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Mozilla Thunderbird for Mac 15.01

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Mozilla Thunderbird for Mac Editor's Review

Mozilla Thunderbird is an Open Source e-mail client developed by Mozilla Corporation.

Thunderbird provides you an interface that looks like the built in Mail application. This interface is very flexible and you can select various settings that can modify its look.

Thunderbird can offer even more functionality than a regular e-mail client. It has built in an RSS/Atom Client which can be used in order to read your newsfeeds and blogs.

Another nice thing about it is the fact that it’s powered by the Gecko engine. Mozilla uses this engine for all its products so Thunderbird isn't an exception. An HTML based e-mail or a newsfeed uses this rendering engine for displaying the content.

You have the same extension support that you can find in Mozilla Firefox. Not all Firefox extensions are compatible with Thunderbird though. There are some of them that are specially designed for this application and they can extend its functionality.

The skin support is also the same as the one used by Firefox. You can customize it by installing a new theme every time you want. You can also find lots of additions for this client in Mozilla's own add-ons page.

Mozilla didn't forget about the supported technologies either. You can use e-mail accounts that require secure connections. Thus, if you do have an account that requires this type of connections, then you can use it because SSL and TLS are supported.

Both POP 3 and IMAP 4 e-mail protocols are supported by this application. You can pick which type of account you have, when you add it manually or by choosing it from the account's preferences panel.

The outgoing SMTP server is easy to set up. You can use the provided settings for that account such, as the user name, server and type of connection. The SMTP configuration is also featuring the support for SSL and TLS cryptographic security protocols.

If your account is well configured you can use it without any trouble. I strongly recommend you to be very careful what settings you make for the client in every account. If you do have an e-mail account with a Web interface, then maybe you shouldn't delete the e-mail server's copy, especially if you use that address for online purchasing.

In order to keep you safe, Mozilla implemented an anti-phishing protection filter. The client tries to alert you if it discovers that the message is a common e-mail scam. The other protection tool is the built in anti-spam filter, which makes it so you won't be bothered again, just by checking certain messages as spam. This new version of Thunderbird provides more protection that the first version because the Bayesian filters are improved.

Pluses: it's a fully featured Open Source mail client, it has a good support for cryptographic security protocols, it has automatic profile configuration for Gmail and .Mac. It's quite easy to configure and it has a very good community support by using Mozilla's IRC server and the Thunderbird channel. Other great things about this client are the built in anti-phishing and anti-spam filters.

Drawbacks / flaws: sometimes the client is slow while loading a module.

In conclusion: with these features it can successfully replace the default Mac Mail application or your newsfeed reader, that is, if you would like Thunderbird's functionality. The second version of this application also brings an improved user interface that is a little bit easier to use than the previous interface.

version reviewed: 2.0.0.0

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