Installing Firefox

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This article will help you install Firefox on your system. Once Firefox is installed, the Software Update feature provides for automatic download and installation of future Firefox updates (see the linked article for details).

All Systems

Download the Firefox installer from or go to this page to choose the full installer for your language and OS. System requirements for the current version of Firefox are listed here. If your computer doesn't meet those requirements, you can download a previous Firefox version from the CDN server. System requirements for Firefox 3.6 are listed here.

If you install Firefox on a multi-user system where access privileges are restricted, you must run Firefox as a user with access to that location upon installation so that all initial startup files are generated.

Note: In most cases, you can install a newer version of Firefox over an existing version [1]. If you prefer a clean install, Uninstall your current Firefox version and delete the installation directory before launching the Firefox installer.


Using any browser, download the Firefox setup file to your desktop or other location. After the download is complete, exit Firefox completely (if open). Double-click the downloaded setup file to launch the installer. See the article Installing Firefox on Windows for detailed information, including Standard and Custom setup and screen images.

If you have problems with the Firefox installation, do the following:

  1. Re-download the Firefox setup file if you receive the message, 7-Zip Unspecified Error
  2. Open the Windows Temp folder
    • Windows XP: Start -> Run -> Type %temp% -> OK
    • Windows Vista and above: Start -> Type %temp% in the Search box -> press Enter
  3. Select all files and folders in the Temp folder and delete them, then close the Temp folder window.
  4. Make sure Firefox is not running and that no instance of "firefox.exe" appears in the Windows Task Manager
  5. Disable your antivirus program and try again.


Note: the article, Moving from Windows to Linux includes installation alternatives.

First, download the latest release to your home directory with your browser or download manager.

bash$ cd ~
bash$ wget<version>.tar.gz

Next, extract the contents with an archiving utility such as Ark or tar.

bash$ tar zxf firefox-<version>.tar.gz

Now you must select the installation directory. If you are the only user, the extracted files could stay where they are, but If this is a multi-user system, the firefox directory must be moved to a publicly accessible location such as /usr/local or /opt.

bash$ su
bash# mv firefox /usr/local
bash# chown -R root:root /usr/local/firefox

The installation is more or less complete, but it's recommended that the firefox script be available somewhere in your path to avoid the inconvenience of having to enter the full path. This can be accomplished by creating a symbolic link in the relative 'bin' directory.

For the personal installation:

bash$ mkdir bin
bash$ cd bin
bash$ ln -s ../firefox/firefox .

Or the mult-user installation (as root):

bash# cd /usr/local/bin
bash# ln -s ../firefox/firefox .

Many Linux distributions already include /usr/local/bin and ~/bin in their global environment variable path, which can easily be verified by running 'firefox' from the shell or the desktop environment's (run) menu. If execution fails (command not found), you can adjust the path by appending "/usr/local/bin:$HOME/bin" to the existing PATH variable in /etc/profile and/or /etc/bashrc.

Mac OS X

Mac OS X system requirements for the current version of Firefox are listed here.

  • Firefox 4 and above requires at least Mac OS X 10.5 and will only run on an Intel Mac. [2] Mac OS X 10.4 users, and 10.5 users with a PPC Mac, can download the latest Firefox 3.6.xx release version for Mac OS, currently available from here or from the Mozilla CDN site (Firefox 3.6 requires Mac OS X 10.4 or above). Another option is TenFourMac, which is based on Mozilla 2.0 and Firefox 4 code.
  • Firefox 3 requires Mac OS X 10.4 or above. Mac OS X 10.3 and 10.2 users can download Firefox (en-US is US English).

The images shown on the right illustrate, in step-by-step detail, how to install Firefox on Mac OS X systems, using the installer file "Firefox 2.0.dmg" as an example.

Download the Firefox .dmg (disk image) file to the desktop.

Double click the downloaded file to open (mount) it.

This creates a "mounted disk" image icon on the desktop and opens a disk-image folder window containing the Firefox application icon.

Note: If you get a "disk image failed to mount" warning, read this forum topic for a possible solution. If you can't launch any dmg files you likely have corrupted launch service cache files. You can go here to get information for different OS X versions. [3]

Drag the Firefox application icon to a Hard Disk location such as the Applications folder

Close the disk-image folder window.

Important: Be sure to drag the Firefox application out of the opened disk image window and onto your Hard Disk before running it.

Do not double click the Firefox icon in the disk image!

To start Firefox, double-click the Firefox icon in the Applications folder.

After doing all of the above, select the mounted disk image by clicking it once.

Next, from the File menu, select Eject "Firefox". Alternately, you can control-click the mounted disk image icon and choose "Eject".

Finally, drag the .dmg file to the trash (unless you want to keep the .dmg file as a backup). [4]

If you wish, you can create an alias of the Firefox icon in the Applications folder and place the alias on the desktop, so that you can quickly start Firefox by using the desktop alias.

See also

External links