Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

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Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

Postby .Todd on Sun Nov 20, 2011 11:28 am

How to Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

First thing to mention is that I wrote this for new users because it accomplishes a task and provides a list
of basic Linux commands. However, if you feel that the commands below will harm your system in any
way, then you should ask or get advice from another before committing these actions.

One of the first things that you will notice after installing LMDE is that Firefox (Your web browser)
and Thunderbird (Your Email Client) are outdated. Here is how to upgrade them to their current verison.

NOTE: Most solutions on this site involve adjusting your sources list so the upgrade and updates come
automatically. This is not one of those tutorials.

Also NOTE: Many people suggest simply switching to other browsers (like Ice Weasel or Chromium) and other
email clients (like Ice Dove and Evolution). Personally, I have nothing against any of those other products and even
like them. However, this is not one of those tutorials.

Step 1:
Open your browser, and goto http://mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/new.
Or, if you need a different language go to http://www.google.com
and search for 'get firefox'.
(The website for Thunderbird download is http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/thunderbird/download
or google get thunderbird if you are doing the Thunderbird upgrade.)

Step 2:
Download firefox or thunderbird whichever you are working on upgrading. There should be
a prompt after selecting download to choose Archive Manager or Save File. Choose Save File.
It should be downloading to your ~/Downloads directory.

Step 3:
Change your directory to your Downloads directory by typing:
cd Downloads (if your are in your Home directory... If you are not in your Home directory type
cd ~/Downloads.)
Open an terminal and type the command:
sudo mv firefox-8.0.tar.bz2 /opt
(sudo mv thunderbird-8.0.tar.bz2 /opt if you are doing the Thunderbird upgrade.)

Or if you if you feel the need to be different, you can
go the the /opt directory first by typing:
cd /opt

Then, type the command:
sudo mv /home/username/Downloads/firefox-8.0.tar.bz2 .
(sudo mv /home/username/Downloads/thunderbird-8.0.tar.bz2 .
if you are doing the Thunderbird upgrade.)

Step 4:
Exit out of firefox (or thunderbird).

Step 5:
Backup your old version of Firefox. Make sure you are in
the /opt directory, by typing the command:
pwd

And, verify that firefox (or thunderbird) is indeed here by typing:
ls

Now, type the command:
sudo mv firefox firefox.old
(sudo mv thunderbird thunderbird.old if you doing the Thunderbird upgrade.)

NOTE: A lot of people use the .old extension. However, I
like to use the current date, so I remember when I committed
my actions. For example, I would use the command:
sudo mv firefox firefox.11202011
(sudo mv thunderbird thunderbird.11202011 if you are doing the Thunderbird upgrade.)

Step 6:
Unpack firefox-8.0.tar.bz2 by typing the command:
sudo tar -xjf firefox-8.0.tar.bz2
(sudo tar -xjf thunderbird-8.0.tar.bz2 if you are doing the Thunderbird upgrade.)

Step 7:
Verify that you have a new firefox or thunderbird directory (once again depending on which one
you are working on...) by typing the command:
ls

Step 8:
Test your browser or email client by opening it up and browsing to a web page or sending a test mail.

Step 9:
Remove the tar package by typing:
sudo rm firefox-8.0.tar.bz2
(sudo rm thunderbird-8.0.tar.bz2 if your are working on thunderbird).

To upgrade Thunderbird, setup your account first and verify that you
can send and receive emails, then repeat steps 1 through 9 except
change the commands with the Thunderbird package instead (It should be
something like thunderbird-8.0.tar.bz2, the directory should be /opt/thunderbird and the website should be http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/thunderbird/download.).
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Re: Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

Postby gothmog123 on Thu Mar 15, 2012 12:45 pm

Is this safe to do? What happens if you update your system?
running LMDE MATE 201204
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Re: Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

Postby grizzler on Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:38 pm

Actually, that second question is a very good one. If you update to Firefox 11 now and the repository moves from -e.g.- 9 to 10, the 10 from the repository will happily overwrite your 11 because the package manager has no idea of what you did manually.

The method is still safe if you remove the repository version first, using Synaptic or apt-get/aptitude. Alternatively, you could update the version number in /var/lib/dpkg/status.
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Re: Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

Postby gothmog123 on Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:46 pm

Thanks for the answer.

But apart from overwriting to an older version (which I can fix again, manually), are there any other negative effects?

If no I'll just do it this way. If yes I have to install a third browser to be able to remove firefox in LMDE.
running LMDE MATE 201204
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Re: Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

Postby grizzler on Thu Mar 15, 2012 2:04 pm

No, I'm not aware of any negative effects. I've used this method myself.
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Re: Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

Postby gothmog123 on Thu Mar 15, 2012 2:41 pm

Gaaah... I just realized there's no downloadable 64 bit version for FF.....
running LMDE MATE 201204
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Re: Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

Postby grizzler on Thu Mar 15, 2012 2:49 pm

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Re: Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

Postby gothmog123 on Thu Mar 15, 2012 3:02 pm

oops ... lol

thanks
running LMDE MATE 201204
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Re: Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

Postby angelalonsofonseca on Sat Mar 17, 2012 10:30 am

Thanks to this post, I successfully got to make this process rather automatic.

Although this is just a work in progress, it works (more or less) out of the box. I am sharing it here just in case someone finds it useful and want to share some thoughts on what should be improved. Steps with an asterisk are already known to be very


Now, to the steps:
1.- Create a folder (in your /home directory, for instance). Mine is called mozupdt.

2.- Create a text file named mozillaproductversion, This should only have the following text on it (change it to your current versions):

firefox-9.0.1
thunderbird-9.0.1

3.- Chmod this file in order to make it only rw by YOUR user (maybe your group as well).

4.- Create a script called, say, mozupdt.sh. Copy and paste the following code on it:
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
#!/bin/bash
#
# a program to check and update firefox and thunderbird in debian

# Constants:
workfolder=`pwd`
versionfile="mozillaproductversion"

firefoxurl="http://mirror.informatik.uni-mannheim.de/pub/mirrors/mozilla.org/firefox/releases/latest/linux-i686/en-US/"
thunderbirdurl="http://mirror.informatik.uni-mannheim.de/pub/mirrors/mozilla.org/thunderbird/releases/latest/linux-i686/en-US/"

# Let's take a look at mozilla's repositories
wget -O firefile $firefoxurl
wget -O thunderfile $thunderbirdurl

# what's the current latest version? (grep, grep, sed, sed)
latestfire=`grep "tar.bz2" firefile | grep -v .asc | sed -n "s/.*\(firefox.*tar.bz2\).*/\1/p" | sed -e s/firefox-//g -e s/.tar.bz2//g`
latestthunder=`grep "tar.bz2" thunderfile | grep -v .asc | sed -n "s/.*\(thunderbird.*tar.bz2\).*/\1/p" | sed -e s/thunderbird-//g -e s/.tar.bz2//g`

# what version is installed?
localfire=`grep firefox $versionfile | sed 's/firefox-//g'`
localthunder=`grep thunderbird $versionfile | sed 's/thunderbird-//g'`

# ask for confirmation
echo "==== Firefox ===="
echo "Installed version: $localfire "
echo "Available version: $latestfire "
echo "==== Thunderbird ===="
echo "Installed version: $localthunder "
echo "Available version: $latestthunder "
echo

while [ "$RESPONSE" != "n" ] && [ "$RESPONSE" != "y" ]
do
echo "Do you want to update these programs to latest available version? (y/n) "
read RESPONSE
done

if [ "$RESPONSE" = "n" ] ; then
echo "exiting ..."
else

# wget latest (which server?)
downlfire=`grep "tar.bz2" firefile | grep -v .asc | sed -n "s/.*\(firefox.*tar.bz2\).*/\1/p"`
downlthunder=`grep "tar.bz2" thunderfile | grep -v .asc | sed -n "s/.*\(thunderbird.*tar.bz2\).*/\1/p"`

wget $firefoxurl/$downlfire
wget $thunderbirdurl/$downlthunder

# move installed folder to a backup one
echo "backing up folders..."
sudo mv /opt/firefox /opt/firefox_bckp`date "+%Y%m%d.%H%M%S"`
sudo mv /opt/thunderbird /opt/thunderbird_bckp`date "+%Y%m%d.%H%M%S"`

# move to /opt, decompress
sudo mv $downlfire $downlthunder /opt
cd /opt
echo "decompressing files..."
sudo tar -xjf $downlfire
sudo tar -xjf $downlthunder

echo "updating versions in register..."
echo firefox-$latestfire > $workfolder/$versionfile
echo thunderbird-$latestthunder >> $workfolder/$versionfile

echo
echo "==== Attention!, the following backup folders have been created for your safety ===="
ls -lha /opt | grep firefox_bckp
ls -lha /opt | grep thunderbird_bckp
echo "==== If you don't need them anymore, you might want to remove them ===="
echo

fi


# clean, clean, clean!!!
rm $workfolder/firefile $workfolder/thunderfile > /dev/null
sudo rm /opt/$downlfire /opt/$downlthunder > /dev/null


---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

5.- As usual, chmod it to be executable and run it...

6.- And if you don't want to care about it, just put it on a cronjob.
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Re: Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

Postby craigevil on Mon Apr 02, 2012 1:25 pm

Tech Patterns :: Switching from Debian Iceweasel to Firefox, permanently - http://techpatterns.com/forums/about1435.html

Includes steps to make Firefox default web browser using the Debian alternatives system, and allowing Firefox to autoupdate when Mozilla releases new versions without having to be root.

Personally I am lazy, all I do is download, extract, create a firefox.desktop file and copy it to /use/share/applications so it shows on the KDE menu. Then add it to the alternatives system and set Firefox as my default browser. No need to mess with /opt , root or with moving files around other than the firefox.desktop file. Two minutes and I have a working Firefox that will update itself whenever a new release comes out. Same for Thunderbird.


my firefox.desktop file:
Code: Select all
#!/usr/bin/env xdg-open
[Desktop Entry]
Categories=Network;WebBrowser;
Comment[en_US]=Browse the World Wide Web
Comment=Browse the World Wide Web
Encoding=UTF-8
Exec=/home/craig/Downloads/firefox/firefox '%u'
GenericName[en_US]=Firefox
GenericName=Firefox
Icon=/home/craig/Downloads/firefox/icons/mozicon128.png
MimeType=text/html;image/png;image/jpeg;image/gif;application/xml;application/xml;application/xhtml+xml;application/vnd.mozilla.xul+xml;application/rss+xml;application/rdf+xml;
Name[en_US]=firefox
Name=firefox
Path=
StartupNotify=true
StartupWMClass=Firefox-bin
Terminal=false
TerminalOptions=
Type=Application
X-DBUS-ServiceName=
X-DBUS-StartupType=
X-GNOME-FullName=Firefox
X-KDE-SubstituteUID=false
X-KDE-Username=Firefox
X-MultipleArgs=false
Debian Sid KDE4.8.4 Kernel 3.4 Thinkpad R40 CPU Pentium M 1.3MHz RAM 2GB ATI Mobility 7500
Debian - "If you can't apt-get something, it isn't useful or doesn't exist"
Giant Debian sources.list | Debian upgrade script smxi | sysinfo script inxi
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Re: Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

Postby franute on Wed Jun 20, 2012 2:57 pm

There is probably a faster solution, I've just read it here and it works.

Basically:

  • 1) Edit "/opt/firefox/defaults/pref/channel-prefs.js" or "/opt/thunderbird/defaults/pref/channel-prefs.js" and change line 2:
    Code: Select all
    pref("app.update.channel", "default");

    into
    Code: Select all
    pref("app.update.channel", "release");

  • 2) Execute firefox or thunderbird as root.
  • 3) Go to "Help -> About Firefox" or "Help -> About Thunderbird" and update it just like in windows.

I don't know if it will cause some trouble when the packages in the repos are updated, but I think I still have enough time until the next UP (and there is always the choice to reinstall :lol: ).
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Re: Upgrade Firefox and Thunderbird on LMDE

Postby josk on Wed Oct 24, 2012 1:46 pm

franute wrote:There is probably a faster solution, I've just read it here and it works.

Basically:

  • 1) Edit "/opt/firefox/defaults/pref/channel-prefs.js" or "/opt/thunderbird/defaults/pref/channel-prefs.js" and change line 2:
    Code: Select all
    pref("app.update.channel", "default");

    into
    Code: Select all
    pref("app.update.channel", "release");

  • 2) Execute firefox or thunderbird as root.
  • 3) Go to "Help -> About Firefox" or "Help -> About Thunderbird" and update it just like in windows.

I don't know if it will cause some trouble when the packages in the repos are updated, but I think I still have enough time until the next UP (and there is always the choice to reinstall :lol: ).


Thanks! That worked for me after I chmod:ed write permissions to /opt/firefox directory. Then browser notified me about new version and everything worked as in windows. I also opened synaptic and locked my firefox version (MENU: Package > Lock version). That way I prevented future updates for Firefox package from linux mint repositories. Now I always have latest and greatest version of FF.
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