Mozilla claims that at its peak, Firefox 3 was being downloaded 14,000 per minute and in the first 24 hours, the organisation had served more than eight million copies of its new browser.
Mozilla claims more than eight million copies of Firefox 3 were downloaded in its first 24 hours.
The Mozilla team had aimed to exceed the 1.6 million downloads that Firefox 2 achieved in the first day of its release period, and had hoped for five million downloads for Firefox 3 in its first 24 hours of release. Mozilla said it's waiting for the Guinness Book of World Records to review the results.
Approximately 14 hours after its release, Firefox 3 passed the five million download mark. President of Mozilla Europe, Tristan Nitot, told ZDNet.com.au sister site ZDNet.co.uk that he felt as though he was in "a dream".
"We have exceeded our wildest expectations," said Nitot. "I'm so proud of the community. Five million downloads in 14 hours is mind boggling. I'm just concerned it's a dream and I'm going to wake up."
At the time, Nitot said it was difficult to predict what the final number of downloads would be.
"Europe is just waking up, so we expect a few more million," said Nitot. "I don't know where it will end up, but we could get seven or eight million [downloads]."
As part of its marketing effort, Mozilla encouraged users to pledge to download Firefox 3 on its release, and to hold download parties.
The release was scheduled to begin at 9pm Sydney-time on Tuesday 17 June. However, the release could not begin as planned as Mozilla's servers had problems, which were exacerbated by the number of people wishing to download Firefox 3, according to Mozilla.
Nitot said that the main problems had begun before Firefox 3 had been released.
"It's true that downloads have exceeded our wildest dreams, but there was a failure even before the sites were open," said Nitot.
A Mozilla spokesperson confirmed that there had been problems migrating the servers, but said that the issues were fixed an hour later.
"There were a few technical issues migrating the sites and servers, then we went live an hour later," said the spokesperson.
A post by Mozilla marketing co-odinator Melissa Shapiro on the Mozilla blog on Tuesday, at the beginning of the release, said that the interest in Firefox 3 had been "overwhelming", and that Mozilla servers were under pressure.
"The outpouring of interest and enthusiasm around Firefox 3 has been overwhelming (literally!)," wrote Shapiro at the time of the release. "Our servers are currently feeling the burn and should be back to normal shortly. Download day will officially commence once the site goes live. The 24-hour period will be clocked from that moment."
Mozilla was still waiting for the Guinness Book of World Records to review its results.
CNET News.com's Stephen Shankland contributed to this report.