Firefox 1.5 in Ubuntu Breezy

Ubuntu Breezy 5.10 users search for installing Firefox 1.5 on their boxes. So, I thought of writing a tutorial. I am writing this using the information in the Ubuntu Wiki. There are a few points to note before installing Firefox 1.5.

  • Don’t remove the Ubuntu version of Firefox, otherwise, you will break a few packages
  • You will no longer get automatic updates through repositories, but the auto-updater built in firefox is enough
  • The Totem video plugin doesn’t work. I don’t use this particular plugin. Anyway you can install the package mozilla-mplayer.
  • You need package libstdc++5 installed.

    sudo apt-get install libstdc++5

  • There is a bug in Firefox which causes an error dialog to be displayed, each time FF starts up saying Firefox could not install this item because of a failure in Chrome Registration. Do this for a work around:

    sudo mkdir -p /opt/firefox/extensions/
    sudo touch /opt/firefox/extensions/



  • I would suggest you backup your bookmarks and settings by

    cd ~/.mozilla/firefox/*.default
    mkdir ~/Desktop/ffsettingscp bookmarks.html cert8.db cookies.txt formhistory.dat
    key3.db signons.txt history.dat  mimeTypes.rdf ~/Desktop/ffsettings

  • Download firefox-1.5.tar.gz and change to the directory you downloaded.

  • Extract it to /opt/firefox

    sudo tar -C /opt -xvzf firefox-1.5.tar.gz

  • Link to your plugins and remove totem-mozilla as it doesn’t work with FF 1.5

    cd /opt/firefox/plugins/sudo ln -s /usr/lib/mozilla-firefox/plugins/*
    sudo rm libtotem_mozilla.*

  • Change to your home directory and rename your old profile(just as backup)

    cd ~mv .mozilla .mozilla.ubuntu

  • To ensure it is used as the default version, modify the symbolic link in /usr/bin

    sudo dpkg-divert –divert /usr/bin/firefox.ubuntu –rename /usr/bin/firefoxsudo
    ln -s /opt/firefox/firefox /usr/bin/firefox

    The dpkg-divert command will move the original system-wide /usr/bin/firefox to a new name. The ln command will place a symbolic link to the newly installed firefox in /usr/bin.

    • Try the new firefox by typing firefox
    • Restore your old data

      cd ~/Desktop/ffsettingsmv * ~/.mozilla/firefox/*.default

    • Restore your search plugins

      sudo cp -i –reply=no /usr/lib/mozilla-firefox/searchplugins/* /opt/firefox/searchplugins/
      sudo cp -i –reply=no ~/.mozilla/firefox/.default/search/ /opt/firefox/searchplugins/

    • To ensure that other programs use the 1.5 version and not the older 1.0.7 version, goto Preferences>Preferred Applications in the System Menu. Under the Web Browser tab, choose custom and enter firefox %s

I hope this tutorial would really help many in installing Firefox and thereby enabling them to view the web in a totally different view. If anyone got any problem in installing Firefox or has got a better way, please discuss here.

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