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Mozilla warns against using new Firefox 3.0 beta

By Stevie Smith Nov 21, 2007, 19:31 GMT

Mozilla warns against using new Firefox 3.0 beta

Mozilla Corp. has released the new Firefox 3.0 beta for software developers and testers. Credit: Mozilla.

Although Mozilla Corporation has this week released the opening 3.0 beta of its popular Firefox Web browser, it has issued a warning to mainstream Web users that the beta should only be adopted by related software developers and those officially connected to the browser’s testing process.

"We do not recommend that anyone other than developers and testers download the Firefox 3 Beta 1 milestone release," outlined Mozilla interface designer Mike Beltzner in a note posted onto Mozilla Corp’s development centre. "It is intended for testing purposes only."

While Beltner’s official announcement may succeed in warning off the average user, the New York Times highlights a much more relaxed Beltzner who notes in his personal blog that: "between you and me, I’ve been running on this ‘developer preview’ for at least three months, and have never looked back."

While Bletzner does remind those pondering a Firefox 3.0 beta download that it is "a preview release, so use with caution," and that, as such, they shouldn’t expect all "add-ons to work without some magic," it would appear that Mozilla’s core warning perhaps doesn’t carry much weight for those who know their way around a computer.

The Firefox 3.0 beta delivers a wealth of back-end enhancements and outward improvements over the existing edition, including various security upgrades, tools, and a fresh design applied to the application’s bookmarking and browser history.

From a security perspective, Beltzner reveals that the 3.0 beta also delivers a malware checker, which performs a filtering action that issues users with a warning when trying to link through to a URL address that has been blacklisted under suspicion of hosting malicious code. It will also provide users with one-click site information, which shows specific site ownership, as well as various bug fixes for plug-in updating and anti-virus software integration.

At this time, no final release date for Firefox 3.0 has been issued by Mozilla Corp., although it almost certainly isn’t likely to arrive in time to coincide with Mozilla’s initial release projection, which pegged it as emerging before the end of 2007.

The Firebox 3.0 beta can be downloaded via Mozilla’s official Web site. It is compatible with Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux, and is available in 21 different languages.

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