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Thunderbird Headaches

By Char

About a year ago I switched my email program from Outlook to Thunderbird and never looked back. I loved the way Thunderbird let me organize, tag, and prioritize my email. I loved that it never “hung” like Outlook and loved that it was FAST. But, all of a sudden it is giving me the biggest headache!

I can receive email from all of my accounts and can still sort, filter, tag and prioritize, but I can’t send anything out. Nothing. I  didn’t change anything – it just stopped working one day. I have checked and double checked my settings – but nothing has fixed it. Does anyone have any ideas?  I really don’t want to reload the program and risk losing anything.

Meanwhile, I am able to send and receive from those accounts using Mail2Web, but that is just a temporary workaround. My G-mail account is working fine, but I don’t really want to start accessing all of my email through it either. As much as I like its spam filtering, its organizational features are lacking.

So, I am open for ideas!! What are you using for your email management? Any thoughts as to why I suddenly can’t send out from Thunderbird?  Thanks in advance!

Categories : Web Tools



Is you outgoing mail server the same as your imconing server? I’ve got my incoming through the domain host and the outgoing through my broadband ISP. When the outgoing doesn’t work it is an ISP email problem.

The other time I’ve seen this is when a host has just started requiring SMTP authentication (without telling anyone they were now needing that).


Are you using POP3/SMTP or IMAP?

Generally when email suddenly stops working without you making any changes, your ISP is to blame. A number of ISPs do port filtering (especially port 25 which SMTP uses) and sometimes neglect to tell their customers.

You have probably already seen this but on the off chance you haven’t it could be worth a look.


Leah – I wonder if my ISP has done something?? It wouldn’t surprise me at all.

Shane – thanks for the resource. I will go read it and see if anything in it sheds light on the issue.


My guess is your ISP requires authentication to send out mail.

Try switching your SMTP settings with Gmail settings.

NOTE it does not use the conventional port 25, and you have to add your Gmail credentials. Check POP settings on Gmail documentation


About a year ago I switched to Gmail from Thunderbird because I was having no end of problems with the email client. It’s also nice to be able to access all my emails at one go even without being at my own computer.


If you have multiple email account in Thunderbird and none of them are working, that gotta be the ISP problem. Or your anti-virus/firewall program is blocking the outgoing mail.

I love Thunderbird. I can travel with it and sync the mail between two computers. Recently, I add Google calendar on Thunderbird + Lighting. I can take Google calendar with me off line and sync it when I get online.

Thunderbird is great!


No idea what the problem is. But I can recommend Foxmail if you need a fast and simple email program with features you are used to from Firefox. I switched to it 3 month ago with my private notebook and I am happy with it. I do use Outlook in my office.


..what you are used from “Thunderbird” of course. Sorry.


You should be getting an error message when you try to send mail and Tbird fails. Post that error message. You can start Tbird for the command lint to get more feeback. Also, if you backiup ~/,thunderbird than your accound info is stored.


If it is not your SMTP settings, then you have an email in the “outbox” and not “Sent item” that has a corrupt header.

You could delete the earliest email in the “Outbox”, then restart your client, and that should get the mail flowing again.


I can now send and receive from my ISP email and I moved my domain email to Gmail which is working fine. I really think it is my computer/Thunderbird. It keeps hanging randomly. Chances are the only solution is to remove and reload.

At least I am functioning now.


For your Thunderbird random freezes/hangs, you might want to try the troubleshooting tips here:

Good luck.


I’m having problems with Thunderbird too. I don’t know what to do. I asked for help at their forums, but so far no one has said anything that has helped:

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