How to Install Firefox Browser on elementary OS 6

The Mozilla Firefox or simply Firefox is a free and open-source web browser developed by the Mozilla Foundation. Firefox is featured on nearly all Linux distributions as the primary browser or secondary. Firefox is not natively installed for users new to elementary OS, but given the distribution is based on Ubuntu, this can be easily achieved.

In the following tutorial, you will learn how to install the latest Firefox stable, beta, or Firefox Quantum on your elementary OS 6 desktop.

Update elementary OS

Update your system to make sure all existing packages are up to date:

sudo apt update && sudo apt upgrade -y

Install Dependecies

To complete the installation of Firefox, you will need to install the following software packages by using the following command in your terminal.

sudo apt install software-properties-common -y

If you are unsure, run the command; it will do no harm.

Install Firefox Stable (Recommended)

The first option is to install Firefox, the default stable version, which is the most recommended option for most users. First, use the following command in your terminal to begin the installation.

sudo apt install firefox

Example output:

Install Firefox Browser on elementary OS 6.xx

Type Y, then press the ENTER KEY to proceed and complete the installation.

Next, confirm the version installed and verify that it was successful.

firefox --version 

Example output:

Mozilla Firefox 96.0

To keep Firefox up to date, you can use the standard apt update and upgrade commands. Use the following command for users who no longer wish to have Firefox present on their elementary OS system.

sudo apt autoremove firefox --purge

Next, you can optionally install the beta or the Quantum, a nightly build development version.

Firefox Next (Beta)

Install Firefox Next

The first option and the most recommended if you want to try a non-stable release is to install the beta build. To do this, you will need to import the ppa:mozillateam/firefox-next.

Before you begin, check to see the browser version of Firefox installed, if applicable.

firefox --version 

Example output:

Mozilla Firefox 95.0.1

Next, open your terminal and add the Firefox Next PPA.

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

Once imported, update your APT repository listing.

sudo apt update

Now, make sure any existing Firefox browser windows are closed and execute the following command.

sudo apt install firefox -y

DO NOT UPGRADE EVEN WITH FIREFOX INSTALLED. USE THE INSTALL OPTION.

Once installed, check the version of Firefox.

firefox --version

Example output:

Mozilla Firefox 96.02

Remove Firefox Next & Roll back to Firefox Stable

In the future, if you no longer wish to have the beta build from Firefox installed, first remove the installation.

sudo apt autoremove firefox -y

Next, remove the Firefox Next PPA by adding the –remove flag onto the previous add-apt-repository command.

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

Now update your APT repository listing to reflect the changes.

sudo apt update

Re-install the stable default version of Firefox.

sudo apt install firefox -y

Once installed, check the version of Firefox.

firefox --version

Example output:

Mozilla Firefox 96.0

And that’s it. You have successfully removed the beta build from your elementary OS 6 desktop.

Firefox Firefox Quantum (Nightly)

Install the FireFox Nightly Build

The second option for those wanting to test the bleeding edge developer build of Firefox, which is named Firefox Quantum Nightly, you will need to install it from the ppa:ubuntu-mozilla-daily/ppa. The one benefit about these nightly builds is that Firefox Quantum is installed separately from the stable and beta builds.

First, open your terminal (CTRL+ALT+T) and add the Firefox Quantum Nightly Build.

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

Once imported, update your APT repository listing.

sudo apt update

Now, make sure any existing Firefox browser windows are closed and execute the following command.

sudo apt install firefox-trunk -y

Once installed, check the version of Firefox.

firefox-trunk --version

Example output:

Mozilla Firefox 97.0a1

The Firefox Quantum Nightly build icon will look slightly different from the standard Firefox icon, and even the colors are vastly different.

Example in Applications > Search menu:

Install Firefox Browser on elementary OS 6.xx

Remember, if installing both, the BETA replaces your standard Firefox browser, and Quantum (Nightly) is separate.

Example when opened:

Install Firefox Browser on elementary OS 6.xx

Remove Firefox Quantum Nightly

In the future, if you no longer wish to have the beta build from Firefox installed, first remove the installation.

sudo apt autoremove firefox-trunk --purge -y

Next, remove the Firefox Quantum Nightly PPA by adding the –remove flag onto the previous add-apt-repository command.

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

Now update your APT repository listing to reflect the changes.

sudo apt update

And that’s it. You have successfully removed the nightly build from your desktop.

Comments and Conclusion

In the tutorial, you have learned how to install Firefox Browser along the optional Firefox Next (Beta), or the Firefox Quantum (Nightly) builds on your elementary OS 6 desktop. While testing new features is fun, they will often be unstable and have some bugs that may cause security issues; you can easily fall back using the instructions.

The beta would be the best bet for the average power user to install and leave the Quantum version to the professionals.



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