First views on Firefox 1.5 Beta 1


Mozilla’s Firefox 1.5 beta was released today to the surprise of many, and those who awaits the promising new feature of the popular web browser. It has been released to the community, especially for Web application developers, and extension developers. Home users can also make use of the availability to try out this new web browser

According to the release notes these are the most noteworthy changes:

  • Automated update to streamline product upgrades. Notification of an update is more prominent, and updates to Firefox may now be half a megabyte or smaller. Updating extensions has also improved.
  • Faster browser navigation with improvements to back and forward button performance.
  • Drag and drop reordering for browser tabs.
  • Improvements to popup blocking.
  • Clear Private Data feature provides an easy way to quickly remove personal data through a menu item or keyboard shortcut.
  • is added to the search engine list.
  • Improvements to product usability including descriptive error pages, redesigned options menu, RSS discovery, and “Safe Mode” experience.
  • Better accessibility support including DHTML accessibility.
  • Report a broken Web site wizard to report Web sites that are not working in Firefox.
  • Better support for Mac OS X (10.2 and greater) including profile migration from Safari and Mac Internet Explorer.
  • New support for Web Standards including SVG, CSS 2 and CSS 3, and JavaScript 1.6.
  • Many security enhancements.
  • List of notable bug fixes since Deer Park Alpha 2

First off I backed up my existing setup and downloaded the latest version from here. The install was quick and painless and all my bookmarks, history etc were carried over to the new version.

My first impressions are that the browser does have a quicker rendering engine meaning pages do seem to appear faster. However the engine is certainly renders different, this site displays fine in the previous version but the header appears messed up in 1.5 Beta 1 I don’t yet know if that is a problem with their render engine or our coding but I’ll look into it and report it with the new Report a broken Web site wizard

I love the ability to be able to drag tabs, you can even drag tabs to different windows which I’m going to find really useful.

Popup blocking seems better, the only popup that I remember not being blocked before was on imageshack and the new version does indeed block that annoying waste of space.

A big problem that will prevent me using this extensively (just yet) is that many extensions no longer work and will need to be rewritten, but once that is done provided it is stable enough this will be my version of choice.

Argggg – I just noticed my Google Toolbar has gone so I can’t spell check this post

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