The official release of Firefox 3.0 is still a few hours away (that's due to happen at 10.00PDT today) but the final build of Firefox is now available for download as long as you know where to look for it (clue - look here). I've grabbed my download and carried out a few installs and I'm ready with some initial thoughts.
IMPORTANT: Downloads from FTP server and direct links will not count towards the Guinness World Record attempt for the most software downloads in a day. If participation in this event is important to you, wait for the official release.
Note: If you've already had your hands on Firefox 3.0 RC3 then the final build isn't going to bring with it any surprises - in fact, it seems that the RC3 and the final build are identical - the MD5 hashes match up exactly (c971bb2273d24d62dd15dcdbd6030ea3).
Firefox 3.0 final installation walk-through gallery.
So, what's new?
In short, a lot. First, there's a newly redesigned interface. I'm guessing that these interface tweaks are going to be loved and hated by people in equal measures. Me, I quite like the new look, but I've already read plenty of of very critical reviews to know that this is a contentious issue.
On top of the interface tweaks are a whole raft of new and improved features. There's an easier to use password manager, a download manager that is a pleasure to use (which supports resumable downloads), better find system, and a totally revamped and very intuitive address bar.
Firefox 3.0 is the first true browser's browser.
Then there are the beefed up security systems. Firefox 3.0 tries its best to keep the user away from bad sites by giving them the information they need to come to an informed decision about the validity of a website.
Added to this is the ability to integrate with antivirus software and parental controls so grown ups can reign control over little Johnny's browsing.
Under the hood the Mozilla dev team have worked hard to improve the speed, memory usage and reliability of the browser. Firefox 3.0 is not only the fastest browser available, its memory footprint has been dramatically reduced.
Even if you have superfast Internet connection, you'll notice a huge difference if you compare say, accessing your GMail account using Firefox 3.0 and Internet Explorer 7. Firefox 3.0 isn't just faster, it's noticeably faster.
Well, those are my initial thoughts on Firefox 3.0 ... feel free to share your Firefox 3.0 Download Say thoughts here.
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- Firefox 3.0 RC 1 takes the lead on speed