What does your mailbox look like?Mozilla could soon decide on letting Thunderbird spread its wings and become a fully autonomous project at Mozilla. The general feeling is that Mozilla is too much focused on Firefox, and other projects like SeaMonkey or Thunderbird are not getting enough freedom to prosper on their own.

Thunderbird is a solid alternative to good ol' Microsoft Outlook but it's never really had much success, probably due to the rough competition it's getting from webmail clients. I personally prefer checking my mail directly from Internet, but for those of you who are looking for a desktop mail client, and aren't convinced by Mozilla's Thunderbird, here are some alternatives you can set up on your PC:

  • IncrediMail Xe - Probably best for those of you that are really into customizing, IncrediMail Xe lets you add emoticons, create multimedia signatures, add sounds, 3D effects and even create e-cards.
  • Pegasus Mail - A sober yet efficient email client, Pegasus Mail doesn't have the sexiest of interfaces, but it offers advanced features like Mailmerge, html mail generation or rule-based filtering.
  • The Bat! - This email client was the top alternative to Outlook before Thunderbird came around and to this day still remains one of the best. With its hotkeys, efficient anti-spam and advanced folder organization, this is the perfect email client for busy, productive types.
  • Becky Internet Mail - Create templates, filters and all sorts of mailing lists. Becky supports most protocols and works efficiently. Like Pegasus Mail, it doesn't have a very attractive interface but it gets the job done really well.
  • PocoMail - With its Focus Box to quickly access your folders and AutoText snippets, PocoMail is a dynamic email client. Just like Thunderbird, you can also read your RSS feeds and Newsgroups straight from the program.


  • Emmanuel Lemor |
    Emmanuel Lemor

    Humm, this review seems missing a few concepts... like the fact that Thunderbird has X number of hundreds of add-ons [like Firefox] which the other softwares do not have.

    Also there is no mention of free vs commercial on this review. Thunderbird is free, 100%, with no ads or equivalent, which is not the case for some of these others...




  • Cyril Roger |
    Cyril Roger

    Hi Emmanuel,

    Thanks for your comments. You are right, one of the big advantages of Thunderbird over the other mail clients is that, like Firefox, it allows you to install all sorts of add-ons. It's also completely free and constantly updated.

    As of the licence types, only IncrediMail Xe and Pegasus Mail are free, all the other ones are shareware.

    Obviously, some people will prefer to stick with Outlook or Thunderbird, but for those that are looking for something else I believe these are good alternative mail clients they can turn to.

  • Ben |

    I've used Pegasus mail for years for its security, multiple email accounts and identities, mailing lists and its unsurpassed powerful filters that make easy work of adding or deleting specific inquiries to or from a mailing list. I just wish an email client like Pegasus also had some more contact management features.

    Contact managers make lousy email clients and the email clients make lousy contact managers.

    It seems truly amazing to me that after all these years, there is still no easy comprehensive powerful solution to integrating contact management, calendar and email.

    In my humble opinion, getting sales inquiries from Web forms into daily follow up and email response cycle, still all too frequently involves copy and past and is clumsy and time consuming.

    Personally I've used Maximzer, Goldmine, Act, Pegasus Mail, Eudora, Outlook and none provide a single easy answer!

  • Charles Pedley |
    Charles Pedley

    Time and Chaos And Pocomail's big brother Barca would fill that category without spending a lot of money.

    Thunderbird actually has calendar addons if desired and has built in all the address info you could want.

    Kalendra is a newer product, visually beautiful that can sync with web.

    Airset.com does much the same without the daily diary feature.


  • Ben |

    just stumbled back onto this site again

    nice suggestions - thanks .... will look into those

  • jody kaufman |
    jody kaufman

    I am searching for an excellent email system that coordinates with windows business vista or time and chaos. I need to be able to communicate on the phone with a real human in order to re-retrieve my mail if necessary as I have a difficult time keeping my ownership of my mail as I have a human invader. I am a 62 year old woman. Thanks

  • Anand |

    Good start cyril, So many email client's discussion is good to know

    Ben, Probably you should Mozilla's Thunderbird, It can be integrated to Oracle calendar, google calendar and so many add ins. I am using it happily, Your experience of thunderbird after you try above would be interesting, as you have tried other email clients. Look forward to your views. Thanks

  • Anonymous |

    Thunderbird is gay, it doesn't allow you change your server type. Completely useless program.

  • Gary |

    Thunderbird 2 was great but as soon as I upgraded to Thunderbird 3 it taks literally HOURS for it to open with anything on the screen! I want to downgrade but cannot find TB 2 anymore...

  • Charlemagne |

    @ Gary

    You can download TB2 from a website called "Old Apps": www.oldapps.com On that website, you can also find older versions of many other freewares.


  • Rich001 |

    Urgent - subject switch. Need to open many old Files created in Amipro. The Original File extension is ".sam". We are a new non-profit needing free / donated document software that will open ".sam" docs and truly retain format, etc. Appreciate all responses, ideas, et al.

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