Grab Firefox 5 Final Ahead Of Schedule

Martin Brinkmann
Jun 18, 2011
Updated • Mar 15, 2012

The official release date of Firefox 5 has been set to June 21, which is three days from today. If you do not want to wait until then to play around with the latest stable release of the popular web browser, you can go ahead and download the browser for your language and operating system from the official Mozilla ftp site. As with all releases that appear there, there is a slim chance of last minute bugs that could force Mozilla to pull the release and replace it with another one. If you want to be on the safe side, or want to upgrade or install Firefox 5 in a productive environment, it is better to wait until the official release announcement.

So what's new in Firefox 5? The release notes list the following new features and changes:

  • Added support for CSS animations
  • The Do-Not-Track header preference has been moved to increase discoverability
  • Improved canvas, JavaScript, memory, and networking performance
  • Improved standards support for HTML5, XHR, MathML, SMIL, and canvas
  • Improved spell checking for some locales
  • Improved desktop environment integration for Linux users
  • WebGL content can no longer load cross-domain textures
  • Background tabs have setTimeout and setInterval clamped to 1000ms to improve performance
  • The Firefox development channel switcher introduced in previous Firefox Beta updates has been removed

Those are almost exclusively under the hood changes, some may be noticeable on day to day like the improved performance.

It should be noted that Firefox 5 introduces HTTP Transaction sorting by CWND which can improve page loading times considerably. See Firefox 5 Gets Faster Connections, Up Next: Memory Improvements for an in depths review and explanation of that feature.

The do not head tracker preference has been moved to the Privacy tab to get more exposure. Users can activate it to send a "do not track" request to each website they open in Firefox.

Interested users can access the complete list of bugs fixed in Firefox 5 here. Each entry links to Bugzilla where additional information can be found.

The latest version of Firefox 5 can be downloaded from the official Mozilla ftp server. It is likely that most Firefox release mirrors will offer the new version on their servers as well.

Next in line is Firefox 6, which will be released in about three months time.


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  1. Anonymous said on December 6, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    Awesome issues here. I am very happy to see your post. Thank you so much and I’m looking forward to touch you. Will you please drop me a mail?

  2. Michel Debar said on June 22, 2011 at 11:56 pm

    Hard to justify Firefox 4 being “end of life” so soon. Version 5 breaks several add-ons, eg RealPlayer download. A bit fed-up with new releases breaking things so often, and with no provision for supporting older version. Irresponsible.

    1. Wally Mush said on June 27, 2011 at 1:37 am

      I have the same problem with Realplayer not downloading with firefox 5.0. Frustrated big time!!!

  3. wangxy said on June 22, 2011 at 6:30 am

    I really can’t see why the new release should be version 5 instead of maybe version 4.1.0. The changes and improvements seem too minor to justify a major version upgrade. I’m all for fast release, but upgrading version number for the sole sake of aggressive release schedule instead of functionality is really beyond my understanding.

  4. ilev said on June 18, 2011 at 8:10 pm

    Before rushing out new versions of Firefox , Mozilla should have sacked the idiot that is responsible for embedding FF version number in add-on’ss xpi files ,making many of them incompatible with new versions of FF (I still have many incompatible add-ons in FF 4 ). Firefox 5 breaks many add-on in including some anti-virus apps. They should have sort this problem first.

    1. Chad said on June 19, 2011 at 6:07 am

      If you want to use addons that haven’t had their version numbers bumping in newer builds including Nightly, Aurora and Beta then you can disable compatility checking with the Add-on Compatibility Reporter addon.

      Also, IIRC, when the new automated addon testing tools were run a couple of weeks ago, 90% of addons had there compatibility bumped from 4.0 to 5.0 with no problems and most of the rest required only minor tweaking from their authors.

  5. FX said on June 18, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    Please don’t link to the Mozilla FTP because it’s not load balanced and will easily crash under the immense load.

    Use this instead to download Firefox 5.0 Final.

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on June 19, 2011 at 9:53 am

      I have not linked to the ftp?

  6. Paul(us) said on June 18, 2011 at 4:43 pm

    Firefox 5 final is already on available.
    Main personal feel over this 5.0 version is that is smoother the work, probably because the crank up the speed. Only i think its ridiculous to speed up the hole number version release. So in a few years we are working with version 35?

    1. ilev said on June 18, 2011 at 8:04 pm

      If Chrome can do it, Firefox can do it too. Firefox 6 beta in 2 weeks, Firefox 7 beta in 1 month.

  7. Crodol said on June 18, 2011 at 3:54 pm

    Martin, which version of Firefox are you using? 4.0.1 or always the latest (Beta)?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on June 18, 2011 at 3:58 pm

      I’m running Aurora

  8. Howard Pearce said on June 18, 2011 at 3:37 pm

    Allof them say unavailable for .. says use the beta

  9. Enigma said on June 18, 2011 at 3:21 pm

    Errr Why so quick with Fx 5 when 4 has not long come out? Is it just an upgrade to get the latest web standards in?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on June 18, 2011 at 3:59 pm

      It is the new rapid release process, a new version of Firefox every 3 months or so.

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