Thunderbird UI Redux



  • I'm not quite sure when I last ranted about FF/TB's UI, but I can't find the thread now. Anyway, whatever they did last time, apparently I was able to turn it off.
    Now thunderbird starts after an update and looks like this:

    Thunderbird UI

     

    BAAAAH. WTF, how can I turn off this abomination?!?

    And best off all: Not only does the drag handle not cover all the blue area, it covers only the few pixels above the menu. That is, less than the height of the caption buttons / the usual caption bar height.

    (And yes, one of my PCs still runs XP instead of 7. IDGAF)



  • @topspin said:

    Not only does the drag handle not cover all the blue area, it covers only the few pixels above the menu.

    Protip: do NOT maximize the window. It will turn the ten pixels title bar into a two pixels title bar.

    @topspin said:

    WTF, how can I turn off this abomination?!?

    Hahaha lol.



  • @derula said:

    Protip: do NOT maximize the window. It will turn the ten pixels title bar into a two pixels title bar.

    OMG. No, It turns it into a zero pixel title bar. With lots of blue "bar" underneath. Yes, ZERO pixels.
    Ok, you can't drag it when maximized anyway, so you're only missing on double-click and right-click target space.



  • Weird.

    I forgot what version I got up to under XP, may have just been 16. I installed 17 in Windows 8 and copied my profile across, and nothing changed at all.

    Firefox's default is to have an orange box at the top for the menu bar (which I like, except that having a real menu bar is now the only way to have a bookmarks bar above the tab bar). Thunderbird by default has an "identical to" operator button ("≡") at the end of the toolbar that you're supposed to guess opens the menus. (I have the mail toolbar off and all the buttons moved into the menu bar, so I'd never seen this atrocity before until I just ran with default settings.)

    Thunderbird is a horrible mail editor (both HTML and plain text), but I've never seen a single mail client since Mac Outlook Express that I would recommend to anyone.



  • @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    Thunderbird by default has an "identical to" operator button ("≡") at the end of the toolbar that you're supposed to guess opens the menus.

    The everything-is-a-phone UI brain worms strike again!



  • I'm still using Version 2.Mostly because I've never been bothered to try to update, but this doesn't make me really want to update, either.

     

    Though my experience with E-Mail clients has been rather poor. Thunderbird is the only one I've been able to get setup properly to send and receive, and even then it's configuration feels like a person that is lactose intolerant finding cheese in a maze.



  • Argh. I didn't try to find the "proper" method (if there is one) of bringing back the title bar; the config setting in question is "mail.tabs.drawInTitlebar".



  • @flabdablet said:

    @Daniel Beardsmore said:
    Thunderbird by default has an "identical to" operator button ("≡") at the end of the toolbar that you're supposed to guess opens the menus.

    The everything-is-a-phone UI brain worms strike again!

    At least i'm not the only one who's not infected.



  • @topspin said:

    @derula said:

    Protip: do NOT maximize the window. It will turn the ten pixels title bar into a two pixels title bar.

    OMG. No, It turns it into a zero pixel title bar. With lots of blue "bar" underneath. Yes, ZERO pixels.
    Ok, you can't drag it when maximized anyway, so you're only missing on double-click and right-click target space.

    At least in Windows 8, it really does have two pixels of title bar (3 pixels was just a guess). Look:



    (I can tell that it really is a title bar because I can hold the mouse and drag to un-maximize)

    Edit: btw, tab bar is hidden because I set mail.tabs.autoHide to true.



  • People still use Thunderbird? Hasn't everybody switched to gmail for personal mail yet? (Professional mail being done through Outlook of course.)


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    @MiffTheFox said:

    People still use Thunderbird? Hasn't everybody switched to gmail for personal mail yet? (Professional mail being done through Outlook of course.)

    I still haven't found a mail client I didn't hate for some reason or another. Outlook wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't taken to hanging for five minutes at a time.



  • @MiffTheFox said:

    People still use Thunderbird? Hasn't everybody switched to gmail for personal mail yet? (Professional mail being done through Outlook of course.)
     

    And what do they use to read their gmail account then? You aren't seriously proposing that people would use the gmail web interface, right?

    In the end of the day, I gave up on nearly all clients I've tried, and use just 2 mail interfaces: squirremail and k9mail. That is, the only time I use a local email reader is when I'm on my phone. I read my gmail account by squirrelmail (as I didn't bother to setup IMAP at the computer that access it).



  • @Mcoder said:

    @MiffTheFox said:

    People still use Thunderbird? Hasn't everybody switched to gmail for personal mail yet? (Professional mail being done through Outlook of course.)
     

    And what do they use to read their gmail account then? You aren't seriously proposing that people would use the gmail web interface, right?

    In the end of the day, I gave up on nearly all clients I've tried, and use just 2 mail interfaces: squirremail and k9mail. That is, the only time I use a local email reader is when I'm on my phone. I read my gmail account by squirrelmail (as I didn't bother to setup IMAP at the computer that access it).

    Yeah, what's wrong with the gmail web interface?



  • I would love you use Outlook. I am forced to use Lotus Notes.



  • @MiffTheFox said:

    Yeah, what's wrong with the gmail web interface?

    Found the problem.



  • @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    Thunderbird is a horrible mail editor (both HTML and plain text), but I've never seen a single mail client since Mac Outlook Express that I would recommend to anyone.

    Remember Claris Emailer 2.0? Loved that client. I'd still be using it if it supported HTML emails.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @joe.edwards said:

    Outlook wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't taken to hanging for five minutes at a time.

    When's the last time you looked at it? It doesn't do that nearly as much, and probably hasn't in the last 3-4 versions.

    Still and all, the "haven't met a mail client I liked" people are probably mainly in the right.

    On the gripping hand, Outlook.com isn't too bad. For webmail.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Remember Claris Emailer 2.0? Loved that client. I'd still be using it if it supported HTML emails.

    I haven't used it.

    @FrostCat said:

    Still and all, the "haven't met a mail client I liked" people are probably mainly in the right.

    Outlook is now where it should have been many years ago — they've almost got IMAP working, and now you can click New in a folder of a non-default account and it will automatically select the correct account to send from! Also, you've got plain text paste at long last.

    Baby steps … :)


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    @FrostCat said:

    @joe.edwards said:
    Outlook wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't taken to hanging for five minutes at a time.

    When's the last time you looked at it? It doesn't do that nearly as much, and probably hasn't in the last 3-4 versions.

    Still and all, the "haven't met a mail client I liked" people are probably mainly in the right.

    On the gripping hand, Outlook.com isn't too bad. For webmail.

    I use 2010 and it does this every day. It quite possibly could be the fault of our Exchange server and/or corporate mandated spyware.



  • @joe.edwards said:

    I use 2010 and it does this every day. It quite possibly could be the fault of our Exchange server and/or corporate mandated spyware.

    That's not normal. (Though the Outlook team still aren't cool with threads and async calls yet. But I'm happy to forego that so long as the Excel team give us true SDI once and for all.)



  • @flabdablet said:

    @Daniel Beardsmore said:
    Thunderbird by default has an "identical to" operator button ("≡") at the end of the toolbar that you're supposed to guess opens the menus.

    The everything-is-a-phone UI brain worms strike again!

     

    That's called a "consistent user experience across platforms".



  • @FrostCat said:

    When's the last time you looked at it? It doesn't do that nearly as much, and probably hasn't in the last 3-4 versions.
    Outlook XP was pretty horrible, and it loved to send an e-mail, then fail to move it to Sent (because it's storage file grew to somewhere around 1.8GB), and repeat the cycle until it was killed. 2003 was slightly better in this regard, since they upped the limit - except for IMAP accounts, which were still limited to -1.8GB (why?). 2007 and 2010 are much better, but I still get one or two calls per week because Outlook is behaving strangely (such as not sending or not receiving any mail), which can always be solved by exiting and restarting.

    Oh, and why did we have to wait until 2010 before Outlook could handle more than one Exchange account at once (and in 2010 you still can't add more than one Exchange account through Outlook - you have to use the [Windows] Control Panel). What the hell is with that?



  • @Watson said:

    the config setting in question is "mail.tabs.drawInTitlebar".
    Thanks, I'll have to try that.

    @derula said:

    At least in Windows 8, it really does have two pixels of title bar (3 pixels was just a guess).
    On XP it's 0. On Vista it's a large enough area that I wouldn't have noticed the difference. Can't try 7 right now.

    BTW, what happened to your random tag script?

     



  • @ender said:

    (and in 2010 you still can't add more than one Exchange account through Outlook - you have to use the [Windows] Control Panel). What the hell is with that?

    Don't forget that the Mail control panel doesn't show up in Start menu search on a great many Windows 7 PCs. Works for me in Windows 8 Pro (64-bit) though. Never figured out the pattern, only that Microsoft stuffed up again.

    Outlook also has a really broken implementation of single-sign on (NTLM authentication?) and there's a long-standing bug where it prompts you for a username of "MAILSERVER\username" instead of "DOMAIN\username" when it's messed up its password handling, so people can't actually log back on.



  • @MiffTheFox said:

    Yeah, what's wrong with the gmail web interface?
     

    It's broken on any browser that isn't Chrome. It uses a ton of slow javascript to just disable the default functionality of clicking on the mail subjects. The biggest targets on the mail list are the senders of the messages, not the subjects, and clicking on them creates a blank email destined to them. The threaded view (the only one available) hides messages and isn't properly sorted.

    Well, I stoped routinely using their web interface years ago, so I don't remember most problems I had with it. Now I rarely use it, but those above are the ones (maybe not all, can't remember) that I rediscover every fast visit.



  • @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    hunderbird by default has an "identical to" operator button ("≡") at the end of the toolbar that you're supposed to guess opens the menus.
     

    And it's on the very right of the toolbar. And nto in the place where the screenshot says it is.

    And there's a random dropdown arrow in the menubar somewhere that opens a menu of the current... folder... or something. It doesn't actually do anything.

    This is drug-induced delirium.



  • @Mcoder said:

    It uses a ton of slow javascript to just disable the default functionality of clicking on the mail subjects. The biggest targets on the mail list are the senders of the messages, not the subjects, and clicking on them creates a blank email destined to them.
     

    Screenshot or it's not true. The subject is by far the biggest click target.



  • @Mcoder said:

    It's broken on any browser that isn't Chrome.
    No problems with Firefox.

    @Mcoder said:

    It uses a ton of slow javascript to just disable the default functionality of clicking on the mail subjects.
    Not my experience.

    @Mcoder said:

    The biggest targets on the mail list are the senders of the messages, not the subjects,
    Nope.

    @Mcoder said:

    and clicking on them creates a blank email destined to them.
    Nope.

    @Mcoder said:

    The threaded view (the only one available)
    Settings > General > Conversation view off

    @Mcoder said:

    hides messages
    True, it hides the bodies of messages I've already read. Sometimes even the dozens of repeated subjects, until I click "N older messages".

    @Mcoder said:

    and isn't properly sorted.
    If by "properly" you mean "not in chronological order", sure.

    @Mcoder said:

    Well, I stoped routinely using their web interface years ago,
    Ah.

    For the reference: I'm using compact view. I don't know about other views.

    And having to disable Firebug is a WTF.

     



  • @Zecc said:

    And having to disable Firebug is a WTF.

    I don't know if it's just me, but Firebug has always seemed to have more bugs in it than the code I've been trying to debug. Drove me nuts. Hopefully the new integrated debugger will work better.



  • @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    @Zecc said:

    And having to disable Firebug is a WTF.

    I don't know if it's just me, but Firebug has always seemed to have more bugs in it than the code I've been trying to debug. Drove me nuts. Hopefully the new integrated debugger will work better.

    > disable Firebug

    Hasn't Firebug been on a enable-per-site design for like four years now?



  • @MiffTheFox said:

    Hasn't Firebug been on a enable-per-site design for like four years now?
    Sure, but I don't know of any other site that actively tells you to disable it.

    Okay, maybe suggesting you to disable Firebug to have better performance isn't a WTF.

    But it's awkard. It's like telling you to take off your gloves if you don't want to have your hands warm.



  • @Zecc said:

    @Mcoder said:
    and clicking on them creates a blank email destined to them.
    Nope.
     

    Yes, this happens.

    Are both of you using gmail from a different universe? Clicking the sender opens the compose screen, and the subject/content line is the biggest. 


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    @dhromed said:

    @Zecc said:

    @Mcoder said:
    and clicking on them creates a blank email destined to them.
    Nope.
     

    Yes, this happens.

    Are both of you using gmail from a different universe? Clicking the sender opens the compose screen, and the subject/content line is the biggest. 

    This may or may not be the case, but it wouldn't surprise me at all to learn that Google uses A/B or multivariate testing, which would imply showing minor differences to different sample groups to see how they affect usage patterns.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    you've got plain text paste at long last.

    Baby steps … :)

     

     

    Really?  I still just paste through Notepad.



  • @FrostCat said:

    Really?  I still just paste through Notepad.

    I've added a Win+V binding to my AutoHotkey script that replaces the contents of the clipboard with its plain text version. For copying text out of e-mails, it also cleans up the horrible mess that Outlook 2003 makes out of copying HTML to plain text, using a series of regular expressions. (One day I'll upgrade my own PC ;-)



  •  That sounds really useful.



  • @joe.edwards said:

    This may or may not be the case, but it wouldn't surprise me at all to learn that Google uses A/B or multivariate testing, which would imply showing minor differences to different sample groups to see how they affect usage patterns.
     

    That explains it enough for now that I can sleep soundly.



  • @joe.edwards said:

    This may or may not be the case, but it wouldn't surprise me at all to learn that Google uses A/B or multivariate testing, which would imply showing minor differences to different sample groups to see how they affect usage patterns.

    Also known as "fucking with people that are trying to get something done".



  • @db2 said:

    Also known as "fucking with people that are trying to get something done".

    How do you figure?



  • @blakeyrat said:

    @db2 said:
    Also known as "fucking with people that are trying to get something done".

    How do you figure?

    Because... because... SHUTUP I'M NOT YOUR GUINEA PIG!



  • @spamcourt said:

    @flabdablet said:
    @Daniel Beardsmore said:
    Thunderbird by default has an "identical to" operator button ("≡") at the end of the toolbar that you're supposed to guess opens the menus.

    The everything-is-a-phone UI brain worms strike again!

    That's called a "consistent user experience across platforms".

    Which, granted, is a fine and worthy design goal for the kind of person who prefers to eat only blancmange everywhere.



  • @FrostCat said:

    Really?  I still just paste through Notepad.

    Does Outlook do the thing where the soft line breaks Notepad has inserted for word wrapping get pasted as hard line breaks, or is that an IE-only annoyance?



  • @flabdablet said:

    Does Outlook do the thing where the soft line breaks Notepad has inserted for word wrapping get pasted as hard line breaks, or is that an IE-only annoyance?

    What would it take, do you reckon, to convince Microsoft to actually fix Notepad?

    I doubt this is still true today, but at one stage, either IIS 6 or Exchange 2003 (the latter, I think) generated logs with UNIX line endings, that Notepad doesn't recognise.



  • @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    @flabdablet said:
    Does Outlook do the thing where the soft line breaks Notepad has inserted for word wrapping get pasted as hard line breaks, or is that an IE-only annoyance?
    What would it take, do you reckon, to convince Microsoft to actually fix Notepad?
    I doubt that Microsoft would invest any time in fixing anything in Notepad. I have always understood that Notepad was nothing more than a demo application for the MFC textbox control.

    Even Internet Explorer (I believe) started out as a demo for the WebBrowser control.


     



  • @bjolling said:

    Even Internet Explorer (I believe) started out as a demo for the WebBrowser control.

    SciTE started out as a demo for an editing control too, and ended up pretty decent.



  • @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    What would it take, do you reckon, to convince Microsoft to actually fix Notepad?

    Notepad isn't broken. It literally only ever existed for DOS compatibility. (You're supposed to use WordPad for actual work.) The only reason it exists now is because a ton of moron idiot programmers who used Notepad for things other than DOS compatibility hard-coded references to it.

    If you're using Notepad now for... well let's say ANYTHING AT ALL, you're an idiot and should die. It's terrible.



  • Because the obvious choice of a text editor is a program geared towards writing letters to your aunt. Plain text just means "set font to Courier New".

    A proper Notepad would have things like regex find/filter/replace, cycle through files of the same type (Alt-Pg Up/Dn in JujuEdit), on-demand loading for large files (, and (read-only if necessary) hex view mode in case the file turns out to be binary, so you have a go-to program for checking what's in any file. Nothing terribly complicated, just a few basics. Don't need tabs or syntax highlighting or anything, just the basic things you will want to do with log files etc when you're not on your own machine. (I use the venerable JujuEdit personally, which does most of the above, and the hex mode is read/write. The stateful regex-based syntax highlighting is very odd though.)

    Just tried to open (via Ctrl+O) a 6 GB log file in WordPad (Server 2008 R2):

    An unknown error occurred while accessing an unnamed file.

    Great.

    Besides, if Notepad is so bad, why are .txt file still associated with it by default on every system including Server 2008 R2 and Windows 8? No confidence on Microsoft's part in their choice of text editor?



  • @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    Because the obvious choice of a text editor is a program geared towards writing letters to your aunt. Plain text just means "set font to Courier New".

    Uh. Huh? What are you talking about?

    @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    A proper Notepad would have things like regex find/filter/replace, cycle through files of the same type (Alt-Pg Up/Dn in JujuEdit), on-demand loading for large files (, and (read-only if necessary) hex view mode in case the file turns out to be binary, so you have a go-to program for checking what's in any file.

    Congratulations, you're listing several reasons people using Notepad are idiots and should die.

    @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    Just tried to open (via Ctrl+O) a 6 GB log file in WordPad (Server 2008 R2):

    Why would you do that? Why do you even have a 6 GB log file? Windows already has a logging system, which has absolutely nothing to do with Notepad.

    @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    Besides, if Notepad is so bad, why are .txt file still associated with it by default on every system including Server 2008 R2 and Windows 8?

    Because .txt is the file type for DOS-style text files, and Notepad exists for DOS compatibility. At least that was the original reason. Now the reason is because a bunch of idiot apps written by morons rely on Notepad being the editor for .txt files. I think I JUST FUCKING WENT OVER THIS A FEW MINUTES AGO.

    @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    No confidence on Microsoft's part in their choice of text editor?

    Huh?

    Microsoft representatives have stated numerous times that they'd have dropped Notepad like a hot potato years and years ago if they could get away with it. Because of compatibility with idiot apps written by morons, they can't. In fact they actually (at least as of Vista) ship multiple copies of Notepad with the OS, since the idiot apps written by morons use different hard-coded paths to find it.

    @Daniel Beardsmore said:

    Filed under: We've had 64-bit integers for a long time now, Right tool for the job, My 1981 8-bit micro had 32-bit integers in BASIC

    Your post delivers more "huh?" per-minute than any other post I've seen. Jesus, man. Make sense. MAKE SENSE!



  • I have yet to find a notepad replacement with both smart tabbing and proper Unicode support, so right now I alternate between notepad2 and babelpad depending on the application.

    Oh, scintilla, why are you stuck in 1998?



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Uh. Huh? What are you talking about?

    If you open a text file in WordPad, you still get the rich text UI; it just sets the formatting to Courier New 11 pt.

    @blakeyrat said:

    Congratulations, you're listing several reasons people using Notepad are idiots and should die.

    I'm listing all the things WordPad doesn't do, that makes it totally unsuitable for being the basic out-of-box text editor. I mean, don't forget that Paint got a ribbon, crayon tools, JPEG support etc, even though it's totally worthless as an image viewer, editor, or really anything at all. Microsoft were happy to spend time and money and QA flogging that dead horse!

    @blakeyrat said:

    Why would you do that? Why do you even have a 6 GB log file?

    That's what I wanted to find out. The only way I could see inside of it was to page through it using more! Even my chosen editor on my own PC has a 2 GB limit for files, though it does have on-demand read.

    Obviously if you linked .txt files to WordPad, it would confuse the hell out of everyone, since the UI is for styled text. Even if WordPad ever did make sense as a text editor, and it doesn't.


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