What's Your Favorite Windows E-Mail Client? (Non-Web)

… excluding web-based clients like Gmail, Yahoo or Live Mail. I run my own mail servers, and I’ve never been a huge fan of the web clients–except as a last resort if I can’t remote in to my system–so I’d like to focus on locally installed programs for a Windows system.

I’m still using the venerable Eudora, but it’s definitely been showing its age over the years, especially with its lack of UTF-8 decoding. There are several plugins which attempt to solve this shortcoming, but most of them are wonky and are no longer supported since their authors have, unlike me, moved on.

Ideally, I’d like to find another client that handles incoming mail alerts the same way Eudora does. That is, instead of simply bolding a tree menu on the side when new mail has arrived, Eudora will alert you by opening the mailbox in a horizontal bar at the bottom of the screen. It’s very handy, and I don’t have to endlessly expand a mailbox tree looking for the correct mail folder with new mail.

'Cause I’m all lazy and stuff.

So, what’s your favorite Windows client, and why?

What you’re looking for is PopPeeper. This handy little tool rocks and is free

That’s certainly an option, Markxxx, if I don’t find a client with a new mail alert system I like. Thanks for the suggestion. It’d be great to have everything in one software package, but I’m glad there’s a workaround.

I hung on in Eudora for all e-mail until just 4-5 months ago. I kept Eudora for personal e-mail, and joined the Dark Side/ Outlook for work. I actually don’t mind Outlook for work stuff, its much better than my first exposure perhaps 10 years ago. And my personal stuff still works in Eudora. Win/Win.

I’m hopelessly hooked on Eudora too. The feature I am looking for that every other app seems to lack is keeping all the mail in one window without using the preview pane.

I abhor the preview pane because I want to be able to click on an email without seeing it. But, from what I saw in Thunderbird and Outlook, if you don’t use the preview pane you have to double-click on an email to view it - in a new window.

Not cool!

I also had issues in Thunderbird with checking a bunch of different accounts at once and using separate SMTP for separate accounts. I think I also had issues with folders. Something like that…I remember I had to download an add-on to get something to work sorta like I wanted it, and I still wasn’t happy with it.

I was really looking forward to the new Eudora project, Penelope but I think they dropped the ball on that. For some reason, they couldn’t figure out how to re-create the awesomeness of Eudora with a new face.


Yeah, Outlook really has improved over the years, squeegee. It’s a lot less clunky (imho), I haven’t seen a corrupted .pst file in years, and it’s difficult to beat an Exchange/Outlook environment. I think Outlook handles IMAP better than Eudora, so I’ll keep a copy of it going to connect with several IMAP accounts and an Exchange account via RPC over https.

You’re right, ZipperJJ, Penelope has kind of futzed out. Big hooplah with which to begin, but it’s really gone nowhere since. I don’t really see how it’s much different than the Thunderbird app–with which, despite its extensive plugin system, I’ve never been that thrilled.

Same goes with MailForge (previously called Odysseus). I was pretty excited by that project, but the beta builds for Windows were nearly unworkable. I hope they’ll improve, and I’m sure they will because I think they have a passionate following, but the last install drove me back to transporting Eudora over to my newest Windows 7 environment. Guess I’ll be sticking with it for another few years.

I use Pocomail. When new mail comes in, you get a mini-window listing it all.


It’s Netscape as it should have evolved. Email notification is a little popup box in the lower right corner of the screen.

That “little popup box” sounds like the Desktop Alerts feature of Outlook 2003 and Outlook 2007.

For years I loved Eudora. But, it really didn’t stick with the times as much as I would have liked and eventually I was forced to move over to Outlook. I was never truly happy there and I was thrilled when Thunderbird came out. Thunderbird does pretty much everything I want in an email client and it is expandable with extensions. The only thing I wish it would do is minimize to the toolbar. The latest version plays really well with IMAP clients.

Outlook. Not because I have done a thorough survey and found it’s the best, but because of intertia. But I stick with it because of features (that others may have too): pretty good rules support, ability to customize with VBA, integration with Windows (drag & drop to folders to save mail; save as Outlook message, HTML, or plain text), signature support, and integration with calendar, notes, to-do list, contacts. Using VBA I have integrated Outlook contacts to Excel so that I can, in a couple of clicks, create a Christmas card list file and print envelopes directly from it.

Would be nice if you could compose email in HTML code, record macros, better HTML engine (which in 2007 is no longer the IE engine).

Outlook is the second most horrible program I’ve ever used right after iTunes. For some reason, the designers thought it was a good idea to put the mail checking routine in the same thread as the rest of the program which means it’ll lock up solid for 10 seconds every time it checks mail.

I use Thunderbird which is not great but the best of a bad bunch. It’s a shame there’s been barely any innovation in the email client domain since Eudora died.

Another Eudora lover checking in.

I hung on like grim death until finally it was just crashing too often for comfort. I shopped around and asked for opinions among my colleagues and finally settled on The Bat!

It’s highly customizable, and I’m still trying to get it to do a few things that I miss from Eudora. And I’ve had to reframe my approach to dealing with e-mail in a few minor ways. But overall I’m pleased (if I can’t have Eudora anymore). I really wanted to be happy with Thunderbird, but it just didn’t have enough of the features that I needed.

One of my main issues is the preview pane thing too. I finally got used to letting all my mail come in and filter into its proper folders, kill the spam and whatever else I want to get rid of, and THEN turn on preview to quickly read everything. Then turn preview off again. It’s a bit of a kludge, but I’m getting used to it.