Strategy on converting people to Nightly users

I’d love to hear more about your strategy on making people using Firefox Nightly. How do you approach people? What is your top 1 advantage you advertise?

I’ve found it quite hard to convince somebody who is on the Release channel to switch to Nightly, however I’ve converted some friends of mine to use Nightly as well as some who have been using DevEdition. All of these people are quite technical users though.

Would love to hear your approaches :slight_smile:


For the Italian community we are working on a campaign of 2 weeks for October and use the Linux Day (open source event) in all the country to promote Nightly.
To people when we talk to people that want to try new features we suggest it of course, also we are promoting on our social channels the Nightly, Photon, Quantum weekly updates.
Also we ask to our mozillians to use it also to help in translation and ahelp the project.
For non-mozillians we say that is an easy way to contribute using the last features and there are less crash then before.

Thanks for starting that thread :slight_smile:

In our French-speaking community we are lucky to have a strong involvement of our core Mozilla community around Nightly. This does of course help a lot converting users!

I think the message that resonates best with people outside of our community is that by using Nightly, thanks to the telemetry and their crash reports, they can be involved in Mozilla and help us build a better Firefox without any involvement apart from using it. A lot of people would like to get involved in Mozilla in some way but can’t find the time to actually get involved, therefore explaining them that just by the use of Firefox Nightly with telemetry on, they help Mozilla is a message very well received.

If you want to convince power users more interested in features than helping Mozilla, the key features that seem to resonnate seem to be:

  • Containers: being able to use several twitter/gmail/facebook instances in the same window is a great feature
  • Improved performances in general that make us generally comparable with Chrome, this is a good argument for people that switched to Chrome because of performances but actually would prefer to use Firefox if it were fast enough
  • Being able to see the work on Quantum/Photon landing in real time, this is something that works best with people that follow Firefox development

In terms of community activities and word of mouth, our Twitter accounts localize all the relevant news from the @FirefoxNightly account so as that they reach a French-speaking audience. We wrote blog articles about Nightly and we also talk about Nightly in the events we participate in.

It’s worth noting that all of our community communication is targetting power users that are not mozillians. For example we had several workshops and presentations at open source events which are not Mozilla related (Ubuntu Party in Paris, Journées du Logicel Lybre in Lyon, Capitale du Libre in Toulouse, Paris Open Source Summit, Drupal meetup…).

It seems easier to convince people that use Chrome to switch to Firefox Nightly than it is to convince Firefox users (except our core community members) to switch to Nightly. My guess is that today our user base which didn’t switch to Chrome didn’t partly because they are conservative and don’t want to change their workflow because it works.

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I have converted a couple of people to Nightly, both at MozFest last year.

The first was a fellow volunteer after a pre-event briefing session sat outside a nice pub in Southwark. (The beer was okay, but was subject to the Southwark beer price multiplier…). We were having a general conversation about Mozilla, and I mentioned that i had side loaded Android Nightly onto my phone. They had not realised that there was a Nightly variant of Fennec available, and has since installed (and enjoys using) Nightly on their phone.

The second was a visitor to MozFest. I had explained the cool “make a desktop from the Nightly page” activity, and they were keen to try. I took the opportunity to explain how useful Nightly is to Mozilla and how it enables people to see features before anyone else. They sounded impressed!

I would never look for force Nightly on anyone, and it would be wrong to completely downplay the sometimes interesting user experience, but there are lots of positives to getting knowledgeable users on the Nightly platform.

As someone that doesn’t really like using nightly, noting specific features that are currently in nightly but not in stable annoys me.

privacy.trackingprotection.ui.enabled = true has been left hanging in nightly for probably over at least 2 years. Personally, when it first came out on stable for Private Browsing I was like "so… I assumed Private Browsing, by definition, was already protecting my privacy. Well, it did, but just in case someone else at my computer wanted to see what I was up to. Still didn’t cover the external threat. But now it does a little bit of external tracking protection- which, to be honest, feels lame. basic list is like 30 tracking sites whereas there are thousands in existence.

privacy.resistFingerprinting has lingered in nightly for over a year and encompasses some bugs left unresolved for over 7 years.

It makes me leave feeling that some development gets stuck.

I am a dev edition user that is thinking of switching to nightly. For me the switch is a mix between wanting to see new feature Mozilla is coming out with and also I want to help in any way I can.


Right now, we can use all the help we get testing Nightly. As Firefox 57 is coming with Quantum and Photon, every pair of eyes is important. :slight_smile:

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Unfortunately, I had to stop using Nightly as my main browser because I kept on running into a particular bug in almost every browser session, requiring either contortions, or adding a legacy extension as a work-around, or launching another browser. :frowning:

Edited on 14-Jul-2017 to add the following:

While there is no indication on the bug report that any work was done, I am now viewing mixed display content, so I am back on Nightly.

Have you filed a bug?

nevermind, not enough coffee this morning, I missed the link to your bug :slight_smile:

What will help here is the new Activate Mozilla activity we just launched:

Might be interesting to ask the other way around: “What stops you from approaching people to use Nightly? What’s your no 1 reason?”

Hmm, you’re not asking and I really do not want to derail this thread, but I think it is connected… I’d propose Nightly to many of my fellow developers but the number one show stopper is that you cannot easily switch between Nightly and Firefox. Most people would be willing to give a quick try (and some might stick) but it is rare that interested people have a full commitment at the beginning.

And the steps at are just so much more like “hey, do the step-by-step-setup” instead of just saying “hey, give Nightly a try”

Relevant reports


DevEdition has a separate profile by default. It would be cool for Nightly to have one also.

Maybe a good place to post this thread is on the Mozilla Clubs Facebook Group, to get involvement form the Club Captains.

Sorry let me clarify, I mean to say that other potential users can be found within other communities or Mozilla itself.

As an example I talk more about Firefox and other browsers with my friends and family in person over discussing them on a forum. Initially though I learn about it from a thread such as this one or another online source. I get the most success in communicating any ideas and projects by attending events and talking with people I get introduced to from a friend. It’s always amazing to me that people usually know about Firefox but don’t know about the other projects and products from Mozilla.

Local places or places where you can reach them are good sources of potential Nightly Users, word to mouth and other communication methods go around an area and eventually reach the right people.

~ Steve

I may sound pretty naive. But we do we even want people to start using nightly at the first place? Why do we want normal users to switch from release channel again?

I don’t know where you get the idea that we want people on the release channel to move to nightly, we don’t :slight_smile:

We want the more technical crowd to use Nightly and that doesn’t mean they are Firefox users at all.

Here in the very first post I got that idea.

So I am going to be very clear about it.

We don’t want to have normal end-users on Nightly, this is alpha software, we want people confortable with this.

The power users that would use Release and want to help Mozilla by becoming contributors to the Mozilla project are welcome. We want the tech-savvy crowd that love Mozilla, we want the people that love to test alpha software and are curious about our November release, we want the people that can report actionable bugs to our developers :slight_smile:

Also, the people we want on Nightly don’t have to be Firefox users at all, they can be Chrome users for example.


I think it might be also worth looking at how other projects do it, e.g. VS Code and their Insiders build. Number 1 reason: Trying out new (one has been waiting for) features. This also holds true for Firefox with Quantum and Photon. It’s exciting times(!). I guess everybody who has just once tried Servo might as well be willing to try Nightly… And I guess many such arguments are following, e.g. autofill

I guess the techsavvy blogs like “These weeks in Firefox” or the make good previews about upcoming features…

I think it’s unfair to ask people to switch from Stable to Nightly since I didn’t do the switch either. I switched from Stable to DevEdition since DevEdition had e10s, better branding than Beta or stable and I was not afraid it would break during a presentation. After a few months of DevEdition I decided to switch to NIghtly since there were all sorts of news with Nightly specific stuff (now Stylo and Photon are two good reasons to try out NIghlty).

I usually tell people to try DevEdition. After a few months I ask them how it went. If they tell me it is rock solid then I tell them I have a stronger drug if they want a bigger rush: Nightly :smiley:

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