Chapter 3: Setting Up Firefox


Chapter 3: Setting Up Firefox

Installing Firefox is as easy as using it. After you install Firefox, the handy Import Wizard allows you to import your settings and bookmarks from other browsers — like switching flights but having your luggage transferred automatically. Whether you use Windows or Macintosh, this chapter tells you everything you need to know to get started.

System Requirements

You should check to make sure that your computer is powerful enough to handle Firefox before installing it. If you bought your computer in the past three or four years, it should be fine.

To install Firefox on Windows, we recommend using Windows XP, although other flavors of Windows (such as Windows ME or Windows 2000) are supported as well. Your computer should also have at least a 500 MHz processor and 128MB of RAM.

To install Firefox on the Macintosh, we recommend using OS X 10.1 or later. For best performance, your computer should also have at least a 667 MHz PowerPC G4 processor with 256MB of RAM and 72MB of free hard drive space.



Getting Firefox

Firefox is available both on CD from the Mozilla Store and as a free download from the Firefox Web site.

Downloading Firefox

If you already have an Internet connection, the best way to get Firefox is by downloading it for free from our Web site. It's a small file, so it should only take a few minutes to download — even on the slowest of Internet connections. To download the setup file:

  1. Navigate to the Firefox Web site (http://www.getfirefox.com).

  2. Click the Free Download link and save the Firefox Setup file to your computer's Desktop.

  3. When the download finishes, double-click the Firefox Setup file on your Desktop.

For Windows

If you are using Windows, the Setup Wizard appears and walks you through the installation process, as shown in Figure 3-1. For detailed instructions, see "Installing Firefox with the Setup Wizard," later in this chapter.

image from book
Figure 3-1: The Firefox Setup Wizard in Windows.

For the Mac

If you are using a Macintosh, a folder containing a Firefox icon appears, as shown in Figure 3-2. Simply drag the icon onto your desktop, then doubleclick it to launch Firefox.

image from book
Figure 3-2: The Firefox disk image on a Macintosh.

Using a Firefox CD

If you don't yet have an Internet connection, or if you want to install Firefox on your friends' computers (remember, it's free and open source!), you can order Firefox on CD for just a few bucks from the online Mozilla Store. Orders must be placed via the store's Web site, so if your Internet connection isn't working yet, you can use a friend's computer.

  1. Navigate to the Mozilla Store Web site (http://www.store.mozilla.org).

  2. Click Software & Guides in the left sidebar.

  3. Add the Firefox CD to your cart.

  4. When you finish shopping, click Check Out. If this is your first time using the Mozilla Store, you will need to create an account. The Store Web site walks you through this painless process.

  5. When the CD arrives in the mail, put it in your computer's CD tray.

For Windows

If you are using Windows, the Setup Wizard appears and walks you through the installation process, as shown earlier in Figure 3-1. For detailed instructions, see "Installing Firefox with the Setup Wizard."

REMEMBER 

If you're using Windows and the Setup Wizard does not appear automatically, you can open it manually. Double-click the My Computer icon on your Desktop, double-click your CD drive, and double-click the Firefox Setup file.

For the Mac

If you're using a Macintosh, a folder containing a Firefox icon appears, as shown in Figure 3-2. Simply drag the icon onto your desktop, then doubleclick the icon to launch Firefox.