Mozilla Rolls Out Firefox RC2

Firefox 1.5 Release Candidate 2 (RC2), likely the last version before the final is unveiled, updated automatically for users of earlier 1.5 editions without problems, unlike RC1, which went public Nov. 1 to a host of complaints.

"Well before I knew about the availability of RC2, [Firefox] offered to upgrade and it worked!" wrote one user on a MozillaZine thread.

One of Firefox 1.5's most touted features is its automatic update, which allows Mozilla to push new versions to users and results in much smaller updates than in Firefox 1.0. The update to RC2, for instance, was under 400K; previously, users had to download the entire browser, at 4 to 5MB.

Firefox 1.5 RC2 can also be downloaded directly from the Mozilla site in versions for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. At the moment, only an English edition is available.

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According to one Mozilla official, the final for 1.5 is close at hand.

"For those wondering why this is called Firefox 1.5 and not Firefox 1.5 RC2, it's because this is a genuine release candidate," wrote Asa Dotzler, the head of quality control for the browser, on his blog. "The build you have, if not problems are found, will be Firefox 1.5."