Mozilla has released the first beta of Firefox 3.0, moving the browser one step closer to a general release. Though a tad delayed than originally expected, Firefox 3.0 Beta 1 comes packed with innovative features and enhanced security tools, which probably makes it worth the wait.

The developers warn that this release is for testing purpose only. “We do not recommend that anyone other than developers and testers download the Firefox 3 Beta 1 milestone release,” Mike Beltzner, Mozilla’s interface designer.

According to PC World:

One of the big changes with Firefox 3.0 is an overhaul of the way the browser bookmarks and keeps track of browsing history. With this new feature, called Places, browsing history will now be stored in a database, meaning that it will be much easier for Firefox users to search for sites they’ve visited.


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And Firefox’s download manager is now better integrated with antivirus software, making it easier to spot malicious files before they are placed on the desktop. The browser will no longer allow add-ons to be downloaded from insecure sites

If you are interested in more information, you can check out the official release notes for Firefox 3.0 Beta 1.

For folks who just prefer the final release, you might be interested to know that a second beta of Firefox is expected before the end of 2007 to be followed by a final Beta 3 update in early 2008. The final version will be released after that in early 2008.

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