Sep 17, 2004

1 million downloads in 10 days

No, i'm not talking about my Tech Roundup blog unfortunately. I'm talking about the launch of Firefox 1.0. This IE alternative web browser has won over many fans in the past year while still in various beta versions, myself included. I do most of my browsing in Firefox, aside from a few MS-heavy sites and applications that don't work quite right - namely Outlook Web Access 2003. You would also not be able to use Firefox with Microsoft CRM or Business Portal from Microsoft Business Solutions.

For the first time since being crowned king in the "IE vs. Netscape" browser wars of the mid 1990's, Microsoft is losing market share in browser usage and Firefox is steadily increasing. Interest in Firefox has been driven in large part by all of the security holes in Internet Explorer. In fact, even the US Government has warned against using IE...

"In June, the U.S. federal government's Computer Emergency Readiness Team warned Web surfers to stop using IE after Microsoft disclosed a bug that allowed spyware to be downloaded to people's computers without their involvement."

Firefox is also a great browser if you love to tweak things. You can download all sorts of Themes and Extensions to make Firefox look and act exactly the way you want it to. Once you've used tabbed browsing and some of the other cool features, you'll never go back.

The Firefox folks are pushing to have 1 million downloads of this 1.0 preview release and they are certainly well on their way to crushing that goal. They've had over 750,000 downloads in the first 3 days. Be patient though. Their servers are getting hammered.

Cnet's News.com has a nice article about the whole thing.

Hopefully the success and rapid adoption of Firefox will light a fire under Microsoft to improve IE. They've added some enhancements with Windows XP Service Pack 2 but really we've been stuck on IE 6.0 since 2001.