Here you will find a more detailed version of the release notes for this version (changelog), although many more changes, fixes and improvements were made than the ones listed here as a result of the change to the Gecko engine version 20.
New/updated/changed major features:
- Per-window Private Browsing
You can find a good explanation of this new feature on Mozilla's website here.
- Panel-based download manager.
Following Firefox, Pale Moon 20 by default enables the panel-based download manager. Since you may not like either the downloads button feature or the actual panel display, they are configurable as follows:
If you prefer to use the classic download manager, you can do so from the status bar options:
Appmenu (Pale Moon button) -> Options -> Status bar options... -> Download -> "Use classic download window" (you may have to restart the browser after this change)
Note: You may lose your download history switching to the "classic" UI. There are also some potential cosmetic issues with the classic download manager window you may run into as it's not 100% supported anymore because of the "under the hood" changes to the way downloads are handled.
If the effects included with the downloads UI toolbar button cause issues (it will show an enlarged arrow fading towards the button when a download is started or finished, which may possibly cause slowdowns if your system can't use hardware acceleration in Pale Moon) you should remove the button from your navigation bar and instead use the status bar download indicator:
- Right-click a toolbar and select "Customize..."
- Drag the Download arrow button from your navigation bar to the customization window to remove it from the UI (this will appear as an arrow icon with "downloads" under it)
- Find the other down arrow with "Download status" under it and drag it down to the status bar (by default left of the progress meter, but anywhere you prefer)
- Close the customization window
- Go to Options -> Status bar options... -> Downloads and check "Always show the downloads indicator"
- Ability to close hanging plugins, without the browser hanging.
- Performance improvements related to common browser tasks.
- Pale Moon specific Cairo performance fix for scaling/panning/zooming of HTML5 drawing surfaces.
Current releases of Firefox have issues with particularly large drawing surfaces. Pale Moon implements a fix for this to prevent performance issues caused by this, which can be seen very clearly on e.g. the MSIE 10 Test Drive Chalkboard test (warning: trying to run this test in Mozilla Firefox will hang the browser and will take a very long time to finish.)
- Pale Moon specific fixes for performance of drawing elements (gradients, etc.).
A number of smaller fixes have been implemented to further reduce processor usage when drawing certain graphical elements.
- HTML5 canvas now supports blend modes.
- Various HTML5 audio and video improvements.
- Update of the Status Bar code to work with the new code base.
This includes adding the setting for switching back to the classic download manager, updates for CSS parser changes, and the default set of tools no longer including the download status in the status bar (since it's included in the downloads button in the main navigation bar), as well as detections of full-screen modes and adjusting controls as-appropriate. Many thanks to Sparky Bluefang for continuing to update and improve the underlying Status-4-Evar add-on code without which the Pale Moon status bar would have been a lot harder to implement and especially maintain.
- ECMAScript for XML (E4X) is kept available for add-ons. Note that this will be removed in future versions as E4X is obsolete.
Add-on users who still use this scripting technique are strongly urged to move to a different scripting technique, e.g. JXON or DOM-native. Please see the Mozilla E4X page for details about this issue. Firefox 20 already disables this feature, and from 21 onwards the code will be removed entirely because it is really obsolete.
- Developer tools have been enabled by default, considering the code is practically impactless unless actually used.
The Web Developer tools have been partially disabled for a long time in Pale Moon, with an initial intention to completely remove the code. Initially, these tools would cause extra load and could slow down the browser, but with the improvements made in the underlying code base (e.g. IonMonkey, memory handling) as well as improvements in the build method for Pale Moon, the developer tools are no longer causing issues when enabled. Please do note that these web developer tools are provided AS-IS, and if you have any particular functionality issues with these tools, you should talk to the Mozilla team or fellow devtools users on this forum. I will not touch the devtools code or provide support for it.
- Theming has been worked on to provide better contrast on glass/dark themes and to work around styling issues present in v19.
You will notice slightly colored, light icons on glass and dark themes, and the standard (previous) set of icons on light themes. HTTPS address bar shading (on by default) encompasses the entire address bar now. This shading may be a little less visible on dark themes or glass, but this will be improved in future versions of the browser.
- Updated fallback character sets to Windows-1252 to properly adhere to the Encoding Standard.
This change should prevent some "page flashes" on web pages specifying a specific character set in <meta> tags in the header.
- Restored legacy function key handling (uplifted from Firefox 22).
High-range function keys (F13-F24) should work properly again.
- Fixed UNC path handling (Chemspill Firefox 20.0.1).
Address bar/search box would not work for Windows users whose profile resides in a network share. and other related bugreports. bug #846848
- Always enable personas, also in Private Browsing mode.
Firefox will remove personas (lightweight themes) in Private Browsing windows. Pale Moon restores the use of personas in all windows - the browsing mode should not affect personalization/customization, especially when there are clear other indicators present about the browsing mode used.
- Experimental support for H.264 videos in HTML5.
This feature is experimental, has some known bugs, and may cause crashes or browser hangs, so is disabled by default. You have to manually enable it in about:config by setting the preference media.windows-media-foundation.enabled to true. This feature will only work on later Windows versions, likely only on Windows 7 and 8.
Security fixes relevant to Pale Moon:
- MFSA 2013-30 A fairly large number of memory safety hazards (crashes/corruption/injection).
- MFSA 2013-31 Out-of-bounds write in Cairo library (CVE-2013-0800)
- MFSA 2013-34 Privilege escalation through Mozilla Updater (CVE-2013-0797)
- MFSA 2013-36 Bypass of SOW protections allows cloning of protected nodes (CVE-2013-0795)
- MFSA 2013-37 Bypass of tab-modal dialog origin disclosure (structural fix)
- MFSA 2013-38 Cross-site scripting (XSS) using timed history navigations (CVE-2013-0793)
- MFSA 2013-39 Memory corruption while rendering grayscale PNG images (CVE-2013-0792)
- MFSA 2013-40 Crash fix: Out-of-bounds array read in CERT_DecodeCertPackage (CVE-2013-0791)