Firefox 2 Roadmap
Ben Goodger (1/17/2006)
Firefox is one of the most critical delivery vehicles for Gecko, and eventually XULRunner. Our goal is to continue to build a "best of breed" browser product for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. We have ambitious goals for the workload between now and our next major release set. This document is a description of our current thinking on how we intend to get to Firefox 2.
Feature planning and discussion is now done entirely in the Mozilla Wiki. See Firefox 2 Product Planning for more information.
Firefox 2 will be based on continued development of the Gecko 1.8 branch created for Firefox 1.5. The goal is that Firefox 1.5 and 2 are compatible from a web developer's point of view. New APIs may be added, but existing ones should not be removed. The content of the Firefox 2 release is to be mostly user-focused and performed on the 1.8 branch, as significant Gecko changes requiring 12 months of shake-n-bake are ongoing on the trunk. Care must be taken by developers to ensure their work reaches both locations, to avoid aviary-branch style inconsistencies.
The branch used for developing Firefox 2 is designed to be low traffic, to keep everyone focused on the release goals and to ensure Gecko compatibility and stability. All Gecko changes must be approved by drivers, regardless of stage in the product cycle. Significant application work needs to be signed off on by the product group. Remember, most UI changes are "significant"! - if not in code size then in impact.
Firefox 3.0 will be offer additional user interface enhancements and many substantial platform improvements.
This is, as always, subject to change.
|1.5||Deer Park||??? 2005||New Gecko, ongoing HIG compliance, sw/update and extension manager improvements.|
|2a||Q1 2006||pre-feature complete alpha|
|2b||early Q2 2006||feature complete beta|
|2rc(s)||late Q2 2006|
|2||late Q2/early Q3 2006||Final Release|
Dates are subject to change. We would like to reach feature complete by the end of the first quarter, 2006 in order to realistically deliver a product around the middle of the year.
Alpha releases are testing milestones and do not represent what we intend to ship as final. They may contain missing features, numerous bugs, etc. They are intended for our developer and testing community to work with to build upon and provide us with early feedback in the event major changes need to happen before the final release.
Beta releases are feature-complete and represent a rough idea of what we'd like to ship. These are for a more general early-adopter/testing audience that wants to see what the next release of Firefox is going to look like so that they can provide us with feedback on the most important issues to fix before the final release.
Release Candidates are facsimiles of what we intend to ship under any of the above categories or the final release itself. We usually post these a few days or weeks ahead of the release in question, to see if there are any critical bugs present that must be fixed. If there are none, we ship the release candidate as "final".
Please Note! Alpha releases are not for general consumption and may crash, delete your bookmarks, your profile, your hard disk, etc. They are very little more than a blessed Nightly Build. Preview Release builds may also suffer bugs and should be downloaded only by people willing to test pre-release software.
Dates shown above are tentative and serve only to give you an idea of the relative position of one release from another. They represent our current state of thinking as to the release dates at the time this document was last updated, and may have changed since then.
As with 1.x, all releases moving forward will be available in as many languages as can be made ready at the time of release. Localizers and others dependent on release timing should use this document as an indicator of the up-to-date release time.
Marketing remains an important part of our strategy. The focus of our community marketing initiatives can be found at SpreadFirefox. In addition to this we will continue to develop our own marketing materials.
Firefox has a tremendous community following, and we wish to highlight the following two sites - Firefox Help for a huge amount of helpful Firefox-related information; and MozillaZine Forums - our premier discussion site for users and developers.