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Thunderbird Best Practices

Written by Guillermo Garron .
Date: 2014-08-03 21:28:22 -0400

Thunderbird Best Practices

Thunderbird is the email client from Mozilla, it has been around since a long time ago, and it evolved to have all you need from an email client.

Even though there are other solutions, and that most people read their emails from mobile devices, I do still use my desktop clients a lot. I mostly use Outlook to work with emails as both my corporate and personal emails are exchange accounts, I have installed Thunderbird on my Mac again.

My personal account is hosted on Office 365 so I can access it via IMAP protocol, in case you are using Thunderbird with any IMAP server here are some considerations you should have when installing and configuring it.

Disk space for off-line access

Thunderbird can download a copy of your emails for you to work with them while off-line, the amount of space you want to use can be configured from:

On the Accounts Settings, select Synchronization and Storage and set the number of days you need to have emails from. I have set mine to two weeks.

Thunderbird Sync and Disk Space Options

Configure Special Folders

Some special folders need to be configured to preserve the way your server works, this folders are:

  • Sent
  • Archives
  • Drafts
  • Trash

These folders need to be configured so Thunderbird may use the same folders your server is using, otherwise it will create duplicate folders for each of the purposes listed above.

Trash will go first, right click on the account you are configuring on the left pane, then select subscribe

Thunderbird subscribe options for IMAP server

Be sure to select all folders you will need, in my case:

  • Archive
  • Deleted Items
  • Drafts
  • Sent Items

Once you have subscribed to the needed folders, you need to tell Thunderbird to use them instead of creating new ones.

Go to Server Settings on Account Settings, and select the right folder in the remote IMAP server to move deleted emails by selecting Move to this folder option.

Move deleted emails to IMAP on Thunderbird

Finally on the Folders and Copies under Account Settings once again, you will configure the rest of folders where you want your Archived, Sent and Draft emails to go.

Folders and Copies Thunderbird

Now Thunderbird will interact better with the IMAP server and thus with other applications you may be using to access your email. If you fail doing this, you may end with two folders getting your sent email, as each IMAP application may create its own. This is particularly useful with and Outlook 365 Exchange Account.

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