Linux Step By Steps

Installing Mozilla Firebird
Written by Collins Richey on 2003-May-17

MozillaFirebird 0.6 (previously Phoenix) is the latest incarnation of the browser-only branch of Mozilla, and Mozilla has stated that this will become the Mozilla Browser.

Here's a brief HOWTO for installing the binary packages. (You want the binary packages if you hope to use Mozilla compatible plugins)

1) Go to and get the 0.6 release or google for the location of the "almost" nightly CVS builds.

2) Unpack the source (tar xvzf thebuildtarball) under your favorite directory (/opt is a good choice). This will give you /opt/MozillaFirebird.

3) Add the following script to /usr/local/bin or some suitable directory and make it executable (chmod 755 mozfb). Original script for Phoenix by Dhruba Bandopadhyay <>. I've named mine 'mozfb'.

export MOZILLA_FIVE_HOME="/opt/MozillaFirebird"
# Seems like pidof resides in /sbin on some boxes
# Modifying the PATH to reflect that
if [ -z "`pidof MozillaFirebird-bin`" ]; then
# No MozillaFirebird running
${MOZILLA_PATH}/MozillaFirebird $@
# MozillaFirebird running - open a new tab/window
${MOZILLA_PATH}/MozillaFirebird -remote "openURL($@ ,new-tab)"
# or if you prefer use "...,new-window)"

4) Update your mailer preferences (ex. Sylpheed -> Other - > "mozfb %s") and/or your window manager menus to invoke 'mozfb'.

5) Copy your mozilla plugins or create symlinks under /opt/MozillaFirebird/plugins. You can do this while the browser is running. My directory looks like this:

-rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 856 May 17 20:17 flashplayer.xpt
lrwxr-xr-x 1 root root 62 May 17 20:18 -> /opt/blackdown-jre-1.4.1/plugin/i386/mozilla/
-rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 1464736 May 17 20:18
-rwxrwxr-x 1 8482 8482 19856 May 16 17:45
lrwxr-xr-x 1 root root 44 May 17 20:20 -> /usr/lib/nsbrowser/plugins/
lrwxr-xr-x 1 root root 42 May 17 20:22 -> /opt/Acrobat5/Browsers/intellinux/
lrwxr-xr-x 1 root root 32 May 17 20:20 -> /opt/netscape/plugins/
-rwrr-xr-x 1 root root 24 May 17 20:21 -> /opt/RealPlayer8/

6) MozillaFirebird "seems" to use the ~/.phoenix directory. I couldn't get the procedure warning about creating a new profile to work ("seems" to be a Windows procedure), and my existing Phoenix setup works without a hitch, but I'm prepared to preserve my bookmarks and to trash the ~/.phoenix directory, if problems arise.