Organizational Deployments, AKA enterprise users

One of the TODO items I brought back from France last year was to start a discussion area for what I’ve been thinking of as “organizational deployments” — everything related to making it easier for organizations to deploy Thunderbird, in particular in larger organizations, where the scale of these deployments makes the “standard” processes hard to manage. (Yes, the standard term is “enterprise” users, but I find that word problematic — still, it’s the same topic)

Well, someone beat me to it. Mike Kaply, a Firefox advocate within IBM, setup a few great starting points:

These will be great place to discuss things that are Mozilla-general. We may even find it a fine place to branch out discussions of Thunderbird specific issues, as I wouldn’t be surprised if topics that may seem Thunderbird specific have analogs in Firefox-land, or at least could benefit from platform-level attention.

If we need to create a Thunderbird specific mailing list, we can do that, but let’s start on the shared list first. I know that many of the topics I’ve heard about, from auto-configuration, to more control over AUS, to hosting add-ons sites, etc., are cross-product issues.

I look forward to hearing from institutional users, corporate, educational, governmental, and other!


  1. First of all, I’m not our organisation’s email admin, however I have a fair idea what we would need in a email client (and we have rolled thuderbird out to a few people).

    – When Thunderbird starts it shows your mail folders, you can tell it to not remember passwords, but it will still provide a list of emails. Now in an ideal world, everyone would have their own Windows Profile. In the real world this is not always possible, especially when using shared laptops, or meeting room pcs. It should be configurable so when tb starts it prompts for a username and password, and shows nothing until this has been passed.

    – building on this… If ‘corporate-tb’ has some generic settings setup within it (a organisations mail server, authentication used, imap folder setup, ldap setup, email domain name etc, which will be the same for all users within the org) then it should be possible for a user to come along, having never used a particular pc before, enter their username/password (as described in the first bullet point above) and for tb to work. i.e. it will know what mail server to connect to, what form the email domain name takes etc.

    – building on that… addressbooks and other stuff on server (which I mentioned in previous comments, and probably will do again!).

    – ability to lock down settings

    – ability to run an update server (server which tb uses to get security updates).

    – ability to force: install, upgrade, uninstall, change settings, of extensions.

    My two pence/cent worth

    (PS Had a look at the wiki:enterprise, seems to be firefox orientated).


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