Several months ago I wrote an article about changing the default browser in Windows Vista Beta 2 and what a pain it was for anyone that had the User Account Control (UAC) enabled. While the purpose of the UAC is to protect the computer from hackers the simple task of modifying or installing something can be quite a pain. The concept of UAC is great, but I am still a little skeptical whether UAC will even help the inexperienced users that always click “OK” or “Continue” just to get the popup to disappear. At least Microsoft can say that they are doing their part.

At the time I was still learning Vista and wasn’t sure if this was some sort of bug in the operating system or if Mozilla had to fix Firefox (and the rest of their applications) in order to change the default program association. It is actually something that Mozilla has to handle themselves and they are working on making Firefox completely compatible with Windows Vista. The latest release, Firefox 2.0.0.1, fixes some of the compatibility issues that have existed, but there are still plenty that they need to conquer including setting the default browser. A comment in that bug report says:

We know it isn’t fixed yet. There is still lots more to be done. It is planned to be fixed for 2.0.0.2. Also, see bug 352420 for some of the additional bugs that need to be fixed.

While 20 bugs still need to be fixed the outlook does look positive since nearly 14 have been resolved (or supposedly resolved). Almost all of the bugs are due to the User Account Control “feature” which hopefully opens the eyes of other software development companies who are just sitting around hoping their software will work fine. I’m hoping that Firefox 2.0.0.2 ships in time for the January 30 release date of Vista, and as of right now it looks like both Firefox 1.5.0.10 and 2.0.0.2 are scheduled for “late January” so it might be close. I’ll cross my fingers and hope that I won’t have to hear the burning question “and why can’t I change my default browser?”