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The current browser support policy for Stack Exchange is to support Firefox 13-14. I noticed an issue on the ESR version of Firefox (10.0.4) bundled with Centos 6 (and therefore RHEL 6).

From the fan out on the question we see that IE7 appears to have been supported until sometime this year (presumably largely due to its prevalence on corporate desktops). Perhaps ESR versions of Firefox merit support for similar reasons.

The question is what the title says: Should Stack Exchange sites support ESR versions of Firefox?

As an example of why this might be desirable, I've been working as a contractor for a number of years and I've encountered more than one occasion where upgrading the browser was not an option, mainly due to incumbent 'no install' policies.

10.0.4 ESR is the vendor-supported browser on RHEL, so I could imagine a situation where policy requires the use of this browser. However, I don't know whether the there is a significant body of users that have this issue.

The next release of Firefox ESR is going to be version 17, due in Q4 of 2012.

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If the issue is just using Stack Overflow from a client site, you could install Firefox on a flash drive. –  Brad Mace Aug 11 '12 at 22:36
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@BradMace as I see it the issue is not whether technical workarounds are possible. Some sites prohibit that sort of thing through desktop usage policies, so working around it may not be feasible for other reasons. That's also the main scenario for users being stuck on IE7. –  ConcernedOfTunbridgeWells Aug 11 '12 at 22:40
    
Whatever hellacious place you work at with draconian rules of not allowing updating browsers can't be a concern of a web site owner. Those kind of rulez only ever move when the People In Charge get too many complaints. You do have to complain. But not here, find the PIC. They don't post here. –  Uphill Luge Aug 11 '12 at 23:10
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@UphillLuge - This is not an uncommon situation in companies in the finance or other highly regulated industries. For every developer who can get local admin rights signed off there are still 100's of spreadsheet jocks and data analysts who can't. Why should these people be second class citizens in the SE universe? –  ConcernedOfTunbridgeWells Aug 11 '12 at 23:57
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1 Answer

You're reading too much into that FAQ. That page is maintained and updated by the community, and is not intended to be an exhaustive list of browsers and versions that are or are not supported.

We're committed to supporting the current version and one previous major version of major browsers. We're not gonna actively break the sites on older versions or more obscure browsers, but chances are we aren't testing on them and won't devote much in the way of time or effort to fix problems that crop up in them.

You can still report bugs - maybe they're not limited to that version, or maybe someone else has found a work-around, or maybe it's just a really easy fix. But if a problem exists only in an old version, isn't affecting very many people, and can't easily be reproduced or tested here...

Well, you have our sympathy for being stuck using it.

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How do you define "major version"? Particularly of browsers like Chrome and Firefox that have "major versions" bimonthly or so. –  Nicol Bolas Aug 12 '12 at 4:02
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To make the point more obvious, the advent of Firefox ESR is to be a "major version" for the purposes of corporate level support. –  Charles Aug 12 '12 at 4:09
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@Shog9 - Should have made this clear - In this case I'm not stuck with it in this particular situation; in the original question I did note than I could update the browser. However I have been in situation where I've had to contend with 'no install' policies and antedelluvian versions of internet explorer, and I thought this question was worth raising with respect to extended support firefox builds as well.. –  ConcernedOfTunbridgeWells Aug 12 '12 at 7:13
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