[LINK] RFI: Thunderbird

Roger Clarke Roger.Clarke at xamax.com.au
Wed Oct 10 17:17:13 AEDT 2018

Thanks for the feedback on my enquiry about an email-client!
(I received emails from multiple people, on and off list).

As recommended, I've trialed Thunderbird.  

Remaining problems (2) and (3) below I might be able to live with.

But problem (1) is serious, and I can't see how I could cope with it.

Any assistance gratefully received!


(1) Getting access to attachments (THE CURRENT PARTY-STOPPER)

    Thunderbird is just as bad as Apple Mail, in that all attachments
    are buried in huge, deep-nested directories, still encoded.

    Searches on a known filename don't find it, in either Spotlight or
    EasyFind. so it's impossible to locate received files!
    ('Someone sent you a file called squiggle.xyz.  Did you get it?')

    No useful info turned up in the bare-bones documentation, nor from 
    multiple searches in Thunderbird fora.

    An add-on once existed, was broken, and has not been revived.

    It requires many wasted keystrokes to get a copy out, 
    and that has to be done inside each and every message.
    (Find message, open list to see the filenames, double-click to
    get a pop-up, instruct it to save, select folder;  it's possible 
    to set it to save future files of that filetype with a double-click)

    (Even then it's behaviour is inconsistent.  For jpg, png, pdf, txt
    and zip, it displays the save-as setting in Preferences/Attachments. 
    *But* for txt, doc, docx, odt and tiff, and perhaps others that I 
    haven't tried, it doesn't show them, but does save them on request).
    Recovering the wasted storage-space requires much the same again.
    (Find message, open list to see the filenames, select Save/Delete
    at bottom-right, click OK).

    Yesterday was a quiet-enough day, but 24 of the non-spam emails 
    I received had attachments that I needed to access and evaluate,
    and 10 if them I need to be able to find easily by name or directory.
    That would be 40 clicks to move 10 files + 96 to delete 24 files -
    not counting the searching for messages.  Everyday, forever.

    All it needs is:
    -   two nested options in the settings 
        -   copy all incoming attachments to nominated attachments folder
            -   delete after copying
    -   a small routine, running on every attachment to every incoming 
        email, that calls functions that are already in the package

(2) Filtering incoming messages into themed mailboxes, and then
    Knowing which mailboxes contain newly-fetched mail (sort-of okay)

    Thunderbird shows the names of mailboxes in bold if 
    any message, fetched at any time in the past, has not been opened.

    Thunderbird shows the names of mailboxes in bold *and blue* if 
    one or more messages have arrived since the mailbox was last opened.

    *But* a Quit and Restart of Thunderbird loses the vital blue marking 
    (although not the far-less-useful bold marking).

    Admittedly Tbird appears pretty stable and hence may not have to be 
    frequently Quit and Restarted, as the execrable PostBox does.

(3) Importing existing mailboxes (maybe fixable)

    Thunderbird is worse than Apple Mail, in that Tools / Import fails
    to find Apple Mail mailboxes ('No mailboxes were found to import').
    Ah, deep down in the documentation it owns up to not importing
    from later than Apple Mail v5.  It's currently at v10!

    There are no add-ons to support import.

    No useful info turned up in the bare-bones documentation, nor from 
    multiple searches in Thunderbird fora.

    A link correspondent has used and reco's https://www.aid4mail.com/


Roger Clarke                                 http://www.rogerclarke.com/
Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd      78 Sidaway St, Chapman ACT 2611 AUSTRALIA
Tel: +61 2 6288 6916                        http://about.me/roger.clarke
mailto:Roger.Clarke at xamax.com.au                http://www.xamax.com.au/ 

Visiting Professor in the Faculty of Law            University of N.S.W.
Visiting Professor in Computer Science    Australian National University

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