Beaconfire Survey: Firefox 3

Editor’s note: Firefox 3 Periodically, we do a survey of Beaconfire staff to get impressions on a variety of non-profit technology issues. All opinions expressed here are solely those of their authors. With the release of Firefox 3 burning up the internets (no pun intended), we though we’d ask: Have you installed Firefox 3? Why or why not??

Kristin, Project Manager: No. Because I’d rather have everyone else troubleshoot the bugs for me…

Amy, Functional Consultant: I haven’t upgraded yet.  Mostly because my computer has been acting up lately and I don’t want to change anything that’s not currently broken :)  However, Mark was showing off some of the extremely cool new FF features in the functional team meeting this morning and I may have to go ahead anyway.

Tim, Functional Consultant: I’ve upgraded to Firefox 3 at home, but not yet at work.  At home, it’s all about being a user and I think Firefox offers a much better user experience than any other browser, and that Firefox 3 is a better experience than the previous version.  A huge item for me is that version 3 plugged some pretty egregious and long-standing memory problems.  Pretty much every improvement Mark mentioned in his earlier post is a compelling reason to switch.  The main reason that I’ve yet to upgrade at work is that there are several addons that are not yet compatible with version 3 (and now that I take a minute to check in on my favorite addon, “Google Browser Sync,” I see that it is no longer available for download.  Ouch!).  Oh well…back to the drawing board.

I guess I’ll install version 3 now.  Though I’ll run both versions instead of doing a complete upgrading since the page rendering and CSS support is slightly different in each.

Kesah, Client Manager: Although I have checked out Firefox 3, I’m not yet using it.  I usually hold out after a major software release so that I can avoid the initial bugs.  Also, from what I’ve heard not all the extensions are compatible with the new version yet.

Michael, Principal Consultant: It’s been on my list to do, but time to do it has held me back. Reading Mark’s review just moved it up on my priority list.

Joanna, Production Specialist: At home, I was automatically upgraded to Firefox 3 beta when I upgraded to the newest version of Ubuntu Linux.  That was a couple months ago.  Most of my plug-ins didn’t work in FF3 at the time, much to my dismay.  I think the plug-in situation has improved now, but I’m still holding off on upgrading at work until I’m convinced that my favorite tools will work.

Taylor, Software Engineer: I have it downloaded and installed but I have not been using it because all the extensions that I love so much aren’t all compatible with it yet, but I expect/hope they will in the coming weeks.

Lynn, Principal Consultant: I prefer to wait until others have helped the software provider work out all the kinks (or at least until the kinks have been identified so I can decide whether it matters to me or not).

Adebo, Software Engineer: Yes I upgraded to the new FF3.  I am an early adopter of software and technology in general, with consideration given to cost, so it was only natural to get the newest version.

Erika, Operations Manager: I haven’t updated yet.  I tend to hold off on updates like this until others have boldly gone before me and tested the waters.  If it ain’t broke, don’t update it, is my policy.  Firefox 2 seems to be working just fine for me at the moment.

Kate, Administrative Assistant: At home, yes, because I’m married to a techie who takes care of such things. Here, no, because Firefox 3 hasn’t knocked my socks off to the point that I want to be bothered upgrading it at work yet. If I’m pleased with it after playing around with it at home, I’ll likely make the switch here as well.

Elizabeth, Senior Consultant: Yes, because FB told me to. The only new software I automatically avoid like the plague is produced by a company that rhymes with Plicrosoft.

Miro, Software Engineer: I was running v2 at home (on Linux). Left it open over night. Next morning, it’s using up all the remaining memory on the machine, and it took me 5 minutes to even shut the thing down.

Memory leaks anyone? I’m waiting for the l33t users to do it first. I dare them.

Mark, Functional Consultant: I’ve upgraded at work, but not at home.

I made the switch fairly quickly mainly b/c Firefox is one of the few open source projects that has such a large community and great momentum behind it, that being an early adopter of a new version involves low risk. Also, I had tired of the memory problems that I was experiencing in version 2 (though those could have had more to do with add-ons than the core itself).

The new features also sounded enticing, and I have already found them to be a step forward in browsing.

Jeff, Principal Consultant: No time to do it yet.

John Brian, Marketing Consultant: As an IE aficionado, I just don’t use Firefox enough to upgrade yet. I’m sure I’ll move up eventually, but the only feature Firefox could add that could make me switch would be for Microsoft to set it as their new default browser for home users.

Have you upgraded yet? Leave your thoughts in the comments. If you’ve a web developer, Tim found some instructions to install both versions at once:

I found this very helpful article outlining how to install FF3 using a different profile from your existing FF2 install.  It will also allow you to run them simultaneously.  There is one piece missing in the instructions where you need to specify a different install directory and shortcut group name.  I chose Firefox3 (duh).

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