Spicebird Hatches Open Source Collaboration

Friday Aug 6th 2010 by Joe Brockmeier
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This open source, cross-platform application for Linux and Windows combines email with calendaring and instant messaging. But does Spicebird fly?

If you're a fan of the Thunderbird email client, you'll be happy to hear how Spicebird improves functionality of that aging application. Joe Brockmeier puts the collaboration application to the test, and while there's a lot to like, he finds it lacking in a few key areas. LinuxPlanet has the details.


Take Thunderbird, mix liberally with calendaring, instant messaging, and release it on Linux and Windows. What do you get? Spicebird, a collaboration client that remixes Thunderbird to bring the creaking mail client up to date for today's users.

Spicebird has been in the works for some time, but the 0.8 release is finally ready for a wider audience. To see if it's ready for everyday use, I downloaded Spicebird 0.8 a week ago and started testing.

Spicebird Setup and Use

Spicebird requires very little setup on Linux. Just grab the tarball, uncompress it, and run Spicebird. That's really all there is to it. Since Spicebird is based on Thunderbird 3.x, you'll see no difference in setting up mail here. Like Thunderbird, Spicebird is great at setting up "standard" email accounts like Gmail -- plug in your email address and password and it'll likely figure out your account details (POP3 vs. IMAP, SSL or not, etc.) on its own.

Read the complete open source collaboration software article

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