MozillaZine

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User Help for Mozilla Thunderbird
bawldiggle

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Joined: August 24th, 2008, 8:18 pm
Location: Australia

Post Posted June 12th, 2020, 6:26 pm

I want to be able to open the TBird WRITE window without opening TBird main window.
How can I do that ? Visited web sites can do it but I cannot find how

I have found ...
[ Keyconfig extension: Thunderbird ]
http://kb.mozillazine.org/Keyconfig_ext ... hunderbird

[ Compose window ]
http://kb.mozillazine.org/Keyconfig_ext ... e_window_3

BUT I dont have a clue how to apply/use the scripts(?) and where to use them :shock:

Also found [Keyboard Shortcuts TB] ... filtered for Win-7 + TBird 52

https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/ke ... hunderbird:win7:tb52

I am using Classic TBird v52.5.2 (32-bit) PAF version because it never breaks ... AND
if it aint broke, don't fix it (with new WEB BS)

Win-7 PRO x64 ... at 75 yrs I dont have a lot of time left to "prepare" for the future.
The only thing I have left to steal are my precious 34 yr old, fluffy-lined, UGG boots

Thank you in advance :)

Long live Mozillazine ... what a life saver :wink:
I hope a permanent solution for MZine can be found.
. . . never to old to learn!

bawldiggle

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Joined: August 24th, 2008, 8:18 pm
Location: Australia

Post Posted June 12th, 2020, 6:46 pm

My PAF location is
Code: Select all
C:/ProgsPortable/T'Bird-5252_paf/ThunderbirdPortable.exe


I tried
Code: Select all
c:/ProgsPortable/T'Bird-5252_paf/ThunderbirdPortable.exe%20-compose


Both failed; "Not understood" by my browser (PaleMoon)
. . . never to old to learn!

tanstaafl
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Joined: July 30th, 2003, 5:06 pm

Post Posted June 12th, 2020, 11:41 pm

See http://kb.mozillazine.org/Command_line_ ... hunderbird

Use the -compose command line argument when launching Thunderbird from a console window (DOS box). Or create a separate Thunderbird shortcut that adds that command line argument to the target field in the shortcuts properties.

The example you gave used a space encoded as %20 (using Percent-encoding). Use a real space before -compose.

I have no idea what PAF stands for or why you have a paf/ prefix, though I assume it has something to do with the portable edition of Thunderbird from the portableapps.com web site. Please don't assume anybody trying to help you is up-to-speed on that type of minutia.

"Both failed; "Not understood" by my browser (PaleMoon)"
What does your browser have to do with this?

BuddhaNature

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Joined: January 3rd, 2008, 9:44 am
Location: Scotland

Post Posted June 13th, 2020, 7:44 am

Tanstaafl, bawldiggle is confusing things a bit as to what he is describing. A 'PAF' just stands for something like "PortableApps File", or "PortableApps Format" or some variation on that theme. I've never seen at PortableApps a definition as to what the acronym actually means. In any case, let's just call it a "PortableApps File" and refer to that as a PAF.

A PAF is what you would get if you download a portable app from PortableApps. So for Thunderbird the download file would (by default) have the name (something like): ThunderbirdPortable_60.9.1_English.paf.exe

In a generic sense for the download of any given app available from PortableApps the PAF would have the following title: AppNamePortable_x.x.paf.exe The PAF itself is just a self-extracting archive of the working files necessary to yield a working portable app. So bawldiggle is mistaken in referring to his working portable Thunderbird as a PAF. The PAF is just the 'installer' not the portable app itself.

So, on download of the Thunderbird PAF and launching it it will unpack the portable Thunderbird to a location like (for example): W:\ThunderbirdPortable Where ThunderbirdPortable is the default name for the 'install' folder as specified in the PAF. (It is possible to unpack into a different folder or to rename the 'install' folder after the unpacking has been completed (bawldiggle has done one of these two things.)

In any case, the 'install' folder contains all the files, and their locations, in a fixed sub-folder structure that allows Thunderbird to run without problems as a portable (provided a strict rule is observed). The strict rule that must be observed is that Thunderbird Portable must always be launched by using the file: W:\ThunderbirdPortable\ThunderbirdPortable.exe That file is known as the (PortableApp) launcher So, what bawldiggle is referring to as the PAF is actually the launcher.

The launcher has a couple of functions (which vary slightly depending on the portable app) but the critical one is that the launcher launches the thunderbird.exe file contained in the folder: W:\ThunderbirdPortable\App\Thunderbird. At the time that the launcher does the launch it passes to the thunderbird.exe the path that it is being run from and that determines where thunderbird.exe will look for the Thunderbird Profile contained in the 'install' folder location: W:\ThunderbirdPortable\Data\profile. (The profile is created on first launch of Thunderbird using the launcher.)

If the launcher isn't used to launch thunderbird.exe (i.e. thunderbird.exe is launched directly) then on launch Thunderbird will look to the system %APPDATA% location for the profile, and if one isn't found there it will create one in that location -- obviously this completely breaks the 'portable' aspect of Thunderbird Portable.

I hope that solves the confusion over what bawldiggle is talking about.

In any case I tested using the launcher for my Thunderbird Portable and passing the parameter thuswise:
Code: Select all
W:\ThunderbirdPortable\ThunderbirdPortable.exe -compose

and it all seems to work without problems concerning the location of the Profile folder. (Which surprised me. So I learnt something new about the Thunderbird Portable launcher too! :D Thanks very much.)
Last edited by BuddhaNature on June 13th, 2020, 7:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
OS: Windows 7 Pro. SP1 x64

tanstaafl
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Post Posted June 13th, 2020, 7:47 am

BuddhaNature:

Thanks for the explanation of PAF.

BuddhaNature

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Joined: January 3rd, 2008, 9:44 am
Location: Scotland

Post Posted June 13th, 2020, 9:05 am

Thanks for the thanks, tanstaafl.

I just did some quick-ish research and it seems to be the case that PAF stands for "PortableApps.com Format". Seems they have a trademark against the name ".paf.exe" and it seems to refer (I would think in part) to the directory structure and types and location of files typically found within a packaged PortableApp. Reference is here: https://portableapps.com/development/po ... com_format
OS: Windows 7 Pro. SP1 x64

FFman
 
Posts: 264
Joined: January 28th, 2012, 2:06 pm

Post Posted June 13th, 2020, 9:21 am

I almost certainly haven't understood the question :-) but why not just create a desktop shortcut with "mailto:" (without quotes) in the location?!

tanstaafl
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Post Posted June 13th, 2020, 9:48 am

My initial thought was that using mailto: in a desktop shortcut would add a middleman - the browser. That would add overhead and risk (I've had mailto settings that used Thunderbird in Firefox break after a update). But when I tried it, it didn't launch the systems default browser. So in most cases that is probably the best solution. Good catch.

Using a Thunderbird shortcut lets you specify optional stuff such as which From: address to use. That can be useful if you don't want to use your default account, which mailto: would use. You can also specify whether you want to compose a HTML or plain text message etc.

I have both version 60.9.1 and 68.9.0 of Thunderbird installed, each with their own profile. The former supports many more add-ons. I use them both, I don't keep 60.9.1 around only to help support other users. Since most of my accounts are IMAP accounts (meaning both profiles can see the same saved message) I'd be tempted to launch the older version rather than the default version if I used a desktop shortcut to launch just the compose window.

I suspect which approach is better for somebody depends upon how well using default settings meets their needs.

The first time I tried using a mailto: desktop shortcut I got a windows popup wanting to confirm that I wanted to use Thunderbird rather than the Windows mail program, despite Thunderbird already being configured as the default email program. I had to check the checkbox to tell it to always use these settings to avoid getting the popup again. I suspect this is due to my updating to the 2004 (May feature update) build of Windows 10 last night.

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