Mozilla releases Thunderbird 3 RC1
Originally expected two weeks ago, the Mozilla developers have now announced the availability of the first release candidate (RC1) for version 3.0 of their popular open source email and news client. The preview release is based on the Gecko 188.8.131.52 platform and includes over 100 changes from the previous beta 4 release. According to Mozilla, Thunderbird 3 RC1 includes some "major re-architecting to provide improved performance, stability, web compatibility, and code simplification and sustainability."
Compared to it's predecessor, Thunderbird 2, the latest development milestone for Thunderbird 3 features IMAP folder synchronisation performance improvements, a new Global Search field with auto-complete and advanced filtering tools. User experience improvements include a new Mail Account Set-up Wizard that provides the email settings for a range of popular mail providers, tabbed email messages, a redesigned mail toolbar and a Smart Folders mode in the folder pane that lets users combine special mailboxes, such as the Inbox, from multiple accounts. As with all development releases, use in production environments and on mission critical systems is not advised.
More details about the release, including a list of known issues, can be found in the release notes. Thunderbird 3 RC1 is available to download for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. The developers note that Thunderbird 3 no longer supports Windows 95, 98, ME, NT and Mac OS X versions prior to 10.4. A final release date for Thunderbird 3, has yet to be announced.