Mozilla Releases Latest Firefox 16.0.1 Fixing Security Vulnerability

Mozilla has released latest Firefox 16.0.1 after fixing the vulnerability it found in Firefox 16. The latest Firefox build, 16.0.1, is available for all supported desktop and mobile platforms.

Mozilla discovered a security vulnerability in Firefox 16 and temporarily removed it from current installer page a day of releasing it. It also advised Firefox 16 users to downgrade to the 15.0.1 until a patch is released. According to the Mozilla Security Blog, the security flaw responsible “could allow a malicious site to potentially determine which websites users have visited and have access to the URL or URL parameters”. Now that Firefox is patched, users will be automatically updated to the patched 16.0.1 release.

Firefox 16.0.1

Firefox 15.0.1 and earlier version users will be automatically updated to the latest stable version Firefox 16.0.1. Cosmetically, users will not notice much changes but beneath the surface, Firefox 16.0.1 should offer a much smoother browsing experience, thanks to the new incremental garbage collection feature.


The incremental garbage collection feature changes the way Firefox used to free up unused memory. Firefox 16.0.1 should now be able to take care of any intensive web-app and games offering a smoother performance, with fewer annoying pauses in-between. Mozilla, in its official blog, described incremental garbage collection in details back in August.

The basic purpose of the garbage collector is to collect memory that JavaScript programs are no longer using. The space that is reclaimed can then be reused for new JavaScript objects. Garbage collections usually happen every five seconds or so. Prior to incremental GC landing, Firefox was unable to do anything else during a collection: it couldn’t respond to mouse clicks or draw animations or run JavaScript code. Most collections were quick, but some took hundreds of milliseconds. This downtime can cause a jerky, frustrating user experience. (On Macs, it causes the dreaded spinning beachball.)

Incremental garbage collection fixes the problem by dividing the work of a GC into smaller pieces. Rather than do a 500 millisecond garbage collection, an incremental collector might divide the work into fifty slices, each taking 10ms to complete. In between the slices, Firefox is free to respond to mouse clicks and draw animations.

The latest Firefox version now comes with an initial support for web apps, which Mozilla developers were working on for a while. These web apps were supposed to be an open alternative to the web apps available at the Chrome Web Store. With Firefox OS release date approaching rapidly, will be released sometime early next year, Mozilla is working hard on bringing its own web app store in shape with Mozilla Marketplace.

Firefox 16.0.1 also brings a unique feature for the developers, a “command line” tool, available in the Web Developers Tools. The command line tool will provides easy keyboard control over Firefox Developer Tools. It is quite intuitive and helps developers by completing commands and parameters.

Firefox for Android introduces a new Reader Mode which will make it easier to view, read and share articles and stories from your smartphone or tablet. To use the new Reader Mode, simply tap the “Reader” icon present in the Awesome Bar. It will activate the reader mode by reformatting pictures and increasing font size to offer you an enjoyable way to read online content sans any advertisements.

List of bug fixes in Latest Firefox 16.0.1:

  • Fixed security vulnerability found in Firefox 16
  • Firefox on Mac OS X now has preliminary VoiceOver support turned on by default
  • Initial web app support (Windows/Mac/Linux)
  • Acholi and Kazakh localizations added
  • Improvements around JavaScript responsiveness through incremental garbage collection
  • New Developer Toolbar with buttons for quick access to tools, error count for the Web Console, and a new command line for quick keyboard access
  • CSS3 Animations, Transitions, Transforms and Gradients unprefixed in Firefox 16
  • Recently opened files list in Scratchpad implemented
  • Debugger breakpoints do not catch on page reload
  • No longer supporting MD5 as a hash algorithm in digital signatures
  • Opus support by default
  • Reverse animation direction has been implemented
  • Per tab reporting in about:memory
  • User Agent strings for pre-release Firefox versions now show only major version
  • Detailed release notes for Firefox on Windows, Mac, Linux and Android

Firefox 16.0.1: Known Issues

The following issues are known issues in Firefox 16 and Mozilla is working hard to fix them.

  • If you try to start Firefox using a locked profile, it will crash
  • For some users, scrolling in the main GMail window will be slower than usual
  • Windows only: The use of Microsoft’s System Restore functionality shortly after updating Firefox may prevent future updates
  • Pointer lock doesn’t work in web apps

Existing Firefox users should see an update notification in their web browser. If you didn’t see any notification, you can click on Firefox > Help > About Firefox to manually check for update. New users can download the latest stable version of Firefox using the download links provided below.

Latest Firefox 16.0.1: Direct Download Links

Windows (English) | Mac (English) | Linux (English) | All system and languages | Download Firefox for Android

Mozilla provides Firefox for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X in a variety of languages. You can get the latest released version of Firefox here or the latest development version of Firefox here. You should also check out our Firefox section for everything related to Mozilla Firefox.

Earlier Firefox version details archive

In Firefox 15, if you install add-ons, you will benefit from the new memory optimization technologies. The new optimization technique basically keeps in check memory leaks by add-ons. In Firefox 14.0.1, the default search engine of Firefox, Google Search, started using HTTPS connections when you search using it. OS X Lion users were able to enjoy web browsing in full screen.

With 14.0.1, just like Google Chrome’s “Click to Play plugins” feature, Mozilla implemented “Click to Play” feature for Firefox. The new “Click-to-play” feature (disabled by default) will disable plugin (such as Adobe Flash) when you are loading a page. Later, if you want to load the contents of that plugin, you can activate them with a single click on the area.

Mozilla has still kept “click to play” and “in-content preferences” features disabled by default. If you need these features, you will need to manually enable them via the about:config preferences.

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About SK Mezanul Haque

SK Mezanul Haque is the founder of (popularly known as My Technology Guide). Passionate about all things in tech. Let's talk on Google Plus.

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  • Jakub

    very nicely and smoothly running 10.0.1

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  • Harley

    firefox 13.0.1 will no longer renders sites properly that used to render fine before upgrade
    is seriously considering switching back to IE believe it or not

  • Jack

    I’ve been getting ERROR message saying : “Platform version 13.0,1 is not compatible with
    minVersion>= 14.0.1
    maxVersion<= 14.0.1

    I tried deleting all Mozilla folders and Registry keys and still the same, I'm use to Firefox but I'm switching to Google Chrome for now!

    • Jasper

      Same problem here. Did you manage to find a solution?

  • prasad

    I installed 15, my life is miserable, if ur running teh lower version pls be there, or you will have to spend good amount of time figuring out its updated version issue and downgrade it


  • Ann

    I checked to see what version of Firefox I was using and it said 15.0.1 and you are currently on the release update channel. Do I need to do anything else like downloading version 15.

    • Mezanul

      Firefox 15.0.1 is the latest version. You don’t have to do anything else. :)

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