drag & drop in Thunderbird

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KK Vienna

Post Posted March 18th, 2008, 3:15 pm

It appears that drag & drop of eMail messages does not work in Thunderbird.

I am not talking about drag & drop within the application (i.e. from one folder to another folder) and also not about attachments to messages which seem to work as expected.

What I refer to is drag and drop of complete messages to the underlying file system (i.e. the desktop). Outlook Express for instance - an inferior mail client compared to Thunderbird - is able to handle this. The drag & dropped message is simply stored as an eml file and that's what I would expect

I am using Version (20080213) on WinXP 32 bit.

Am I missing something or is there any specific reason why this functionality is not available?

Any hints greatly appreciated. Tx and rgds



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Post Posted March 18th, 2008, 4:47 pm

Thunderbird does not support that. Use File>Save As instead.
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Post Posted March 18th, 2008, 4:48 pm

The main reason is, that Outlook Express is part of the Operating System, and Thunderbird is not.
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KK Vienna

Post Posted March 19th, 2008, 1:10 am

First of all many thanks for the quick replies. Much appreciated.

I understand that "File>Save as" works. However drag & drop is much easier and quicker, especially if you can drop eMail messages onto other programs (i.e. dropping the eMaill into the other program's window - provided that other program is aware of how to handle such events - resulting in the eMail message being attached in the other program).

Outlook Express is just cr@ap, but for that single reason a friend of mine is using it. Save as and then import from the other program is just ways too complicated - especially if this required numerous times during the day.

Any chance that this will be adressed in a future version? I'd consider this a very user friendly enhancement to Thunderbird and could guarantee a number of users switching over to the better solution leaving OE behind.


KK Vienna

Rod Whiteley

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Post Posted March 19th, 2008, 1:35 am

I think I have seen a formal enhancement request for this in Bugzilla, so it might appear in a future version.

KK Vienna

Post Posted March 19th, 2008, 2:17 am

Thanks Rod,
just found the request in Bugzilla at

I really hope this feature makes it into a future, preferrably into the next, release.

KK Vienna

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Post Posted March 9th, 2011, 11:18 am

I just worked out a less tough way of doing this. Select the message you want, in this case CTRL + A on a whole folder then use the shortcut CTRL + S and select the folder you want them saved to. Job done.


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Post Posted March 9th, 2011, 11:54 am

Thank you for offering one way of addressing this question. Unfortunately you've offered the answer three years after the question was raised and it's unlikely any of the original posters are still waiting for the answer.

Locking this due to the age of the original posts.

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