May 27, 2007

Firefox 3.0 passes major milestone

Mozilla has met a major milestone in its march to Firefox 3.0, developers said yesterday, by adding another chunk of the new Places feature to the alpha set for release late next week.

Places -- a complete revamp of the bookmarks and history functions of the browser -- was at one point slated to debut in Firefox 2.0, but was yanked a year ago in the run up to that version's October 2006 release. Instead, it will debut in Firefox 3.0.

"We enabled the Places implementation of bookmarks on the trunk," said the Places team in a post to the Mozilla developer center blog. "Although there is still much to be done, this is an important milestone for us." Firefox 3.0 alpha 5 is scheduled to launch June 1.

Because Places uses the open-source SQLite database engine to store and retrieve bookmarks and history entries, it's incompatible with earlier Firefox editions' bookmarks. Alpha users must convert their existing entries, Mozilla developers said.

"If you make any changes to bookmarks.html (say, by running Firefox 2 and editing your bookmarks) you will need to manually export them and re-import them into the bookmark-on-places [Firefox 3.0 alpha] nightly," they said.

Firefox 3.0 alpha 5 will likely post to this Mozilla page when it releases. The preview, also codenamed "Gran Paradiso," has been rolled out for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux in past iterations.

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