Firefox ESR and when to use it
What is Firefox ESR?
Firefox ESR (Extended Support Release) is a special release track of the Firefox web browser. With the Firefox browser's move to a more accelerated release schedule where new versions come out every 1-4 months, this was causing issues for some web service providers. In some cases, a new release of Firefox would be out before the service had finished testing compatibility with the old version which could create problems for users.
To create a more stable environment for instances that could not support an aggressive update cycle, Mozilla created the Extended Support Release plan where a version of Firefox would obtain extended support for security and bug fixes beyond the normal release cycle for roughly one year.
While the ESR version of Firefox is a separate install, the only difference is that the auto-update feature tracks the ESR releases (ESR 10, 17, 24...) instead of the main version release path (17, 18, 19, 20...).
When to Use ESR
If you regularly use a web-based application (web-based email, file storage, etc.) and encounter problems with Firefox's automatic updates breaking compatibility with the web application, consider switching to an ESR release.
Download Firefox ESR
Firefox ESR can be downloaded from the following link:
Install the Firefox release the same way you would install the regular release of Filefox.
MacOS: Mount the disk image and drag the Firefox application into the Applications folder.
Windows: Run the Firefox installer.
The ESR release will maintain your existing Firefox bookmarks and settings.