Thunderbird 78 has been Released!

Ryan Sipes ryan at thunderbird.net
Fri Jul 17 11:02:09 UTC 2020


Hey all,

As you've likely heard by now, Thunderbird 78 is out. We are not 
automatically updating our users likely until Thunderbird 78.2 as to 
allow us time to get in some features (like OpenPGP support), and to 
give add-on authors more time to develop support for the new release. 
But anyone is welcome to update manually today by downloading the 78 
from our website <https://thunderbird.net>.

I'd like to thank all of you on this list who contributed to this 
release. Without this community, an enormous release like this would not 
have been possible. It's amazing to look back on the last three years, 
and the challenges that were present for Thunderbird and to see how far 
we've come. There are still issues, but each release we chip away at 
some of the things that have held the project back. At this point we've 
chipped away at the wall of technical debt and the "Thunderbird is dead" 
myth enough, that I feel we can finally see some sunlight.

So what's new in the release? For a wordier rundown, check out the 
"What's New in Thunderbird 78" 
<https://blog.thunderbird.net/2020/07/whats-new-in-thunderbird-78/> blog 
post. Or if you like just scanning release notes, you can find them here 
<https://www.thunderbird.net/thunderbird/78.0/releasenotes/>. Here are 
some highlights from the blog post and release notes:


  What’s New in Thunderbird 78

Thunderbird 78 is our newest ESR (extended-support release), which comes 
out yearly and is considered the latest stable release. Right now you 
can download the newest version from our website 
<https://thunderbird.net>, and existing users will be automatically 
updated in the near future. *We encourage those who rely on the popular 
add-on Enigmail to wait to update* until the automatic update rolls out 
to them to ensure their encrypted email settings are properly imported 
into Thunderbird’s new built-in OpenPGP encrypted email feature.

Last year’s release focused on ensuring Thunderbird has a stable 
foundation on which to build. The new Thunderbird 78 aims to improve the 
experience of using Thunderbird, adding many quality-of-life features to 
the application and making it easier to use.


    Compose Window Redesign

Compose Window Comparison, 68 and 78 
<https://blog.thunderbird.net/files/2020/07/compose-comparison.png>

The compose window has been reworked to help users find features more 
easily and to make composing a message faster and more straightforward. 
The compose window now also takes up less space with recipients listed 
in “pills” instead of an entire line for every address.


    Dark Mode

Dark Mode <https://blog.thunderbird.net/files/2020/07/Dark-Mode-1.png>

Thunderbird’s new Dark Mode is easier on the eyes for those working in 
the dark, and it has the added benefit of looking really cool! The Dark 
Mode even works when writing and reading emails – so you are not 
suddenly blinded while you work. Thunderbird will look at your operating 
system settings to see if you have enabled dark mode OS-wide and respect 
those settings. Here are the instructions for setting dark mode in Mac 
<https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT208976>, and setting dark mode in 
Windows 
<https://www.pcmag.com/how-to/how-to-enable-dark-mode-in-windows-10>.


    Account Setup & Account Central Updated

Account Setup and Account Central Updated, comparison between 68 and 78 
<https://blog.thunderbird.net/files/2020/07/account-setup.png>

The Account Setup window and the Account Central tab, which appears when 
you do not have an account setup or when you select an existing account 
in the folder tree, have both been updated. The layout and dialogues 
have been improved in order to make it easier to understand the 
information displayed and to find relevant settings. The Account Central 
tab also has new information about the Thunderbird project and displays 
the version you are using.


    End-to-End Encrypted Email Support

New end-to-end encryption preferences tab. 
<https://blog.thunderbird.net/files/2020/07/e2eprefs.png>

*Thunderbird 78.2*, due out in the coming months, will offer a new 
feature that allows you to end-to-end encrypt your email messages via 
OpenPGP. In the past this feature was achieved in Thunderbird primarily 
with the Enigmail add-on, however, in this release we have brought this 
functionality into core Thunderbird. We’d like to offer a special thanks 
to Patrick Brunschwig for his years of work on Enigmail, which laid the 
groundwork for this integrated feature, and for his assistance 
throughout its development. The new feature is also enabled by the RNP 
library, and we’d like to thank the project’s developers for their close 
collaboration and hard work addressing our needs.

End-to-end encryption for email can be used to ensure that only the 
sender and the recipients of a message can read the contents. Without 
this protection it is easy for network administrators, email providers 
and government agencies to read your messages. If you would like to 
learn more about how end-to-end encryption in Thunderbird works, check 
out our article on Introduction to End-to-end encryption in Thunderbird 
<https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/introduction-to-e2e-encryption>. 
If you would like to learn more about the development of this feature or 
participate in testing, check out the OpenPGP Thunderbird wiki page 
<https://wiki.mozilla.org/Thunderbird:OpenPGP>.


    Other Notable Changes:

  * Calendar and Tasks Integrated
  * Folder Icons and Colors Updated
  * Minimize to Tray added for Windows
  * OTR Messaging Support
  * Checkbox Message Select Column
  * So much more.
    <https://www.thunderbird.net/en-US/thunderbird/78.0/releasenotes/>


    Great Release, Bright Future

The past year has been an amazing year for Thunderbird. We had an 
incredible release in version 68 that was popular with our users, and 
laid the groundwork for much of what we did in 78. On top of great 
improvements in the product, we moved into a new financial and legal 
home <https://blog.thunderbird.net/2020/01/thunderbirds-new-home/>, and 
we grew our team to thirteen people (soon to be even more)!

We’re so grateful to all our users and contributors who have stuck with 
us all these years, and we hope to earn your dedication for the years to 
come. Thunderbird 78 is the beginning of a new era for the project, as 
we attempt to bring our users the features that they want and need to be 
productive in the 2020s – while also maintaining what has made 
Thunderbird so great all these years.

Thank you to our wonderful community, please enjoy Thunderbird 78.

Download the newest release from our website. <https://thunderbird.net>

---

Ryan Sipes
Community & Biz Dev. Manager
*Thunderbird* <https://thunderbird.net>

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