Mozilla Thunderbird 17.0.5 - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com

Mozilla Thunderbird

CNET Editors' review

Despite perceptions to the contrary, the desktop-based e-mail client is not dead. Mozilla Thunderbird 3.0 is a serious reaction to the prevalence of Web mail, so whether you're looking for a strong desktop client, an Outlook replacement, or a powerful tool for managing archives and Web mail offline, Thunderbird can scale to your needs.

Outlook users will notice the speed and responsiveness of the program, which loads quickly, even when weighed down by multiple folders and RSS feeds, and the basic feature set remains intact: good junk mail filters, HTML support, multiple identities, and robust Web mail, POP, IMAP, and Microsoft Exchange server support. Security features include S/MIME, digital signing, message encryption, and a built-in phishing detector. Add-ons, based on the same code as Firefox's add-on network, can enhance your security even further.

Joining such useful features as the back and forward e-mail browsing buttons and customizable tags in version 3.0 are a set of must-have features. The powerful search tool integrates results with desktop searches on Windows Vista and Windows 7, while tabs reinforce the connections between Web browsing and e-mail reading. In fact, the new search tool is so powerful that if you have a massive number of e-mails, you may want to set it to index them overnight lest it drain system resources from other programs. Gmail support especially has been revamped, so you now get an All Mail folder in Thunderbird, among other improvements. Mozilla's new Personas skins work in Thunderbird, while the Lightning add-on supplies the missing Microsoft Exchange-compatible calendar feature.

Flexible, powerful, and lightweight, Thunderbird 3 is an appropriate companion to Firefox in every way.

New search and tabs take flight in Thunderbird 3:

Publisher's Description

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All User Reviews
  • All versions:

    3.8 stars

    out of 1,217 votes

    • 5 star: 579
    • 4 star: 247
    • 3 star: 131
    • 2 star: 102
    • 1 star: 158
  • Current version:

    3.9 stars

    out of 7 votes

    • 5 star: 3
    • 4 star: 1
    • 3 star: 2
    • 2 star: 1
    • 1 star: 0
  • My rating:

    0 stars

    Write review

Results 1-7 of 7

  • 5.0 stars

    "This All-In-One Application ROCKS! It earns 5 Stars!"

    May 12, 2013  |   By MrWebAuthor

    Version: Mozilla Thunderbird 17.0.5

    Pros

    All of my MS-Office was 2003, and every time I went to Microsoft's website for any help with it, nearly every link led me to the page where I needed to buy the new 2013-version of Office. Needless to say, I'm too broke to dish out hundreds of dollars for an Office suite that would confuse me more than 2003. Since I'm very familiar with Outlook and have used it in my corporate job for years, I knew I'd miss having it on MY computers. But then a friend recommended Thunderbird, I downloaded it, read tons of HELPs documentation, and installed all the cool extensions I needed (Windows' theme, Lightning, and one more that lets me use and share my Google calendar with other people), worked on getting all the options and settings 'just right', and this software is WAY BETTER and much more user-friendly than Outlook! Sorry for this lengthy comment, but I'll let you know that there's a bunch more "Pros" I could share, but I'll stop here. I HIGHLY recommend this software to anyone!

    Cons

    Considering I just installed it on all our computers last night (nope, I didn't sleep because I was totally and completely engrossed in learning about all the options that can be added to this tool), I've yet to experience any negative issues with it. It downloaded excellently from this website, installed like a charm, accepted all the addons with no problems at all, and the configurations were pretty easy to incorporate in comparison to Microsoft's Outlook. So far, as of yet, I've nothing to share regarding any "Cons" in this section. Only time will tell if this turns out to be crap-ware, but the cool thing is, Mozilla's got tons more of comprehensive HELPs pages and tutorials than Microsoft, so finding 'a fix' for any future issues shouldn't be too much of a hassle. I'm in my mid-50s and been doing technology for many years, and as I've gotten older, I've found "simpler" is a lot more satisfying than bells and whistles I'll never use and don't want to take the time to learn it all.

    Summary

    I don't have much more to say that I haven't already shared in the upper two sections of this review. I know it's lengthy, but I hope this Review helps you out while you're just sitting there in your chair asking yourself, "Should I go for it (download it), or should I pass this one by and hope for greener pastures of something better on down the line?" I just know much I appreciate reading well-written Reviews from actual real people (such as myself and people just like you) who took the time and effort to share how they 'personally feel' about a product they've used themselves. The choice is up to you, now. Like I said, I hope this Review has helped you in making a quality decision. --- Oh, by the way, if you're a Mom, today is YOUR day: Happy Mother's Day!

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  • 2.0 stars

    "Missing Folders/Will not download"

    May 8, 2013  |   By yfnetm

    Version: Mozilla Thunderbird 17.0.5

    Pros

    Usually easy to set-up

    Cons

    Random problems/ Crappy Support

    Summary

    I use Thunderbird to access 3 mail accounts, 2 of them being GMail. One my GMail folders has totally disappeared. If I try to recreate it, Thunderbird automatically deletes it again.
    When I try to download mail. Thunderbird does nothing OR is downloads for every account except the folder that it deleted.
    I have attempted to get help from Mozilla support, but they appear to have no real help desk: everything is posted to a forum and if someone feels like helping to solve your problem, they will reply. If no one cares or no one has a clue, you're screwed, which is about 75 percent of the time.

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  • 3.0 stars

    "Still gets failing grade in password management"

    May 7, 2013  |   By Alan Mintaka

    Version: Mozilla Thunderbird 17.0.5

    Pros

    Faster and easier to use in terms of folder management than Outlook. None of the "feature creep" that makes Outlook a laughingstock for Microsoft.

    Cons

    Password management is asinine. Passwords aren't stored in the account settings. They're listed separately from all other account parameters in a different menu option. Even if you find the list of passwords, you still can't change any of them. You can only delete a password you want to change, then try to get mail from the original server as you normally would. If and when you get a new password prompt, you can enter the change and select the option to remember it in the so-called "Password Manager."

    Meanwhile, other access options such as SSL are in the account options, nowhere near the Password Manager.

    Good grief. What a ham-handed UI.

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  • 4.0 stars

    "It looks like they're they're racing Chrome."

    April 24, 2013  |   By GERRY RAINS

    Version: Mozilla Thunderbird 17.0.5

    Pros

    It's still a very good browser.

    Cons

    They seem to be racing Chrome to see who can have the most updates in the shortest period of time. Unfortunately they're leaving some of the best add-ons behind and no longer applicable.

    Summary

    I see no real difference in this update.

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  • 5.0 stars

    "works like a charm"

    April 24, 2013  |   By bertitovergara

    Version: Mozilla Thunderbird 17.0.5

    Pros

    easy to configure, beautiful interface

    Cons

    i see no cons

    Summary

    funny add ons

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  • 5.0 stars

    "Nice mail program"

    April 13, 2013  |   By realitycheck5

    Version: Mozilla Thunderbird 17.0.5

    Pros

    Easy to use
    simple format, easy to learn

    Cons

    Nothing to do with the program itself, but I find Mozilla's support ridiculously difficult to navigate. But I'm only moderately skilled.

    Summary

    Nice email program, easy to use. Difficult support navigation.

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  • 3.0 stars

    "Mostly Good; Text format hassles"

    April 11, 2013  |   By cwmacphail

    Version: Mozilla Thunderbird 17.0.5

    Pros

    Lots of great features
    Lots of extensions

    Cons

    - Text formatting hassles. Even though there are buttons for font and text size, that part is very buggy. It becomes impossible to control the format of the message you're composing. Also the font sometimes changes mid paragraph for no apparent reason. This has been going on for years. There are a variety of text formatting bugs that I can't even describe. They never get around to fixing these.

    - Once in a while, the cursor changes position for no apparent reason. Maybe during auto-save. If you are in the middle of doing the wrong thing, like selecting text, it can wipe out whole sections of the message you're composing. (Thank god for undo).

    Summary

    I've used Thunderbird for about 5 years. I love it, but the text formatting bugs are driving me to try something else.

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Results 1-7 of 7

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