Despite running into a few glitches at the start of the record-setting attempt for the most software downloaded in 24 hours, approximately 8.3 million full copies of Firefox 3 were downloaded during the first 24 hours of its availability. The Mozilla folks are working with the blokes from Guinness World Records to determine if in fact a true world record has been set. As there is no previously established official record for the most software downloaded in a day, the record is likely to keep. We'll drink to that!
At a highpoint during the download barrage, the Mozilla developers reported:
"Mozilla.com web traffic is pushing well over 2 Gigabits a second of just pure HTTP traffic. That is in addition to the 13 Gigabits a second or so of download traffic. We are still at around 14,000 download/minute and mozilla.com is responding well! Go Mozilla community and IT team!"
When the Firefox 3 download went online it was available in versions for Windows, Mac OS, and Linux. Additionally, for all three operating systems, Firefox was available in 45 localized versions for different regions and languages--from Afrikaans to Ukrainian.
So now that everyone and their grandmother have downloaded Firefox 3, the true test comes: Will the new version of the browser actually be used at least as much as Firefox 2 was? It's difficult--if not impossible--to find a consistent consensus on accurate, worldwide browser-use statistics. However, a number of industry pundits, such as Chuck Upsdell of the weekly Browser News newsletter and the Janco Associates management consulting firm, make estimated guesses that approximately 15 to 17 percent of the browsers in use by U.S.-based Internet users are Gecko-based browsers, such as Firefox. These are conservative estimates; other sites show stats as high as 40 percent Gecko users. Time will tell if Firefox 3 truly has the special sauce to send these numbers higher. At the very least, Mozilla's stunt put Firefox on the front pages of the NewYorkTime.com and BBC.co.uk.