Question about Thunderbird

By dms96960
Feb 28, 2008
  1. I just switched to Thunderbird from Outlook Express. I only have access to SLOW dial-up modem connections.

    In OE I was able to see each email message and its size including attachments. I could then either double click on it to download it, or I could simply delete it before it downloaded, thereby saving hours a day of wasted time. Is there a way to do this with Thunderbird?

  2. Didou

    Didou Bowtie extraordinair! Posts: 4,274

    You cannot see these kinds of informations before downloading emails at least when you're using a POP3 account (which is what most people use).

    If you have IMAP available on your email account, you can configure Thunderbird to download the message headers & then you'll be able to have such informations without downloading the whole message.

    & lastly if you were using Outlook Express with your Hotmail account, you won't be able to use that account with Thunderbird without installing some plug-ins.
  3. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,150   +597

    on the left pane is a list of Email Accounts
    (if your colapse all of the [-] they shrink the tree into a list of your email account names)

    click on Server Settings

    UNCHECK Automatically Download
    CHECK Fetch Headers Only
    click OK​

    the body (and attachments) will download ONLY if you click on the message and
    you can delete it (the header) and the Server Email itself with the delete [X] menu item
  4. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,000   +15

    check out the options and account settings in TB.
  5. dms96960

    dms96960 TS Addict Topic Starter Posts: 253   +28

    I am using TB version

    I did everything suggested and clicked on server settings, but I am unable to find anything even close to "automatically download" or "fetch headers only." Could these be located elsewhere in this version?

    Thanks again.
  6. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 9,150   +597

    I have TB: Thunderbird (version )
    and FF Firefox (

    the option (on 1.5.*) is associated with the email server settings and almost all
    email clients have this option somewhere.
  7. dms96960

    dms96960 TS Addict Topic Starter Posts: 253   +28

    Under server settings, the only boxes are:

    check for new messages at startup

    check for new messages every ___ minutes

    when I delete a message _________________

    clean up inbox on exit

    empty trash on exit
  8. Didou

    Didou Bowtie extraordinair! Posts: 4,274

    Your options should look like this (see attachment).
  9. dms96960

    dms96960 TS Addict Topic Starter Posts: 253   +28

    Didou, it does look exactly like that on my POP3 Gmail server settings, but NOT on my IMAP (non-Gmail) server settings. It would be great if I could just download the headers (and sizes) and delete before downloading.
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