March 07, 2012

Firefoxes

Quite often, I find myself wanting to run multiple versions of Firefox: to test out a new feature in Nightly, make sure my add-ons work in Aurora or maybe track down a bug in an earlier version. Using the Profile Manager, it's possible to have numerous versions of Firefox running side by side.

I started writing a tutorial, but it quickly got too complicated. So, I decided to write a script that would download, install and set up profiles for any version of Firefox. About halfway through, I stumbled upon a script called "install-all-firefox" by Max Glenister. It did a lot of what I wanted, so I forked it and worked from there.

OSX Dock

How To Use It

Note: Currently this is OSX only curl -L -O https://github.com/omgmog/install-all-firefox/raw/master/firefoxes.sh chmod +x firefoxes.sh ./firefoxes.sh [version] [locale] [no_prompt]

Version and locale are option. If you don't use a locale, it will try to figure out your locale. If you don't have a version, it will install all available versions of Firefox.

If you want to see what's available (and what you have installed):

./firefoxes.sh

What It Does

  1. Figures out your locale (or allows you to specify it).
  2. Finds the file on the FTP server, and then downloads and installs it.
  3. Sets up a new profile and modifies the launcher to open the Firefox version with that profile.
  4. For versions using the same icon (Firefox 4 and Firefox Beta use the same icon, for example), it adds the version to the icon and name.
  5. Changes the settings so future versions (Nightly, Aurora, etc) check for updates regularly while numbered versions (4.0, 5.0, etc) stay where they are.

About Gregory Koberger

I'm a freelance developer and designer, formerly of Mozilla. I talk a lot about web development, technology and user experience — sometimes on my blog but mostly on Twitter.

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