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syncing thunderbird email with gmail, google contacts on Windows 10

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  • 5 have this problem
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  • Last reply by sfhowes

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Finding it v difficult to sync thunderbird email with gmail, google contacts and google calendar on Windows 10. Not easy and addons don't seem to be there. May go back to using gmail as email client.

Finding it v difficult to sync thunderbird email with gmail, google contacts and google calendar on Windows 10. Not easy and addons don't seem to be there. May go back to using gmail as email client.

Chosen solution

You need to change how deletions are handled in Thunderbird’s Account Settings > Server Settings > When I delete a message. Set it to move deleted messages to the IMAP Trash/Bin/Deleted folder of your Gmail account.

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For Google Contacts and Calendar sync, give the TbSync add-on a try. It works just fine for me with Tbird 78 on Windows 10. As for email sync, what's the problem you're facing? Are emails not getting fetched like they should? Is this a first attempt at using Tbird? Give details of the issues you're having; help us help you.

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Thanks for response, and will try TbSync. Issue is more with deletion of emails. Particularly with deletion of old messages, not being picked up by Gmail.

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Chosen Solution

You need to change how deletions are handled in Thunderbird’s Account Settings > Server Settings > When I delete a message. Set it to move deleted messages to the IMAP Trash/Bin/Deleted folder of your Gmail account.

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Gmail's recommendation is to set 'When I delete a message' to 'Just mark it as deleted'.

Consider also the delete options in gmail settings: https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1353221#c2

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Many thanks Stans! Can't believe how long that took me to resolve, now working perfectly, phew!

Was confused by Gmails recommendation "just mark it as deleted" which was not what I wanted.

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TbSync requests unlimited permission to install. is this safe?

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I'm hopeful that somebody might be able to explain how to configure the TbSync plug-in for Google Calendar integration.

From what I understand, TbSync provides a CalDAV implementation, but I can't figure out what, exactly, to enter into the input fields when configuring a CalDAV connection.

People in this thread (and many others) suggest/confirm that TbSync works with Google Calendar, but the following reference pages make no mention of such support:

https://github.com/jobisoft/DAV-4-TbSync/wiki/Compatibility-list-(DAV)

https://github.com/jobisoft/DAV-4-TbSync/wiki/About:-Provider-for-CalDAV-&-CardDAV

Furthermore, this URL lists "add support for Google" as a wishlist item:

https://github.com/jobisoft/TbSync

Last, and certainly not least, the installed plugin states, specifically, in the add-on info:

"This Add-on does not support Goolge. Alternatives: - CardBook - Provider for Google Calendar"

Provided all of these disclaimers are false, and TbSync does in fact work with Google Calendar, I'm wondering what to enter into the following fields when configuring CalDAV via TbSync:

Account name: Google (seems arbitrary, so we'll run with this) User name: foobar@gmail.com Password: XXXXXX (should this be my actual Google account password, or an "App password" generated specifically for this purpose?!) CalDAV server address: https://apidata.googleusercontent.com/caldav/v2/foobar@gmail.com/user (I've also found resources that suggest "events" instead of "user" as the last segment, but who knows...) CardDAV: I'm just leaving this empty, for now, since I have no idea what purpose is serves.

With these settings, TbSync launches the Google sign-on process in a modal/pop-up. I sign-in, accept the 2FA prompt on my phone, and then nothing further happens. The "Enter account information" modal/dialog remains open in TbSync, and if I click "Next" again, I'm taken through the same process, over and over.

What am I doing wrong? Any help here is greatly appreciated!

As a final point of note, I second @chg-nash 's sentiment that the add-on requests "Unlimited permission to Thunderbird and my computer". Alarming indeed. Yet, when I view the add-on in Thunderbird, after installing it, the granted permissions are merely, "This extension doesn't require any permissions." Quite a stark difference! So, which is it?

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TbSync no longer supports Google accounts in the 'usual' way, but you can follow the instructions here:

https://github.com/jobisoft/TbSync/issues/466

An alternative is the Provider for Google Calendar.

You can add a Google calendar to TB without add-ons, as a CalDAV calendar, by entering this for the Location:

https://apidata.googleusercontent.com/caldav/v2/myname@gmail.com/events

Enter your email address for the Username, and allow cookies in Options/Privacy & Security, for OAuth2 authentication.

Card Book can sync TB with Google Contacts.

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Stans said

For Google Contacts and Calendar sync, give the TbSync add-on a try. It works just fine for me with Tbird 78 on Windows 10. As for email sync, what's the problem you're facing? Are emails not getting fetched like they should? Is this a first attempt at using Tbird? Give details of the issues you're having; help us help you.

Do you mind sharing how you set up your Google Account on TbSync? I only see CardDAV and Exchange. Thanks

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I have a question for one of you who have experience with these syncing options. I have been using TbSync for some time to sync both calendar and address book from my Google apps account. Now that TbSync has stopped supporting Google, it seems like I should move to CardBook and Provider for Google Calendar, both of which seem to be fully supported. I am just wondering about the transition. I now have a separate address book named for my Google account, and also a separate calendar named for my Google account. Many of the contacts in my Personal Address Book are also in Google since I uploaded them a while ago. In moving to the new add-ons, should I first delete the old calendar and address book, and let the new add-ons sync from Google to start? I don't want to lose anything.

Cardbook says the address books it creates are completely separate from those within Thunderbird. That suggests I could start with the address book by simply telling TbSync to stop syncing the address book, and then letting Cardbook create a new address book from my Google account. I would probably not import that old Google-related local Thunderbird address book. I guess I could import my Personal Address book, and I hope that would not create a lot of duplicates. Once that is working fine, I could probably go back and delete the old Thunderbird internal address book previously synced from Google. For Provider for Google Calendar, it is not clear what is best. I assume if I uninstall TbSync and the associated WebDAV add-on, the calendar previously synced will still be there, and it might conflict with the new one created by Provider. Or perhaps it is best to just leave them both. Neither add-on is very clear to me on how to deal with such a transition. Any advice is appreciated. Thanks.

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TbSync still works with Google if you follow the instructions above and double-click extensions.dav4tbsync.googlesupport to true in Config. editor (Options/General/Indexing). Contacts and calendars sync, or you could use it just for contacts and add the calendar directly as a CalDAV calendar.

If you're concerned about the effects of switching add-ons, create a new profile to test a new setup. Help/Troubleshooting, about:profiles, to create and launch profiles.

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Actually, my TbSync seems to continue to work even without that setting. I am guessing that is because it is set to allow previous configurations to continue, but I could not add any new accounts or make any changes. I have changed that setting. My worry is that, over time, something would stop working if the add-ons are not being maintained. So I don't need to move immediately, but it seems prudent to find new options.

On the new profile, my current profile has five different IMAP email accounts active and several address books. Setting up a full new profile would be a lot of effort. I suppose I could set up a new profile with just my primary Google account to see what happens there, but I would not be able to see what might happen to the legacy address book and calendar. My thinking would be to save my entire profile and then experiment. If things go wrong, I should be able to restore that saved profile and be back to where I was since IMAP should then redownload any emails that had not been downloaded by that profile -- at least, if I understand things correctly.

Thanks for the advice. I would not have known about the issue if not for your posts.

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Even if these add-ons are abandoned, which is unlikely now that the add-on development environment is somewhat stable, the built-in CardDAV support in TB 78 will remain. At the moment, it supports some providers, but the OAuth2 support for Google Contacts is not yet functioning. Adding a Google calendar as a CalDAV calendar directly does work with OAuth2 authentication.

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Thanks. Maybe I am overreacting. TbSync has worked fairly well for me. I have had a couple of glitches where an event conflict was reported that I could not figure out how to clear on the calendar when I had a recurring meeting set up and tried to change one instance on Thunderbird. And when you add new contacts in Thunderbird they sync to Google but as "other contacts," so they will not sync with other devices like my phone unless I move them into the main contact list manually. Further, I don't recall seeing my Google address book under TbSync as a separate address book in the past. I thought it was syncing directly with my Personal Address book. But it is there now. I guess I will need to start using that address book so my contacts with continue to sync. Perhaps that is something that came with the latest update of TbSync. I can live with these anomalies.

I am not sure if the other options would be better. Cardbook does seem much more versatile than the internal Thunderbird options and TbSync, but there may be downsides I would not see unless I try it. I am not sure how to add a Google calendar directly. It sounds like you don't need Provider for Google Calendar. I do assume there are probably many Thunderbird users who have the same need to sync with Google contacts and calendars. Your advice is welcomed, and I am sure a post or help file outlining different options and trade-offs in more complete fashion would be appreciated by many. From what you say, it sounds like Thunderbird might be capable of syncing to Google without any add-ons at some point in the not too distant future.

Thanks again.

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chg-nash said

TbSync requests unlimited permission to install. is this safe?

Any clue on this?

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johnatanmoran said

chg-nash said

TbSync requests unlimited permission to install. is this safe?

Any clue on this?

Not to worry about it. That was always the case with legacy extensions, you just didn't get notified about it then. It's a remnant of the old legacy extensions behaviour.

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I am having problems synchronising Thunderbird to my Google Contacts. I have recently upgraded to Thunderbird 78, and learnt that gcontactsync no longer works for this issue. As recommended on this forum, I have downloaded TbSync, and that is working fine for my individual contacts. However, it is not transferring over my Groups of contacts. Am I doing something silly (I'm not very computer literate)? Many thanks

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dshirt said

However, it is not transferring over my Groups of contacts. Am I doing something silly (I'm not very computer literate)?

It's a known bug in Google's CardDAV API and Google doesn't seem pressed to fix it any time soon. See https://issuetracker.google.com/issue.../36761530 https://cardbook.icu/forum/forums/top.../is-there-a-way-to-sync-google-contacts-groups/ https://evertpot.com/google-carddav-issues/

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Thanks. I see this originally was raised with Google in April 2017 and no reply ever seen despite frequent reminders. Presumably Google not interested in fixing? Problem didn't seem to occur with gcontactsync, but that not compatible with TB 78. So am I totally scuppered or is there another App that will do the job? If not fixable I will have to seriously consider moving to another email app (I presume there is no such problem with Outlook?)

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I can't speak for Outlook, but since the issue is with Google's CardDAV API, it won't matter which other app you switch to. The problem will still be there if that app uses CardDAV. Feel free to try other email apps though. I haven't checked, but if the gcontactsync add-on uses the Google Contacts API instead of CardDAV, then it isn't affected by this bug. Google evidently favours its Contacts API over CardDAV, so maybe the developers of these add-ons can work on using that instead, if Google plays nice. CardDAV is an open standard while Google's Contacts API is proprietary.

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