Deploying Firefox in an enterprise environment

This page provides an overview of using Firefox in an enterprise environment. If you have questions, the best place to start is by subscribing to the Mozilla Enterprise Working Group mailing list.

If you'd like to be informed of the latest developments and work being done on Firefox for enterprise environments, see Firefox Quantum for Enterprise.

Note: This article covers Firefox version 60 and above. To deploy for enterprise environments in Firefox 59 or below, see this page.

Policy Manager

Firefox 60 introduced the new policy manager. The policy manager is a component in Firefox that reads policies during startup and configures the browser to respect those policies. The engine is written to allow support for a variety of methods to specify the policies. At this time, Firefox supports two methods for specifying policies:

In the future, we hope to add support for other platform-specific policy implementations.

The policies themselves are a work in progress and we are continuing to add support for new ones. You can keep up with the current policy work at in the Mozilla Policy Templates GitHub repository This repository contains the Windows ADMX templates as well as documentation for how to specify each policy in the JSON file.

Choosing a Firefox update channel

We currently offer two paths for Firefox updates: rapid release and extended support release (ESR). The rapid release is updated every six weeks whereas the extended support release is updated every on average every 42 weeks. We recommend using the rapid release if you can. The extended support release is intended for organizations that extensively test each browser release against internally-developed web apps. The one other significant difference between the rapid release and the ESR from an enterprise perspective is that a few policies are only available on the ESR. These include policies that change the homepage, manipulate search engines, and disable updates. Note that both versions receive regular security updates.

The default installers we make available for Windows are stub installers that download the needed files. For deployment, you'll probably want a full installer. You can download full installers for the rapid release here. You can download full installers for the extended support release here.

Working with the Firefox installer on Windows

Our Windows installers are self extracting executables. They can be installed silently with the "-ms" flag on the command line. If you want to customize other aspects of the install, you can use an INI file. More information is available here.

Configuring Firefox

Starting with Firefox 60, the best way to configure Firefox is with the new policy manager. On Windows, you can use the ADMX templates we provide on GitHub. For other platforms (and Windows if you can't use GPO) you can create a file called policies.json and place it in the distribution directory.

As a simple example, we can create a policy that disables access to about:config:

{
  "policies": {
    "BlockAboutConfig": true
}

Information about the supported policies can be found in the README in the GitHub repository.

AutoConfig

If you discover that you must change preferences that are not available via the policy manager, you can use AutoConfig.

Customizing the Windows Installer

There might be cases where you need to add files or extensions to the Windows installer. Here are the steps to follow.

  1. Unzip the installer using 7-Zip.
  2. Make any changes you need, including putting policies.json in the distribution directory or placing extensions into distribution/extensions.
  3. Repackage all of the install files with this command: 7z a -r -t7z app.7z -mx -m0=BCJ2 -m1=LZMA:d24 -m2=LZMA:d19 -m3=LZMA:d19 -mb0:1 -mb0s1:2 -mb0s2:3
  4. Download the following files from the Firefox source tree: 7zSD.sfx app.tag
  5. Concatenate the files to create the installer. copy /B 7zSD.sfx+app.tag+app.7z our_new_installer.exe. Don't forget the /B  flag. It tells copy that these are binary files so it doesn’t add extra characters to the files.

Document Tags and Contributors

 Contributors to this page: FliegendeWurst, Sheppy, Conan1989, MKaply
 Last updated by: FliegendeWurst,