Nightly, Aurora and Beta, Oh My!

5 September, 2012 § Leave a comment

There are three prerelease Firefox channels for you to use, and each has its own benefits and target audiences. This blog post includes basic descriptions of each of the prerelease channels and my target audience recommendations.

Firefox Nightly is updated every day. If a bug is found in our Nightly cycle, developers have up to 18 weeks to fix it. Fixing bugs in our Nightly cycle is the least stressful, as there remains plenty of time to test out fixes and make sure that we can find the best solution possible. Bugs found and filed during our Nightly cycle have the highest probability of being fixed in a timely matter.

I recommend Firefox Nightly to web developers and tech-savvy individuals. Web developers can get early access at new browser features, and start adding support for them in to their web applications.

Firefox Aurora is updated every 1-2 days, only when new changes are made. If a bug is found in our Aurora cycle, developers have less than 12 weeks to find a fix. These fixes may disable features or include the necessary changes to keep the feature alive.

I recommend Firefox Aurora to people working in web QA since it provides a good representation of the future release, and also enough time to notify Mozilla about web compatibility issues.

Firefox Beta is updated every week and provides Mozilla’s last chance to catch major issues in Firefox before the code changes hit our Release channel. If a bug is found in our Beta cycle, developers have less than six weeks to either shut off the feature or find a fix. Most code changes during the Beta cycle involve disabling features.

I installed Firefox Beta on my parent’s computers and recommend it to users who are less technical.

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