Automatic Thunderbird upgrade to version 78.x has started
Users of the desktop email client Thunderbird who are still running version 68.x of the program will be upgraded to Thunderbird 78.2.2 automatically. The development team of the email client put an update blocker in place to prevent automatic upgrades from Thunderbird 68.x to Thunderbird 78 after the initial release of the new version. One of the main reasons for putting the update block in place was that the extension system changed in Thunderbird 78.
The new version of the email client supports only MailExtensions and not classic extensions; this invalidated all classic extensions that users had installed in the email client unless the extension developers would have created a compatible version of the extension in the meantime.
Thunderbird users who still run version 68 of the email client are upgraded to version 78.2.2 -- the most recent version -- automatically. The program is either upgraded automatically in the background if the default update settings have not been changed, or on user request.
Users who don't want to be upgraded at this point in time need to disable the updating functionality in the program; this is done by disabling automatic updates in the settings and changing the setting to manual updates (under Options > Advanced > Update).
Thunderbird users who use extensions may want to research whether these are compatible with the latest version prior to running the upgrade. One option to do that is to check each extension manually for compatibility, another to set up Thunderbird in a virtual environment or second system, import the profile, run the update, and check which extensions remain enabled.
Mozilla has not changed the notification on the Thunderbird 78.2.2 release notes page yet. A note on the page states that Thunderbird 78.2.2 is not offered as an upgrade from Thunderbird 68 or earlier, and that it is only available as a direct download.
Thunderbird 78.x includes a number of new features and improvements such as integrated support for OpenPGP.
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