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FireFox 3 Launched!

Alex Christie

18 June 2008

Fire3
Finally, it’s here! After months of Beta versions and endless problems (the reason for it being in Beta version) Mozilla has finally launched FireFox3. And if industry response is anything to go by, it’s going to be big, very big.

My colleague was one of the first to download it today but being the sceptical programmer that I am, I was reluctant to install it myself, especially after all the heart break I had to deal with during the Beta version.

So there we were, my colleague had installed it and to my annoyance constantly called me over to his desk to share his latest discovery in FireFox. He was constantly finding new features and tricked out Add-ons for FireFox. Thanks to him I soon found myself craving to have the new FireFox installed on my PC and then I couldn’t resist any more. I installed it.

So what’s new with FireFox 3? Well, when you start it up you are greeted by a new user interface. It’s not completely new, just rounded off more, which will make current FireFox users instantly feel at home. Then you have this new address bar, which Mozilla refers to as the Smart Location Bar. Basically what it does is to give you a list of Websites as you are typing your URL or keyword. Each listed site contains its name and the URL.

They have also re-designed the book marking function making it a lot easier to bookmark pages. All you need to do now is to click on the empty star at the end of the address bar (Smart Location Bar). One click book marks it automatically, two clicks gives you the option to select where you want to save it.

Even better news, they have finally designed the download manager so you can pause mid way and actually swithch off your PC without loosing your data. You simply continue once your backup. Easy as that.

Then after playing around for a while, I notice the biggest change of the lot. WebPages display in FireFox3 exactly like they do in Internet Explorer. That’s great, but does this mean that double browser programming is something of the past? I am not sure, but it looks to be the case for now. For those of you who do not know what I mean, in the past, you’d have to design a website using one Web Browser and then had to re-test it using a second to make sure it’s was compatible. Let’s hope the new changes stay, because I really like it (less work for me of course).

However, it’s not all good. If you make use of a bunch of Add-ons in your current version of FireFox, don’t expect the majority of them to necessarily work in the new version. The problem has been highlighted, but it seems as though it will remain. So before you do install FF3, make sure your Add-ons is available or at least compatible.

If you would like to read more or download the new FireFox please click here.

Also, check out this page for cool Add-ons.

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