Mozilla moves towards Firefox 2.0

Mozilla has released the first iteration of what will eventually be christened Firefox 2.0.

Alpha 1 of the Bon Echo project is described as the first development milestone for the next version of the popular open-source browser.

The developers are keen to point out that the browser is strictly for testing purposes only. They are looking for feedback on changes that have been made to tabbed browsing behaviour, the bookmark and history data storage layer, svg support, security updates to its extension system and plugin extensions.

The Alpha 1 release is available for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux systems, from the Mozilla ftp site.

Firefox 1.0 was first launched in November 2004 and quickly gained popularity to become Internet Explorer’s main rival.

Version 7 of IE is already in pre-beta and looking not unlike Firefox in appearance. But Mozilla is not standing still.

A feature-complete release of Firefox 2.0 is due before summer, with a release candidate soon afterwards. A final release is expected in the autumn of this year.

At the same time it will be working on version 3.0 of Firefox, which is on the roadmap to launch early in 2007.

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