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28 October 2010, 13:03

Mozilla: Firefox 4 delayed until 'early 2011'

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Firefox Logo After missing the scheduled release date for the seventh beta, Mozilla has confirmed that version 4 of its open source Firefox web browser has been further delayed. Originally expected to arrive by the end of this year, the revised release schedule now says that the major update to the browser will shift to release candidate status sometime in "early 2011".

According to a post on the mailing list by Firefox development director Mike Beltzner, while development has not slowed down and "strong progress is being made daily", delays in finishing the "feature complete" Beta 7 milestone have caused the development team to revise their beta and release candidate schedules. Beltzner says that the "frequent beta releases have been extremely helpful in identifying compatibility issues with existing web content, so we plan on continuing to release beta milestones through the end of December".

The developers say that in early 2011, the release candidate builds will be followed "with a final release closely behind". However, a final release date has yet to be confirmed.

Firefox 4 is the non-profit organisation's next-generation web browser based on version 2.0 of the Gecko rendering platform – the Firefox 3.6 branch uses Gecko 1.9.2 – and features a new Add-ons Manager and extension management API. Other changes include a new 'tabs on top' layout, the integration of Firefox Sync, formerly known as Weave, and various new features aimed at web developers.

A list of the remaining blocker bugs for Firefox 4 Beta 7 can be found in the Mozilla Platform Meeting Minutes from the 26th of October. The latest stable release of Firefox is version 3.6.12, a security update that addressed a critical vulnerability, while the latest development preview is Firefox 4 Beta 6

Firefox binaries are released under the Mozilla Firefox End-User Software License Agreement and the source code is released under disjunctive tri-licensing that includes the Mozilla Public Licence, GPLv2 and LGPLv2.1.

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