In keeping with its new accelerated release schedule, Mozilla released the stable version of Firefox 6.0 to Windows, Mac, and Linux users today, just over seven weeks after the June 21 release of Firefox 5.0. A new version of Firefox for Android was also released.

In addition to the normal stability and security patches, Firefox 6.0 adds a few new features to the browser. First, like Chrome, URLs in the Firefox address bar Awesome Bar now render a site's domain in black and the rest of the URL in a slightly lighter grey.

Highlighted domains

Users of the Panorama tab grouping feature should enjoy some speed increases, since tab groups are only loaded when they're actually selected.

On the developer side of things, the Web Console now features auto-complete and a user-customizable location, and a new Scratchpad utility allows for testing of JavaScript code.

The Scratchpad, accessible from the Web Developer menu

These are the major additions, but for a complete list of features you can see the Firefox 6.0 release notes.

Performance and resource usage are roughly the same as in Firefox 5.0 - if you're looking for notable gains in that area, you'll have to wait for Firefox 7.0, which is making memory usage reduction one of its main goals. Firefox 6.0 is currently available from, and the stable version of Firefox 7.0 is due to be released on September 27.

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  • Shadowmaster625 - Tuesday, August 16, 2011 - link

    This is really irritating. I just got most of my addons updated for 5.0, now this? Yeah right I aint doing it.
  • FATCamaro - Tuesday, August 16, 2011 - link

    I didn't have to do anything other than wait a week for a couple of my extensions to catch up. If your add-ons are taking this long to be updated you should switch to a more actively updated add-on if available.

    All that said, I completely agree with you about the irritation bit. I am very disappointed with the direction mozilla is taking. Still works for me, but I think this will disillusion regular users who don't care and don't want to update and also users like you who run into problems. Because there inevitably are problems with a release schedule this ambitious.
  • JarredWalton - Tuesday, August 16, 2011 - link

    What kills me is these full point upgrades. Firefox 2.0 to 3.0 *was* major, and 3.0 to 3.5 (and then 3.6) at least had some significant tweaks. 4.0 was also a big deal, adding GPU acceleration among other things. From 4.0 to 5.0 wasn't much of a change, other than some UI differences, unless there's something on the back end that I missed. Coincidentally, when 5.0 came out was when I actually ditched Firefox and went with Chrome (after using FF for at least four years).

    One problem in the post-3.x FF world is that suddenly the silly Facebook games that I play (Bejeweled Blitz and Zuma Blitz) run like poop on FF4, but they work fine on Chrome. Now FF is doing Chrome-like version increments, but last I checked (the final release candidate of FF6), nothing had improved to win me back. So, sayonara Firefox -- you're still not as bad as IE, thanks to the numerous extensions, but Chrome has won me over.
  • Lifted - Wednesday, August 17, 2011 - link

    "Google remains the only major web browser with it’s Chrome product that does not adhere to the Do Not Track setting. The same lack of disregard likely applies to all the applications Google bundles with it’s spy handset Android-based phones."

    While I agree that Chrome is a slick browser, I refuse to live with GoogleScope focused deep up my rear.
  • DaFox - Wednesday, August 17, 2011 - link

    Funny, I actually just switched back to Fx6 when it hit beta after using Chrome for 7 months or so. The 'Omnibar' in chrome and the history were the final things that pushed me over the edge back to Firefox.

    The biggest problem with it is that it parses the whole page. So If I were to mention say.... Cinnamon Toast Crunch here, you could search for Cinnamon Toast Crunch in your Chrome history and it should bring up this page, which I found utterly retarded.

    All in all though, it doesn't really matter what you use when you're using Chrome, Fx or Opera. They are all excellent and better than eachother in various ways depending on how you use your browser.
  • DanNeely - Tuesday, August 16, 2011 - link

    Unless your extensions are using apis that were changed, (binary components???), or access to the update server is blocked (*glares at corporate IT); FF should be querying and getting told that the addin is safe to use even though it's not marked as supporting the next versions.
  • Leonick - Tuesday, August 16, 2011 - link

    Install the add-on compatibility reporter, it lets you ignore the version requirements for addons and you can report problems to the developers if there are any.

    Most addons that have at least been updated to 4.x works just fine on 5 and 6 too.
  • Mulderism - Tuesday, August 16, 2011 - link

    Firefox has been all but banned from my MBP and I'm adjusting to Safari and Chrome as my daily browsers. Firefox was just getting too slow. I miss the extensions and more capable RSS features but I just could deal with the sluggishness any more.
  • bersl2 - Tuesday, August 16, 2011 - link

    Firefox 7 is the first version to benefit from extensive work to reduce memory consumption. There was an attempt to get some of this into Firefox 6, but it was too late in the development cycle. Still, that is what is good about "release early, release often".

    I've been using the alpha (which I suppose is now or will shortly be the new beta) for the past few weeks, and it is amazing. If memory and CPU were your problems, Firefox 7 should fix them.
  • DanNeely - Tuesday, August 16, 2011 - link

    Have you been using it with large numbers of tabs? I've been using O at home for the last few years primarily because FF would fall on its face after a day or three with several dozen tabs open.

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