Let’s admit, the SSL warnings in Firefox 3.0 are a bit cumbersome. Normal “Joe Schmoe” users just don’t get it. As an example, my girlfriend came to me saying her webmail was broken, while it was just the SSL warning that was between her and her mail. Without my help, she would have just been grumpy, thinking i broke her mail again 😉

I was wondering what the guys over at Mozilla were doing to make the situation a bit more clear. Now that Firefox 3.1 beta2 has been out for a while, i thought i would give it a spin and check out if anything changed since 3.0 in the SSL warning dept.

When you visit an SSL enabled site for the first time, this is presented to you.

In my opinion, this is a step in the right direction, explaining what has happened in semi-bitesize chuncks of text instead of cramming everything in 1 big, daunting blob of text as in FF 3.0.

Firefox 3.1 - Initial SSL warning page

Clicking on “Technical Details” or “I understand the Risks” show more information about both topics.

I really hope this will be fully translated in the users’ language to lower the barrier even more.

Firefox 3.1 - Extended SSL view

This is pretty much the same dialog as was the case in Firefox 3.0.

Although now it seems to get the certificate automatically, making you click only on “Confirm Security Exception” to proceed to the page you intended to visit.

Firefox 3.1 - SSL Accept Exception

All in all this seems like a step in the right direction to make this more userfriendly for the big public!

As this is only the second beta, the screenshots above are subject to change by the time 3.1 final is released.