Friday, October 29, 2004

Almost Ready for Prime Time

A month or so ago, Mozilla put out the ``Pre-release'' 1.0 version of Firefox, the browser for the Internet. I finally installed it a few nights ago. Installation was rather painless, though I did run the installer script as root, as at work we've had problems with the browser when permissions are not set correctly.

As usual, I didn't trust Firefox to remember my preferences, and the instructions say to turn off all extensions before migrating. To get around this, I renamed my ~/.mozilla/firefox directory and let Firefox set me up again. I then copied my bookmarks.html file from my old installation to the new one.

There are 1.0PR versions of the Adblock, Sage, and CookieCuller extensions, so I installed those. I looked around for a new version of mozex, but there isn't one. I did find an article on NewsForge showing how to how to use an old version of mozex. I was going to use that when I realized that Firefox now seems to respect the Preferred Applications in gnome-control-center. Using that, it was easy to set up evolution to use my version of newfire to put clicked-on-links into a browser tab, and to set up mailto: links in Firefox to bring up evolution. Since that's all I used mozex for, I'm not going to install the extension until a 1.0 compatible version comes out.

I should note that newfire has changed along with Firefox. The newest version looks like this:


# See

# Workaround for bug in Firefox script which determines if a window
#  is open


FFOX_REMOTE="${FFOX} -a firefox -remote"

#    $FFOX_REMOTE "openurl($URL,new-window)"
    $FFOX_REMOTE "openurl($URL,new-tab)"

    $FFOX $URL

if $FFOX_REMOTE "ping()" 2>&1 | grep "Error:" >/dev/null; then

Note that Mozilla is really trying to make a big splash when Firefox 1.0 is officially released. There will even be full-page ads in the New York Times. On that same page is an announcement for release candidate 1 for Firefox 1.0. Stay tuned.