Preston Hagar prestonh at
Fri Aug 13 15:08:50 UTC 2010

On Fri, Aug 13, 2010 at 1:42 AM, Basil Chupin <blchupin at> wrote:
> Thank you for pointing out the above 2 extensions and their pros/cons.
> But I have to ask - simply out of curiosity - why would one need to have
> an addon installed for this purpose when it only takes a simple click on
> a desktop icon where Thunderbird is running to see if TB has received
> new mail for you? Obviously there must be at least one reason otherwise
> the addon would not have been written, nor maintained, but what is that
> reason?
> Is it because by having this addon you can read the mail while you are
> using a different application on a different Desktop? If so, doesn't
> this overwrite the screen with TB mail?
> BC

I use Thunderbird on my work computer and it checks 3 emails accounts
(work, personal, and personal-business).  I have a dual monitor setup
and 95% of the time, the left screen is a terminal (usually with emacs
open programming something, or doing admin work on a server) and the
right screen is usually a browser (often with documentation, how-to or
other useful info).  I keep Thunderbird ready as well, but there is no
room on either screen for it to have space while my browser and
terminal are open, therefore it is usually in the background.

Without any type of notification that I received a new email, I just
have to remember to click on Thunderbird every so often just to make
sure something important didn't come in.  When I am in the middle of a
programming session, pulling my self away every 10 minutes or so can
be really distracting and counter-productive.  With the libnotify
extension, I can (hopefully) notice the pop-up, see the subject and
sender and decide if it is more important than my current task,
without too much distraction.  The reason for using the fireTray
extension is in case I miss the libnotify pop-up.  With the libnotify
pop-up, it is on the far right screen and is only up for about 30
seconds or so max.  If I am too focused on my left screen, or I look
away from the computer for a while, I could get an important email I
need to respond to quickly and not realize it (unless, again, I
randomly check Thunderbird every so often just to make sure).  With
firetray, I can at a glance see if I have any unread messages that I
might have missed with libnotify popups and then know I need to check
my email.

I am sure my setup/situation is somewhat specific to me, but I have
found what works.  The OP was seeming to look for a similar solution,
and I thought I would share.


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