Microsoft adopts new Chromium 4-week release cycle

Martin Brinkmann
Mar 13, 2021
Internet, Microsoft Edge

Microsoft revealed this week that it will adopt the new Chromium 4-week release cycle that Google announced for its Chrome web browser last week.

Starting later this year, Microsoft Edge Stable releases will be switched to a 4-week release cycle from a 6-week release cycle. Like Google, Microsoft plans to launch a new edition of its Edge browser for Enterprise customers that will have a 8-week release cycle.

microsoft edge 4-week release cycle

The new Microsoft Edge Extended Stable version will get frequent security updates in the 8-week period but new features and changes will be introduced every 8-weeks when the releases sync up with the regular Stable releases of Microsoft Edge.

To help our enterprise customers looking for an extended timeline to manage updates, Microsoft Edge will offer an Extended Stable option aligned to a longer, 8-week major release cycle; if this option is not selected, the 4-week cadence will be the default experience. Enterprise customers opting for the Extended Stable option will still get all the great innovation and security from the 4-week cycles, just delivered at a more manageable pace. In between major releases, customers choosing the Extended Stable option can expect a biweekly security update with the most important fixes; everything else will be delivered on the extended schedule every eight weeks.

While designed specifically for the Enterprise, Microsoft Edge Extended Stable won't be limited to users in the Enterprise. The new edition of Edge can best be compared to Firefox ESR releases. The main difference between the two is that Firefox ESR is supported for a longer period of time.

Microsoft plans to switch to the faster release cycle when Edge 94 gets released in September 2021. Google revealed that the change will land in the third quarter of 2021, but failed to provide a version of Chrome or a month, when it announced the change last week.

Most browser makers that use Chromium as the base will likely switch to the faster release schedule as well. Some might instead switch to the Stable Extended edition instead, but it is too early to tell at this point in time.

The change may make it more difficult for smaller developers to keep up. Mozilla switched to a 4-week release cycle some time ago as well.

Now You: if you do use a Chromium browser, will you switch to the Extended Stable edition if it becomes available?

Microsoft adopts new Chromium 4-week release cycle
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Microsoft adopts new Chromium 4-week release cycle
Microsoft revealed this week that it will adopt the new Chromium 4-week release cycle that Google announced for its Chrome web browser last week.
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  1. GeckoEngine said on March 14, 2021 at 2:38 pm

    It’s not some kind of maddness, it’s an old and well-known plan, it’s so by desing, it’s the classic comm*ie method: they need and they want to have a total control of everything, and they’re allways striving to achieve such a status. They own all big companies, they almost total control the net… They made gates and windows into your home, goo*lagsChromes-and-clones … for ripping-off people money, for spying on honest people, to promote their agenda … And they have never ever done something good for people and they never will, as it is proven for last few milennia. Folk just need to open eyes and start using the software made by people for people, and stop using comm*is surveillance hardware and software products. Although they own moz://a-corp. too, and they are (of course, as usual) ruining the good product once made by people for people (firefox), the firefox (and specially the aforementioned firefoxESR) is still the way to go, when talking about so called modern browsers, when you need java-and-such for shopping, banking, commenting … (or SeaMonkey, IceCat …). If for any reason you need the bleeding-edge-browser, then the hardened-firefox (i.e. Librewolf) is the way to go. And if you don’t need the java-things and bloat-and-spyware-and… which comes with “modern-browsers” (let’s say you want just read some staff), then you can use some free “non-modern-browser”, eighter cli or grafic one. Totalitarians will never ever give (or help the people to achieve) the freedom for people; you have to do it yourself.

    1. Anonymous said on March 15, 2021 at 2:59 am

      There’s a class of useless people whose SOLE job is to bitch about other people’s ingenuity and hard work – this browser is shite, that OS is shite, such and such social media site is shite… All they can contribute is hot smelly gas from multiple ends. They obviously lack the brains to make their own software or sites according to their needs, which is why despite the constant bitching they continue to use whatever it is they bitch about (or variants based on the same hard work). Doers vs Losers – the world certainly needs more of the former, and hopefully designer baby tech in future will eliminate the stinky scourge of the latter.

  2. owl said on March 14, 2021 at 9:07 am

    About two years ago, Mozilla carried out “Rapid Release (4 weeks cycle)” in Firefox, which Chromium users said, “It’s a stupid method! Mozilla has jumped into the path of self-destruction!” There was a lot of intense bashing in the ghacks community (Comments).
    Did these of Chromium also “jump into the path of self-destruction”?

    In any case, Microsoft and Google are thoroughly implementing “profit first” from the perspective of shareholder measures, and the “QA” team and others have been restructuring (abolished) from the perspective of reducing labor costs.
    Since the transition to “AI” is accelerated to reduce labor costs, it is aimed at “making all end users to beta user” as an alternative to “QA”.
    This management strategy (company’s lifeline is the explicit value of the corporate value in the “Shareholder Countermeasures”) convinced, so they don’t care at all what anyone says about them.

    End users who use the Browser service are simply truncated if they disagree and don’t want to agree.

    If you don’t want to be a beta user, the Extended Stable edition, which is a substantially stable version of Chromium, is a good choice, as is the ESR (about 50-week cycle) option in Firefox.
    However, in that case, cannot expect to enjoy the “latest features” (that is, there is a trade-off relationship).

    That said, I like Firefox ESR.
    Because I’m not interested in new features, I’m focused on stability, and I’m happy with Firefox ESR.

    1. owl said on March 14, 2021 at 11:25 am

      Related complement information:
      My perspective (as an SDET) of the lay offs recently : microsoft
      The view of the ex-Microsoft employee
      Former Microsoft Employee explains why bugs in Windows updates increased | gHacks Tech News
      View the Telemetry Data that Microsoft collects on Windows 10 | gHacks Tech News

  3. Ron said on March 13, 2021 at 4:33 pm

    And the madness continues . . . .

  4. Paul(us) said on March 13, 2021 at 1:17 pm

    Just like with Chrome I am quite sure that in the foreseeable future there will be releases that will go horribly wrong because of this in my opinion to fast cycle. Why not patch the real serious problems in build updates and come with a quarterly version update?

    We have been seeing ( Think right now to the printing blue screens problem) the past couple of years with let’s say Microsoft that their updates on anabolic steroids have been crippling the users.
    Why not update a version when you have something really tested which brings a real improvement and not a thing like new smileys!

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