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Firefox 3 out now

Last night the Mozilla developers released Firefox 3.0 to the wild. Congratulations for the new major version!

I've been using the RCs since some weeks to see what the new version can. My impressions are a bit mixed. On the one hand, I love the new rendering, which seems much faster and smooth. The new bookmark management is quite cool and after some fiddling I also got my foreward/backward button back, which is 1 button instead of 2 now. Luckily, most of my favorid extensions already have adopted Firefox 3 and run smoothly. Web developer toolbar, Flashgot, Adblock plus, Flashblock, Google preview, Download Statusbar, Greasemonkey and the StumbleUpon work nicely. Firebug ist still in beta state for 3.0, but also works fine so far.

However, there are still some, which did not see new releases for ages and therefore do not seem to be even near to a Firefox 3 version. I needed to switch from All-In-One-Gestures to Firegestures, which was fine, since I mostly use the "back" functionality which works the same in both. Tab Mix Plus does not work at all, but is essential for me. Started from the undo close tab history, which gives you a list of recently closed tabs instead of just restoring the last, over the duplicate tab function to the central close button, I'm missing a good part of my used Firefox functionality.

I'm a bit sad, that I neither have the time nor the possibility to dig deeper into XUL stuff to fix the issues myself, which would be the open source way to do it. However, I still hope that someone else out there will have or that other people will come up with a different extension which brings the same nice features. So long, I can live quite good with Firefox 3 for now. It still hangs in certain conditions on my system, but that should be fixed in one of the next bug fix releases. I know very well, that X.0 versions are never absolutly stable. Amazing, how stable Firefox 3 already is!

In that sense, great work, Firefox hackers!

Everyone out there should download and try out Firefox 3.0 today, to help with building the desired world record. There have already been more than 250,000 downloads from Germany, as I write this article. So, let's see where this leads. :)

Update (2008-06-18, 19:08): The Search Status extension works, seems I had disactivated it for some reason.

Update (2008-06-23, 10:36): Thanks to a comment here, I got aware of a recent dev build of Tab Mix Plus. Luckily it seems to work quite fine, so my FF3 is near to be complete now. :)

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