Now Available: Firefox 4 with WebGL on Ubuntu

Firefox 4 just came out, so people on Linux can use WebGL and the Google Body Browser now.

Ubuntu isn’t making Firefox 4.0 automatically available until 11.04 comes out. It is technically ready, it is just a management decision.

If you are an Ubuntu user you can install Firefox 4.0 and enable WebGL for the Google Body Browser via the following commands.

Make sure you have a copy of the file libOSMesa.so.6 installed in Ubuntu at the path /usr/lib/libOSMesa.so.6
If you don’t have a copy of this file in your Ubuntu installation, execute this command in a terminal ( Applications | Accessories | Terminal ) at the command prompt to install the file into Ubuntu:

sudo apt-get install libosmesa6

Install Firefox 4.0
To install Firefox 4.0 into Ubuntu execute the following commands in a terminal at a command prompt
( Applications | Accessories | Terminal )

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mozillateam/firefox-stable
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
sudo apt-get install firefox ubufox

Once Firefox 4.0 is installed, type about:config in your location bar in that web browser
search on “webgl”
set webgl.osmesalib to /usr/lib/libOSMesa.so.6
set webgl.disabled to false
set all of the other webgl variables to true

restart firefox

Enjoy the Google Body Browser !

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5 thoughts on “Now Available: Firefox 4 with WebGL on Ubuntu”

  1. Notice that hardware-accelerated WebGL is also available in Firefox 4. It’s enabled by default, but only the NVIDIA proprietary driver is whitelisted by default. Other drivers can be enabled by running firefox with the MOZ_GLX_IGNORE_BLACKLIST environment variable defined. For example, this command line:

    MOZ_GLX_IGNORE_BLACKLIST=1 ./firefox

    will work, assuming you don’t have a firefox already running.

    See:
    https://wiki.mozilla.org/index.php?title=Blocklisting/Blocked_Graphics_Drivers#On_X11

  2. Also, this:

    > set all of the other webgl variables to true

    is incredibly bad advice. Leave about:config preferences to their default state unless you have a specific reason to change them.

  3. Where do you enter the commands to get a copy of libOSMesa.so.6? Do you enter it in about:config?

  4. Hey spydude;

    Thanks for the useful question. Looking at my directions I saw that they were not clear in that regard. I have updated my directions. Please feel free to let me know if the directions still aren’t clear.

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