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No, I not really want to compile Firefox from source, and I don't want to add any untrusted 3rd party repositories. Google tells me there aren't any solution for having a fresh version of Firefox on Scientific-Linux 6.1. Or are there any methods?

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Doesn't just going to the firefox website and downloading it work for you? If not, why not? – Mat Jan 4 '12 at 17:41
I need to update it later by hand, no? – LanceBaynes Jan 4 '12 at 17:50
All modern browsers do auto-updates (if you let them), AFAIK (Chrome & Firefox certainly do). – Mat Jan 4 '12 at 17:51
I switched from my distro's 3.6 firefox to running the upstream binary from mozilla.org out of my $HOME directory back at Firefox 5.0. It has updated itself this whole time up to 9.0 now without me needing to do anything besides agree to the update and restart FF when it does. – jw013 Jan 4 '12 at 19:29
up vote 2 down vote accepted

I am using firefox 9 on scientific linux without any headaches. Here is how:
Just go to this link to download the ff 9 for linux and extract the tar in /opt or any other directory. Now you can do one of the following (or both):

  1. Create an alias alias ff9='/opt/firefox/firefox' so that if you run ff9 you'll get firefox 9.
  2. (This is what I have done for me) Go to the panel, either the top one with menus or the bottom one with windows, and right click on it. Click "add to the panel" and then click "Add custom launcher" and configure it. Now you can launch ff9 from your panel icons.

Firefox does not require you to compile it. Just run binary and you are good to go. Since everything is there in /opt/firefox or whatever directory you choose, you system's environment is not messed up. All you need to do, if you want to uninstall, is remove firefox dir and delete the alias or/and launcher from panel.

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I will install ff to my user profile so it could update itself. – LanceBaynes Jan 5 '12 at 6:07

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