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Why does Firefox still not have true ‘silent update’ capability? [Rant]

2013-01-19_215249 [1]

When you think of ‘silent update’ for a program, what do you imagine? For me, a silent update is an update that happens behind-the-scenes with no acknowledgement from the user; an update that happens on its own and the user either never finds out or only finds out after the update has already been applied. You know, something like what Chrome [2] has.

You see Google Chrome has true silent updating capabilities. As new versions of Chrome are pushed out, Chrome automatically updates in the background and the user rarely ever knows Chrome has been updated. Indeed, I don’t remember that last time I ever visually saw Chrome display any sort of update message or a ‘this program has been updated’ message. Heck, I don’t even know what version of Chrome I’m on because I never see it update — it just does it on its own.

Since Mozilla started rapid releases for Firefox [3], it realized it needed silent updating capabilities least it annoy the crap out of its fan base with “update Firefox now” messages every six weeks. So Mozilla has been touting silent updates in Firefox since Firefox 15, claiming to have added the capability. Unfortunately, however, Mozilla hasn’t really added silent update functionality.

True, Firefox now does automatically update itself and automatically install the updates (unless you explicitly disable that functionality). However, the updates aren’t really truly silent. If you are keen, you will notice every once in a while you get some sort of ‘Firefox Update’ message telling you Firefox is being updated, forcing you to wait until the update is applied. In other words, not silent!

Interestingly enough, I noticed this doesn’t necessarily happen on every Firefox update — just some.

I don’t know what is wrong with Mozilla. Seriously Mozilla, get on your game. I know one of the reasons Chrome is able to do silent updates is because of Google Updater. Why in the world can Mozilla not implement something like Google Updater, and then give users an option to opt-out if they don’t want some sort of Mozilla Updater running in the background?

At the very least, if you cannot implement silent updates because you don’t know how, then don’t bloody claim you have added silent updates. Argggggggggggghhhhhhhhh!