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Firefox 3 goes live, improves security
Published: 2008-06-17

Early server issues did little to dampen an enthusiastic response on Tuesday for the release of the latest version of Mozilla's Web browser, Firefox 3.

The browser, released at 1 p.m. EDT on Tuesday, uses less memory and adds one-click bookmarking, better suggestions for sought-after Web sites, and features to help Web surfers avoid malicious software. Rival Opera released their latest browser last week, boasting a similar security feature, as does Microsoft's next browser Internet Explorer 8, which is still in beta.

By Tuesday afternoon, Mozilla stated that about 14,000 people were downloading the software every minute. The demand caused server problems in the early afternoon, according to the company.

"This will put us well into the tens of millions of downloads in a 24 hour period if we can sustain it," the company said in a statement. "Each download is about 7MB so that’s around 13 Gigabits/s of just download traffic. Not too shabby!"

External attackers have increasingly focused on the browser as a vector through which to attack unsuspecting users' computers. Among the most popular techniques, attackers compromise legitimate Web servers with code to redirect the Web site's visitors to servers hosting malicious code. Anti-malware builds on the anti-phishing features that all three browser makers incorporated into their software last year.

Mozilla had publicized the release, asking users to sign up to download the product in an attempt to set a worldwide record for the most downloads in 24 hours.

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Posted by: Robert Lemos
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