Firefox 14.0.1 Available – Why There Won’t be a Firefox 14.0 Release

Firefox recently updated from v13.0.1 to v14.0.1; here’s why they decided to skip v14.0 ….

Confusing times for users of the Firefox stable channel. The current version of the web browser, Firefox 13.0.1, will be updated in the next 24 hour period to Firefox 14.0.1 and not Firefox 14.0 which the majority of users may have expected. Mozilla decided to bypass Firefox 14.0 to synchronize release versions between the desktop and mobile versions of the browser.

Firefox Mobile 14.0 has been released on June 26, outside the regular release schedule of the web browser.  To sync the version numbers of the desktop and mobile version of Firefox, Mozilla decided to release Firefox 14.0.1 for mobile and desktop on July 17, 2012, instead of Firefox 14.0 for the desktop and Firefox 14.0.1 for mobile clients.

The new versions are already available on Mozilla’s ftp server and various download portals. While likely that this will be the version that Mozilla will announce later today as the new version of Firefox, it is still possible that the currently available version will be replaced by another. This has been the case occasionally in the past, for instance when last minute bugs were discovered that required the compilation of a new version.

firefox 14.0.1

The Firefox Beta release notes provide us with information about the changes in Firefox 14.0.1:

The browser’s default search engine Google Search has been switched to HTTPs connections to improve privacy and security while searching. Mac OS X Lion users get full screen support for their operating system, and the browser address bar is now auto-completing typed urls. Lastly, a new click-to-play feature to disable plugin contents on page load and activate them with a click later on.

The feature is disabled by default and needs to be enabled in the browser’s about:config preference listing. Enter about:config into the address bar of the browser and hit enter. Accept the warning if it is displayed and filter for the term plugins.click_to_play. Double-click it to set its value to true to enable the click-to-play feature in Firefox. Plugins are then displayed as a gray area on the screen with a call to action (Click here to activate plugins.).

click here to activate plugins

To disable click-to-play in Firefox repeat the process outlined above.

The browser’s site identity manager has been updated by only displaying a website’s favicon in the tab and no longer in the address bar. You can read more about the changee here:  Mozilla To Remove Favicons From Firefox URL Bar

Developers can now take advantage of the Pointer Lock API and API that prevents the display from sleeping, as well as new text-transform and font-variant CSS improvements for Turkic and Greek languages.

The new Firefox updates will be available in the coming 24 hour period if everything goes according to plans. In other news, a new Thunderbird version, Thunderbird 14.0, is also expected to be released today.

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