Mozilla Thunderbird

Mozilla Thunderbird mail client is a redesign of the Mozilla mail component. Its goal is to produce a cross-platform, standalone mail application using the XUL user interface language. It is modeled after the Mozilla Firebird rewrite of the Mozilla browser. The intended customer is someone who uses Mozilla Firebird (or another non-Mozilla browser) as his or her primary browser and wants a mail client based on Mozilla that “plays nice” with the browser.

Some of the new features in version 0.6 include a Windows installer, Pinstripe theme for Mac OS X, new artwork, improved junk mail controls, improved mail notification in the system dock for Mac OS X, server-wide news filters and a slew of other new features. This software may work well enough to be relied upon as your primary messaging client as it is based off a stable Mozilla 1.6 architecture. However, Mozilla Thunderbird is still a preview release, and therefore several features may not be complete.

Here are some of the features in detail:

  • Full-Featured Email – Simple to use, powerful, and customizable, Thunderbird is a full-featured email application. Thunderbird supports IMAP and POP mail protocols, as well as HTML mail formatting. Easily import your existing email accounts and messages. Built-in RSS capabilities, powerful quick search, spell check as you type, global inbox, deleting attachments and advanced message filtering round out Thunderbird’s modern feature set.
  • Junk Mail Filters – Each email you receive passes through Thunderbird’s leading-edge junk mail filters. Each time you mark messages as spam, Thunderbird improves its filtering so you can spend more time reading the mail that matters. Thunderbird will also use your mail provider’s spam filters to keep junk mail out of your inbox.
  • Anti-Phishing Protection – Thunderbird protects you from increasingly common email scams—also known as “phishing”—which try to fool you into handing over your passwords and other personal information. Thunderbird will tell you when it thinks a message might be a scam.
  • Advanced Security – Thunderbird provides enterprise and government grade security features including S/MIME, digital signing, message encryption, support for certificates and security devices. Attachments are never run without your express permission, protecting you from many worms and viruses.
  • Automatic Updates – The new Software Update feature makes it easy to get the latest security and feature updates to Thunderbird. Thunderbird automatically downloads these small updates in the background and prompts you when they are ready to be installed.
  • Customize Thunderbird – Select new button controls for your toolbars, install extensions to add new features, or change the look of your browser with themes—the way Thunderbird looks and works is under your control.

Here are the requirements of Mozilla Thunderbird:


  • Windows 98, 98SE, ME, NT 4.0, 2000, XP (Recommended)
  • Minimum Hardware – Pentium 233 MHz (Recommended: Pentium 500MHz or greater) 64 MB RAM (Recommended: 128 MB RAM or greater) 52 MB hard drive space


  • Linux kernel – 2.2.14 with the following libraries or packages minimums: glibc 2.3.2, gtk+2.0, XFree86-3.3.6, fontconfig (also known as xft), libstdc++5
  • Minimum Hardware – Intel Pentium II or AMD K6-III+ 233 MHz CPU (Recommended: 500MHz or greater) 64 MB RAM (Recommended: 128 MB RAM or greater) 52 MB hard drive space


  • Mac OS X 10.2.x and later
  • Minimum Hardware – Macintosh computer with a PowerPC G3, G4, or G5 processor
    128 MB RAM (Recommended: 256 MB RAM or greater) 4 GB hard drive space
Review by Jared Moya

Mozilla Thunderbird has an average rating 4.7 out of 5 based on 7 user ratings.