Mozilla Corp. yesterday launched Thunderbird 1.5, an open source alternative to proprietary email software such as Microsoft Outlook, Qualcomm Eudora and IBM Lotus Notes.
Version 1.5 features several utilities to improve user productivity.
But the most significant tool, according to Thunderbird project leader Scott MacGregor, is a new software update tool that automatically downloads feature and security updates in the background and prompts users when they are ready for installation.
Since email addicts can never have enough security and peace of mind, the new product includes better spam filtering to help users block junk email. The product is also equipped with a new "phishing" detector that flags suspicious emails to save users from email scams.
The software also now supports Kerberos Authentication and includes a redesigned options interface and SMTP server management.
To accommodate the growing glut of socially-inclined Internet users, Thunderbird 1.5 also supports RSS and podcasting, allowing users to receive feed updates through email messages. The software also allows users to access podcasts via a dialog box that provides access to a Web browser or audio player.
Other improvements to Thunderbird 1.5 include an auto spell-checker and saving feature, as well as the option of dumping unwanted e-mail attachments.
Users may download Thunderbird 1.5 free here.
Thunderbird is hoping the latest features could vault it beyond the 18 million downloads it has garnered since it launched in 2004, aimed at folks who want a mail client that works with Mozilla's popular Firefox browser.
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