Since Wednesday, the Thunderbird 3.0 RC1 is available for download.
Stable and rich in new, this version would finally enable the software
messaging Mozilla out of anonymity.
Small brother of Firefox, Thunderbird has not met the same success. An
interface austere and competition from webmail (Gmail, Live Hotmail,
Yahoo Mail …) and software like Outlook and Outlook Express (Windows
Mail) has been a brake on its development. But the Mozilla Foundation
does not give up, and the release candidate (RC) 1 version 3.0 proves
that the publisher has turned a corner with a host of new features,
some of which are unpublished in the message.
Here are five good reasons to move to Thunderbird and few sources of regret that deserve to disappear in a future edition.
1. Settings simplified
For software installation (for Windows file weighs only 8.6 MB), we see
great progress. The assistants are clearer, integration with search in
Windows is proposed, and especially the accounts settings are
In fact, the software takes care of everything. Simply enter your email
address and password, and Thunderbird automatically takes care of
settings for incoming and outgoing servers. A system of indicators
(green, orange, red) tells you if the account has been detected or not.
Free and tested with Gmail, Imap protocol management was also improved,
with faster access to e-mail and synchronization performed in the
background. Finally, note the arrival of module activities, which
allows you to view the tasks being carried out by the software.
2. An ergonomic user-experience
The novelty seems trivial, but it is a first in this kind of software.
With Thunderbird, Mozilla includes a tab system, like in browsers. It
is very convenient to switch from one account to another. You can also
create a tab for specific folders. In practice, it is a real bonus, and
we imagine that the competition should not delay to offer a similar
system. Note that each e-mail also appears to open a new tab.
Note also, a new records management, with the possibility, in the
sidebar, move files to classic favorites or those containing e-mails
unread. Creating folders called "virtual" is done with a simple right
On the side of the toolbar, the Spam or Reply icons are now attached to each message and not the main program window.
3. Includes extensions similar to Firefox
As Firefox, Thunderbird can be improved and optimized with extensions,
which are grafted directly into the software. There are a lot, less
than Firefox, but some deserve to be installed. You will find on this
page a list of available extensions.
In this new version, we also note the arrival of a module to manage
installed themes, plug-ins and extensions. This is exactly same as in
Firefox. For now, few extensions are compatible with this version.
Those using the previous update could be disappointed during the update.
4. Find e-mails easily
The big difference compared to version 2, is that research is now
global. It is no longer done only in messages or in the contacts. Just
enter a few letters that Thunderbird is starting to show results.
Again, it’s very practical.
Another improvement is the presence of filters to refine the search by
sender or by keyword. Thunderbird will even offer access to
"statistics" and features that resemble those proposed by Xobni, an
add-on for Outlook.
5. Cleaning hard disk without losing anything important
To ensure that critical messages continue to clutter your inbox,
Thunderbird offers now archived. To do this, simply right click on a
message and then click the Check In command sufficient.
The message is not sent to the Recycle Bin, as one might think, but it
is archived in a special folder. It is available with the search
function. Gmail offers exactly the same device.
And some regrets
With this release, Mozilla aims to address both webmail and Outlook,
including in the workplace. Recognize that significant progress has
been made in terms of features and usability.
The general interface is not as attractive as that of Windows Live Mail
but as with Firefox, there are themes and extensions to customize it.
Even if this version is not finalized yet it must be remembered, we
believe, the fact remains that according to size remains absent.
Initially planned just to compete Outlook to manage calendar
appointments and other events is conspicuous by its absence.
It will then install the extension Lightning for profit, but for now, this add-on is not available for this version 3.0.