Mozilla has uploaded the stable version of Firefox 10 to its ftp server. The company is currently in the process of distributing the release to all of its world wide mirror servers in preparation for the release later today. The release of the extended support release version marks the beginning of the end for Firefox's 3.x branch which will be retired from support in April of this year.
The ESR release has been designed for companies, organizations and users who cannot keep up with deploying new Firefox versions every six weeks. Firefox ESR releases will follow the rapid release process, but increase only by a minor version whenever the standard version increases by a major version. Regular Firefox 10 users will be moved to Firefox 11 in six weeks time, while Firefox 10 ESR users will be moved to Firefox 10.1 instead.
The ESR release will be offered separately from the regular version of Firefox. Also, unlike in regular versions of Firefox, Firefox ESR updates add security and stability fixes only. That's a stark contrast to Firefox Stable releases which get new feature updates as well with every release.
This means that ESR is more stable in regards to functionality which is a good thing for organizations and users who want or require more stability when it comes to the release process and updates.
Another important change in Firefox 10 is that add-ons are now automatically set to be compatible if they have also been compatible with Firefox 4. This ends the majority of the add-on compatibility issues that Firefox users experienced whenever a new major version of the browser was released.
The beta changelog lists the features one expects from a six week release cycle with the new hidden forward button the most notable change. Firefox 10 furthermore adds support for CSS3 3D-Transforms, anti-aliasing for WebGL, full screen APIs that can be used to build web apps that run full screen and support for the bdi element for bi-directional text isolation.
Developers can make use of the new CSS Style Inspector and IndexedDB APIs that match the specifications more closely
The previously announced silent update option has not made it into this version of Firefox. Mozilla aims to release the new feature with Firefox 13, which is expected to launch in the beginning of June.
Firefox users can expect to see update notifications later today. Please check out our Firefox 10 What's New guide which looked at the changes in the Firefox 10 Aurora version.
Update: Firefox 10 Stable (here) is now available at the official Mozilla website.
Update 2: Firefox 10 ESR download links are now also available. Click here to go the page.
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