF 1.5, it's somewhat weak. I'd guess that if they devoted a menu to History, they've vastly improved it. :)

    One thing I would LOVE to see is all of Tab Mix Plus t
  • No biggie, as this isn't even pre-release software; it seems to be more like a CVS/nightly to me. Still, it'd be nice to know that the Mozilla foundation are working towards that greatly to be desired goal.
  • and we will share the fire of the fox.

    Seriously, can anyone give us a brief overview of what they are and why we should be really excited about the new Firefox Developer Tools option that I saw in the screenshots of the installation?

    Are we talking HTML, CSS, what?
  • Having an EULA pop up during the first run is idiotic for a free software project. There is no reason why the user must accept a license to run this program. EULA acceptance screens are needed for programs that add restrictions beyond regular copyright law (e.g. no reverse engineering). For programs with a free software license, which add additional rights (e.g. modify, but only if you distribute source to changes), it is not. The user either accepts or does not. If she does not, she has the rights granted

Information is the inverse of entropy.