The latest version of Firefox is now available on Mozilla's download server.
At the time of this writing, the download link is not live, but users can simply replace the version number in the link from 7.0.1 to 8.0 to get the updated browser -- or hit the download links below.
Mozilla usually advises us that no Firefox release is official until the software is announced by the company, but we can safely assume that the quiet publication is a sign of a release candidate process without hiccups and that this is, in fact, the browser that will be pushed out to Firefox users this week. As a side note, Mozilla will not be including a silent update in its browser until version 10, so you will still have to grant permission for an update in this and the next version of Firefox.
As previously noted, the big news in this release are the addition of a Twitter search option, a few tab tweaks and greater restrictions for third-party add-ons. Most importantly, add-ons such as toolbars are not given free reign and cannot run without the user's explicit permission anymore. If you are a Firefox user, this is a must upgrade.
It will be critical for Mozilla to avoid a upgrade mistakes in this version as it was the case with version 7.0, which forced the company to release a 7.0.1 fix. Market share for Firefox was down to 26.39 percent in October, just ahead of Chrome, which landed at 25 percent, according to StatCounter. Google recently updated its stable channel to version 15 in late October, the beta channel to version 16 and the developer channel to version 17 last week. Chrome 16 Beta officially introduces a profile manager, which enables a much more convenient switching between multiple users. Version 17 adds support for panels, and adjustable margins in Chrome's print preview.