I want to install the latest Firefox on my Ubuntu (64bit) box.

What is the best way to do this? Is there a specific update site or should I download the binaries manually? If doing manually, in which directory should I put the files? In my home directory, or is there a better place?


11 Answers 11


The latest version of Firefox is available for as a security updates in all supported releases of Ubuntu, just doing a normal update will pull it in. You need to enable at least one of the security or updates repositories (e. g. via Software & Updates → Updates); security should be enabled by default but it's better to check, especially if the package manager doesn't update Firefox yet.

Usually it's available within a few hours of Mozilla's announcement, sometimes faster, depending on the archive builders, and the speed of your local mirror, etc.

See also:

  • (to do this with the command line, it's sudo apt-get upgrade)
    – Andrew
    Jan 3, 2014 at 21:57
  • 4
    Ubuntu does not actually keep up to date with the latest version of firefox, but they try to stay close. I would suggest using a PPA. Jun 6, 2016 at 19:30

A generic way to install Firefox

You can either go to Firefox page and download the latest.

Then you could create a directory where you're going to test this release of Firefox, unpack the downloaded package (I assume it is in your $HOME/Downloads folder) and launch it:

cd $HOME
mkdir Apps
cd Apps
tar jxf ~/Downloads/firefox-4.0b*.tar.bz2

To launch it, it's probably more interesting to create a "Launcher" (Gnome specific), an icon on your desktop to launch the beta. I guess there are similar steps for KDE. For this:


If you want the Beta you can use this PPA:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mozillateam/firefox-next

Source - Firefox Next

If you want the Bleeding Bloody Edge Next 2.0 Experience (Firefox 11.x now) then use this PPA:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-mozilla-daily/ppa

Sources - Firefox Daily Builds (WARNING - Very unstable and you get several updates a day)

  • 1
    Can I ask what is wrong with this answer. Because of the -1 so I can correct it. Jan 29, 2012 at 23:48
  • 10
    you have the steps necessary to get the beta and daily builds, but not the stable. Mar 18, 2014 at 5:13

There are several methods of installing a non-default version of Firefox, that are covered by my tutorial Installing Other Versions, which has detailed explanations and method comparisons. So I will post here only the relevant information regarding Firefox 4. Please do not use multiple methods. Pick one and stick with it or revert the changes before trying a different one. I recommend the manual installation method, since depending on the PPA you choose, you will also update Firefox 3.6 and other Mozilla products.

Since it is still a Beta release and there are some radical changes in this version, is recommended that you install it side-by-side with the default version and use a different user profile, in order to avoid data loss.

Method #1 - Manual Download & Installation

First you need to download it form Mozilla [pick one only]:

The easiest way to install Firefox 4 downloaded from Mozilla is to use my extension FoxTester. It allows you to install any number of different Firefox versions, without interfering with your default installation and user profile. Everything is done through Firefox context menu, without typing commands or even closing Firefox. Although this extension is not intended for upgrading Firefox, it also allows to make any version installation permanent.

If you prefer to do it manually, then follow the instructions of method #1 from the Installing Other Versions tutorial. Basically, you will extract the downloaded file to your /home directory or the /opt and execute the firefox file inside it. There are also additional steps on that tutorial if you want to make it fully compatible with plugins.

Method #2 - Ubuntuzilla repository

This method will only be available to 32bit users, after the release of the final version of Firefox 4.

Method #3 - Installing from PPA repositories

Firefox 4 is currently available through ubuntu-mozilla-daily PPA repository (semi-official) and SilverWave PPA repository (non-official). You need to add one of those ppa repositories to your sources list, then update and install Firefox 4.

To install from ubuntu-mozilla-daily on Karmic, Lucid or Maverick, run the following commands:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-mozilla-daily/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install firefox-4.0

For additional info about PPA repositories see What are PPAs and how do I use them?.

To install from SilverWave PPA, see http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1352580


  • The ubuntu-mozilla-daily ppa also upgrade your default Firefox installation with the latest testing version of Firefox 3.x and other Mozilla applications. So although the SilverWave PP is not official, it might be less troublesome to use it instead.
  • When you install Firefox 4 using one of those repositories, a clone of your Firefox user profile is created under ~/.mozilla/firefox-4.0. So everything you do on Firefox 4 won't be saved on your default profile. This could cause confusion and apparent loss of data (bookmarks, passwords...) if you switch back and forth between Firefox 3.6 and Firefox 4 or when the last one becomes default and start using the default profile folder (i.e ~/.mozilla/firefox).

Add-on Compatibility

During the beta phase and to some extent after the final release of Firefox 4, most extensions and themes won't be compatible with it and thus not activated. Usually when you are testing a minor update version, you can disable compatibility check, to force extensions to be installed and activated. But is not so simple in this case, due to radical changes in the UI and the extension API of Firefox 4. So even with the compatibility check disable, several extensions won't work at all or could break other extensions and even Firefox.

If you are using a different profile or make regular backups, then you could use the Addon Compatibility Reporter extension, to disable the compatibility.

If something goes wrong and you can't even access the add-ons manager to disable the extensions, then start Firefox in safe mode and disable all extensions. After starting Firefox in safe mode, you can enable only the compatible ones.

It is strongly advised to start the "Error Console" (CTRL+SHIFT+J) while using Firefox with extensions that are incompatible. Disable any extension that cause an error. You might have to enable only the error report to avoid lots of css messages from web sites.


Although Firefox 4 is a lot faster than Firefox 3.6, is always a good idea to keep it fast by optimizing databases and tweaking some preferences.

Database Optimization: improves startup time and performance considerably, specially on features like the awesome bar suggestions or bookmark management.

Preferences Tweaks: improves network speed, page rendering, memory usage and fixes some common issues.

BarTab: this nice extension allows to prevent tabs from loading the page content until they are needed. So if you usually start Firefox with several tabs, this will save memory space and improve startup time and responsiveness.

Better Cache: this extension allows to better control how Firefox handle the content cache, allowing to avoid constantly reloading pages and elements, thus reducing page display time considerably. Make sure you read the manual, because you might prevent sites that need to constantly reloaded from displaying new content (works with compatibility disabled).


The very anticipated new UI hasn't been released for Linux yet. So, Firefox 4 still looks very similar to 3.6, except for a few changes, like for example the ability to place tabs on top [View >> Toolbars >> Tabs on Top]. Nevertheless, you can change a lot of things as usual, using the built-in options, themes, scripts, extensions or changing the userChrome.css.

  • 4
    I don't think Ubuntuzilla will be getting Firefox 4; they've ceased operating. ubuntuforums.org/…
    – Fern Moss
    Mar 15, 2011 at 1:16
  • Thanks for the info about Ubuntuzilla. I have updated the information. Mar 21, 2011 at 20:58
  • 1
    -1: A link is not an answer. Mar 22, 2011 at 20:06
  • 2
    Firefather, I am just tired of updating the same info on multiple sites every time Mozilla or Ubuntu change something. If you read the link content you will see the information is good and updated. Take care. Mar 25, 2011 at 12:02
  • And what happens if the content of the link changes, or the link stops working altogether? Then your answer wouldn't be very helpful at all anymore.
    – Ryan
    Aug 17, 2011 at 8:30

you can install the latest version of firefox in the linux distributions using 2 methods.

  1. PPA (for debian based)
  2. Tar file (for all distr)

For method 1 use the below steps

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade

If you want to download the tar and proceed for installation follow the 2nd step

For method 2 use the below steps

Download The Latest Version of Firefox 43 from their FTP site or use wget using a particular version . In here i am showing the latest version 43

Link :firefox ftp site

tar -xjf firefox-43.0.tar.bz2
sudo rm -rf /opt/firefox
sudo mv firefox /opt/firefox43

Create Symbolic link for New Firefox as default

sudo ln -s /opt/firefox43/firefox /usr/bin/firefox

source : askmetutorials


Step 1:

Setup the Mozilla - Ubuntu daily PPA and update your package list using the following command:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ubuntu-mozilla-daily/ppa && sudo apt-get update

Step 2:

After the repository gets updated, you can install Firefox 4.0 on your Ubuntu system using the following command:

sudo apt-get install firefox-4.0
  • 1
    This would be more helpful if you explain what those do; it's bad form to give a sudo command without explanation. Mar 14, 2011 at 18:18
  • 1
    ppa:mozillateam/firefox-next is more stable than the daily builds.
    – papukaija
    Mar 14, 2011 at 20:53

For those interested enough, here is my repo with some installation scripts that I wrote for Debian/Ubuntu (you'll find inside a script for keeping Firefox up-to-date):


Check it out!


this is for the binary released from mozilla

download link

extract with with a helper like file-roller or with tar xvf firefox-59.0.2.tar.bz2

to start type in your terminal emulator (a click from your file manager may also work)

cd firefox/

now open Preferences and click Set as default, this creates ~/.local/share/applications/userapp-Firefox-[random].desktop and adds entries to ~/.config/mimeapps.list

that's it, this firefox should now handle any web associations from applications like your file manager

to have a desktop icon / launcher remove NoDisplay from and add Icon=firefox to ~/.local/share/applications/userapp-Firefox-[random].desktop and copy the icons (see link)

see how to install firefox from mozilla

auto updates work like in the windows version, to have the latest version make sure they're enabled


Here is what I found works best:

Download it from mozilla.com and extract it (to wherever you want). It creates a folder called "firefox" and in that folder there is a file called "firefox". Drag this file onto your panel, and it asks you to give the new launcher a name (call it Firefox, but it doesn't matter), and you're done. To open Firefox just use the new launcher on the panel (the correct icon should be there automatically).

Be wary though that the firefox command still opens your old installation.

  • 1
    That install won't stay updated... Use repositories instead.
    – papukaija
    Mar 14, 2011 at 20:54
  • This is essentially what I do, and it updates fine for me. If you have a multi-user system, this becomes problematic, but if you're installing it for yourself this works well.
    – belacqua
    Mar 14, 2011 at 22:08
  • This is "windows" like way of updating software. Impractical if you need to keep up to date many applications.
    – PeterM
    May 9, 2017 at 7:32

You can add the ppa:mozillateam/firefox-next PPA which holds the Release builds(alpha, beta, RC) of the current development version of Firefox which currently is rc1.

Firstly add the PPA ppa:mozillateam/firefox-next(How to Add a PPA) then install firefox-4.0 from the software center.


Right now, I suggest you not to install Firefox. Just download the tar file from Download Firefox 4.

Untar this tar file in your home directory and double click the file run-mozilla.sh and you will have Firefox 4. If you want, you can create a shortcut to the home folder for instant access.

  • 4
    Always use repositories if it's possible. Otherwise you won't get security updates or new releases.
    – papukaija
    Mar 14, 2011 at 20:52
  • 1
    @papukaija Commenting on everyone's answer and telling them your way is better Is The Wrong Way To Do Things around here. Make your answer, let the community judge it. Fwiw, you have a good solution, you just need to post it as an answer instead of a bazillion comments.
    – djeikyb
    Mar 18, 2011 at 0:22
  • 4
    So you think it's a good idea to not let people to know that their suggestion is insecure? Really, the question isn't if my supported way (no, I haven't even suggested firefox-next ppa first) is better than others, but how to do things securely and efficiently.
    – papukaija
    Mar 22, 2011 at 20:54
  • 1
    @papukaija -- Updates work correctly if you're installing in your own directory for a single user. That being said, it looks like the ppa is now up-to-date for 4.0, so I would encourage anyone to use that as the preferred method.
    – belacqua
    Mar 25, 2011 at 23:27
  • 1
    This is the only way that works if you are using an older version of ubuntu (because the community has abandoned your particular video card for example...grrr..). Downvoters should realize that not everyone is on the lastest version of ubuntu.
    – srboisvert
    Apr 27, 2011 at 18:48

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