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Mozilla Thunderbird 0.2 Released 431

An anonymous reader writes "Mozilla Thunderbird 0.2 is out! For those who haven't heard about it yet, Mozilla Thunderbird is's new standalone mail client and sister product to Mozilla Firebird. According to MozillaZine's article on the release, new features include 'a redesigned Options dialogue, spell checker improvements, enhancements to the default theme and better performance and stability'. More information can be found at the Mozilla Thunderbird Project Page and in the release notes (which include the important information that a clean install is vital). Builds are available for Windows (7.3Mb), Mac OS (11.1Mb) and Linux (9.5Mb) or you can download the source (29.1Mb) and build it yourself for extra geek points."
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Mozilla Thunderbird 0.2 Released

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  • Confused (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Thunderbird / Firebird?

    Why not pick a diffrent GMC product name just to confuse us!


    I don't enjoy this mental image of a drunk on the street with drinking from his paperbag while browsing the web.

  • by chrisgeleven ( 514645 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:41PM (#6865149) Homepage
    Exchange server support. Unfortunately I must use it at work and at school, which also means I must use Outlook.
    • Just ask the admin nicely to turn on pop3/IMAP support. Of course this doesn't solve the fact that there is no calendering support =(
    • by deek ( 22697 ) * on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:56PM (#6865244) Homepage Journal
      I second this, in a very big way. Proper exchange connectivity is the only thing that's preventing me from running Linux permanently at work.

      Sure, I can use the Ximian connector for Exchange, but I don't want to pay for something that I only use at work (and work will not pay for it, because they don't support Linux desktops). Plus, I don't think it supports full exchange functionality.

      IMAP doesn't cut it either. It'll allow me to view email on Exchange, but the contacts and appointments and tasks and mail filter aren't available.

      I really ought to try coding it myself. Just never enough hours in the week.
      • by Aadain2001 ( 684036 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @11:28PM (#6865774) Journal
        There's a reason it costs money: it is NOT an easy project! If it was something that just took some time, there would have been a plugin already. Also, it requires access to a working Exchange Server, which isn't exactly cheap or easy to get working in the first place.

        The better solution is to develope a sane, open protocol that ANY developer could use, including Microsoft. Then would could have all the alternative programs (you know, mostly OSS) start using it and to start pressuring for more interoperablility from MS. Yes, I know, that's a long shot. But if we do all the work for them, they are more inclined to use it. Anyway, that's my two cents.
      • by gad_zuki! ( 70830 ) on Thursday September 04, 2003 @05:14AM (#6866922)
        Okay, the connector is 69 dollars. [] Not cheap and not exactly expensive. You're living in a Microsoft world but you like Linux, why not just buy it? At one time in my life I had a nice foreign car and I had to pay extra for parts, labor, etc. To me it was an opportunity cost worth paying for. I didn't want another Chevy so I paid a little extra. In the long run it made me a bit happier and it was nice owning something somewhat rare/different.

        Just out of curioustiy: at what price-point will most people in your situation actually buy the dang thing? What if it was 29.99? How cheap are you?

        Or better yet why doesn't Ximian offer a student discount?

        It blows my mind that hard-core linux types will put 10 hours into figuring out some trivial problem but won't blow 70 dollars on a piece of software that will let them use Exchange.

        "So Ted, what did you do today?"

        "I wrote a script that gets my email from OWA 2000 and puts it in a comma deliminated file on one of my linux partitions. Then I wrote an app that will take this file and run a fake POP3 server for me to get the emails. Pretty good eh?"

        "How much time did you spend on this, Ted?"

        "I dunno, 3 or 4 hours."

        "Dont you bill $50 an hour."


        "Why dont you just buy the damn connector?"

        *long pause*

        "Cause Stallman says proprietary software is bad? Oh man, I need help."
        • It blows my mind that hard-core linux types will put 10 hours into figuring out some trivial problem but won't blow 70 dollars on a piece of software...

          Hackers highly value their problem solving abilities. The satisfaction of finding a solution far outways the simplicity of buy it. It's just a matter of what's more valuable to a person, having a solution or building it.
          • I guess the real issue is not why someone would choose to write it them self. I think we all know why. The complaint is why complain about how much a $69 piece of software costs? That is not that much more than a videogame or a nice dinner. It is about choice. If you want to write a program and give it away then more power to you. If you want to write and sell the a program then also more power to you. If you want to complain that someone else wants to get paid for a program they wrote then write it yoursel
    • by zakezuke ( 229119 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:01PM (#6865275)
      Exchange server offers a nice web based system for e-mail, ok perhaps nice is too strong a word.

      Exchange server offers web based e-mail.

      Unfortunatly, both Exchange protocal and Mapi are closed protocals that require a license to implement presently from microsoft. This is not to say I wouldn't use a 3rd party generated exchange complient software, only that microsoft has teenage mutent ninga lawyers defending their protocals.

      But try pop3 or imap, Exchange server usually includes both those standards as well unless the admin has disabled them some some ungodly reason.
  • by Luigi30 ( 656867 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:42PM (#6865158)
    SCO is suing Mozilla for making stuff on Linux. And Ford is suing Mozilla for using the word Thunderbird. And I'm being sued for not being funny.
  • by n0nsensical ( 633430 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:42PM (#6865160)
    English []
    Norwegian []
    It's from Norway, it must be good.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:45PM (#6865180)
    Check out the unofficial processor optimized builds [], available in a variety of flavors.
  • by grasshoppa ( 657393 ) <skennedy@AAAtpno ... inus threevowels> on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:47PM (#6865189) Homepage
    ...but I still don't have any friends. :( ( no emails magically appeared )
    • by Timesprout ( 579035 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:20PM (#6865383)
      Add a Hotmail account and you will suddenly find your popularity with sex crazed nymphettes has increased tremendously.
      • Re:I upgraded... (Score:3, Informative)

        by anethema ( 99553 )
        It's actually funny. Recently hotmail seems to have improved their junk mail by 100x. I am getting no more junk mails in my inbox, and no more false positives in the junk mail folder.

        Something really changed I think. Before most of the junk mail was going to my inbox, and usually one or two junk mails, plus a false positive were in the junk mail box.

        Don't know what you did but thanks hotmail.
  • Moz 0.2 (Score:5, Informative)

    by OverlordQ ( 264228 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:49PM (#6865196) Journal
    Been running it for a good hour or so now, and I must say it DOES start-up alot quicker then 0.1 and it seems to be alot more stable as well. The update was easy (unzipping a folder yay) and everything seems to be working as well if not better then before. Kudos Moz :)
  • by blogologue ( 681423 ) * on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:49PM (#6865201) Homepage
    We're running a series of Thunderbird articles [], the latest article explains how to migrate from other clients []. Send this link to your friends!
  • When... (Score:4, Funny)

    by jabbadabbadoo ( 599681 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:50PM (#6865208)
    ...will Mozilla Taurus be released?
  • Speed (Score:5, Interesting)

    by miradu2000 ( 196048 ) * on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:54PM (#6865229) Homepage
    While I love the idea of ridding my windows desktop from any microsoft software other than what is required (windows), Thunderbird needs to majorly work on it's speed before it is of any use to me. I use a 500 mhz k6-2 with 512 MB ram, and often I can't type an email message because the program is so slow. However, it deals with IMAP much better than outlook- which makes my life much easier. Plus I can match skins to firebird!
    • With this release (0.2), I have no typing speed/latency issues. The box is not that great, either -- an Athlon 1.533 with 256 MB. Maybe the difference could be explained by the fact that I compose all mail as text. If you use HTML, (1) a pox on you, and (2) try disabling that -- I'm genuinely curious to see if that makes a speed difference.

      Mozilla's embedded mail client, even the latest version, has major issues... the message display pane likes to go apeshit. There's a bugzilla thread, in which the de
  • by Henry V .009 ( 518000 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:55PM (#6865241) Journal
    Anybody have a hotmail account hack for this yet?
  • by revividus ( 643168 ) <> on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:57PM (#6865249) Homepage
    I haven't seen it referenced in the moz dev plan, but does anyone know if there are plans to make the HTML Composer in Mozilla into a stand-alone app? Or the IRC client?

    They could call them, oh, I don't know, Hummingbird and Lovebird.

  • Alright (Score:5, Insightful)

    by focitrixilous P ( 690813 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @09:59PM (#6865263) Journal
    With Microsoft confused as to the devlopment state of Outlook Express [], This could be a golden oppertunity for the open source community to gain a significant foothold, because Microsoft might finally be fixing their bugs. I know it sounds crazy, but why else would they push everything back so far?
  • by Mister Black ( 265849 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:00PM (#6865271)
    Bah! Let me know when Mozilla Mad Dog or Mozilla Night Train Express are released.
  • by altp ( 108775 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:08PM (#6865308) Homepage
    ... If there is an improvment with imap accounts. Is there a setting to check all imap folders, what doesn't cause it to error on folders that cannot contain mail?

    Does it handle gpg any better than it did before? Evolution users couldn't verify messages signed with thunderbird perviously.
    • by seaton carew ( 593626 ) on Thursday September 04, 2003 @04:58AM (#6866886)
      Is there a setting to check all imap folders

      Why yes. Yes, there is!
      Just put this in your user.js file in the profile folder:

      // Check for new mail in ALL imap folders
      user_pref("mail.check_all_imap_folders_for_new", true);

      Note that the prefs file can be tricky to find. On XP, it's usually in
      C:\Documents and Settings\%username%\Application Data\Thunderbird\Profiles\default\%random%.slt
      Information for other operating systems here []
      Remember to quit Thunderbird first, otherwise it'll overwrite your changes.

  • I'm all for .. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by SirSlud ( 67381 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:08PM (#6865310) Homepage
    .. the lack of Outlook Express for free.

    Its the killer net-wired computer app, and Microsoft is taking away the free treat. Interesting to see what happens with Mozilla's email client.

    I wonder what Eudora Lite is like these days? ;)
  • Quick, tiny review (Score:5, Informative)

    by rnelsonee ( 98732 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:08PM (#6865311)
    I just wanted to pipe in. I'm a Windows user (I know, kill me), but like most people on this site, I hate Outlook and Outlook Express. Vehemently. So I've been using Netscape 4.x's aging email client, Communicator. This post is geared for those who are still using it. Since Thunderbird is by the Mozilla folk, it behaves and looks a lot like Communicator. So if you're using Communicator but hate the fact that a) it can't render some HTML email that your stupid drone friends sends you, and b) all links open in Netscape 4.x, which is almost archaic now, I'd suggest you download Thunderbird and give it a try. You'll be able to import you Address Book and old emails/folders. Not your mail filters though, which pissed me off at first. So I re-did several hundred of them. But then I found Thunderbird's great junk-mail filter. It works great. The other neat-o factor is that you can apply filters to flag messages as Personal/Work/Whatever, and it color codes the emails! Very cool. Anywho, if you like Communicator, try Thunderbird. Especially as it gets more stable...
  • by Quarters ( 18322 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:09PM (#6865313)
    running around going, "THE NEW PHONEBOOKS ARE HERE!! THE NEW PHONEBOOKS ARE HERE!!" whenever I see someone make an excited news post about a 0.1 rev to a *mail client*?
  • GPG Support (Score:3, Interesting)

    by danielrm26 ( 567852 ) * on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:09PM (#6865322) Homepage
    I just hope the GPG support stays solid and consistent. I am about to try and upgrade here both on a Linux and XP system and I am praying that we won't be burdened with enigmail problems.

    If this client stays as solid as it seems to be, and is able to maintain good GPG support, I think I am going to be *very* pleased.
  • by abischof ( 255 ) * <> on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:09PM (#6865323) Homepage

    I'm trying to switch over from Mozilla to Firebird and Thunderbird, but I've run into a few niggles. On the Thunderbird side, for instance, is there any way to open links in a new Firebird tab? In Mozilla's MailNews, I like being able to middle-click to open URLs in a new browser tab :).

    And, on the Firebird side, is there a way to turn on inline-autocomplete for the URL bar? (If you're not familiar with inline-autocomplete, it's when the top-match dynamically appears in the URL bar as you type.)

    Other than that, I'm also looking for a DOM Inspector extension for Firebird as well. Yeah, there are some one-off XPIs [] to get the DOM Inspector in Firebird, but I'm concerned that they may not be actively developed. For instance, if the Firebird extensions API changes, I'm not sure if someone would step up to release a new DOM Inspector XPI :-/.

    • There's a pref in Firebird to not reuse existing windows for external links. I don't remember the pref at the moment, I saw it in somebody's blog recently, but I'm too lazy to look it up. It's there, you just gotta find it... I'm sure you're familiar with about:config.

    • I'm trying to switch over from Mozilla to Firebird and Thunderbird, but I've run into a few niggles. On the Thunderbird side, for instance, is there any way to open links in a new Firebird tab? In Mozilla's MailNews, I like being able to middle-click to open URLs in a new browser tab :).

      You can always drag'n'drop onto the tab area...
    • by joshwa ( 24288 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @11:42PM (#6865846) Homepage Journal
      You need an Firebird extension -- Tab Browser Extension [] -- which sometimes works on its own, and sometimes needs help from the registry (this is a win32 problem only, AFAIK).

      Related mozilla bug is here: (copy & paste into new tab/window; bugzilla rejects slashdot referrers)

      Inline autocomplete-- go to chrome://communicator/content/pref/pref.xul in Firebird (copy the location as above). Go to Navigator > Smart Browsing > Location Bar Autocomplete. Sorry, I don't remember the value of the actual pref in prefs.js.
  • Why? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Timesprout ( 579035 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:11PM (#6865333)
    Why were they not a bit more aggresive with version numbers ? Its not like its a totally new code base so I'm wondering why they did not start at .4 or higher and work towards version parity (hopefully a 1.0 release in the very very near future) with Firebird so the Mozilla tools can be offered as a suite rather than a hodgepodge of different versions. I ask because telling your PHB you want to run 0.2 software in many cases is like telling him you have volunteered his services for clinical trials of a new protological device. Not something hes going to be happy about.
  • Memory Footprint? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by mhlandrydotnet ( 677863 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:16PM (#6865361)
    Does anyone know if the memory footprint has improved? It is the only thing keeping me from switching from OE (which has about 1/3 memory footprint) and the memory footprint section has not been updated on their web site.
    • Re:Memory Footprint? (Score:2, Informative)

      by JPrice ( 181921 )
      Well, for what it's worth, Thunderbird is currently taking up about 15 megs of ram on my W2K box, though I think part of it may depend on things like how much mail is in the currently active folder.

      I just started up OE (having never used it before) and it clocked in at about 12 megs.
  • Two questions (Score:3, Interesting)

    by helix400 ( 558178 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:17PM (#6865367) Journal
    1) Is it possible to upgrade your existing Thunderbird 0.1 settings into 0.2? I know Thunderbird is not an installer, its just an unzip and go application. So I worry about upgrading.

    2) Does Thunderbird bounce mail? Unfortunately, I have no clue what bouncing mail means, although it has something to do with stopping spam with SpamAssassin. My brother says he'll only switch from Eudora as soon as it can bounce email.
    • Re:Two questions (Score:5, Informative)

      by JPrice ( 181921 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:43PM (#6865515) Homepage
      With regard to your first question, Thunderbird keeps your mail folders/preferences separate from its installation directory. To install Tb0.2 you just need to delete your existing Thunderbird directory and put the new one in it's place. You can check out the installation instructions here [].

      With regards to your second question, generally speaking "bouncing" is something that only mail servers can do. What Thunderbird can do is identify spam and filter it to a "Junk" folder (or just delete it right away).
      • "generally speaking "bouncing" is something that only mail servers can do"

        I was bouncing messages in Pine last decade. I don't see why a client can't bounce it - it should just add itself to the envelope as one of the hops the message relayed through.
    • Re:Two questions (Score:2, Informative)

      by SmartSsa ( 19152 )
      bouncing mail from an email client is useless in the war against spam (it's only effective on real mailing lists, but mostly annoying anyways)... bouncing mail from a server is mostly useless too considering most spam lists ignore bounces or don't even accept smtp connections.

      the only real way is to reject during transmission, and that's a server side config.

      I've been using mozilla 1.5a for a while, and thunderbird 0.2a (time to upgrade! woot) and both of them are very good with their adaptive junkmail f
  • Long term plans? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Malc ( 1751 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:28PM (#6865427)
    Maybe I didn't read the roadmap thoroughly enough, but I can't see the long term plans for this. I switched my mail and news from Netscape 4.8 to Mozilla 1.4. So far it's been reasonable, even though there are some quirks, sluggishness and some rather obtuse UI choices. Mail in Mozilla 1.4 has finally reached a level that is good enough for my full time use. I would really love to get away from the integrated monolithic process of Mozilla 1.4, but when it comes to email, I'm very conservative about trying software before it's ready.

    When is this supposed to be ready? What is the long term plan for version 1.0? Does anybody have a clue, or will it follow after Debian and release when it's ready? The Mozilla Foundation is very different to Debian, and I think they need to provide more foresight. How long do people foresee it being until they spin off a stable branch meant as a replacement to for Mail/News in Mozilla 1.4? Anpther year?
    • Re:Long term plans? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by snilloc ( 470200 )
      Most clients have an option to leave the email on the server, so a conservative person could try a new client with that setting and continue to download email with both clients.

      Sending mail might require you to cc/bcc yourself if you usually save outgoing messages too. A bit of a PITA, but it would reduce any risk in experimenting with new email clients.

  • by MSBob ( 307239 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @10:46PM (#6865534)
    Why can't Thunderbird deal with multipart attachments? Forte can, Outlook Express can and Thunderbird/Mozilla News seem to be the only mainstream newsreaders that cannot. I think this should be high on their agenda. Remember, pr0n friendliness always helps higher download rates.
  • Try Extensions (Score:4, Informative)

    by bstadil ( 7110 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @11:03PM (#6865638) Homepage
    Try some of the Extensions [] after installation. I personally love the QuickReply program.

    Just type response in a little box below the message and hit enter. Jobs done!.

  • by catbutt ( 469582 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @11:05PM (#6865651)
    ...but it seems that two major things are missing, if I am going to be able to keep my mail organized.

    1) filtering (to folders) outgoing messages. I want all messages from OR TO certain people to automatically go into my, say, "work" folder.

    2) sorting messages by "the other party", whether sender or reciever. In Eudora its just called "who". Within my, say, "work" folder, I might want to find all correspondance with, say, Bob. I don't want to first sort by sender, then the recipient. I want to see them all Bob messages, together.

    I moved from Outlook Express to Eudora years ago because it didn't have these essential features....please tell me thunderbird has them somewhere but I'm just not seeing them.
  • by Enzo1977 ( 112600 ) on Wednesday September 03, 2003 @11:05PM (#6865655)
    Why is it so difficult to get Thunderbird to import an entire address book from the Palm Desktop? Do I really have to be bothered to export every single name in my Palm address book to a Vcard or Address Archive, and then import them individually into Thunderbird? The day Thunderbird can import my entire palm address book will prove to me its effectiveness over any previous mozilla/netscape mail client I've used in the past. Has anyone else tried this process? Ever notice how the values get jumbled? Mr. A's phone numbers are showing up in the home address line, Mr X's E-mail address appears in the work phone line, etc. Its such an inconvenience it would be more effective if I just manually entered each address, but I won't, and I refuse to, because I own a computer, and not a rolodex that I have to fill out by hand.
  • by SilentMajority ( 674573 ) on Thursday September 04, 2003 @12:47AM (#6866117) Homepage
    Anyone notice the difference in memory usage between running Thunderbird 0.2 + Firebird 0.6.1 vs Mozilla 1.4 on Windows?

  • by symbolic ( 11752 ) on Thursday September 04, 2003 @12:52AM (#6866128)
    I've used Mozilla primarily on the Mac (OS 9), and one thing I've NEVER understood is why Mozilla, at its worst, eats up about 137+ MB of RAM. This is unacceptable. I suspect that much of it has to do with the growing amount of E-mail that i've collected in to various folders, but there has to be a better way.

    I've been wondering if piping all the email to a true database engine wouldn't be an interesting option for those that want to endure the process of setting it up. MySQL is fast, lean, and I'm guessing that the initial load time when opening the e-mail client might be cut substantially.
  • Why is it so big? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by 68k geek ( 573999 ) on Thursday September 04, 2003 @05:11AM (#6866918) Journal
    Why the helll does an email client weight 7-11 MB? I really don't see what kind of functionality it has that requires it to be more then a few 100's of kilos big (not to say 10's of kilos).
  • by Likes Microsoft ( 662147 ) on Thursday September 04, 2003 @06:56AM (#6867208) Homepage

    I'm already a fan of Firebird. Maybe someone here could answer a question I couldn't find in the FAQ. Can I use Mozilla Mail or Thunderbird to access my Outlook *.pst file to use my stored e-mail addresses (which I keep synced with my palm pilot through Outlook)? I would happily switch over if it did that.

    If not, maybe this is a plugin worth making. It would ease the transition of many current Outlook users. Oh, and please don't tell me I can import the addresses. That's no use to me if I can't keep things synchronized with my palm pilot.

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