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I want to install adblock for Firefox and I see it is in Synaptic.

Should I install it with Synaptic or the regular way with the Firefox add-on manager? Does it make any differences at all?

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

The version in the Ubuntu repositories will only receive bug fixes during a release cycle, not new features. This version has been tested with your version of Firefox, and is fairly stable.

If you use the unpackaged version via Mozilla Addons or elsewhere, it'll receive all new updates by the maintainer of the addon. These may cause breakage, depending on the level of testing upstream puts their code through. In Adblock's case, I suspect the level of QA is high, so this is not a very pressing concern, but one to take into account nevertheless.

Firefox will refuse to install a newer version of the addon if said version no longer supports your browser version, so you don't have to worry about that.

The main difference is that the Ubuntu-packaged version is feature-stable (its behavior does not change) as well as reliability-stable (it will work consistently) throughout the release, whereas you don't get those guarantees from using AdBlock's extention installed externally.

If you're installing it for more than one user, by all means, use the packaged version. But if it's just for you, I think the locally installed version is fine.

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No, the Ubuntu Firefox Modifications Extension allows this to easily be done without any problems.

To answer your question: no, it doesn't matter.

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Does Synaptic check for compatibility between Firefox version and plugin version? – ParanoiaPuppy Jul 29 '10 at 0:08
@Par: Hmmm.... I'm not sure. – Nathan Osman Jul 29 '10 at 0:13
@Par: Well, being in repository means that it has been tested with the Firefox and works fine. – Krzysztof Klimonda Jul 29 '10 at 2:02
@Krysztof: I should stop posting when I'm tired. This completely slipped my mind. Thanks for the reminder. – ParanoiaPuppy Jul 29 '10 at 10:46

The only difference is that the version in the Ubuntu repositories will usually take a day or two longer to be updated.

If you install using the Add-On manager (as opposed to going to the website) it's my understanding that it installs from the Ubuntu repositories anyways due to the ubufox plugin.

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No, it doesn't do that, from my testing. In addition, it's not just a day or two longer, you've got to wait for the next release of Ubuntu or, in the case of bug fixes, for the problem to be SRU'd, which takes two weeks on average. – lfaraone Jul 29 '10 at 3:59
Yes, in general, addons in the repository don't get updated in a stable release. However, they will get updated for compatibility when we push a new version of Firefox (so, when Lucid and Maverick get 4.x or whatever, all the addons in the repositories will get updated at the same time). – Chris Coulson Nov 13 '10 at 11:36

I have more 60 extensions installed and I always get them From Mozilla. Some updates might cause problems but they are usually fixed right away, specially AdBlock and NoScript.

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I would recommend using firefox's addons menu, as it is updated IMMEDIATELY when the developer of the addon pushes out a new version to Firefox. Whereas with the Ubuntu repos, it takes days/weeks/even months, depending.

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