A “must have” should be placed in relation to the users needs. In my case, my requirements from an email client are not that diverse, but inclined towards security and efficiency.
1. Enigmail – email encryption
Making people encrypt their emails can be tricky. If it’s not simple enough, they usually quit. I didn’t quit and I’m not sending a lot of encrypted emails, but I want to have the possibility to do it. Reasons for encrypting your email are destined their own post or a google search, but meanwhile you can check out EmailSelfDefense and how to use Thunderbird with encryption.
2. Mailhops – email transmission
I want to know where has the received email passed through and in which form (encrypted or not encrypted). From a reconnaissance point of view, it can prove to be useful to map out a companys email system only through a received email. It is also interesting to see how companies choose to route their emails.
Mailhops tells you the route that the email took from source to destination. Its flaws would include :
- confusing certain source headers IDs with IP addresses (you’ll end up seeing a lot of mails going through Japan, when in fact they don’t)
- it has a function for seeing DNS blacklist information related to resolved hosts in email sources – it does not work
- it has another function for showing the DKIM and SPF – they will only show when the message has a line referring to it, so it does not show you anything by default
Bugs will always be there, but that doesn’t ruin the fact that Mailhops is an interesting tool.
3. Paranoia – email transmission
Verification of encrypted transmission of the email. A smiley / sad face will be generated depending on the channels through which your emails have been transmitted.
4. Follow up – productivity / efficiency
People are busy and people tend to forget. Be it either sending emails for job applications, promoting your products or conducting an interview you have to be consistent in following up, of course, without being annoying. Otherwise, most of your unsolicited or even expected emails will most likely never get answered.
Uses tags and tasks for reminding on email follow up. Requires Lighting to integrate task creation functionality. The bad part about it’s the tasks though – you are not being notified on which mail you have to follow up. I disregarded this and used sorting by tags to get an overview. It’s not exactly what I wanted, but choosing from the follow-up Thunderbird offer, this one does its job the best.
5. Quicktext – productivity / efficiency
Imagine having a a button to click that would insert phrases that you normally write in frequent emails. This is Quicktext – it allows you to create templates and group under certain names. It is perfect for following up, being quickly able to switch between the lines that you are using.
6. Xnote++ – productivity / efficiency
Add sticky notes to your emails. It removes the need to write extra comments about emails in various locations (real sticky notes, notes etc).
7. Quick translator – productivity / efficiency
Easy translation addon. After selecting the text, a circle hovers next to your selection and enables you to click and get the translation.
8. Lightning – productivity / efficiency
One might argue the need for having your emails, calendar and tasks handled from the same place. I see efficiency in this – as in, not having to open another browser tab and having a great overview of multiple aspects in the same program.
9. Provider for Google Calendar – complements Ligthing
Most people will use Lighting with their Google calendars. To do this, Provider for Google Calendar is required.