back to article Lightning catches up with Thunderbird

Mozilla has made a beta of Lighting 1.0 available for download, giving users of its Thunderbird email package a more integrated way of working out what day it is. The Lightning extension adds calendaring to Thunderbird, making the email package more of an alternative for those used to the likes of full fat Outlook. But while …


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  1. mrlumpy

    oh yeah, hail the gods of opensource!

    Yay! my email client is now back to full functionality and I never need to miss another meeting, or know which bin to put out or the wife's birthday!

    1. Cazzo Enorme


      Sorry, but I read that as:

      "know which bin to put out *for* the wife's birthday!"

      1. Roby


        Me too. In fact after you pointed out it *didn't* say that, I still had to read it two more times until I could see what it actually said

  2. Marcus 8


    I use my phone, and i have an ipod touch which is also kinda handy for that sort of stuff, more so than for exmple a mail client because of the fact its on me.

    I do understand why a fully functional calendar is required, but you know a diary, a nice mont blanc fountain pen resting on top is just a timeless image :)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      That calendar integration in email clients has more to do with scheduling meetings than anything else. The calendar held the meeting dates, and the email was used to inform others of the meeting details and changes.

      If Fax was the main communications medium of the day, then we'd have Fax-Calendar integration.

      Not such a worthwhile addon now with instant message twitter and skype. Not to mention the Google shared calendars.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    managed so far

    For many years there have been calendar alternatives and yet still the forward and back buttons in thunderbird dont let me step through my messages without closing each one and opening the next - fix core functionality before pushing unnecessary new code.

  4. Steve Evans


    And even better than M$ has ever managed, it really is English, not American!

  5. Robert Carnegie Silver badge


    I assume in the story, "Lighting" is the incomplete name of the incomplete product called "Lightning".

    In other news, the Time Lords returned in Doctor Who, and the Doctor Who Adventures magazine calendar gift has two months missing - at least mine did. They've been at it. I think May and November are the periods that you should block out for your alien abduction episodes - and after all Doctor Who is an alien and he abducts people. Granddaughter indeed.

  6. lukewarmdog


    Ah the language of that most majestic of Beligan horses.

    Wednesneigh 5th Neigh - get laid.

    Rest of week - eat hay.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    About time

    Mozilla delayed Firefox 3.5 release to allow popular extension writers to get their code working.

    Similarly, TB3 should have had Lightning working at time of release IMO.

    Still, it's nearly here now.

  8. Stephen Hunt

    Thunderbird and Lightning?

    very very frightning...

  9. sandman

    Doesn't matter

    Let's face it, people who use Thunderbird are rarely important enough in an organisation to need to calendar meetings. Ever seen a senior executive use anything other than Outlook?

    1. Marijn Vriens

      RE: Doesn't matter

      Ahhh... so that explains why they're always late and have no clue what's going on...

      1. Beelzeebub


        ...perhaps it's because they offer their products for free, unlike some others.

    2. heyrick Silver badge

      My boss's boss uses Outlook.

      ...and then writes everything down on PostIt's which get stuck to the wall. I call this "archeoLOGIC behaviour", but nobody else gets the joke. <sigh>

  10. John Sanders

    Tried to setup thunderbird...

    But at least in ubuntu 9.10 thunderbird 3.0.2 does not show new emails with a bold font, which has been the case on any email software... well, since ever.

    So I had to say a customer that he should stick with Outlook Express for the time being.

    Very sad but true. Thunderbird's problem is one of love and care, no one loves it no one cares, and that's since the time it was an appendix of Netscape navigator.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @John Sanders re: Unread/Bold mail

      Thunderbird 3.x does show new mails in bold; you have a configuration problem.

      I did have the same in a fresh install of openSUSE, which was cured after installing proprietary Nvidia screen driver.

      Also in Ubuntu, goto, install their repository, then from a terminal window, use the command: sudo apt-get install non-free-codecs

      That will install MS TT fonts, Sun Java and a load of CODECs etc. you need.

  11. William Wallace

    Re: Doesn't matter

    Personally, I wasn't important enough to have a mobile phone until two years ago - and I'm the CEO. Worst decision I ever made!

  12. blackworx
    Thumb Down

    How about

    The ability to choose between composing in plain text and HTML on a per-message basis?


    Oh well.

  13. JC 2

    @ Doesn't matter

    You seem to be forgetting, those Outlook emails are the ones they WANT you to see. Ever wonder what they use when they want a bit of privacy or portability instead of routinely archived mail or webmail? Thunderbird Portable suits the bill nicely.

    Gone are the days when someone feels compelled to use some particular email client, particularly one as bloated and intrusive as Outlook, and as always plug-ins are nice to have, as is source code and standards.

    As for Lightning, been running 1.0b2 for awhile now, as has anyone who felt they had use for it.

  14. Mark Fenton
    Gates Horns

    When can we have an open source Exchange Client...

    ....then I'll ditch Office and go OpenSource!

    Please someone....

  15. Jim 64
    Gates Horns

    Nice one. Even less need for M$.

    Been using TBird3 for about a month. Excellent. Was disappointed that it didn't have the calendar func from the start as expected for a long time. Glad to see this is remedied. Now most users that want to buy office, only need the Home and Student edition which saves a bundle. For the rest of us, with Ubuntu, Open Office, Tbird3 w calendar func and so on, M$ is out of the picture (and our wallets) for machines used mainly for browsing. GREAT!

  16. Winkypop Silver badge
    Thumb Up


    What is this Outlook you speak of?

    Must go and open Thunderbird, I have mail to read.

  17. Mark Simon

    Long time coming

    Thunderbird 3 has been on the books for a very long time. I have yet to upgrade, since I still have too many extensions caught out by the change. I have downloaded the new Lightning, but I can’t try it out since it won’t work on TB2. What’s going on here?

  18. mikebartnz

    Good news

    Great news I have been waiting a while for it to run on the latest version.

    Mark Simon you need to use an older version of Lightning.

    blackworx wrong you can.

  19. Harry

    Ever seen a senior executive use anything other than Outlook?

    Ever found a senior executive that was intelligent enough to know there are better (and cheaper) alternatives to MOST microsoft products?

    The saying used to be that nobody ever got fired for buying IBM -- but that was only because the even-more-senior people didn't know any better.

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