What is Firefox Nightly?

Modified Oct. 10, 2023, 8:19 a.m.


What is this version of Firefox named Nightly? Is it better than Firefox? What’s the difference? I’ve made my research and here are all the answers you need.

Firefox Nightly is the alpha release of Mozilla Firefox. It means that all the new features developed by Mozilla are released on Firefox Nightly first. But all of these new features often have a lot of issues discovered by the users that Mozilla did not fix yet. I will explain the differences between Firefox and Firefox Nightly, and the advantages and disadvantages of Firefox Nightly.

You can download Firefox Nightly here

Firefox nightly logo and brand name with a night sky in the background

Difference between Firefox and Firefox Nightly

Mozilla is always trying to make Firefox better, faster, and with new features. With the development of these new features, they also need to do a lot of different tests to ensure that the release is stable. They don’t want a Firefox release with a lot of bugs, not stable, the user experience would be terrible and their reputation would decrease.

But even if they are doing a lot of tests, they can’t be sure that the release is stable by themselves, they can’t take the risk to deploy it without being sure how stable the release is. So they need to find people to test the new release with the new features.

There are two ideas behind Firefox Nightly.

  • First, it allows Mozilla to find a lot of people to test the new feature, and report bugs to them so the release can become more stable day after day.
  • Moreover, it allows Firefox users, that are not afraid of using a release not stable, to access the latest feature of Firefox. Firefox Nightly, even if it has a lot of bugs, is often faster and better than the stable Firefox.

Why does Firefox Nightly update so often?

You can’t be closer to the Firefox development than using Firefox Nightly, all the new features are released on Firefox Nightly first. But each time a new feature is released, your version of Firefox Nightly is not up to date anymore and needs to be updated to the newest version.

Also, these features are not fully stable when they are released by Mozilla. A lot of small fixes are needed are done every day by the team. They are also doing small changes with the development of features. Other reasons for your browser to be updated.

Finally, Mozilla needs your Firefox Nightly browser to be up to date each time you are using it. Indeed, they need your data, your feedback about the feature they released, and the bugs they fixed.

The different versions of Firefox

They are different versions of Firefox, four.

The stable Firefox

This is the version everyone knows about, the basic Firefox. It’s the more stable Firefox release and the one installed by default

The Firefox Beta version

This version is not a fully stable Firefox version, but it should not have too many issues. You would only face minor issues by using the beta version. And this version has more features and a later release than the stable Firefox.

The Developer Edition

This version is not so much different than the Beta release, most of the developer edition releases are the same as the Beta release. But as the Developer Edition is released for the developers, Mozilla want sometimes the developer to be able to access some features before they are released in the Beta version, that’s why both exist.

The Firefox Nightly version

Finally the Firefox Nightly version, the less stable but with the newest release.

Which version of Firefox should I use?

In most cases, you want to stay on the stable version of Firefox, or at least to have it installed on your computer in case the other ones have serious issues.

If you want to have access to some new features not released on the stable version of Firefox, or if you are a web developer, you might want to use the beta version of Firefox, or the developer edition in specific cases.

Finally, if using a web browser with many bugs is not a problem for you and you want to try the latest feature of Firefox, then Firefox Nightly is the best choice for you. But remember to always have a stable version of Firefox just in case.

In any case, you will still be able to access all the features, here is how to change the homepage to yahoo.



Maxime Levesque is a technical engineer with more than 5 years of professional experience. He is an expert in computer and phones, mostly on Apple products. Maxime is also the founder of TechBrowser.

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