Mozilla will install a hotfix on Firefox 10 to 28 Stable versions on Windows that have automatic updates enabled to get those installations to the latest release version of the web browser.
Most Firefox installations are updated automatically thanks to the built-in update functionality of the web browser. Stable and beta versions of Firefox check every 12 hours for updates while Nightly channel versions every two hours.
Firefox users and system administrators can block automatic updates deliberately in the browser. While it is usually not recommended, some users of the browser do so to block certain major changes from landing on their system.
The most recent is probably the Australis interface that launched with Firefox 29, but there are other situations, for instance when changes were made to Firefox's add-on engine which rendered add-ons useless unless updated.
There is another reason why Firefox may not be up to date: stuck updates. About two percent of all Firefox installations are stuck on old versions of the browser because of this behavior.
Mozilla announced back in May 2014 that it had the intention to deliver an update hotfix for stable versions of the browser that were not yet on the latest version to resolve the issue for the majority of systems where this is the case.
What you need to know about the update
Here is what you need to know about the hotfix:
- Mozilla will roll out the update hotfix for Firefox 10 to 28 that are on the stable channel. This means that pre-Firefox 10, Firefox ESR, Firefox Beta to Nightly, and post-Firefox 28 installations won't receive the update.
- Updates will only be offered to 32-bit version of Windows XP SP2 and newer systems.
- Mozilla will honor the update preferences. It won't deploy the update on systems where automatic updates are disabled. Basically, it will only deploy it on systems with automatic updates enabled that match the criteria mentioned under 1) and 2).
The hotfix will download the full installation package of Firefox in the background and install it on the system to update the browser to the latest version.
Users may be informed about the update via a notification in the browser. It is not clear if this is the case all the time, or only under certain circumstances, for instance if the option "check for updates, but let me choose whether to install them" has been selected instead of the option to automatically install them.
If you are running an older version of Firefox and don't want to be upgraded, you may want to make sure that automatic updates are disabled.