Easy Gmail and .Mac setup on latest Thunderbird 2 builds

This has the makings of a great new feature for Thunderbird, and I’d like to help get the word out for testers test it. As Scott writes,

One of the goals in Thunderbird 2 is to make account setup easier for folks using large ISPs (like google, yahoo!, etc) for e-mail. In fact ISPs can now create extensions for Thunderbird that drop in their configuration files.

With the current nightly branch builds, when creating a new mail account, the account wizard now lists Gmail and .Mac (Mac OS X only) as default account types you can create. Choose one of these account types, and the next screen in the wizard asks for your username for that service.

That’s the only piece of information you need to enter, Thunderbird figures the rest out!

Here’s a cropped screenshot:

The Gmail inclusion is great, but it’s the ISP extensions that I think will be the most beneficial. Imagine being a novice user, trying out Thunderbird, and instead of having to read through instructions from your ISP, just install the corresponding extension.

Of course, we need installing Thunderbird add-ons to be easier. Way too many people install Thunderbird add-ons in Firefox, and wonder why it’s not showing up in Thunderbird.

To test this feature use the latest Thunderbird2 builds.

Oh, by the way, Happy New Year. 🙂