Firefox 20 Introduces Per-Windows Private Browsing, A New Download Manager, & More [Updates]

firefox logo   Firefox 20 Introduces Per Windows Private Browsing, A New Download Manager, & More [Updates]Mozilla has released Firefox 20 for Windows, Mac, Linux, and Android, and it’s filled with new features that should bring great joy to users of the popular Web browser. These features include per-window private browsing, a new download manager in the toolbar, and the ability to force-close stuck plugins separately.

Per-window private browsing is a feature that will have many users excited. While private browsing has been available in Firefox for some time, it always required users to open a separate private window, which completely replaced the current session, not allowing for concurrent browsing in private and non-private modes. The update allows users to go private while maintaining access to their other tabs, and on Android, to open a private tab next to their regular tabs.

The update also makes tracking downloads easier, with a new download monitor which now appears in the Firefox toolbar. This allows users to view and find downloaded files without leaving the current browsing window, and could easily eliminate the need for various download add-ons you may have been using.

Firefox 20 also adds the ability to close hanging plugins separately, without having the entire browser hang hopelessly. This is a nice little stability tweak that prevents you from having to shut down the whole browser every time something goes amiss. In addition to these awesome new features, there are plenty of other improvements and fixes. Firefox fans most certainly have a reason to rejoice.

Firefox 20 is available to download from Mozilla’s website, or through an in-app update, if Firefox is already installed.

Do you like these new Firefox features? Can it persuade you to switch to Firefox?

Source: Firefox Blog

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26 Comments -

0 votes

Harshit J

The download panel is great. I have tried it in the nightly version.

0 votes

Ahsan Javed

Still Using Firefox , its much better than Chrome . New Features Will Make It More Awesome…….

1 votes

Marek S?owikowski

Since Adobe canceled developing Flash to platforms other than Win and Mac, there is a problem with browsing content-rich sites using Linux-based computers. Only Chrome has new built-in Flash player version so I prefer to use Chrome because I am using three OS platforms and want to newst flash and consistent web browsing platform (plug-ins, bookimarks and so on).

0 votes

Visweshwaran Suri

Will ever firefox come with flash inbuilt for atleast android ecosystem?

1 votes

Rick

I don’t see anyone else having complaints yet, but I installed the new update and immediately had nothing but problems. No session history. If I entered an address in the url bar and hit enter, nothing happened. I could only get to sites via links or bookmarks. No search engines, and could not get the add new search engines option to work. All kinds of problems with tab settings. Weird extra bar at top and no bookmarks bar – which I eventually corrected by telling it ti hide menu bar then reshow it. Same with restarting in safe mode. Other problems too. Found a Yahoo optimized version of 19 to reinstall, then had to remove Yahoo toolbar and seach, but all seems OK for the moment. Anyone else having problems with 20?

6 votes

vWil

You could try to Reset Firefox (https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/reset-firefox-easily-fix-most-problems), and start afresh with only the needed personal data. If you’d like to save a listing of the add-ons, important modified preferences/settings etc. to quickly replicate the previous instance, you need to ” Copy text to clipboard” (on the left of the reset button), and paste it into Office Excel, or OpenOffice/LibreOffice Calc, or Notepad.

Also, note that some security software may create temporary problems when a new version of a program is detected. This usually goes away by itself after a few hours/days when the security software undergoes its routine updates. Otherwise you may have to re-trust the updated Firefox program and its related files in the security software’s various configuration modules, or delete the current settings for Firefox/files and force the security software to “ask” for new permissions/settings.

1 votes

Rick

Still no luck :( Tried the reset, same problems. No search engines, nor ability to install any. Typing url in and clicking go or enter does nothing, other stuff I mentioned all still a problem. This is my computer at work, an older xp machine, but I’m kind of afraid to allow the update on my home machine now. Another help site I looked at said to delete the search.sqlite file from my profile and restart – but that file already did not exist. I use Chrome some at home, but until or if I can resolve this Firefox issue, I guess I’m going to get a lot more familiar with it at work.

6 votes

vWil

If it’s a managed PC, then perhaps you could notify the IT dept. It could be that there’s some centralized configuration of Firefox, and it may not be working seamlessly after the update, or the update process itself was somehow interrupted. Otherwise, if you have an administrative logon, you may want to download the full installer (https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/new/), and reinstall over the current installation, preferably after temporarily disabling any security software.

http://kb.mozillazine.org/Profile_folder_-_Firefox

1 votes

Rick

The computers there are managed and most are locked up, but mine is not. I have full access to all the browser and computer settings. I’m about 99.9% certain there is no centralized configuration. I tried a complete uninstall then reinstall with a newly downloaded file. Same thing – no search, url bar inoperative, etc. Since I was forced to use it and learn a few more things, I actually found myself getting hooked on Chrome – but I’d still like to resolve this problem and have my Firefox. Restarted my computer at home for another reason without thinking about it, and the automatic update installed the new version with no problem, so I’m golden at home : )

6 votes
0 votes

Rick

Thanks for all the suggestions vWil! I’m off today but will try all this on Monday. They do use Sonic Wall to block certain websites at the server level. Would that be the same type of thing as Trusteer Rapport?

0 votes

vWil

That shouldn’t be a problem. From the looks of it, this has to be something specifically in Firefox, or at least another locally installed program that could affect other programs. Also, a quick search doesn’t seem to indicate any similar issues/bugs in Firefox 20.

Hope you’re able to solve this one way or the other. Have a great weekend :)

0 votes
0 votes

Rick

I never was able to figure out the problem with this update, so I just decided to start using Chrome at work. I have actually gotten quite fond of it as I use it and learn the shortcuts. It actually seems noticeably faster on the old xp machine I use at work, particularly on the web interface for Evernote, as well as a couple other things.

But lo and behold, yesterday I decided to try Firefox again and see if there were any more updates. There were, and I installed 20.0.1 and everything suddenly works again. Only problem now is that I want to keep using Chrome at work. I’m sticking with Firefox as my main browser at home though. Guess I’m a two browser user now!

1 votes

Scott

Thanks for reporting these problems. It reinforces my upgrade-phobic approach always to allow a version update like this to get a few weeks under its belt (complete with user experiences and minor bug fixes) before upgrading to it myself. :-)

0 votes

Lisa Santika Onggrid

Same here. I’m never one to jump straight to ‘new, shiny’ upgrades.

0 votes

Lisa Santika Onggrid

These sort of things is exactly the reason I try to find alternative browser since FF19. Dunno why, but Firefox is kinda hit-and-miss nowadays. I still keep it for its awesome plugins though.

0 votes

Govertz J

I have used Firefox for years, and only use Chrome to test websites and wouldn’t have it any other way :)

0 votes

null

LOL ya I love firefox, but I STILL HATE the flipping way the space bar scrolls the page.. just HATE it… and I still have not seen a very easy way to just disable the feature…. oh please firefox??? it really drives me NUTS…….

0 votes
0 votes

dragonmouth

Check out the following:
http://kb.mozillazine.org/About:config_entries

It is a listing of all the entries in about:config and their settings. One of them should fix your problem. You may also get ideas on how to tailor FF to your liking.

0 votes

Nevzat A

I don’t know if it’s just me but Firefox 20 seems way faster than it’s previous versions. No lags between switching tabs. I loved it!

0 votes

Luigi Ramones

I’m loving the improved download panel. Always hated the old on.

0 votes

macwitty

Glad to see Firefox “back”. Used the download yesterday, nice

0 votes

Ayham Alkasir

Wow what a great version of Mozilla, two great new features in Firefox’s 20th version.
it will remain no1 for all advanced users as I guess.

0 votes

Jerome Rosen

Just installed Firefox 20. It refuses to start on my Home Page- only Blank Tab. Been using FF for years & never encountered this problem before. Don’t have this problem with FF 19.0.2 or IE or Chrome or Comodo Ice Dragon. Really frustrating.

P.S. Been in the computer business for over 40 years.