Firefox 86.0.0 and 78.8.0 ESR released

Mozilla[German]Mozilla's developers have released version 86.0.0 and 78.8.0 ESR of the Firefox browser on February 23, 2021. The FF 86 is a new development branch and the ESR is a security update that fixes vulnerabilities, but also aims to fix bugs.


Firefox 86.0.0

According to the release notes, version 86.0.0 brings a number of new features such as stronger cookie protection or the playback of multiple videos in picture-in-picture mode.

Total Cookie Protection

The new Firefox feature Total Cookie Protection is a privacy enhancement and is integrated into the ETP Strict mode. Total Cookie Protection restricts cookies to the website where they were created. This prevents tracking companies from using these cookies to track users as they browse from website to website.

Firefox Total Cookie Protection

Web browsers allow cookies to be exchanged between websites. This allows companies to "tag" a browser and track the user as they browse websites. This type of cookie-based tracking has long been the most widely used method of collecting information about users. It's a key component of mass commercial tracking that allows advertising companies to quietly build a detailed personal profile of you.

Back in 2019, Firefox introduced advanced tracking protection by default, blocking cookies from companies identified as trackers by partners at Disconnect. Now, developers are introducing the next level to tracking protection, creating even more comprehensive protection against cookie-based tracking. Isolating cookies on a per-website basis ensures that cookies cannot be used to track users as they browse from website to website.


Other new features

Firefox 86 supports simultaneous viewing of multiple videos in picture-in-picture mode. The following screenshot shows this on a Firefox browser window.  

Videos in picture-in-picture mode
Videos in picture-in-picture mode

In addition, printing functionality has been improved with a cleaner design and better integration with your computer's printer settings.

Firefox printer settings
Firefox printer settings

For Firefox users in Canada, credit card management and auto-fill are now enabled. In addition, the following fixed bugs for the new Firefox version:

  • Reader mode now works with local HTML pages.
  • Using screen reader quick navigation to get to editable text controls no longer erroneously reaches non-editable cells in some grids, such as on
  • The mouse check feature of the Orca screen reader now works correctly after switching tabs in Firefox.
  • Screen readers no longer display column headers incorrectly in tables with cells that span multiple columns.
  • Links in Reader view now have more color contrast.

The update to version 84 closes various vulnerabilities, some of which are classified as High. On Linux and Android, protection to mitigate the stack-clash attack has been enabled. As of Firefox 86, DTLS 1.0 is no longer supported by WebRTC for establishing PeerConnections. All WebRTC services must support DTLS 1.2 as a minimum version from now on. In addition, there is a consolidation of all video decoding in the new RDD process, resulting in a more secure Firefox. For admins in enterprises, here are these release notes with bug fixes.

Firefox 78.8.0 esr

There has also been an update to Firefox 78.8.0 esr with one year of long-term support with the same vulnerability fixed. Firefox 86.0.0 and 78.8.0 ESR can be downloaded from this web page (choose the variant from the list boxes shown). The updates are also available for direct download. 

  • Firefox 86.0.0: Download Installer
  • Firefox 78.8.0 esr: Download Installer

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