Critical Review of Mozilla Thunderbird 0.5

Wednesday February 25th, 2004

rizzof writes: "I wanted to offer a critical in-depth review of Thunderbird for a change. This is a quite different from all the glowing reviews of last week following the release. It analyzes shortcomings of the application and user-interface gaffes that keep it from achieving its full potential."

#24 Re: Re: yet another single-tree fan

by voracity

Friday February 27th, 2004 12:01 AM

You are replying to this message

(I hope others respond to this as well.)

To be clear, I don't want a single tree; I want to be able to create multiple Local Mail stores (e.g. work, uni), and assign multiple incoming accounts to each.

The main reason is that I have multiple accounts that all actually exist for the same reason. I have 3 work accounts, 2 home accounts, and 2 uni accounts. On top of that, I have a laptop that I move between work and home, and work has no direct 'net access (all behind proxy). So the work accounts (and 1 home account) gets duplicated. I want 3 sets of folders: work, home and uni. I have instead <me goes and counts> 11. Those are all the pop3 accounts, and includes all the redirections that the accounts allow.

This is very messy for the following reasons:

- I have a HEAP of redundant folders (drafts/templates/sent/trash) that have nothing in them and never will, but I nonetheless have to scroll through them all, which can get incredibly confusing.

- Trying to work out precisely which one of my accounts got new mail is a *lot* harder than it should be.

- Junk mail controls work differently on each account.

- Filters (which are different for work/home/uni, and which I also update fairly regularly) are different on each account.

- Finding out which of my work accounts, or uni accounts, etc. a mail went to is messy.

- Figuring out which of the Sent folders my email sends have gone to is even less pleasant (admittedly, this is 'fixable' with filters).

- Navigating the accounts preferences pane (which I do far too frequently) is really, really, really . . . really, really unpleasant.

- When filtering into another account, the 'New mail notification' works badly (you have to visit the account it was received on, before the notification disappears).

I probably ought to be using another email client, but I stick with thunderbird out of ideology, and the hope that it will be fixed in future (although, I've been waiting several years).

The recent ability to have multiple identities per account is a good start (but why is the outgoing server still tied to an identity? what about laptop users?). But I want a complete split: mail stores, incoming servers, outgoing servers and identities all separate, but linkable. Of course, they should be created together by default, but I don't want to be forced to have them tied together.

Oh, and I'd like a similar ability for newsgroups, but I'm not as fussed about that one.