The ten most useful thunderbird add-ons

Martin Brinkmann
Oct 6, 2006
Updated • Nov 5, 2017
Email, Thunderbird

I've published a great deal of information about Firefox and tons of extensions that have been developed for it but I've never done the same for Thunderbird, the email client that is developed by Mozilla.

I started using Thunderbird about a week ago when I imported all my emails from Opera to it and I like the email client a lot. It is fast, I can sort all emails the way I like it and the spam mail filter is awesome even without third party tools.

The list of extensions disappointed me a little bit, 297 add-ons is not much considering that Firefox has 1863 add-ons listed. I nevertheless compiled a list of the ten most useful Thunderbird add-ons according to my opinion, yours may and probably will differ on the subject.

Update: We have removed all extensions that are not compatible with the most recent versions of the Thunderbird email client.

  1. Minimize to Tray - You can't minimize thunderbird to tray, you can only minimize it to the taskbar or close it completely. You could alternatively use a third party tool like RBtray instead.
  2. United States English Dictionary - A great spellchecking dictionary.
  3. Lightning - Thunderbird has no calendar and lightning adds calendar functionality. Currently under development.
  4. Dod Configuration - Department of Defense Configuration. Configures your application for use within the Department of Defense.
  5. Addressbooks Synchronizer - Synchronize files if you use Thunderbird on different computers, like notebook and desktop or home and work.
  6. Clippings - Have some standard sentences that you use a lot in mails ? Use Clippings to save them and paste them easily whenever you need them.
  7. Maximize message pane - maximizes the message preview pane without opening a new window.
  8. Text size toolbar - Adds buttons to the toolbar to change the size of the text.
  9. ReminderFox - works as well in Thunderbird, reminds you of events to come.
  10. Quicktext - create templates for emails that you write over and over again.

Five more, good ones but specialized:

  • Track Package - You ship or receive lots of packages each day? eBay junkies perhaps? This extension is for you, mark a tracking number and check where the package is.
  • Okopipi - Report spam to central databases.
  • abc Tajpu - write foreign characters with this extension. Surely looks bad to write something like smoerebroed the way I do.. smørebrød it is i think..
  • Signature Switch - one for work, one for home, one for friends, one for p...
  • Nested Quote Remover - Remove nested quotes before it becomes ugly.

Two not so serious ones:

  • Quitomozilla - Helps you stop smoking by displayed the time you stopped, the cigarettes that you did not smoke in that time and the amount of money that you saved, works in Thunderbird and Firefox for maximum results.
  • Bork Bork Bork - The Swedish chef would speak the text this way.. Smoerebroed all the way..

While all extensions are still available for download for the email client, it needs to be noted that some may not work anymore in the latest version of it.

Update: Time has passed, and lots of useful extensions have been created for the Thunderbird email client in that time. Here is a list of new extensions that you may want to consider.

  • Lightning adds a calendar to Thunderbird which you can synchronize.
  • Enigmail adds OpenPGP support to the email client.
  • Theme Font & Size Changer enables you to change text size and colors in Thunderbird.
  • XNote++ adds sticky notes that you can associate with emails.
  • Quick Translator to translate between more than 50 languages with a click or use of a hotkey.
The ten most useful thunderbird add-ons
Article Name
The ten most useful thunderbird add-ons
Extend the Thunderbird email client with useful extensions to add features to the program or improve existing features in one way or another.
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  1. JMGG said on January 19, 2012 at 8:25 am

    You said that Outlook isn’t your main email client, so which is your main one?

    1. BalaC said on January 19, 2012 at 9:42 am

      I think its thunderbird

    2. Martin Brinkmann said on January 19, 2012 at 10:15 am

      It is Mozilla Thunderbird.

  2. Salaam said on September 24, 2012 at 9:52 pm

    Awesome! This actually solved my problem… what a stupid bug.

  3. Claud said on December 19, 2012 at 2:08 am

    If this is the same bug that I’ve encountered, there may be another fix: (1) hover over open Outlook item in Taskbar, cursor up to hover over Outlook window item, and right-click; (2) this should give you Restore / Move / Size / Minimize / Maximize — choose Move or Size; (3) use your cursor keys, going arbitrarily N/S/E/W, to try to move or size the Outlook window back into view. Basically, the app behaves as though it were open in a 0x0 window, or at a location that’s offscreen, and this will frequently work to resize and/or move the window. Don’t forget to close while resized/moved, so that Outlook remembers the size/position for next time.

    1. Lynda said on February 12, 2013 at 3:37 pm

      THANK YOU Claude!!! I could get the main window to launch but could not get any other message window to show on the desktop. You are my hero!!!!

    2. Chad said on November 20, 2018 at 4:24 pm

      Solved my issue! 6 years later and this is still problem…

    3. Ivan X said on January 21, 2021 at 4:50 pm

      Fantastic. Thank you. Size did the trick.

  4. Andrew said on October 26, 2013 at 7:06 am

    This solved my Outlook problem, too. Thank you. :)

  5. Charles said on December 7, 2013 at 7:23 pm

    Thank you so much, this started happening to me today and was causing big problems. You are a life saver, I hope I can help you in some way some day.

  6. garth said on November 7, 2014 at 7:13 pm

    You are a god – thank you!

  7. Faisal said on February 9, 2015 at 10:09 am

    thanks a lot…. work like charm.. :-)

  8. Simon said on March 24, 2015 at 11:36 pm

    Yah…thanks Claude. I’ve been having the same problem and tried all the suggestions…your solution was the answer. It had resized itself to a 0/0 box. Cheers

  9. Olu said on April 14, 2015 at 1:35 pm

    Excellent post. This had me baffled even trying to accurately describe the problem. This fixed it for me.
    Thank you

  10. Coenig said on July 23, 2015 at 7:36 am

    Thanks a lot for the article. Don’t know why it happenend, don’t know how it got fixed, but it was really annoying and now it works :-)

  11. Fali said on January 20, 2016 at 4:19 pm

    Thanks a lot. I was facing this issue from past 3 week. I tried everything but no resolution. The issue was happening intermittently and mainly when I was changing the display of screen ( as i use 2 monitors). The only option i had was to do system restore. But thanks to you.

    1. MIki said on January 10, 2019 at 11:54 am

      I’ve been tried to sole this problem for 12hours. Your comment about changing the display of screen helped me a lot!! Thanks!!

  12. Christina said on January 20, 2016 at 6:14 pm

    Thank you…don’t know why this happened but your instructions helped me fix it. Running Windows 10 and office pro 2007

  13. Oz said on July 22, 2016 at 3:20 pm

    Great tip! Thanks!

  14. Tracy said on September 1, 2016 at 4:48 pm

    Worked for me, too – thank you!!!

  15. shawn said on September 9, 2016 at 10:25 am

    It’s Worked for me, too
    thank you very much!

  16. Jari said on October 31, 2016 at 11:53 am

    I had a similar issue with Outlook 2013 on Windows 10 and this helped me to fix it. Thank you very much!

  17. Michel H said on November 30, 2016 at 11:08 pm

    Thank you so much. Solved!
    Considering you published this in 2012, incredible not been debugged by Microsoft.
    Thank you again. M

  18. Ziad Bitar said on January 9, 2017 at 2:00 am

    This problem was faced by only one user logging to TS 2008 r2 using outlook 2010.The issue was resolved.


  19. Anonymous said on February 15, 2017 at 5:24 pm

    Great tip. Thank you!!!! If it helps, I had to use the Control Key and the arrow keys at the same time to bring my window back into view. Worked like a charm.

  20. Rochelle said on March 6, 2017 at 11:59 am

    Thank you, this worked !!!!

  21. anom1234 said on May 20, 2018 at 11:20 pm

    Man, you are a fucking god. Thanks a lot, what an annoying bug!!

  22. JC said on October 12, 2020 at 2:14 pm

    Awesome, this post solved the issue. Many thanks!

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