What’s New In Thunderbird 78

Thunderbird is among the must-have applications on any operating system. It is developed by the same company that develops Firefox, Mozilla Foundation. Recently, Thunderbird released Thunderbird 78.0 with a couple of interesting features and improvements.

The popular email client is installed on almost all Linux distributions. All you need to do is search for it in the app menu. In case your distro does not have it, you can install it from the repository. Just use the package manager to install Thunderbird on your distro.

Though Thunderbird 78.0 is officially out now, the update is not yet available from the repositories. Repositories still have the older version.

What’s new in Thunderbird 78.0

New Account central

Thunderbird 78 has a new account central to set up new email accounts, feeds, Calendars, etc.

Thunderbird dashboard
Thunderbird dashboard

Built-in End-to-End Encryption in Thunderbird 78.2

End-to-End encryption was possible in Thunderbird with the help of an add-on. Now it will be the part of the core in the 78.2 version to be released in a few months.

Dark mode

The email client now supports dark mode. Though there is no option to enable dark mode, instead, thunderbird respects the dark mode settings enabled by the operating system.

So if you have the option to enable dark mode in the operating system, or your system theme is dark, it will respect that mode.

Though the thunderbird dark mode feature is not working properly for my operating system, Linux Mint 20. I have enabled a dark theme, and this is how it looks like –

Thunderbird dark mode not working in Linux mint
Dark mode not working properly in Linux mint

As you can see, the thunderbird window is not completely dark, whereas the other window, the file manager, is completely dark. I hope to get a fix for this really soon.

Calendar & Task manager integrated

  • Thunderbird Calendar support
  • Thunderbird customize calendar
  • Thunderbird create new calendar
  • Thunderbird calendar created
Thunderbird Calendar

Redesigned compose window

Thunderbird compose email
Compose email

New folder icons & icons colors

Thunderbird updated icons colors
Updated icons colors

Minimize to system tray added for windows

Another small but useful feature is “minimize to the system tray”. It is only available for the Windows version of Thunderbird.

Select multiple messages column

You can now select multiple messages by enabling a separate column of checkboxes.

Thunderbird select messages column
Select messages column

Once the “Select Messages” column is enabled, each email has a checkbox to select it.

Thunderbird select multiple messages
Select multiple messages

Delete messages column

Like Select Messages, the Delete column option has been added to the thunderbird. By enabling the ‘Delete’ column, you can delete messages without having to open them.

Thunderbird delete column
Thunderbird delete column

Once the delete column is enabled, the delete option in each email row is available.

Thunderbird delete emails
Thunderbird delete emails

Global search

Another important feature is the Global search option available under App menu >> Find.

Thunderbird Global search
Thunderbird Global search

Download & install Thunderbird 78.0

Update to Thunderbird 78 is not yet available from repositories. So you will have to wait for the current installation to receive the update. But you can download Thunderbird 78 from the website and use it.

Uncompress the file, and click Thunderbird. It will run Thunderbird without any installation.

To open it from the app menu, you can create a shortcut in the app menu of your distro.


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4 Comments Text
  • How do I use this with my work email outlook.office365.com?
    How do I use this with my gmail account?

  • You can use Thunderbird with virtually any existing address and use different addresses within Thunderbird.
    Just setup an account for each e-mail you want to use. Generally, Thunderbird will recognize the associate server and create the proper settings automatically, given your email and password.
    Generally, with Gmail and some other services, you also need to go into your account (Gmail, Microsoft, whatever) to give the proper authorizations to the email client.

  • You will need Owl plugin to use Thunderbird 78 (10 EUR /year) with Exchange email if your Exchange server implements 2-factor authentication (oAUTH).
    What I struggle with is the very clumsy and windy installation of the Thunderbird 78 download on Linux Ubiuntu or Mint. Every time I have to download an archive file (.tar.xxx) for an installation, I am completely put off because the process is extremely long-winded and clumsy. I believe it is one of the biggest put-offs for those seeking to migrate to Linux from Windows.

  • I can’t find the Thunderbird 78 folder with the profile in Linux Mint (To copy the files from “Windows 10 -> Linux Mint”). Or is it possible to use one “profile” on an external disk (Linux AND Windows 10)

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