Mozilla, the folks behind the Firefox web browser, is currently working on getting rid of Direct3D 11 in favor of WebRender Engine in upcoming versions of Firefox, specifically versions 92 or 93. Additionally, once you’ve upgraded to version 93 of the web browser, just know you will not be able to go back.
Basic history of WebRender Engine
Back in the year 2019, Mozilla released the WebRender rendering engine in Firefox. The company included it as an option for anyone who wants to enable it via the Settings area. However, in the future, WebRender will become the default at the expense of Direct3D.
Mozilla moves to replace Direct3D with WebRender
Firefox in the future will no longer make use of Direct3D as Mozilla aims to replace it with the WebRender engine technology:
What is the WebRender rendering engine?
WebRender is a 2D rendering engine that takes advantage of your computer’s graphics card in a bid to accelerate the performance of the Firefox web browser. How it works is similar to the Direct3D engine, though it is better when working with OpenGL API.
The idea behind using WebRender is to improve the page load speed of Firefox. Furthermore, the entire browser should feel snappier when in general use. At the moment, we do not see any major downsides to the WebRender engine outside of weaker computer hardware.
Since the gradual rollout of the engine back in 2019 with Firefox 67, the folks at Mozilla have also released it on macOS in Firefox 87 and Linux systems in Firefox 91. In terms of Android, the version of Firefox for that platform won’t get the new engine until Firefox 92.
In just a small timeframe, then, Mozilla will have WebRender running on all platforms where Firefox is located, and that’s a good thing if you ask us.
No other option but WebRender
As we have mentioned before, Mozilla is planning to send Direct3D away and replace it with the new 2D engine. And you won’t be able to fall back because Firefox 93 aims to remove the gfx.webrender.force-legacy-layers preference.
The environment variable known as MOZ_WEBRENDER=0 is designed to help with rolling back, so as expected, Mozilla will have it removed as well.
When is Firefox 93 coming to Windows 11/10?
Unfortunately, we do not have that information. But we do know that plans are in place to release Firefox 92 in September of this year. Firefox 93 will come soon after.