Firefox 3.6.4 Beta released

Firefox 3.6.4 Beta released

The latest beta of Firefox - 3.6.4 - introduces technology designed to stop plug-ins from crashing the browser.

The Mozilla Foundation has released an update to its popular Firefox browser which introduces the 'Lorentz' technology designed to keep the browser from crashing due to faulty plug-ins.

Firefox 3.6.4 Beta - available for immediate download - is the latest version of the current Firefox 3.6 tree, and will be rolled out to all users as a full release soon. Prior to that, however, Mozilla is asking willing participants to perform a little bit of testing - and, in turn, offering the chance of a sneak peak at a system designed to keep things ticking over in the event of a code crash.

Taking a leaf from Google's Chrome browser, the 'Lorentz' system built in to 3.6.4 runs each plug-in in its own dedicated 'sandbox' environment. In the not-unlikely event that a third-party plug-in - such as Adobe's Flash Player, Microsoft's Silverlight, or others - experiences issues and throws a wobbler, it means that the browser itself continues to run. For anyone who tends to have a large number of tabs open, it's likely to save a fair amount of time - and makes the whole crash experience a neater, tidier one.

The Lorentz technology has been available in beta form for a little while now, but the 3.6.4 Beta build represents the first time it has been integrated directly into a release tree - and offers a glimpse of how the technology will work when it is finally released to the general public.

Sadly for Mac users, Lorentz is currently only available on the Windows and Linux versions of Firefox.

Are you impressed to see Mozilla taking steps to keep the browser as crash-free as possible, or is Lorentz just a slavish copy of Google's Chrome? Share your thoughts over in the forums.


Discuss in the forums Reply
proxess 21st April 2010, 11:05 Quote
Ohh nice. Yes please to this. How soon will this be in production?
general22 21st April 2010, 11:05 Quote
It is a great step since a lot of these crashes come from Flash etc so it should make the browser more resilient to a crash.
Stewb 21st April 2010, 11:18 Quote
Heh, don't have much optimism for this. Much was touted about Chromes ability to run every tab as its own process so the whole thing never crashes, has never worked, every time chrome has crashed for me its taken everything with it >_<
GFC 21st April 2010, 11:20 Quote
Irony.. the first time firefox crashed EVER was on .4 xDD
perplekks45 21st April 2010, 12:20 Quote
Probably because it's beta...
rickysio 21st April 2010, 13:26 Quote
Or use Minefield - it's also included inside. Must say it has worked - in the past when PDF went belly up firefox would slow to a crawl, but now it just displays an error page without any slowdown.
l3v1ck 21st April 2010, 17:44 Quote
It's a nice idea but it's not that big a deal. Every since Firefox started reopening the tabs you'd been using after a crash, I've been happy. Obviously this is better, but it's nothing to sing and dance about.
OleJ 22nd April 2010, 10:08 Quote
Only Windows and Linux :(
battles_atlas 22nd April 2010, 18:02 Quote
Anyone else getting bothered by how slow Firefox seems to be getting these days? Definite case of middle age bloat
impar 22nd April 2010, 18:36 Quote
Originally Posted by battles_atlas
Anyone else getting bothered by how slow Firefox seems to be getting these days?
My Firefoxes have been modded, functions have been added, Ui has been tweaked to my taste, everytime I try other browswer I am the one that is slower.
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