Firefox 17 is out, but not for Old Macs

I haven’t upgraded Firefox here to this version.  Maybe later today…

Firefox 17 has been released.   Most of those out there will get a little message saying “Hey, I’ve upgraded, click this and make all your problems go away.   I do mine Manually since I don’t want to have to completely back out of my browser windows and stop what I am doing.

Firefox has been excellent for me.  I don’t want to use another alternate browser such as Chrome or Opera.  I will stay here on Firefox for a while until its time to move on. 

The newest version of Firefox offers integration into the social networks.  I fail to see why that is needed, it just sounds like a massive security and privacy hole, but there really isn’t that much privacy left unless you want to stick your head in the sand.   That’s why I manage what I say online fairly closely, you should too.

There are also other features that will be helpful to the user and you can find the complete list here.

That Mac problem though …

I support a few folks on Mac here.  It’s a pleasant experience and to say I support them is a major exaggeration.  It’s more like I get an occasional question and they go off into their happy world where Unicorns roam free and your kitchen sink gives you hot, cold, and Hot Chocolate.  

I even have a Mac here, but it is an aging beast that is really well past it’s prime.   The old PowerPC platform is the problem.  When the sainted and departed Steve Jobs deigned that it was time to make the move to the same Intel hardware that most of us use in our desktops and laptops, he also said that he would limit the support to the old PowerPC platform to two more revisions of the OSX operating system.

Now we are three versions past that, at least another 5 years along.   Those machines are still around and if you believe the “Apple Distortion Field” they’re heavily in demand.

They aren’t but people who have them are trying to sell them like they are.

The biggest problem with modern computing is the Browser.  It’s a huge security problem because it is where we do most of our “work”.  Since all the major browser programs are stopping support for the older operating systems, you can look forward to more and more spam from friends who are on those computers because they surfed a “bad” page and now have a virus.

Their last modern browser is Opera.  These holdouts on Tiger and Leopard need to stop using anything else and switch over.  It’s a modern browser that has all the things we’ve come to depend on and works fairly well.

If that isn’t what they want to do, there’s always LinuxLinux is a thriving operating system platform that is currently being supported on the ancient hardware.  I can say from personal experience that Linux on PowerPC runs amazingly well and actually faster than the Mac OSX that I replaced it with.  It won’t run the usual programs in the Mac world so it means keeping the old hardware or buying a new computer.  On the other hand, you can run MOST windows programs on Linux using Wine.  I’ve run Wine in the past and it works well.

There you have it!  Happy updating!

Consider Downgrade on Firefox 16.0

There was one of those exploits that you hear about found on Firefox 16.0 the other day.  As a result, the recommendation is that if you have Firefox 16.0 to downgrade to version 15.0.1 and wait for a fix.

You can check your version by doing the following:

Start Firefox
Click Help
Click About Firefox

If you have version 15.0.1 you’re safe.
If you have version 16.0, you will want to downgrade to 15.0.1

The good news is that they’re working on a fix and supposedly will have one out by today, October 12th, 2012… but you never know.

For more information, you can read up on the problem here, or look into their Security Blog here.

What the bug does is it allows an evil doer to see what you have done since you started the browser.  So if you plan on waiting it out, don’t hit the banks.

That’s what happens when you rush software out the door.

Firefox 15 Upgrade Happened With No Problems on Windows

Yesterday I had that little window pop up and demand attention.

Firefox wanted to be upgraded.  

I clicked another window and purposely buried it.  I’ve had bad luck with upgrades before and didn’t want a problem.  While Firefox upgrades have been mostly painless I wanted to do what I call an orderly shutdown.  After all, I was due for a client meeting in an hour and had about 20 windows and tabs open under Firefox.

I went to my meeting, got some instructions for a web development project I’ll be working on, and came home.   All the while that little window was sitting buried under all the digital chaff I had on my laptop.

I ignored it until this morning.  I had a logical break point, closed the unneeded windows and trusted that the existing Firefox would save all those leftover windows and tabs before closing.

I clicked the button to upgrade, and it closed.

I should have done it earlier, it was completely painless. 

I’ve gone through a couple hundred window opens, closes, loads and reads now.   All those web pages were fine, it was “normal”. 

I’d say just click and do your upgrade.  It was harmless on windows.  I’ll have to check Linux later.

If you dismissed the upgrade window, here is the process:

  • With Firefox open, Click Help.
  • Click About Firefox to check your updates.
  • If that window says that “Firefox is up to date” you’re done.
  • If that window has a button that says “Apply Update”, click on that button, and the update will happen.

If you get lost on that, the official Firefox Upgrade instructions are here.

There’s always the other way to do it… grab the software directly from the Get Firefox Webpage.  Surf and click on the tab for either Mobile or Desktop.  In my case, when I clicked on the Desktop Tab it told me “Hooray, your browser is up to date”.

Like I said, no problems.  Time to surf some “stuff”.  Basically it was a “Non Event”.