Mozilla Thunderbird is basically an e-mail client but it also integrates other functions. As this application has progressed through versions, it has been evolving into an all-in-one communication client. The installation is seamless and soon the program will be running on your computer. An important part of every e-mail client is of course adding accounts. I was really surprised to see how easy I was able to add my Gmail account: Mozilla Thunderbird only required me to enter my e-mail address and password, and it took care of the rest. Then, it let me choose a protocol from IMAP or POP3. If you do not have an e-mail account, you can create a new one directly from Thunderbird, just by providing a few data.
Its interface is not very different from that of Microsoft Outlook, which eases the transition for those users who would prefer to switch e-mail clients. However, there are some differences. Thunderbird’s interface is based on tabs, which are used to open messages or other services. So, in relation to the management of e-mail messages, it is very similar to Yahoo Mail’s interface, and not very different from a tabbed browser. If you do not like the default interface, you can easily change this program’s appearance by using the available skins.
If you add more than one e-mail account, it will separate sets of folders for each of them. This is very convenient when you are using several e-mail addresses for different purposes, as for example, a personal address and a business address. This way, you can keep the information compartmentalized.
The program is very fast and it only takes a few seconds to open and be fully functional. In addition, it is said to be more secure than Microsoft´s client. It also has a powerful e-mail filtering engine, which “learns” how to deal with junk messages from your actions. What is more, it supports extensions to add new features.
In order to overcome the limitations imposed by many e-mail service providers that do not accept large attachments, there is Thunderbird Filelink. This solution can upload your attachments to an online storage service and send the recipient a link to the upload file instead of the real attachment. One thing that I really liked about Thunderbird is the chat functionality. This means that you can add as multiple instant-messaging accounts to chat with your friends without leaving Thunderbird. One thing you might be missing if you abandon Outlook is the planner. Apparently, Thunderbird does not allow such things as keeping a calendar and a to-do list.
In general, Mozilla Thunderbird is an excellent application. I know that many users may put some resistance to change, but believe Thunderbird really deserves a try.
- It is easy to use
- Setting an account is very easy
- It allows using multiple accounts
- It allows using extensions
- It lets you add instant messaging accounts
- It is free
- It does not include a calendar or a to-do list