Mozilla to launch enterprise Firefox this month with 7X slower pace

Responds to enterprise worries with slower schedule; new version ships every 42 weeks

Mozilla yesterday said it will kick off a slower-paced Firefox release schedule for enterprises at the end of this month.

The new version -- Firefox ESR, which stands for Extended Support Release -- is Mozilla's response to backlash earlier this year against its scheme to ship a new edition of the browser every six weeks.

Firefox ESR will release every 42 weeks, seven times the usual pace, and because Mozilla will support the current ESR edition for an additional 12 weeks after the next version appears, a single edition will be supported with security patches for 54 weeks, or just over a year.

Mozilla now discontinues security support for a specific version of Firefox as soon as the next in line appears.

The first enterprise edition, Firefox ESR 10, will ship Jan. 31 alongside the standard Firefox 10, and the second will appear as Firefox ESR 17 on Nov. 20. Security updates for ESR 10, however, will continue through Feb. 12, 2013, giving enterprises the intervening 12 weeks to test ESR 17 while still receiving patches.

Rather than use the version numbers associated with Firefox -- say, Firefox 11, 12 and so on -- Firefox ESR will be designated as Firefox ESR 10.1, 10.2 and the like, until Firefox ESR 17 shows.

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