There's one important feature missing in Thunderbird that you will need when working with many different accounts, that is, reordering them. You won't find any option for this in the settings, nor is there any obvious way. The only one I found involved editing the prefs.js file (close Thunderbird while doing so!), that is located in C:\Users\user-name\AppData\Roaming\Thunderbird\Profiles\[profile-name]:
Some people suggest changing the order of the user_pref("mail.accountmanager.accounts") parameter but this did nothing for me. What worked instead was setting the user_pref("mail.accountmanager.defaultaccount", "accountx") parameter.
Setting it will put one account at the top of the list - by repeating this process, you can order your accounts the way you want it! Just replace the number of the account (marked with x in the text above) with the one you want top.
Starting with the Mozilla Thunderbird 17, the classic title bar has been hidden in Thunderbird. To get the classic title bar back, follow these steps:
- Start Mozilla Thunderbird.
- Open the config editor by clicking on Tools -> Options -> Advanced -> General -> Config Editor (button)
- Navigate to the setting "mail.tabs.drawInTitlebar" in the config editor and set it to "false" by double clicking on the line.
- Close the config editor and restart Thunderbird
I've experienced that Thunderbird has gotten slower and slower on my Laptop, at last it was nearly unusable. Sometimes I could see the chars appearing slowly on the screen while I typed the email or it was impossible to drag & drop a email to a different folder because Thunderbird was stalled for 10-15 seconds. No other applications on my System were slow and the notebook has afast harddisk and SSD, so this was not the problem. The following steps helped me to speedup Thunderbird so that it got usable again.
Set some interface options
Edit Thunderbird options under Preferences → Advanced → General tab, click on "Advanced options" button and set these values:
layers.acceleration.disabled = true
gfx.direct2d.disabled = false
and restart Thunderbird. If it is still slow, try the next options:
Disabling the AeroGlass interface makes the interface reacting much faster. Install the "NoGlass" Addon which is available in the Thunderbird addon repository.
Disable Folder Indexing
If you have folders with many emails inside, Indexing can slow down Thunderbird. Go To Preferences → Advanced → General tab and disable the Global search.
Antivirus scanning of the Email folders in the filesystem
A antivirus scanner can slow down Thunderbird as well. Configure your antivirus program to exclude the Thunderbird Mail folders from being scanned. Warning: this option should only be used when the email is scanned by a smtp proxy of the antivirus program for viruses before it is handed to Thunderbird.
Cleanup Thunderbird index files
Thunderbird creates a lot of index files. A cleanup of these files can speedup Thunderbird as well, especially if some of them are broken. There is a handy tool called ThunderFix to do that.
SSL certificates are used to sign and encrypt/decrypt mails in thunderbird via S/MIME. If you have got a certificate that you want to use to validate your identity, import it as follows:
Open Thunderbird and go to Edit > Preferences:
Click on Advanced and go to the Certificates tab. There, click on View Certificates:
On the Your Certificates tab, click on Import and browse to the directory where you have saved your certificate, which must be saved as .p12 file (see here to learn how to produce that format). Your certificate will then be shown in the list.
Please notice that your certificate must be valid and trusted to be used in Thunderbird! You will have problems with most self-signed certificates.
SSL (Secure Socket Layer) is used for encryption and decryption, processing of S/MIME signed or encrypted mails, generation of certificates and more. To use it on Windows (32 and 64 bit versions), download the OpenSSL tools from code.google.com/p/openssl-for-windows/downloads/list.
Uncompress it anywhere you like and start it by double-clicking the openssl.exe executable in the \bin folder.
If you create files with OpenSSL, they will appear in the \bin directory by default.
To create a self-signed SSL certificate, you first need a key. Create it like this:
genrsa -des3 -out server.key 4096
Type in your desired key (password) and confirm it. Next, you need a certificate request. Create it as follows and give the path to the config file in the -config option (it should be in the directory where you unpacked the files to):
req -config C:\path\to\openssl.cnf -new -key server.key -out server.csr
Next, sign the certificate request:
x509 -req -days 365 -in server.csr -signkey server.key -out server.crt
The -days option specifies how long the certificate will be valid - mine will be for one year. Now you have a signed certificate.
However if you want to use it with programs as Thunderbird or similar, you will need the certificate to be in the .p12 format. To accomplish this, enter following:
pkcs12 -export -in server.crt -inkey server.key -name "Your Full Name" -out server.p12
To add a mail account to your Thunderbird, go to Edit > Account Settings...
and hit the Account Actions button beneath the menu on the left.
Select Add Mail Account... and enter the name that will be shown to others, the email address that you want to add to Thunderbird and its password.
Hit Continue and Thunderbird should automatically search for your address on the given server. If it is not found you can also configure it manually. Select the IMAP radiobox as recommended to be able to view your mail on multiple computers and hit Create Account.
You should now be able to access your email account via Thunderbird. If this is still not the case you may have to complete your account name so that it is identical with your email address.
There is a handy Thunderbird extension named "Auto zip" available that compresses email attachments as .zip files automatically, So you dont have to compress the files manually anymore before you attach them to the email.
Thunderbird extension download:
Sadly, the official version of the plugin works only for thunderbird 2. But a few users offer already patched versions for Thunderbird 3 (see links in the comments). Please be aware that using such a patched version has the risk that it might contain malicious code.)