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Send formatted html email in Thunderbird.

  • 6 replies
  • 6 have this problem
  • 2364 views
  • Last reply by Walckiers

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I've made a New Years Message carefully formatted in html (via text2tags). In particular, it has its own CSS, some live links to pages on the web, and some jpegs and pngs (also already on the web). How do I send my New Years Message in Thunderbird? ( I know that I could send it as an attachment, but thats not what I want; I want it to open as a pretty page of html )

Chosen solution

Thank you, Zenos, for your rapid and helpful reply. I followed your suggestion and it worked out of the box. For those who may come this way later, here is what I did in detail.

   0. Went to 

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/thunderbird/addon/stationery/

   1. Downloaded and saved «stationery-0.8.6.2-tb.xpi»
   2. Mozilla Thunderbird Mail / Tools / add-ons
   3. / options (next to addon search field)
      / Install addon from file «stationery-0.8.6.2-tb.xpi»
      / Closed and restarted Mozilla Thunderbird Mail
   4. Mozilla Thunderbird Mail 
      / Write / Other stationery / my_greetings.html
   5. Sent my_greetings.html to myself.
   6. Arrived looking as nice as it did when I sent it. 
      Only small difference is that the fonts 
      seem to have been replaced by Courier. 
      
     To see what is going on, I saved the email 
     and ran diff on my_greetings.eml vs my_greetings.html
      
     First observation is that the html of my_greetings.eml
     has been  tidied as per  tidy (validate, correct, 

     and pretty-print HTML files) -

     which is nice
      Second observation is that all the embedded CSS in 
      my_greetings.html; e.g.
      h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6 { 
       font-weight: normal; 
       margin:1em 0em 0em 0em; 
       padding: 0em; color: #A06A4D; }
      is still there, and implemented, in my_greetings.eml
      So I am not sure why
      font-family: "Garamond", "Georgia", serif;
      is not being implemented in  my_greetings.eml
      But that just shows my ignorance of CSS. 

Meanwhile the group will get their New Years Message as intended. So Thank You again.

Read this answer in context 👍 0

All Replies (6)

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Easy "built-in tools" answer:

Start an HTML message, use Insert|HTML. An Editing window appears where you could paste your HTML code.

This may not work cleanly because it essentially drops you in between the <body> and </body> tags and if you have css stuff that belongs in the header, you're out of luck.

A better solution:

Use an editor that gives you a view of the entire source. I like the Stationery add-on for this particular feature. Another possibility is the Edit HTML add-on. This adds an entry to the Format menu.

In general, HTML code designed for webpages doesn't always sit easily as email. Good luck.

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Chosen Solution

Thank you, Zenos, for your rapid and helpful reply. I followed your suggestion and it worked out of the box. For those who may come this way later, here is what I did in detail.

   0. Went to 

https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/thunderbird/addon/stationery/

   1. Downloaded and saved «stationery-0.8.6.2-tb.xpi»
   2. Mozilla Thunderbird Mail / Tools / add-ons
   3. / options (next to addon search field)
      / Install addon from file «stationery-0.8.6.2-tb.xpi»
      / Closed and restarted Mozilla Thunderbird Mail
   4. Mozilla Thunderbird Mail 
      / Write / Other stationery / my_greetings.html
   5. Sent my_greetings.html to myself.
   6. Arrived looking as nice as it did when I sent it. 
      Only small difference is that the fonts 
      seem to have been replaced by Courier. 
      
     To see what is going on, I saved the email 
     and ran diff on my_greetings.eml vs my_greetings.html
      
     First observation is that the html of my_greetings.eml
     has been  tidied as per  tidy (validate, correct, 

     and pretty-print HTML files) -

     which is nice
      Second observation is that all the embedded CSS in 
      my_greetings.html; e.g.
      h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6 { 
       font-weight: normal; 
       margin:1em 0em 0em 0em; 
       padding: 0em; color: #A06A4D; }
      is still there, and implemented, in my_greetings.eml
      So I am not sure why
      font-family: "Garamond", "Georgia", serif;
      is not being implemented in  my_greetings.eml
      But that just shows my ignorance of CSS. 

Meanwhile the group will get their New Years Message as intended. So Thank You again.

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There is a setting in Thunderbird under Tools|Options|Display|Formatting->Advanced named "Allow messages to use other fonts".

If this is not selected, it may indeed replace fonts in messages by your defaults when displaying them to you, its user. It's highly likely that your messages will appear as you intended to your recipients.

I hadn't anticipated the possibility of using your html file as a piece of stationery - good thinking!

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Ohh - you have just helped me to find a whole heap of stuff in Tools / …

   … Stationery options / …
       … Templates
       … Options
       … Source editor

Seems to have been stowed away at bottom of list, as an unloved final option.

Has anyone written a comprehensive guide to

   … Stationery options / …
       … Templates
       … Options
       … Source editor

?

If yes, could there please be a link added at https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/products/thunderbird Currently, F1 help returns nothing useful. Else here is a little task for 2016

I'm sure I'm not the only user who would be grateful for that.

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Since these are supplied by the addon, we hold the author of the addon responsible for any instructions.

Unfortunately, menus are usually considered to be self-explanatory and are rarely documented.

Stationery's templates have several useful features which I only learnt about in a reply by the author to a comment left on his website. There is a placeholder for quoted text (so you can place it inside a formatted region and apply a style), there is a placeholder for your signature (so it can work with addons such as Signature Switch) and there is an insertion point placeholder so you can set where you start typing; useful if you have created a template containing both letterhead and footer.

Since the addon was, I believe, created to provide a functionality comparable with Outlook Express's ability to use stationery templates, and indeed allows the same stationery to be used in Thunderbird, I suspect these features were present in OE and maybe it was assumed that anyone who used these features there would not need further documentation.

I fell out of love with it because if you change the sender, it discards all your recent typing. I know it does this, it warns you it will do it, I can use ctrl+a to preserve everything, but you forget and it happened once too often after I'd done a lot of typing.

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Thank you > in a reply by the author to a comment left on his website I can't find that webpage but I did find a few other pages which offer incidental help for Stationery -

http://smarttemplate4.mozdev.org/stationery.html http://www.radarhill.com/help/article/stationery-thunderbird http://www.ffextensions.com/addon/Stationery/2116.html (hat tip DuckDuckGo)

Lets hope that Arivald (author and maintainer of Stationery) perl -e 'print(scalar(reverse("\nlp.airetni\@dlavira")))' is listening to this, and can produce a better help page than the current https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/thunderbird/addon/stationery/?src=userprofile

After all, according to https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/thunderbird/user/arivald/ Stationery is still in active development - last updated: July 9, 2015, and at the last count it had 22,440 users