Introduction

This document describes how to configure Thunderbird version 3 (and newer) for use with the UF Astronomy mail servers.

The departmental IMAP server supports encrypted communication over the IMAPS protocol, as well as authenticated email relaying through the SUBMISSION protocol. The advantage to using these protocols rather than the standard IMAP/SMTP protocol is that traveling users can send and receive email from anywhere in the world while ensuring the contents of their email is secure from prying eyes. This document describes the necessary steps to configuring the Thunderbird client to use IMAPS and SUBMISSION.

When you start Thunderbird 3 for the first time, it will ask if you wish to import any settings from other mail clients. Since this is a brand new configuration, please select the button to not import anything.
Please enter your name and email address in the lines for your name and your Astronomy email address, then click continue. Your Astronomy email address will be YOUR_USERID@astro.ufl.edu.
At this point, Thunderbird will try to automatically determine the settings for our mail system. There will be a button to modify the settings (not displayed), go ahead and press that button and then set the Incoming and Outgoing systems as they are displayed to the left.

The settings for Incoming are:
mailhost.astro.ufl.edu IMAP 993 SSL/TLS

The settings for Outgoing are:
mailhost.astro.ufl.edu SMTP 465 SSL/TLS

You should then be able to click on the re-test button, and then select "create account" (you may need to enter your password first).

You should now be given a screen which has your email address on the left side. Right click on your email address and select the option for properties.
Now you should see the Account Settings screen. Make sure the settings look something like you see in the image to the left of this text, but of course your username is your Astronomy userid. You may also choose to update the frequency for checking new messages.
Next click on the Synchronization and Storage line. If you are configuring Thunderbird on one of the departmental linux machines, you should make sure that the option to "Keep Messages for this account on this computer" is unchecked, otherwise a complete duplicate of your email account will also be stored in your home directory, and will go against your available quota.
Next click on the option for Outgoing Server (SMTP). Make sure that port 465 is specified, along with the option for Use name and password. Connection security should be set to SSL/TLS.
It is possible that you will get prompted to add a security exception for the incoming IMAP server. If you see this window, select Get Certificate and then click on the button to Add Security Exception.
It is possible that you will get prompted to add a security exception for the outgoing SMTP server. If you see this window, select Get Certificate and then click on the button to Add Security Exception.

That's it! Thunderbird 3 should now be configured for use with the Astronomy mail system.