New features: Firefox for iOS

"Having brought is mobile firmware aspirations to an abrupt end by ditching the Firefox OS, Mozilla has had a little more time to focus on its speciality—great browsing experiences. The Firefox client has long been a front-runner at desktop level, and in recent times, has garnered a strong user base through Google's Android as well. It wasn't until last year that Firefox could finally grace the App Store with its presence, and rather disappointingly, the iOS version was considerably scant on the features front. Thankfully, the latest update plugs many of those gaps. ..."
Source: Phone Arena
Details  Mozilla adds a slew of new features to Firefox for iOS

Reducing Adobe Flash Usage in Firefox

"... Mozilla and the Web as a whole have been taking steps to reduce the need for Flash content in everyday browsing. Starting in August, Firefox will block certain Flash content that is not essential to the user experience, while continuing to support legacy Flash content. These and future changes will bring Firefox users enhanced security, improved battery life, faster page load, and better browser responsiveness. ..."
Source: Mozilla
 Reducing Adobe Flash Usage in Firefox | Future Releases

Firefox 48: first Rust component onboard

"... Firefox 48 will be the first version of Firefox that ships with a Rust component. The component in question is a media parser written in Rust. That may not sound too exciting at first, but considering that media playback code is a primary attack vector on desktop and mobile systems alike, it is of significance. ..."
Source: gHacks Tech News
Details  Firefox 48: first Rust component onboard

gHacks user.js updated

"The Ghacks user.js list covering the majority of privacy and security configuration options for the Firefox web browser has been updated.
"... please remember that this is my user.js as it is today. I do not expect or want anyone to just run with it. You should know what you are doing. That said, I have kept the warning list at the top up to date, but I will never catch everything for everybody. This list is meant to be a TEMPLATE, please treat it as such. ..."
Source: gHacks Tech News
 The most comprehensive Firefox user.js has been updated

NoSquint Plus Review

NoSquint has been one of my "must have" extensions since I first found it.
I didn't know it was no longer maintained but mine is still working fine on Pale Moon.

" NoSquint Plus is a new add-on for the Firefox and Chrome web browser that is a fork of the very popular but no longer maintained NoSquint extension for Firefox. "
Source: gHacks Tech News
Review  NoSquint Plus for Firefox and Chrome

NativeShot screenshot tool for Firefox

"NativeShot is a Firefox add-on that enables you to take screenshots of anything that is displayed on the monitor even outside of Firefox's window.
"What makes NativeShot particularly interesting besides that is the fact that it supports many of the features such as hotkey support, delayed screenshots or an editor that desktop screenshot programs offer. ..."
Source: gHacks Tech News
Details  NativeShot screenshot tool for Firefox

Mozilla launches Firefox Test Pilot

"Mozilla launched Firefox Test Pilot a moment ago. It is a new server that lets users test ideas and features that may one day be integrated into the Firefox web browser.
"Firefox users can install features they are interested in, and provide Mozilla with feedback.
"Mozilla uses the feature to get early feedback for potentially new features that it may one day integrate into the Firefox web browser.
"Users help Mozilla eliminate bugs and issues, and may also be vocal about design decisions, and propose changes that improve a feature's usability or usefulness. ..."
Source: gHacks Tech News
Details  Mozilla launches Firefox Test Pilot

We’re 10!

10-year-cake That's right 10 years ago today, a Blog was Born! Honestly, I am surprised it has last this long (and I am not just talking about the blog). A lot has happened in the last 10 years in the browser 'market'. While Internet Explorer is still around (and sadly not by choice for some users who are stuck using IE for certain essential websites), there is a lot more choice in web browsers now. Even Microsoft introduced a new (and crippled) browser with Windows 10. Microsoft Edge, a browser so useless it pushes users over the edge. Netscape is long gone, though it did hang on for a while longer than most people had expected. Ironic considering in the late 90's while attending Arizona State University, Netscape was the default browsers on both the Mac's AND PC's (running Windows NT 4.0). You could still use Internet Explorer, you just had to find it in the Start Menu. So what made Firefox so great 10-year ago. Three things come to mind that users now just take for granted as pretty much every browser nowadays comes standard with these:
    1. Tabs. Gone are the days of having multiple browser windows open. Honestly, I didn't get tabs at first as was so used to having multiple browser windows. Tabs took a little getting use to, but now it is one of those things how did we ever live without it?
    2. Add-ons. This was the biggest 'selling point' of Firefox, being able to customize not only how the browser looked, but behaved. Extensions added functionality (such as Ad-Blocking) that were not native to the browser). Sadly, Microsoft didn't think extensions were all that important when they released their successor to Internet Exploiter, Edge last year. This is something that is suppose to change this summer.
    3. Pop-Up blocking. While there were third-party pop-up blockers for Internet Explorer, they were standalone programs that needed to be installed and not part of the browser itself. Nothing more annoying than going to a site and getting bombarded with pop-up ads. Unfortunately, web developers have found a way to get around this lately as users are getting bombard with subscribe pop-ups when they visit certain sites.
Yes, I still use Firefox...mainly at work along with Chrome (Lenovo/IBM Corp warranty processing sites work best with Chrome) and Internet Exploiter (our web based inventory system can work in Firefox, but it doesn't render nicely). I no longer use Firefox for Android as I could never get it to correctly sync (heck I couldn't even get Firefox to correctly sync between two computers). Ironically, I have yet to try Pale Moon which is a stripped down (as in removing all the unwanted bloat and UI changes) independent build of Firefox. Sadly, it is this bloat and drastic UI changes that has driven many former Firefox users away to other browsers. The current Mozilla (many of the original Mozilla developers left after Firefox 4 was released), still does not seem to understand this and keeps finding new ways to make the browser even more bloated. Plus, Mozilla had turned into Apple when it comes to what extensions it will allow users to install in Firefox. Time will tell, what will happen in the next 10-years with Firefox.

Firefox 46 Released

Mozilla has released the next scheduled update for Firefox with Firefox 46 on April 26th. Changes in this release include:
    • Improved security of the JavaScript Just In Time (JIT) Compiler
    • GTK3 integration (GNU/Linux only)
    • Correct rendering for scaled SVGs that use a clip and a mask
    • Various security fixes
    • Screen reader behavior with blank spaces in Google Docs corrected
    • WebRTC fixes to improve performance and stability
There were some fixes and other items in this release which can be viewed via the Release Notes. Depending on the user's update settings, users should be prompted to install the new version or can do so sooner via the in-browser update (Help > About Firefox) or can manually download and install Firefox via getfirefox.com site. The next planned update is Firefox 47 due for release on June 7, 2016.

32-Bit Windows Firefox Still Supports NPAPI plugins

Seems like every couple months people start crying 'the sky is falling' with Firefox and Netscape Plugin Application Programming Interface (NPAPI) plugins. Earlier this week there was a flurry of activity with Bug 1165981. Again people seem to think that Firefox is not going support NPAPI plugins anymore on Windows since the 64-Bit (Win64) versions does not (except for Flash). As a reminder the removal of NPAPI support only applies to the Win64 version of Firefox. The 32-bit Windows version still supports all the NPAPI plugins including Java and Silverlight. However, Mozilla does plan on discontinuing support in the future with the Firefox 32-bit Windows version. It also important to understand that Chrome stopped supporting NPAPI plugins long ago (they have their own custom version of Flash integrated into the browser) and Microsoft's Edge (Windows 10) browser has never supported NPAPI plugins. In reference to Java, Oracle has announced they will discontinue the Java plugin in the future (late 2016). I will post more about this in greater detail on my Tech Blog shortly.