In our webmail vs desktop email client article, we mentioned that using desktop email clients has its benefits. Speaking of desktop email clients, one of the most popular email clients for Windows 10 is Thunderbird, but according to users, Thunderbird has its share of issues on Windows 10, and today we’re going to address some of these issues.
Thunderbird issues on Windows 10
Thunderbird issues can prevent you from receiving new emails, and speaking of Thunderbird, these are some common problems reported by users:
- Mozilla Thunderbird problems sending emails – This issue can occur if your email account isn’t properly configured. To fix it, be sure that your login information is correct.
- Mozilla Thunderbird very slow – Many users reported this issue, but we already covered this problem in-depth in our Thunderbird is slow article, so be sure to check it out for more solutions.
- Mozilla Thunderbird won’t download emails – This problem can sometimes occur due to your antivirus, an in order to fix the problem, you might have to disable or remove your antivirus software.
- Mozilla Thunderbird keeps freezing, not responding, crashing, hanging – These are some various problems that can occur with Thunderbird, but you should be able to fix them using our solutions.
Solution 1 – Check your antivirus
According to users, Thunderbird issues can sometimes appear due to your antivirus. Antivirus tools can sometimes interfere with your system and block certain applications, so to fix this problem, make sure that Thunderbird isn’t blocked by your antivirus or firewall.
If that doesn’t help, your next step would be to disable certain antivirus features, or even disable your antivirus altogether. In some cases, you might even have to uninstall your antivirus. Even if you uninstall your antivirus, you should be protected by Windows Defender, so your PC won’t be at risk.
If removing the antivirus solves the problem, perhaps you should consider switching to a different antivirus solution. Bitdefender provides great protection, and it won’t interfere with other applications. It also has permanent access to a worldwide signature database so you will be safe even from the newest cyber attacks. It comes at a special price and includes a good customer support, so you definitely should try it out.
Solution 2 – Update Thunderbird
Quite often issues with Thunderbird on Windows 10 can occur due to an outdated version of Thunderbird. In order to fix most Thunderbird issues, it’s always good to use the latest version of Thunderbird on Windows 10 in order to avoid any potential incompatibility issues.
Solution 3 – Run Thunderbird from Safe Mode
According to users, Thunderbird hangs on their Windows 10 PC while trying to perform a certain action, and this can be caused by any third-party application. In order to fix this issue, some users are suggesting to start Thunderbird from Safe Mode. To do that follow these steps:
- Open the Settings app. You can do so using the Windows Key + I shortcut.
- Now go to the Update & Security section.
- Select Recovery from the left pane. From the right pane choose Restart now button.
- List of options will now appear. Navigate to Troubleshoot > Advanced options > Startup Settings. Click the Restart button.
- You should now see a list of options. Press the appropriate keyboard key to select the version of Safe Mode you want to use.
After entering the Safe Mode start Thunderbird. If Thunderbird is working normally in Safe Mode, the issue is most likely caused by a third-party application that is installed on your PC, and in order to fix Thunderbird you’ll need to find the problematic application on your PC and disable/uninstall it.
Solution 4 – Disable Thunderbird add-ons
Sometimes issues with Thunderbird can be caused by third-party add-ons that you have installed. The easiest way to check if a certain add-on is causing issues with Thunderbird is to start Thunderbird Safe Mode. To do that, do the following:
- Press and hold Shift on your keyboard and run Thunderbird.
- You should see the Thunderbird Safe Mode window. Check Disable all add-ons and click Continue in Safe Mode.
- Optional: If the previous method isn’t working for you, you can always enter Safe Mode by starting Thunderbird normally and clicking the Menu icon in the top right and choosing Help >Restart with Add-ons Disabled.
If you have resolved Thunderbird issues by entering the Safe Mode, then your issue is most likely caused by Thunderbird extensions, and in order to fix the issue you’ll have to disable/remove problematic extensions. To do that, follow these steps:
- Start Thunderbird.
- Click the Menu button in the top right corner and choose Add-ons.
- Now select Extensions tab on the left.
- You should see a list of available extensions. Click Disable next to each extension in order to disable it.
- Now enable extensions one by one until you find the one that is causing you problems.
Solution 5 – Run CCleaner
Users reported that they have successfully fixed the issues with Thunderbird on Windows 10 after running CCleaner. This is the most used Disk Cleanup utility at the moment. It is lightweight and easy-to-use, so you won’t have any problems while using it. Bear in mind that CCleaner can sometimes remove important files from your PC, so use it carefully.
Solution 6 – Make sure that your email account is properly configured
One common Thunderbird issue is the inability to receive emails. This can happen for various reasons, but the most likely is miss-configuration of your email account in Thunderbird. However, you can easily fix that by doing the following:
- Go to Tools > Account Settings. Alternatively, you can go to the Application menu button and choose Options > Account Settings.
- Select Server Settings from the left pane. In the right pane, make sure that your login information is correct.
If this issue started occurring recently, the email configuration might be changed by your email provider, so be sure to check their support page and double check if your email client is configured properly.
Solution 7 – Rebuild Global Database
If Thunderbird is slow while searching for emails, the problem might be your Global Database. This file stores all sorts of information, but if this file is corrupted, you might experience various Thunderbird issues.
However, you can fix the problem simply by rebuilding the Global Database. This is relatively simple to do, and you can do it by following these steps:
- Press Windows Key + R and enter %appdata%. Press Enter or click OK.
- Now navigate to ThunderbirdProfiles. Navigate to your Profile directory. This directory should have a random string in front followed by your profile name.
- Now locate the global-messages-db.sqlite file and delete it.
After doing that, start Thunderbird. The application will start building the database and the problem should be resolved.
Solution 8 – Reinstall Thunderbird
Sometimes Thunderbird issues can occur if your Thunderbird installation is corrupted. This can be fixed in most cases simply by reinstalling Thunderbird, so you might want to try that. There are several ways to uninstall an application, and although removing Thunderbird from the Settings app is the simplest method, you should know that this method isn’t always effective.
Sometimes applications can leave certain files or registry entries behind, even after you uninstall them. This can be a problem since those files can cause issues in the future, so it’s advised to remove them. This can be a tedious task, so it’s better to use a dedicated tool such as Revo Uninstaller to do that for you. It will remove the software and all its leftovers so they won’t interfere with your system causing errors.
Revo Uninstaller is an uninstaller software, and it can uninstall any application for you, but it will also remove all files and registry entries associated with that application. Once you remove Thunderbird with this tool, install it again and the problem should be completely resolved.
Solution 9 – Try using webmail or a different email client
If you’re having Thunderbird issues on your PC, the problem might be caused by the email client itself. However, you can fix this issue simply by using webmail. Many email providers offer access to webmail, so you might want to try using webmail as a temporary solution.
If webmail works, the problem is most definitely related to your PC or the email client.
If you want, you can always try switching to a different email client and check if that solves the problem. The built-in Mail app in Windows 10 offers decent features, but if you want a proper email client, you might want to consider using eM Client. This tool has a free version that allows you to include two email accounts. However, for more accounts, you will pay a license that will include extra-accounts and more necessary features.
Thunderbird issues on Windows 10 are most often caused by a third-party application or by a Thunderbird extension, and you can easily fix most of Thunderbird issues by following our solutions. We also did a comparison between Thunderbird and OE Classic, so if you can’t fix problems with Thunderbird, you might want to switch to OE Classic.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in May 2016 and has been since completely revamped and updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.