How to Install Firefox 4 in Ubuntu Linux

Earlier today, we reported that Firefox 4 has just been released. Why do you need instructions to install the newest Firefox in Ubuntu? If you go into your Ubuntu Software Center, you’ll see that you more than likely have Firefox 3.6 installed, and it’s “up to date”. Naturally, they don’t add programs to the Software Center as soon as they are released. That would be foolish if there was something wrong with the new version. I don’t blame them for waiting at least a few days for the adventure seekers to provide some feedback.

There are three ways that I know of to add the newest Firefox to Ubuntu.

firefox 4

Method 1: Download Bzipped Package

You can go to the Firefox download page, download the TAR.BZ2 package and manually install it. The advantage of that method is that you won’t lose the current version 3.6 of Firefox. However, you’ll have to unpack the BZ2 file to a folder somewhere, locate the “firefox” executable file, then double click to launch it. If you’d like to, you can also create your own launcher link on the desktop or add it to a panel.

Method 2: Command Line Install

You can add the Firefox “Stable” repository and install the latest version from the command line in a terminal window. That’s actually the easiest method for most linux users. Here are the three simple commands you need to enter into the terminal.

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

Method 3: Software Center Install

Open your “Ubuntu Software Center” and click “Edit” > “Software Sources” then click the Other Software’ tab. Add the PPA as shown below. When you exit the “Software Sources” applet, your Software Center will reload the repositories and it may even automatically find the updated Firefox for you.


add firefox stable ppa to the software center

That’s all there is to it. Below you’ll find a quick movie showing some of the new features.  I hope you enjoy the new Firefox as much as the millions of users who downloaded it today.


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Clif Sipe

Promoting Freeware and Free information since 2004. Owner of with over 2000 pages of freebies. Please subscribe to my Google Feed or follow me on Twitter @clifnotes.