Mozilla Thunderbird 0.4 Released

Friday December 5th, 2003

Following two release candidates, the 0.4 release of Mozilla Thunderbird is now available. Thunderbird 0.4 features an updated look to Thunderbird's default theme, including a variety of new icons; better OS integration, cut and paste of images on Windows, and a number of bug fixes and other new features.

Builds are available for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X, while other platforms and configurations should be available in the near future. The Thunderbird Release Notes have more information, along with the Thunderbird project page on

#1 so...

by mlefevre

Friday December 5th, 2003 5:52 PM

whose bright idea was it to put the version number into the banner graphic on the project page? :)

and why is the alt text for the graphic "mozilla thunderbird logo with screenshot followed by thunderbird title text" - that's not an alternative, it's a description...

#4 Re: so...

by redemption

Friday December 5th, 2003 9:57 PM

Heh my thoughts exactly on the version number in the banner.

Anyhow, this new release is great as usual. I'd tried and stopped trying the 2 RCs before because of a bug with themes (the Smoke theme, more specifically), thinking it was something with the RCs instead. Turned out I had to fix my profile (I backed up and restored using Mozilla Backup - there are other ways, such as deleting your chrome/ directory) and all was well after that.

#8 Re: so...

by hdort

Saturday December 6th, 2003 1:30 AM

Actually, that's exactly what the alt attribute should be used for; here's the snippet from the W3C HTMl 4.01 specification: "alt %Text; #REQUIRED -- short description --", or in plain english: the alt attribute is a required (!) text attribute of the IMG tag which should provide a short description of the image.

#18 Re: Re: so...

by AlexBishop

Saturday December 6th, 2003 12:06 PM

"the alt attribute is a required (!) text attribute of the IMG tag which should provide a short description of the image."

You sound surprised that it's required. The alt text should be an alternative to the image, i.e. it should convey the same infomration of an image. So for the grpahic at the top of the Mozilla Thunderbird project page, the proper alt text would be "Thunderbird 0.3", seeing as it's really justa glorified title (for that reason the image should also be wrapped in the appropriate heading tag).



#19 Re: so...

by wgianopoulos

Saturday December 6th, 2003 12:15 PM

The alt text is supposed to be a description, as an alternative to the image, for text only browsers to display, or for visually impared users to be able to have spoken by text to voice conversion software, so that the idea conveyed by the image is available to people who, for one reason or another, cannot view the image.

All other uses for Alt-text are NOT in compliance with standards.

#2 theme

by techn9ne

Friday December 5th, 2003 8:46 PM

new theme looks great!

#7 Re: theme

by vfwlkr

Saturday December 6th, 2003 12:16 AM

second that. I wasnt expecting much when upgrading. Pleasant surprise!

#10 full ack!

by Assimil8or

Saturday December 6th, 2003 4:54 AM

better than I could imagine ;)

#21 Re: full ack!

by offmdan

Saturday December 6th, 2003 5:43 PM


Was waiting for the occasion to say "COOL!"

Nice job on those icons! The general look is just professional. Good work folks! :)

#24 Re: Re: full ack!

by zem

Saturday December 6th, 2003 10:15 PM

I Completely agree. The number one reason I am using M$ Outlook was that the icons for folders, etc., were revolting. The onlt thing keeping me from switching over is the fact that I cannot edit messages in one of my folders like I can on M$ Outlook

#3 Working pretty nice but where is link handling?

by buff

Friday December 5th, 2003 8:54 PM

It appears to be working pretty well. I still can't open links in Thunderbird using Firebird yet on Linux. Bummer. I was hoping this would be fixed by the next release.

#5 Linux URL Dispatching

by mscott

Friday December 5th, 2003 10:36 PM


#26 Re: Linux URL Dispatching

by buff

Sunday December 7th, 2003 1:58 PM

I just followed the instructions on that page to get links to work in thunderbird. It was a not go. I am using Mandrake 9.1 with KDE. I added user_pref("", "/usr/lib/firebird/MozillaFirebird $s"); to my user.js for thunderbird. I verified I have the final thunderbird release and that /usr/lib/firebird/MozillaFirebird run from a console correctly runs Firebird. Can't get it to work.

#9 Re: Working pretty nice but where is link handling

by bzbarsky

Saturday December 6th, 2003 3:09 AM

The linux URL story would be much simpler if there were a standard way of detecting what app is supposed to handle a particular URI.... There isn't yet, though the freedesktop stuff is moving in that direction.

#13 Re: Re: Working pretty nice but where is link hand

by Waldo_2

Saturday December 6th, 2003 9:11 AM

Indeed, that's the real problem with Linux right now: it's too disorganized. Sure, the kernel and X are pretty standard, but after that, just about anything goes (although two or three will be the only real choices - but they won't act the same way). Once software interaction (including (un)installs) is more standardized so organization can occur, Linux should really take off.

For now, tho, it's a fun way for me to amuse myself (and get CVS working - WinCVS never worked for me).

#20 Re: Working pretty nice but where is link handling

by slippytoad

Saturday December 6th, 2003 1:11 PM

This is precisely why I still use Mozilla Suite; because I need the integration between the two apps on Linux and it doesn't work. Oh, and I also use Composer a lot...;-)

#31 Reply

by Malc

Monday December 8th, 2003 10:51 PM

There's no reason why they couldn't hack it if they wanted to so that the other product launched via a hard-coded relative path, possibly configurable via about:config. There is zero need for a single monolithic process.

The Mozilla Suite should be a tightly integrated but de-coupled (!!) collection of independent apps that run in their own process space. Microsoft Office has no problems running in separate process spaces, and look how well integrated it is. KDE is a tightly integrated desktop environment, yet it doesn't force all it's apps in to one process space. The concept is just daft and was a huge architectual mistake by Netscape and then Mozilla.

When implemented properly, all the user should care about is that the right window appears when they click the right icon or URL - the rest should just be an implementation detail that the user need not care about. I want multiple processes so a crash in my browser doesn't kill the email I'm writing, and high CPU load in my email tool doesn't render my browser in operable. And no, threading doesn't cut it.

#27 Re: Working pretty nice but where is link handling

by aydsman

Sunday December 7th, 2003 3:06 PM

The way I've been doing it is quite simple.

On my Redhat 9 w/- Gnome system (on Windows at work too) I just select the link and drag it to Firebird.

Drop it on a tab to open the link in that tab, just on the tab bar to create a new tab. Works for actualy hypertext links or just a section of text.

I agree a simple click would be nice as well but this way works just as good.

#6 some decent improvements

by ph1nn

Friday December 5th, 2003 10:37 PM

I too was hoping for links to work with Firebird, thats a major issue.

Other than that definate improvements... now how about a Firebird release to follow this one!

#11 .torrents???

by ksheka

Saturday December 6th, 2003 5:04 AM

The ftp servers are already slow. Anyone mind posting a link to torrents of these files?

As an aside, I've found the mozilla ftp servers unbearably slow for weeks now. :-( Is it just me? Maybe, for advanced users, .torrents should be automatically made for all releases, at least for the first few days??? (In addition to the normal downloads, of course. :-)

#15 Re: .torrents???

by redemption

Saturday December 6th, 2003 9:20 AM

There is some questionable content on that site (or rather, tracker). If someone knows of a cleaner tracker, let me know.

#16 Re: Re: .torrents???

by redemption

Saturday December 6th, 2003 9:23 AM

Forgot to add, that some more seeds would be appreciated! :)

#17 .torrents???

by ksheka

Saturday December 6th, 2003 10:52 AM

I'll keep my win32 seed open for a while. :-) Hopefully at least till the place gets slashdotted. :-)

#12 Qute theme

by pizzach

Saturday December 6th, 2003 8:53 AM

The Qute theme is really nice for Firebird and Thunberbird, but wouldn't it be better if the throbber in some way was saying Firebird/Thunderbird much like the old Mozilla/Netcape and the IE throbbers that clue you into what app your using. Otherwise, you lose a lot of brand recognition. On the up side theme recognition is up, even though they are one and the same right now...

#14 Re: Qute theme

by Waldo_2

Saturday December 6th, 2003 9:13 AM

It's waiting on an update to the Firebird throbber...

#22 subject

by alcatraz52

Saturday December 6th, 2003 5:43 PM

Great release!

#23 Netscape Webmail?

by bshft1

Saturday December 6th, 2003 8:19 PM

Any chance that Thunderbird will ever be able to access Netscape mail? I would like to make the jump to Firebird / Thunderbird but don't want to lose the ability to access my Netscape account. Sure you can access it in webmail, but it's just not as convenient.

#28 Re: Netscape Webmail?

by mlefevre

Sunday December 7th, 2003 3:41 PM

Well you never know what may happen in the future, but for the moment access to Netscape mail is only possible with webmail or by using AOL/Netscape's proprietary and secret protocol, which they've only made available in Netscape-branded clients.

#25 Looks like I'm sticking with Eudora.. STILL


Sunday December 7th, 2003 12:30 PM

when i import my Eudora mail into this new version.. most HTML messages are STILL messed up.

#32 Re: Looks like I'm sticking with Eudora.. STILL

by Skurfer

Wednesday December 17th, 2003 6:22 AM

I was looking into this for a customer today and it isn't Thunderbird's fault. Eudora destroys every message it touches.

Basically, what it does is take a perfectly usable multi-part message, discard the plain text portion, and rewrite the HTML portion so that no other client can tell that it's supposed to be HTML. Other clients, such as Thunderbird, assume the message is plain text because there's nothing to indicate otherwise.

#33 Re: Re: Looks like I'm sticking with Eudora.. STILL

by Rhizzo

Sunday February 22nd, 2004 8:09 AM

Well, the main task of an import filter is to convert application specific formats, isn't it? It is not true that Eudora leaves no hint to indicate that the original message was sent in HTML-format (how would Eudora itself distinguish between text and HTML messages then?): Looking at an Eudora MBX file using a simple text editor, I can see the tags <x-html> and </x-html>. So in my amateurish opinion, the import filter just has to find those tags to find out, if the message was written in HTML and then add/replace the correct tags. By the way, this import issue is also for me the only reason why I still use Eudora.

#29 Standard icon width?

by leet

Monday December 8th, 2003 9:29 AM

This issue has probably been discussed before, but why don't the toolbar icons seem to have the same width? The current look is a bit haphazard to me.

#30 Import Netscape 7 settings

by ccapeng

Monday December 8th, 2003 12:55 PM

I use Netscape 7 as my default mail client, but new mail icon don't stay in system tray. It bother me. I would like to try Thunderbird; however, I don't see any import tool for that. Any advice?