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How can I install the Firefox 5 tar.gz properly under an Ubuntu and Fedora Linux environment?

Which folders should I put in?

  • /usr/local or
  • /opt/

Also, for those plugin .so files, where should I put them in?

  • /usr/lib/firefox/plugins or
  • ~/.mozilla/plugins

Actually I originally had Firefox 3.6 installed from the Ubuntu packages. I just want a proper way to install Firefox 5, overriding Firefox 3.6.


There is an answer on Ubuntu. How can i install well in Fedora?? Anyone can post the solution of Fedora as well?

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up vote 8 down vote accepted

It sounds you're using Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid since the latest version (11.04 Natty) is supplied with Firefox 5. Otherwise, remove your older Firefox packages and install Firefox 5 from the official repository.

Instructions for Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid and Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick (the proper way)

Instead of installing the tarball, you're recommended to install the mozillateam/firefox-stable PPA and use firefox from that package (see also What are PPAs and how to use them?, Lucid-specific information is available here).

This PPA is maintained by the same guy responsible for the firefox package in the main repository. PPA description:

Firefox Stable releases.

Aimed at Lucid and Maverick users who want to use a modern browser which starts faster than you can brew your morning coffee

Shell commands for adding the PPA, refreshing the repository information and installing Firefox 5:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mozillateam/firefox-stable
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install firefox

Installing from tarball

If you still want to install the 32-bit tarball (there is not 64-bit version available from Mozilla), install it into your home directory. Instructions can be found on a Askubuntu question on installing multiple Firefox versions.

If you've a multi-user system for which you do not want to install Firefox each time, put the folders in /opt since it's a stand-alone package which do not follow the directory layout that is suitable for /usr/local. Plugins should be put in or ~/.mozilla/plugins (for per-user installations) or /opt/firefox/plugins (replace /opt accordingly)

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@Levensteyn: what's the different putting the plugins in /usr/lib/firefox/plugins and /opt/firefox/plugins ? – Kit Ho Jul 4 '11 at 0:51
@Kit Ho: /usr/lib/firefox/plugins should be used by the package manager. /opt is for local packages which can be used across upgrades. – Lekensteyn Jul 4 '11 at 8:41
FYI: you can track the current beta (Firefox 6) by replacing "firefox-stable" with "firefox-next" in the PPA name above (same developers) – Greg Aug 5 '11 at 7:02

For Fedora, see : Install Firefox 5 on Fedora 15/14/13.

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Do you know if Fedora 11 support this? Cause i am using Fedora 11 – Kit Ho Aug 5 '11 at 6:05
The described procedure is the same for all versions, with only small syntactical differences. Regarding the repository, the Remi repository also contains remi-release-11.rpm. – harrymc Aug 5 '11 at 6:26

Is there any particular reason why you have not opted to install Firefox using Ubuntu Software Center, APT or Synaptic? The developers of Ubuntu have a team dedicated to providing installation packages for all up to date software.

To install Firefox, it's probably best to use one of those three methods, Synaptic being the most common for Ubuntu users.

More information here:

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If you really want to install it via tar.gz file, then unpack it to /opt/ directory and create symlink:

cd /opt
sudo tar xvfz /home/me/Downloads/firefox-{wahtever}.tar.gz
sudo chown -R root:root firefox-{wahtever}
sudo ln -s /opt/firefox-{whatever}/firefox /usr/local/bin/firefox

so you can execute if without providing full path. You can also right-click on desktop and create launcher and drag it to some panel.

Note, that you will not get updates automatically if you install firefox from .tar.gz. It's better to find some PPA repository if you are not happy with version from the official repository.

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where can i find the ppa repository for fedora 11? – Kit Ho Aug 7 '11 at 14:44
PPA is only in ubuntu. for fedora, you need to find alternative repository like EPEL or directly RPM on sites like rpmfind – Michał Šrajer Aug 7 '11 at 18:34
+1 for /opt & symlinks - this is totally how I roll myself. – Doc Aug 10 '11 at 16:25

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