# How do I hide Thunderbird from the launcher while running?

I have a question for you all.

It's possible to "hide" thunderbird from the unity application bar when thunderbird is running?

For my is unhelpfull see thunderbird on the "mail" tray ( near shutdown button) and the unity "running" application.

If i close thunder with the close button, it don't notify me new email.

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See this: brainstorm.ubuntu.com/idea/28707 - a suggestion to add this feature. MinimizeToTray revived and Firetray don't work satisfactorily for me. With one of these extensions running, when I first launch evolution 3 or 4 windows open. Additionally after closing evolution to the messaging menu several times, when I re-open evolution the global menu is lost. –  stuart10 Oct 18 '11 at 18:35

You can use the plug in called "Minimize to Tray" in Thunderbird to achieve that. Once installed Press F9 to minimize Thunderbird to the system tray. You will keep on receiving the Emails when it is minimized.

This works perfectly fine when you click the mail icon in the system tray.

I hope this will be helpful.

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Very good Abhijeet. It works. I only added the Enhanced Desktop Notification Addon so it notifies me via notify-send bubbles of a new mail. –  Luis Alvarado May 2 '12 at 20:08

The MinimizeToTray revived add-on for Thunderbird can be configured to hide the Thunderbird icon in the Unity launcher when the close button is pressed, while leaving Thunderbird running and allowing it to be accessed through the mail indicator.

It may be installed by going to Tools --> Add-ons in Thunderbird and searching for MinimizeToTray. Once it is installed, the add-on's preferences can be configured to hide Thunderbird rather than closing or minimizing it when the close or minimize button is pressed.

1. Once the add-on is installed, go to Tools --> Add-ons again and click the Preferences button for the MinimizeToTray (revived) add-on.
2. In the Minimize to tray section, select Instead of closing and when minimizing option from the list.
3. In the Unity Launcher (on the left hand side), right click on Thunderbird's entry and ensure that Keep in Launcher is not ticked.

Once this is done, clicking the close or minimize button in Thunderbird should hide it. It may be recalled using the Mail entry in the Messaging Menu. To quit the program (rather than just hiding it), use File --> Quit in Thunderbird.

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MinimizeToTray revived and Firetray don't work satisfactorily for me. With one of these extensions running, when I first launch evolution 3 or 4 windows open. Additionally after closing evolution to the messaging menu several times, when I re-open evolution the global menu is lost. –  stuart10 Oct 20 '11 at 1:21
very good thanks for the detailed steps! –  mojo706 Sep 2 '13 at 14:22

The MinimizeToTray revived add-on for Thunderbird can be configured to hide the Thunderbird icon in the Unity launcher when the close button is pressed, while leaving Thunderbird running and allowing it to be accessed through the mail indicator.

It may be installed by going to Tools --> Add-ons in Thunderbird and searching for MinimizeToTray. Once it is installed, the add-on's preferences can be configured to hide Thunderbird rather than closing or minimizing it when the close or minimize button is pressed.

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Install an Addon Called FireTray , Visit the Addon Preferences/Options/Settings and adjust accordingly. When You See that page, you'll know what to Do

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Thats funny. I was trying that one after I made the question but still has issues. Will update my question so it might give you a better idea and help me because having this working would really help. –  Luis Alvarado May 2 '12 at 17:45
you might wanna logout and log back in, may it works in sync with unity I Use to use it, but now stopped. –  sarveshlad May 2 '12 at 17:47
Yes already did that. I also thought it might need a login/logout. –  Luis Alvarado May 2 '12 at 17:48

No, Thunderbird has no support to hide itself like that. Why don't you just move it to the bottom of your launcher if you want it out of the way and don't want to use the keyboard shortcuts for it?

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What you need is Popper. Popper reads the new emails from POP3 and IMAP email servers and notifies about the number, subject, sender and time of new emails in the indicator applet and via a notification bubble.

How to install?

Press Ctrl+Alt+T to open the terminal and run the following command:

sudo apt-get install popper

How to configure?

Press the super key (windows key) and search for popper.

Open the Popper configurator and select "start popper automatically after login".

Go back to Popper configurator and select the "Account" tab

Name: Any name of your choice
Server: Paste the server address hare that you just copied from Thunderbird
Port: Paste the port number hare that you copied from Thunderbird and select 'SSL only'


Select IMAP if your email provider sports IMAP (Gmail, Yahoo and GMX)

Set the check frequency (how often should popper check for new mails).

Now open the "Test" tab of Popper configurator:

Hit "Save and Exit". That's it.

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I have lot of rules in Thunderbird, even automaticly ignoring rule. It's little hard to combine both clients... –  confiq May 2 '12 at 19:05
What archive is this package in. I did not find it on packages.ubuntu.com –  txwikinger May 14 '12 at 21:05
@txwikinger Search in Software Center on your Ubuntu installation, Or you can install via terminal. –  Basharat Sialvi May 14 '12 at 21:10

Quote (and edit the way I did this):

Got this to work for me in 12.04

Install wmctrl

Make a script called start_thunderbird_hidden.sh in example /home (you can of course change the name of the script and where you put it)

$chmod +x ~/home/start_thunderbird_hidden.sh Make the contents of the script as follows:  #!/bin/bash thunderbird & while [[$(wmctrl -l | grep Thunderbird) == "" ]]; do sleep 0.1; done
wmctrl -k on


Had to include the full path rather than using ~/ to get it to work 5. Go to Startup Applications -> add -> Command: /home//start_thunderbird_hidden.sh

Now thunderbird start on login and hide inside the launcher.

To completely remove the App indicator on the left follow the link. (not tested by me)

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I have a solution that may help you, but it would require you using Compiz.

Setting it up

1. Start Compiz and enable the plugin 'Window Rules'.
2. Copy the following line

class=Thunderbird

3. Paste the code into the box titled 'Skip Taskbar'. This lets you have Thunderbird active while hiding it from your Launcher.

4. There are other options within this plugin that may be of use to you. E.g, there is the option to remove the close button from the window of any particular application, in this case if you use that code, it will be Thunderbird. Though I tried this and it worked a bit odd with a bug or two with that feature, so give it a try and use it for a bit to see if that one works for you.

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you should check out popper, it autostarts at login,it will notify you when you have any new mail, even set custom sounds to notify you (or none) its great, it says when you have mail, then you open thunderbird to read 'em

check it out here