Why was the new 102 ESR Tor Browser release delayed?

According to Firefox Release Calendar - MozillaWiki there are no 91ESR release for this month. So why didn’t the new 102 ESR based Tor Browser hit the market at the release date of 9-20 of ESR 102.3?

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A) Tor Browser probably won’t be ready on the same day that the ESR releases. B) There are a lot of changes between major ESR versions, and it isn’t as simple as just taking all the Tor changes and dumping them on to a new version of FF. C) There may be other changes happening, not specific to ensuring Tor Browser runs on a new version of FF that blocks release.

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Hi @RendezvousPoint, in addition to what @HackerNCoder has said above (which is all correct), we do currently have a version of Tor Browser running Firefox ESR 102 in our Alpha release channel. Once it has undergone wider testing by our community Alpha testers, and the browser devs have finished their remaining ESR 102 related tasks, it will be released with Tor Browser 12.0.

In the interim, the browser devs will backport any important security fixes that are released to the ESR 91 based Tor Browser.

You can also track the remaining tickets that need to be resolved before a stable release can happen here:

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Thanks for your answers. The reason I asked is that TB stable releases were always ready when ESR jumps happened (at least in the last 8 years that I’ve been following the Tor project), so it was odd to see significant delays for the first time in this switch.

Tor Browser 11.0 (from last year) was released on Nov 8 (or at least the blog post was), Firefox ESR 91 had been released on 10th of August.

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The jump release of ESR 91 (when Mozilla no longer ships a version of ESR 78) was November 2. So it was only a 1 week delay.

That’s what matters since then the old ESR won’t have any security updates.

On this point – the devs will be cherry-picking CVE fixes when necessary until Tor Browser 12.0’s release.

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By the way using the alpha version now isn’t an option now for those seeking optimal privacy since it makes you stand out due to the different user agent Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 10.0; rv:102.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/102.0.

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Alpha is an unstable release channel intended for feedback and testing, so differences like this are to be expected. I would strongly recommend that Tor Browser users who are looking to safeguard their privacy use stable instead.


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