Firefox 87.0.0 and 78.9.0 ESR released

Mozilla[German]Mozilla's developers have released version 87.0.0 and 78.9.0 ESR of the Firefox browser on March 23, 2021. The FF 87 is a new development branch and the ESR is a security update that fixes vulnerabilities but also aims to fix bugs.


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Firefox 87.0.0

According to the release notes, version 87.0.0 brings some new features like improved response to private browsing and tracking protection. Here's a rough overview:

  • With Private Browsing and strict advanced tracking protection with SmartBlock, which provides replacement scripts to ensure websites load properly, there are fewer website crashes.
  • To further protect your privacy, the new default HTTP referrer policy truncates path and query string information from referrer headers to prevent websites from inadvertently sharing sensitive user data.
  • The Highlight All feature in the Find in Page function now displays check marks next to the scroll bar that correspond to the position of the matches found on the page in question.

In addition, full support for the macOS built-in screen reader VoiceOver is now available. In addition, a new locale Silesian (szl) has been added. The following issues are fixed in the new Firefox:

  • Video controls now have visible focus styling, and video and audio controls are now navigable from the keyboard.
  • HTML <meter> is now spoken by screen readers.
  • Firefox now sets a meaningful initial focus in the Add-ons Manager.
  • Firefox now triggers a name/description change event when the content of aria-labelledby/describedby changes.

The update closes various vulnerabilities, some of which are classified as High. Compared to previous versions of Firefox, there are the following changes:

  • To prevent loss of user data when filling out forms, the backspace key has been disabled as a navigation shortcut for the back navigation key. To re-enable the backspace key combination, you can change the about:config preference browser.backspace_action to 0. You can also use the recommended Alt + Left Arrow key combination (Command + Left Arrow on Mac) instead.
  • Items that were not used often or have other access points in the browser have been removed from the Library menu: Synchronized Tabs, Recent Markers, and the Pocket List.
  • The Help menu has been simplified by reducing redundant items, such as those that link to Firefox support pages that can also be accessed through the Get Help item.

Several bug fixes and new policies have been implemented in the latest version of Firefox-Enterprise. More details can be found in the release notes of Firefox for Enterprise 87. There are also some changes for developers, which are listed in the readme.

Firefox 78.9.0 esr

An update to Firefox 78.9.0 esr has also been provided with one year of long-term support with the same vulnerabilities fixed. The new Firefox and the ESR variant can be downloaded from this web page (choose the variant from the list boxes displayed). The updates are also available for direct downloads. 


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2 Responses to Firefox 87.0.0 and 78.9.0 ESR released

  1. P.D. says:

    I'm waiting this one out.

    Any time Mozilla comes out with "a new development branch," there's usually a train wreck. Look what happened to the Android version of Firefox, which went from pretty good to a trash heap of kludge-code when they did that a couple of months ago.

    I world be very glad to be wrong. The AOS devs/programmers seem to be completely tone-deaf idiots. Just look at the recent reviews on the Playstore. Hopefully they're kept in a sandbox away from the Windows/Apple people.

    Please, God.

  2. P.D. says:

    This doesn't bode well:

    "Please check back soon.

    "We've paused submissions to this form so that we can improve how we collect feedback."

    https://qsurvey.mozilla.com/s3/Give-feedback-landing-page

    Oh, boy. Looks like the AOS Devs got out of their sandbox. Heads up, incoming!

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