Firefox 4 Beta 11 Lands

Mozilla have released Beta 11 of Firefox 4 today, and as previously predicted there will be another beta before it reaches Release Candidate (RC) stage, with work on Beta 12 already underway. Currently, the beta page has yet to be updated, but you can grab the EN-US version from their official supported link here.

In a posting last night on Google Group mozilla.dev.planning, Firefox Release Manager, Chris Legnitto, let it be known that, "QA has signed off on Firefox 4 beta 11. We intend to push it to mirrors tonight / tomorrow morning PST".

Legnitto also commented on the lengthy QA to ship cycle, hinting at a more streamlined process to come in the future.

Just to let you know, releases aren't as easy as flipping a switch. The release mechanics generally follow these steps:

1. Release to mirrors
2. Wait for sufficient mirror uptake for update testing
3. Test the updates on the "releasetest" channel to make sure the bits on the mirrors are ok
4. Wait for sufficient mirror uptake for release to the beta audience
5. Push webpages live
6. Test the updates on the "beta" channel, get QA signoff on them
7. Update download links on mozilla.com
8. Announce to the world

As an aside, there are exciting plans to pipeline and automate the mechanics of releases to cut down the time it takes to go from QA signoff to tested bits on the wire.

Firefox 4, based on the Gecko 2.0 engine, will bring an updated user interface, new ways to organise tabs, a revamped add-on manager, support for HTML5 video standards, multitouch support on Windows 7 and a range of performance and security enhancements. The full release notes for beta 10 can be viewed here.

Don't forget that you can discuss this beta, and nightly builds right here on Neowin in the "Meet Firefox 4.0 (beta 11)" topic.

Image credit: Mozilla.

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Kirkburn said,
You said nothing there that actually says why they're 'done'.

His nickname said it all. Let the kids playing around. Personally I love kids, even spoilt ones. They are still kids who didn't get much love from their parents, obviously.

A kid said "Mozilla is done." Anyone has a reason not to believe it? O.K. I'm with!

Actually the one I would look out for is Opera. Yes seriously. Firefox is far from done with though. No other browser allows you to customize as much. They can try but there not even close to being there and most likely never will.

I'm still having problems with font rendering correctly, but this same problem has always happened to me in beta versions of FF. I'll try again when the RC comes out.

Phantom Phreak said,
I'm still having problems with font rendering correctly, but this same problem has always happened to me in beta versions of FF. I'll try again when the RC comes out.
Once again... That's not a Firefox problem. It's a Direct2D rendering fonts problem (with ClearType enabled)

It doesn't display apple.com correctly at all. Cannot view ANY of the videos, and it does not display the menu animations that Chrome displays on that site, for example. What is up with the HTML5 implementation in Firefox 4 beta 11? It totally sucks.

sabrex said,
It doesn't display apple.com correctly at all. Cannot view ANY of the videos, and it does not display the menu animations that Chrome displays on that site, for example. What is up with the HTML5 implementation in Firefox 4 beta 11? It totally sucks.
Maybe Webkit specific CSS code for the webpage and maybe HTML5 videos requires H.264 ?

1for-matik said,
Maybe Webkit specific CSS code for the webpage and maybe HTML5 videos requires H.264 ?

So Firefox can't display Apple's website because Mozilla doesn't want to support Webkit CSS and H.264? And they expect people to continue to use Firefox... why? Not being able to display content on the biggest tech company's website is a bit of a massive failure. Very few users out there will care why it doesn't display pages correctly and the politics behind it. They will only care that it doesn't.

nub said,
H.264 != free

My guess is WebM and Theora are probably infringing on a few patents held by the various contributors to H.264. I'm sure if push came to shove MPEG-LA could and would pursue legal challenges to both codecs. As it stands H.264 is the only codec that's an actual standard recognized by actual standards bodies and used absolutely everywhere. It's also free to distribute video content in H.264 and to view that content. What's not free is implementing the codec into browsers, but since Windows 7 and MacOSX 10.6 already include the codec, all browsers can easily support playback of H.264 HTML5 content by passing the job off to Windows 7 or MacOSX and wipe their hands of any responsibility. The fact that they choose not to is a bit peculiar.

sabrex said,

So Firefox can't display Apple's website because Mozilla doesn't want to support Webkit CSS and H.264? And they expect people to continue to use Firefox... why? Not being able to display content on the biggest tech company's website is a bit of a massive failure. Very few users out there will care why it doesn't display pages correctly and the politics behind it. They will only care that it doesn't.

Why would they support webkit CSS? Apple is using non-standard implementations of HTML5 on their site.

sabrex said,

My guess is WebM and Theora are probably infringing on a few patents held by the various contributors to H.264. I'm sure if push came to shove MPEG-LA could and would pursue legal challenges to both codecs. As it stands H.264 is the only codec that's an actual standard recognized by actual standards bodies and used absolutely everywhere. It's also free to distribute video content in H.264 and to view that content. What's not free is implementing the codec into browsers, but since Windows 7 and MacOSX 10.6 already include the codec, all browsers can easily support playback of H.264 HTML5 content by passing the job off to Windows 7 or MacOSX and wipe their hands of any responsibility. The fact that they choose not to is a bit peculiar.

What about linux?

@sabrex : Firefox (Gecko engine) loads and show very well Apple's website but without Webkit's CSS animations. That will be the same thing with Internet Explorer 9 (Trident engine) and Opera 11.01 (Presto engine) !

For the videos, only browsers who choose H.264 (like Safari and IE9, Chrome will drop support in next version) will show Apple videos ! Others can too but with QuickTime plug-in.

1for-matik said,
@sabrex : Firefox (Gecko engine) loads and show very well Apple's website but without Webkit's CSS animations. That will be the same thing with Internet Explorer 9 (Trident engine) and Opera 11.01 (Presto engine) !

For the videos, only browsers who choose H.264 (like Safari and IE9, Chrome will drop support in next version) will show Apple videos ! Others can too but with QuickTime plug-in.

It seems to me that if all browsers don't support H.264 HTML5 videos natively, then Flash will continue to be the only thing web developers will choose for embedded videos, because it will run on all browsers everywhere (except on iOS devices that is). HTML5 video is pretty much DOA the way things are going at the moment.

On a side note, thanks to your comment on QuickTime plug-in, I checked and it was already installed for Firefox, but I still couldn't play the Apple.com videos. I noticed I also had the VLC 1.1.7 plug-in installed. After I disabled that, all videos are not working with Firefox 4 Beta 11 on Apple.com ... so that's pretty awesome Thanks for the hint!

sabrex said,
It seems to me that if all browsers don't support H.264 HTML5 videos natively, then Flash will continue to be the only thing web developers will choose for embedded videos
And much the same can be said for other codecs that they don't all support. Consider if they all supported WebM instead? In any case, there are good reasons for all the browser developer's choices - unfortunately, it's not a simple thing to decide.

If they want to compete with Chrome in the version numbers purely because "Firefox 4" looks old compared with "IE 9" or "Opera 10"... why not just get rid of the version number in the name just like Chrome have done?

To the end user, I doubt they have any idea really what version Chrome is (I've never heard anyone say Chrome 8, Chrome 9, just Chrome) and Firefox should just do the same really.

Step by step, Mozilla is starting to look like they are repeating their very own history about Netscape.

Seriously, while I was huge fan of Netscape 3; with Netscape 4, Mozilla went for a couple of changes to make it feel like it will never open, slow-responsive UI, lost to its lighter opponent IE, which is now seems to be Chrome...

Firefox 4 is now even with Beta 11 feeling like it is a bloatware...

gosh this company is doomed. if they can't release a silly browser after all these years what can we expect of them. the browser is great, but why are they fooling around and holding this in the beta stage for so long! 11 betas is far too many. cmon Mozilla you can do it!

jasonon said,
the browser is great, but why are they fooling around and holding this in the beta stage for so long!
Because they don't want to launch a broken browser?

If they want to keep it beta a little longer why not, it is looking more and more better, and im a Chrome fan myself. But might have it installed for rainy days lol

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