Mozilla announced Tuesday that its proposal for an Extended Support Release (ESR) of Firefox, which was initially proposed after negative corporate feedback of its new rapid-release development cycle, is now a plan of action. According to the blog post announcement, the ESR version is designed for use by enterprises, public institutions, universities and other organizations that centrally manage their own Firefox deployments.
Releases of the ESR version will occur only once a year, unlike the standard version of the browser, which now updates every six weeks. The faster pace of the standard release cycle was met negatively last year by businesses and other organizations who need to test their software and custom add-ons, which could be broken easily in new versions of the browser. With two separate versions of Firefox, Mozilla can now focus on staying competitive with Chrome and Internet Explorer through frequent updates in the standard version, while also providing the stability that corporations demand in the Extended Support Release.
"Releases of the ESR will occur once a year, providing these organizations with a version of Firefox that receives security updates but does not make changes to the Web or Firefox add-ons platform," wrote Jay Sullivan, Mozilla's vice president of products, in the blog post announcement. "We have worked with many organizations to ensure that the ESR balances their need for the latest security updates with the desire to have a lighter application certification burden."
Details of the plan can be found on Mozilla's wiki. So far, no date or timeline for ESR's introduction is known, though the blog post noted that implementation specifics would be posted within the week.