No surprise: Firefox 3.1 beta 3 planned for early January

It's no big surprise that the Mozilla team decided for sure to release a third beta of Firefox 3.1 before moving to release candidate mode.

It's no big surprise that the Mozilla team decided for sure to release a third beta of Firefox 3.1 before moving to release candidate mode.

That was all but voted on at last week's meeting (I thought) but Mozilla "corporate" PR folks informed me that no decision was made. The formal proposal for beta 3 was only issued today.

With that, beta 2 is now expected to be available in early December and beta 3 in early January, according to information available on the Mozilla web site.

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"After that discussion, the decision was to propose that we add a third beta milestone for Firefox 3.1," lead developer Mike Beltzner wrote in his blog.

Aside from fixing the remaining "blockers," a third beta will give testers more time to test recently added features debuting in beta 2 such as Private Browsing Mode, Worker Threads, Speculative Parsing and TraceMonkey .... with wide-reaching changes like those listed above, it was felt that this was prudent, especially if it could be done without major impact to schedule," Belzner wrote.

Mozilla said the code is essentially frozen and no new features will be added to Firefox 3.1. "Beta 3 code freeze will be scheduled based on the results of the triage, but is expected to be in early January 2009," Beltzner summed up in the group's meeting notes.