Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

When I hit reply to an email, the recipient's signature i removed if it is preceded by "--". Is there a way to stop this in Thunderbird? Many thanks!

share|improve this question

This behavior is actually by design. The "-- " (dash-dash-space line) is the "signature cut line" and is placed by conforming mail clients (e.g., Thunderbird, Gmail, etc.) for precisely the reason that they can be trimmed automatically from responses.

Some background:

I believe they originally came out of Usenet circles, and the idea was that if someone had posted to a list, the signature was already recorded and seen by subscribers. Since bandwidth was at a premium (is still, worldwide), cutting it would not needlessly waste time, space, and money.

As far as actively including it when replying, I don't know of a way. Either trawl the Thunderbird extensions, or hire someone to build one for you.

share|improve this answer
Many thnks for your response. I was aware of the purpose of the -- issue, but I think it is a bit rude to respond to some people who are not aware of this issue and they might think "why has this guy removed my signature (and added his own), has he not got better things to do than waste time editing my original email etc". Maybe I am being paranoid... – user141158 Mar 17 '13 at 20:11
@user141158: I suppose it depends on who you ask. In this day and age, I would think that the person would either not know what's up but ignore it (especially if they reply and their mail client does the same thing), or wouldn't even notice. And frankly, I suspect the latter, unless they ask. – hunteke Mar 17 '13 at 22:08

Thunderbird has a hidden option to do this. Go to Tools -> Options -> Advanced -> General -> Config Editor… Filter on mail.strip_sig_on_reply and toggle the preference to false.

share|improve this answer
Great, many thanks! – user141158 Sep 16 '15 at 15:49

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.