Firefox, in its 20th version, has patched 11 potentially catastrophic security flaws, while introducing a few privacy and convenience features for the average user.
Some of the flaws patched - like modified image files from the Cairo graphics library, or Mesa graphics drivers
causing WebGL to crash on Linux systems - were quite dangerous, but fairly obscure. Others - such as shared permissions between tabs, issues with updater authorization and memory corruption while loading grayscale images - were potentially much more troublesome, reports Fox News.
Firefox 20's new tab functionality is probably the most salient. Previously, users wanting to browse the Web privately would have to start up a new session of Firefox. Now, users can set the privacy of each individual tab, saving them the trouble of having to run multiple Firefox windows or restart the browser.
In the new version, unless the plug-in directly affects the content on a Web page, a malfunctioning plug-in will not cause the whole browser to freeze up.
The download manager also experienced a small redesign. Instead of taking users to a separate download page, a small clickable arrow shows their pending downloads unobtrusively.
The security fixes are all well and good, but the ability to assign privacy settings to tabs on the fly is quite exciting, especially if you share your computer with other people. Other browsers would do well to adopt the same paradigm.