Productivity Tip – Threaded Emails In Thunderbird

Thunderbird, which is my email client of choice is starting to become the most used application on my system. Therefor, I am thankful for any productivity tips I may come across to make reading and archiving emails faster. A little convenience never hurt either. Thats why I have to say thanks to Ryan from for pointing out how easy it is to thread emails.

Before using this feature, email discussions with individuals would appear as separate emails. After enabling the threading option, emails are displayed under one subject with the ability to press a button to show the threaded conversation. Not only does this help in keeping tabs on the conversation at hand, but it also keeps my inbox organized.

Here is how to enable threading in Thunderbird. Simply click on the icon as seen in the following screenshot.

Now, all emails under the same subject will be threaded. You can tell if a series of emails are threaded if you see the following icon to the left of the subject header.

This little productivity tip has already helped me out in terms of managing all of the emails I participate in. Threaded emails is especially useful for those who participate in mailing lists as it would be nearly impossible to keep up with the conversation otherwise.

Have any more Thunderbird productivity tips? Be sure to share them in the comments.

3 thoughts on “Productivity Tip – Threaded Emails In Thunderbird

  1. TimW – I believe TBird will keep them separate using the message id, not the subject line.

    One caution with the feature though — I’ve been burned by this and had to stop using it. The message thread will appear under the first message (of course) which is sorted in the list chronologically (assuming you sort that way). This means that if you’ve got 200 messages in your inbox and an active thread that began 100+ messages ago, you may not notice when a new message is added to that thread because it’s too far down from the top of your inbox.

    Now, if you could get the list to place the thread in the chronology of the most recent post in the thread, that’d be extremely helpful.

  2. What if the subject is the same? For example, I have emails with the subject “order confirmation” when I get customer orders. Sometimes I reply to a particular customer (like when I am out of something). So, having a dozen “Order Confirmation” subject lines in my Orders folder (Outlook) is not uncommon.

    Would Thunderbird account for the conversation with the person, or is it based on the subject line?

    Does this make sense?

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