Thunderbird Setup

These instructions are for Thunderbird for Windows. The Macintosh version is similar. The most recent version of Thunderbird is available on the Mozilla web site:

New Account Setup (assumes you have never configured Thunderbird on the computer you are using)
  • Start Thunderbird.
  • You'll see the System Integration screen. Review the options and then click OK.
  • The next screen is the Welcome to Thunderbird screen. Click Skip this and use my existing email on the lower left.
  • You should now see the Mail Account Setup screen.
  • Your Name: enter your name.
  • Your Email Address: enter your email address.
  • Password: enter your password (WITS recommends that you do not check the Remember password box).
  • Click Continue.
  • Thunderbird will usually detect the correct Google mail server settings (it may take up to a minute). If it works, click the Create Account button.
  • If automatic configuration does not work:
  • Click the Manual Config button.
    • Fill in the settings as follows (your name, email address, and password are OK; the lower half of the form needs to be corrected):
      • Click Create Account (if you made any typos, the Create Account button will remain dimmed).
    • Username: your complete Willamette email address (e.g.,
    • Incoming: [] [IMAP] [993] [SSL/TLS] (there are four boxes to fill-in).
    • Outgoing: [] SMTP [465] [SSL/TLS] (three boxes to fill-in; SMTP is fixed).
  • Click the Re-test Configuration button.

Thunderbird is now connected to your Google account. Everything should work, but you should review all of the settings outlined below.

Check Your Account Settings

  • Click on your new account name in the left hand side of the Account Settings window.
  • Under Account Settings, you can change your account name, your name (as it appears on email you send), your reply-to address, your organization, and your signature text or signature file.
  • Reply-to address: leave blank unless you want responses to your messages to go to an email address other than the one you used in the Email address box.
  • Organization: enter Willamette University (optional).
  • Signature text: type the signature block you want to use in the box. It is no longer necessary to attach a signature file, but that option is available. WITS does not recommend using the vCard option.

Check Your Server Settings

  • Click on Server Settings (make sure you stay on your new account).
  • The top part is all done. Under Server Settings, there are some additional options.
  • WITS recommends the following settings:
    Check for new mail at startup{check this box}
    Check for new messages every ## minutes {check this box and set to at least 5 minutes}
    When I delete a message: Move it to the Trash folder
    Clean up ("Expunge") Inbox on Exit {check this box}
    Empty Trash on Exit {check this box}
  • Click on the Advanced button and check the following settings:
    IMAP server directory: {leave blank}
    Show only subscribed folders {checked by default}
    Server supports folders that contain subfolders and messages {check this box}
    Do not change the default settings in the next three boxes (Personal namespace, Public (shared) and Other users)
    Allow server to override these namespaces {check this box}

Configuring Other Email Options

  • Click on Copies & Folders (make sure you stay on your new account).
  • WITS recommends that you keep the default settings. Your sent mail, drafts, archives, and templates will all be stored on the Google mail server in the default locations.
  • Click on Composition and Addressing.
  • Under Composition, you can select to compose messages in HTML format and you can set your preferences for quoting the original message and the placement of your signature.
  • Under Addressing, select Use a different LDAP server and then select Willamette's LDAP server (it is often called Willamette Fussers or simply Willamette or a similar name). If your installation of Thunderbird has never had the LDAP directory lookup service installed, follow these instructions:
  • NOTE: The LDAP directory service is not available if you are connected to the Internet from off-campus.
    • Click Edit Directories.
      • Click Add.
      • For Directory Server Properties, enter the following:
        Name: Willamette Fussers
        Base DN:
        Port number: 389 (default)
        Bind DN: {leave blank}
        Use secure connection (SSL) {do not check}
        Click OK
    • Make sure Willamette is selected next to Use a different LDAP server.
  • Junk Settings: use the default settings.
  • Synchronization & Storage: under Message Synchronizing, remove the check from Keep messages for this account on this computer (it is not necessary to download your mail). The default settings under Disk Space are recommended.
  • Return Receipts, Security, and Local Folders: use the default settings.
  • Click OK to return to the main Thunderbird window.

Outgoing (SMTP) Server Settings

  • Click Tools -> Account Settings
  • Click on Outgoing Server (SMTP)
  • Select your server name in the box on the left (likely, click edit.
  • In the SMTP Server box that shows up, enter the following information:
    • Description:
    • Server name:
    • port: 465
    • Connection Security: SSL/TLS
    • Authentication method: Normal Password
    • Username: your full email address <>
    • Click OK
  • Click OK to get out of the Account Settings window.

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