Mozilla has announced that Firefox 3 Release Candidate 1 (RC1) is scheduled for the end of May. A code freeze was implemented late last week, forcing programmers to scramble to make last-minute changes and stomp out any bugs that still exist.
Release candidates are typically the final stages of development before the new software is pushed out to users.
The latest beta version – Firefox Beta 3.5 – was released in early April and, in my experience, the results of that version weren’t exactly stellar.
Techworld notes that Mark Schroepfer, vice president of engineering, posted to Mozilla’s development blog this weekend, “The release candidates will move a little slower than beta.” The reason, according to Techworld, is because of “the need to account for more public feedback than with earlier builds.”
Or, as one friend posted succinctly to his Twitter stream: “Firefox 3 beta 5 = fail.”
I wonder if Schroepfer saw a lot of that and decided to urge his company into a more cautious route.
Personally, I’m still a Beta or two behind 5. But even the Firefox 3 beta that I use to surf the Interwebs daily is a little buggy. From time to time it freezes or just decides to shut down on its own. That said, I’m a lot happier with my latest version instead of Firefox 2, which routinely froze and forced me to reset my user preferences: Losing my bookmarks and history several times a day got old quickly.