Thunderbird++ for each of the four major components

Matt Harris at
Fri Apr 21 13:12:14 UTC 2017

On 19-Apr-17 11:21 PM, Gervase Markham wrote:
> On 19/04/17 14:38, The Wanderer wrote:
>> For myself, if it's not possible to upgrade from Thunderbird to
>> Thunderbird++ and continue using my existing profile without data loss
>> (even if not all features are present yet), I would not consider
>> Thunderbird++ to be "viable".
> There would be precisely that - a unidirectional migration (although I'd
> say even a migrator is doubtful as part of an MVP - people can just set
> up their email accounts again; it's easy with the DB).
> One day, using an existing profile without data loss might be possible.
> But to say you couldn't try Thunderbird++ until that was possible is
> surely not true.

Currently I play in many release and non release versions of 
Thunderbird.  I do so in the knowledge that there is a slight chance I 
might loose something if things go wrong, but actual mail is unlikely 
except in the case of the  maildir accounts.  What you are proposing is 
an absolute guarantee that something will go wrong.  I use POP 
primarily. That moves the paradigm to "not a chance" when it comes to 
Thunderbird++.  Am I going to go without half my profile for a week or 
two while I try it out?  Nope.  I am going to wait until a product 
arrives that at the very minimum can convert my existing dataset into 
something useful in the new product.

As for Thunderbird users, not developers,  they download the product and 
expect it to "just get their mail and contacts"  from where ever they 
were in the past.  In many cases they do not conceive that web mail and 
a mail client are not the same thing.  When the shiny tool they 
downloaded does not "just work",  they move to the next download on file 
hippo.  A few seek support,  but most folks these days simply are not 
that invested in their software.  First sign of trouble, dump it and try 
something else.

One of the greatest failures of Thunderbird is the absence of a profile 
migration tool!  Now you are proposing another elephant without a trunk 
to drink from.  Those using the product have difficulty copying a file 
from their desktop to a USB drive.  We expect them to copy profiles.

>> The more data there is to be potentially lost without migration, and the
>> harder it is to avoid losing it without migration, the harder it is to
>> convince people to move without migration.
> Sure. But not everyone will need to migrate.
Everyone want their contacts. Well perhaps those not on corporate ldap 
server,  but home users  certainly want them imported from somewhere
> I want to focus on the word "Minimum" in MVP. Minimum does not mean
> "works for me", it means "works for some large enough set of people that
> we actually have a userbase".

How about works only for those using IMAP and have no contacts or 
mailing lists.  Otherwise migration is an absolute must.  That is unless 
your MVP can sync their phone,  that might be a winner

Anyone still using their Firefox OS phone?  Think about user acceptance 
there of what was an MVP

> Gerv
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> tb-planning mailing list
> tb-planning at

Matt Harris
Thunderbird Support Lead

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