[Review] What’s New in Mozilla Firefox Nightly Builds?

NOTE: This topic has been closed. Please visit following article to get latest news and updates about Mozilla Firefox latest Nightly build:

[Mozilla Firefox Nightly Build Update Topic]

UPDATE 50:

Latest Firefox 21.0 Nightly build adds a new option to the "New Tab" page which allows you to restore removed thumbnails to the page. Whenever you remove a thumbnail from new tab page, Firefox shows 2 new options: Undo and Restore all.

Restore_New_Tab_Page_Thumbnails_Mozilla_Firefox.png

You can restore the most recently removed thumbnail by clicking on "Undo" option. If you want to restore all removed thumbnails, click on "Restore All" option.

UPDATE 49:

Latest Firefox 21.0 Nightly build comes with a new tab "Data Choices" in Options window which allows you to customize privacy settings such as:

  • Enable or disable telemetry
  • Enable or disable Firefox health report
  • Enable or disable crash reporter

New_Data_Choices_Option_Mozilla_Firefox.png

Mozilla has moved these options from "General" tab to this new tab.

UPDATE 48:

With the release of new Firefox 18.0 stable version, Mozilla has released first alpha build of upcoming Firefox 21.0 version to the Nightly channel.

This new build features a new animation in download complete notification. When you download a file from Internet and the download completes, Firefox shows a new animation for the download manager icon present in the toolbar as shown in following image:

Firefox_Download_Complete_Notification_Animation.gif

We would also like to tell that Mozilla has replaced the old download manager window with a new downloads section which is shown using the built-in Library which also shows History and Bookmarks.

UPDATE 47:

When you open Firefox in private browsing mode, it overwrites the existing window with the new private browsing window and you lose all the tabs which you were working on. But the latest Nightly build fixes this issue.

The current Firefox 20.0 Alpha build opens the private browsing session in a new window instead of overwriting your running session. So now you can have both normal session as well as private browsing session running at same time. Good move Mozilla...

UPDATE 46:

Mozilla Firefox 20.0 Alpha 1 build has been released and available for download.

UPDATE 45:

The latest Alpha build of Mozilla Firefox 18.0 version also comes with a Metro version of Firefox specially designed for Windows 8 Start Screen.

Mozilla_Firefox_Metro_Version.png

If you are facing problems with Firefox Metro version in Windows 8, check out following article:

How to Use Mozilla Firefox Metro Version in Windows 8? Fix Metro App Launching Desktop Version

UPDATE 44:

Mozilla has released first Alpha build of Firefox 18.0. The most noticeable change in this new build is the come back of good old Download Manager. Mozilla has removed the new download manager and replaced it with the old classic download manager window.

UPDATE 43:

Mozilla has updated the "New Tab" page in the latest Nightly 17.0 build. Now a new "preload" function has been introduced which makes the "New Tab" page faster by preloading it in the background.

Currently the feature is under testing and users will need to manually enable it. To enable preload feature:

1. Open Firefox and type about:config in the addressbar and press Enter. It'll confirm, click on I'll be careful, I promise! button.

2. Now type preload in the Filter box and look for following boolean key:

browser.newtab.preload

3. The entry "browser.newtab.preload" would be set to false. Double-click on it or right-click on it and select "Toggle". It'll set its value to true.

Enable_Preloaded_New_Tab_Page_Mozilla_Firefox.png

4. That's it. It'll immediately enable preload function for "New Tab" page and it'll load much faster than before.

UPDATE 42:

Mozilla Firefox 17.0 Alpha 1 build has been released and available for download.

UPDATE 41:

Mozilla Firefox 16.0 Alpha 1 build has been released and available for download.

UPDATE 40:

Mozilla has made 2 noticeable changes in latest Firefox 15.0 nightly build.

First change is the removal of "Tabs on Top" option. Now you no longer get this option when you right-click on toolbar or select "Toolbars" menu in Menubar. So you'll have to keep the tab bar on top even if you don't like it.

Second change is the re-allocation of "Don't load tabs until selected" option in Firefox Preferences window. In previous versions of Firefox, this option was present in "General" tab of Preferences window but now it has been moved to "Tabs" tab so that all settings related to tabs are present in a single place.

PS: If you are using the Nightly build and want to get tabs on bottom, you can do that using an easy about:config trick:

How to Put Tabs Back on Bottom in Mozilla Firefox?

UPDATE 39:

Finally Mozilla has finalized the "Silent Background Update" feature in Firefox. The latest Firefox 15.0 nightly build comes with this new feature enabled. Now when you install an update in Firefox and restarts it to apply the update, Firefox no longer takes too much time to install the update and no longer shows any screen such as "Installing update...". Now the update is installed in background while you are using Firefox.

UPDATE 38:

Latest Firefox 15.0 Nightly build comes with new InContent Preferences feature which shows Firefox Preferences as web page in separate tab. Check out following topic for more info with screenshots:

How to Enable New InContent Preferences Feature in Mozilla Firefox Nightly Build?

UPDATE 37:

Mozilla Firefox 15.0 Alpha 1 build has been released and available for download.

UPDATE 36:

Latest Firefox 14.0 Nightly build comes with a new simple website security certificate icon in addressbar.

UPDATE 35:

Latest Firefox 14.0 Nightly build comes with new re-designed "Download Manager". Now when a download starts, a new "Downloads" icon appears in Navigation toolbar which shows progress of download as shown in following screenshot:

New_Firefox_Download_Manager.png

Alternatively you can access the download manager using "Ctrl+J" keyboard shortcut.

PS: If you don't like this new download manager and want to switch back to old one, you can use following steps:

1. Open Firefox and type about:config in the addressbar and press Enter. It’ll confirm, click on I’ll be careful, I promise! button.

2. Now type ToolkitUI in the Filter box and look for following boolean key:

browser.download.useToolkitUI

3. The entry "browser.download.useToolkitUI" would be set to false. Double-click on it or right-click on it and select "Toggle". It'll set its value to true.

4. That's it. Now you'll be able to enjoy the classic download manager in a separate window instead of the new one.

UPDATE 34:

As mentioned in UPDATE 22, recently Mozilla re-designed built-in image viewer in Firefox and put a dark background when you directly view an image.

Now in the latest Firefox 14.0 Nightly build, Mozilla has again re-designed the image viewer and replaced dark background with a new textured background as shown in following screenshot:

New_Textured_Image_Background_Mozilla_Firefox.png

UPDATE 33:

The latest Firefox 14.0 nightly build comes with new Script Debugger which is disabled by default. You can enable it using following steps:

1. Open Firefox and type about:config in the addressbar and press Enter. It’ll confirm, click on I’ll be careful, I promise! button.

2. Now type debugger in the Filter box and look for following boolean key:

devtools.debugger.enabled

3. The entry "devtools.debugger.enabled" would be set to false. Double-click on it or right-click on it and select "Toggle". It'll set its value to true.

4. That's it. Now you can access this new Script Debugger using "Web Developer" menu or using "Ctrl+Shift+S" hotkey.

Firefox_Script_Debugger.png

UPDATE 32:

The latest Firefox 14.0 nightly build comes with built-in PDF reader. By default its disabled and can be enabled using Add-ons -> Extensions window.

This built-in PDF reader uses HTML5 to display PDF files directly in Firefox browser.

UPDATE 31:

We told you yesterday that Mozilla is working on a new homepage design and the good news is that the new homepage has been put in the latest nightly 14.0 alpha build.

Following is a preview of this new homepage in action:

Mozilla_Firefox_New_Homepage.png

The new homepage is very useful and provides quick access to Bookmarks Manager, History Manager, Settings, Add-ons Manager, Downloads Manager and Sync. It also contains Google search box as usual.

UPDATE 30:

Mozilla has added a new "Reset to Default State" button in latest nightly build which can be used to restore Firefox to factory settings.

Read more info at following link:

Mozilla to Add "Reset to Default State" Button to Firefox Browser

UPDATE 29:

Mozilla has once again redesigned "New Tab" page in the latest nightly build of Firefox 14.0. Now "New Tab" page looks far better compared to the previous one mentioned in Update 27.

The background color has been changed, also the page title doesn't overlap the website thumbnail. Its shown below the thumbnail which makes the whole "New Tab" page looking cleaner.

Following is a screenshot of this redesigned "New Tab" page in action:

Mozilla_Firefox_13_Nightly_New_Tab_Page.png

UPDATE 28:

Mozilla has added a new secret "about:compartments" page in latest nightly build of Firefox 13.0 version. You can access this secret page by just typing about:compartments in Firefox addressbar and press Enter.

About_Compartments_Page_Mozilla_Firefox.png

This new page shows a list of all live JS compartments. If you don't know, compartments are little segments of memory which is used by JavaScripts in Mozilla Firefox. Mozilla's idea behind adding this new page was to make detection of zombie compartments as simple as possible. Zombie compartments are a kind of memory leak. In previous versions, you had to use about:memory page to find out zombie compartments which was a little bit complicated but now addition of this new about:compartments page makes it easier.

This page shows all running websites compartments separate from system compartments.

It also contains a "More verbose" link which can be used to show truncated URLs in full.

UPDATE 27:

The latest Mozilla Firefox 13.0 Alpha build comes with redesigned "New Tab" page enabled by default. Recently the new tab page appeared in an alpha build but Mozilla removed it from later builds. But now the new tab page is back.

New_Tab_Page_Mozilla_Firefox.png

UPDATE 26:

Mozilla Firefox 13.0 Alpha 1 build has been released and available for download.

PS: Mozilla has disabled "Addressbar URL auto-fill" feature in this new alpha build.

UPDATE 25:

The latest Mozilla Firefox 12.0 Alpha build comes with following 3 new features:

  • Addressbar URL auto-fill
  • Smooth scrolling enabled by default now
  • Redesigned new tab page

When you start typing in addressbar, Firefox checks the browser history data and automatically fills URL of the first website which starts from the typed characters. If you want, you can disable this new addressbar auto-fill feature by settings browser.urlbar.autoFill boolean present in about:config to false.

To enable the brand new "New Tab" page, you'll need to follow a simple method given in following tutorial:

How to Enable Brand New "New Tab" Page in Mozilla Firefox Nightly Build?

UPDATE 24:

The latest Mozilla Firefox 12.0 Alpha build comes with a new feature "Background update". This feature is enabled by default and can be accessed using Firefox Options window.

Following is a screenshot of "Advanced -> Update" tab in Options window which highlights this new feature:

Firefox_Background_Update_Option.png

As you can see there is a new option "Use a background service to install updates" in Firefox Options window which is enabled by default.

NOTE: Mozilla has also removed "Show all tabs" button (small arrow) from tab bar. Its only shown when the tab strip overflows.

If you are using stable or beta version of Mozilla Firefox and want to remove the tab drop-down menu from tab bar, check out this tutorial.

UPDATE 23:

The latest Mozilla Firefox 12.0 Alpha 1 build comes with a new re-designed Toolbar Customize window as shown in following screenshot:

Mozilla_Firefox_New_Toolbar_Customize_Window.png

As you can see in above screenshot, the new redesigned window looks better. The spacing between toolbar buttons has been decreased so that the whole window doesn't take too much space. Also there is a white background behind buttons which provides a nice look.

UPDATE 22:

The latest Mozilla Firefox 12.0 Alpha 1 build comes with a re-designed image viewer which shows the image in center with a dark background as shown in following screenshot:

Mozilla_Firefox_New_Image_Viewer.png

UPDATE 21:

Mozilla Firefox 12.0 Alpha 1 build has been released and available for download.

UPDATE 20:

After a long gap, here is something new in Firefox nightly build which is worth to mention.

The latest Firefox 11.0 Alpha build comes with automatic add-on sync feature. This feature will sync your installed add-ons and their configuration settings across machines.

You can enable it using Tools -> Options -> Sync and select Add-ons checkbox.

Firefox_Addon_Sync.png

If you don't know Firefox Sync is a built-in feature of Firefox which allows you to sync Firefox bookmarks, passwords, preferences, history and opened tabs across different computers.

UPDATE 19:

Mozilla Firefox 11.0 Alpha 1 build released by Mozilla and available for download.

UPDATE 18:

The latest Mozilla Firefox 10.0 Alpha 1 build comes with redesigned "Automatic Update" settings. When you open Firefox Options window and go to Advanced -> Update tab, you'll notice the new options there.

The new redesigned Automatic update settings look very similar to Windows default Automatic Update settings.

UPDATE 17:

A few months back we posted about interesting mockups released by Mozilla. These mockups featured "Conditional forward button" which has been now enabled in latest Firefox 10.0 Alpha 1 build.

This new feature hides forward button until its required. For example, you launch the web browser and open a website, at this moment there would be no need of forward button as you have not moved to any other page so the forward button is not shown. Now you click on a link and move to new page, still the forward button will be invisible. Now if you go to previous page using back button, the forward button will become visible with a smooth animation because now you can go forward.

Firefox_Conditional_Back_Forward_Buttons.png

Its really a good feature as it saves space on your toolbar.

UPDATE 16:

Mozilla Firefox 10.0 Alpha 1 build has been released and available for download.

UPDATE 15:

The latest Mozilla Firefox 9.0 Alpha 1 build comes with an updated "New Tab" icon.

UPDATE 14:

Mozilla Firefox 9.0 Alpha 1 build has been released and available for download. If you are already using nightly build, it'll automatically update it.

UPDATE 13:

Mozilla has changed the App button color in latest Nightly build. Now the App button color matches the nightly logo in About box:

New_Nightly_Firefox_App_Button.png

UPDATE 12:

Mozilla has started working on Firefox 8.0 and first Alpha build is available for download.

UPDATE 11:

The latest Mozilla Firefox 7.0 Alpha 1 Nightly build comes with a new feature "Telemetry" which sends non-personal usage and performance statistics to Mozilla.

Its an optional feature and can be enabled using new "Submit Performance Data" option added to "Advanced" tab in Preferences window.

UPDATE 10:

The latest Mozilla Firefox 7.0 Alpha 1 Nightly build doesn't show "http://" prefix in URLs shown in addressbar. Don't worry, it does show "https://" prefix.

Similar to Google Chrome?

PS: You can disable this new feature and re-enable http:// prefix in URL using following simple trick:

1. Open Firefox and type about:config in the addressbar and press Enter. It’ll confirm, click on I’ll be careful, I promise! button.

2. Now type trim in the Filter box and look for following boolean key:

browser.urlbar.trimURLs

3. The entry "browser.urlbar.trimURLs" would be set to true. Double-click on it or right-click on it and select "Toggle". It'll set its value to false.

4. That's it. Now Firefox will show http:// URL prefix again.

UPDATE 9:

In the latest Mozilla Firefox 7.0 Alpha 1 Nightly build, a new menuitem "Get More Tools" has been added to "Web Developer" menu in orange Firefox button.

UPDATE 8:

The latest Mozilla Firefox 7.0 Alpha 1 Nightly build features brand new "Permissions Manager" which can be accessed by typing about:permissions in addressbar and press Enter.

Permissions Manager allows you to set various permissions settings for different websites. You can set whether a website should store your password, location, cookies, offline storage and should show pop-up windows or not.

You can set permissions for all websites in bulk as well.

Permissions_Manager_about_permissions_Mozilla_Firefox.png

UPDATE 7:

Mozilla has started working on Firefox 7.0 and first Alpha build is available for download.

If you are wondering what happened to Firefox 6.0? It has been moved to Aurora channel.

If you still have confusion, following list will clear it:

  • Mozilla Firefox 4.0 - Latest Final version
  • Mozilla Firefox 5.0 - Latest Beta version
  • Mozilla Firefox 6.0 - Latest Aurora version
  • Mozilla Firefox 7.0 - Latest Nightly version

If you don't know about Nightly, Aurora, check this link.

UPDATE 6:

Latest Mozilla Firefox 6.0 Alpha 1 Build features "Auto Complete" in Addressbar. As soon as you type first few characters of a URL, Firefox automatically auto-fills the remaining URL taken from history and bookmarks list.

UPDATE 5:

Latest Mozilla Firefox 6.0 Alpha 1 Build features new Toolbar background in "History" and "Bookmarks" windows. Open them by using "Ctrl+Shift+H" and "Ctrl+Shift+B" key combinations or using orange Firefox button and you'll notice the new toolbar background.

Mozilla_Firefox_Nightly_Build_New_Toolbar_Background.png

UPDATE 4:

The newly introduced update channel "Aurora" allows you to switch to Beta and Release channels using the About dialog box.

As our reader "JrColas22" mentioned, when you open About dialog box in an Aurora build, you get the message: "You are currently on the Aurora update channel. Change". When you click on "Change" link, you get the option to change the update channels from Aurora to Release or Beta.

UPDATE 3:

Mozilla has updated the current update channels for Firefox and have introduced Firefox 6.0 Alpha 1 Preview build in the Nightly channel.

Aurora channel keeps Firefox 5.0 Alpha 2 Preview build.

UPDATE 2:

"Tell websites I do not want to be tracked" option has been moved to "Privacy" tab from "Advanced" tab in latest Alpha 1 Preview build.

UPDATE 1:

After releasing final version of Firefox 4.0, Mozilla has started working on Firefox 4.2 version and has released the first preview build of Alpha 1.

PS: If any of your favorite extensions is not working in nightly build, you can follow instructions given in following topic:

How to Fix Broken Incompatible Extensions in Mozilla Firefox Newer Versions





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