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Configure Thunderbird (Linux) for Communigate

Before you start: In case you can't see the needed details on the images, you can always click on them to see a larger version. This Documentation expects that you already have a mail-account and that you know your data.
If you're missing the menu bar inside Thunderbird, you can enable it  with a right click next to the tabs and then click "Menu Bar".

This documentation covers the following:


There are two ways to add a mail account to Thunderbird. In case you're starting Thunderbird for the first time, it will present a pop up windows where you can add your account. Press "Skip this and use my existing email" to begin.

If you already configured Thunderbird, you'll need to go to "File -> New -> Existing Mail Account..." - the dialogues will be the same now.

Please enter your name, mail address and password into the window "Mail Account Setup". If you want to, set a tick to "Remember password" - this option can be changed later if needed. Continue with "Next"and then click at "Manual config".

Enter "" for both, incoming and outgoing. Choose "SSL/TLS" for SSL and "Encrypted password" for Authentication. Enter your username into the username-field. Thunderbird should finish the other settings automatically - check that by clicking on the picture below and correct information if needed.

Press "Advanced config" now. Click on the menu tab with your mail address (will be set by Thunderbird automatically, can be changed afterwards). Fill in the missing Organization (Leibniz Institute for Astrophysics Potsdam) and add a signature. Of course you can use the signature shown below - you'll just need to exchange the X's with your data.

Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam (AIP),
An der Sternwarte 16, 14482 Potsdam
Tel:0331-7499XXX - Fax:0331-7499XXX - Mail:

Vorstand: Prof. Dr. Matthias Steinmetz
Stiftung bürgerlichen Rechts
Stiftungsverzeichnis Brandenburg: 26 742-00/7026

Now choose the menu tab "Server Settings" on the left. Press "Advanced..." on the right and remove the tick for "Show only subscribed folders" - accept with "OK".

Remove the tick for "Compose messages in HTML format" and add a tick for "Include signature for forwards" inside the menu tab "Composition & Addressing". In order to ensure that every recipient can read your mails, we recommend to not send HTML-mails.

Since the space inside your home directory is limited, we suggest you to turn of synchronization of mails. You can disable it with removing the tick for "Keep messages for this account on this computer" inside of "Synchronization & Storage".

Connecting the Communigate Calendar(s) with Thunderbird

Press on the symbol with the 3 parallel  vertical stripes and then on "Add-ons" or go to "Tools -> Add-ons".

A overview will open, use the search function to search for "Lightning". Maybe you already find Lightning within the Collection.

If you've been searching, you'll need to find the entry for Lightning, it should be called something like 'Lightning X.X.X'. Press on the button "Install" on the right, slightly under the Add-on-title.

If you went over the collection-page, press on the button "Add to Thunderbird".

When the process has been finished, a small bar will appear - click at "Restart now" to finish the installation.

A new entry "Events and Tasks" is now available within the menu bar. Press "Events and Tasks" and press at "Calendar" and "Tasks" - this will open two new tabs with the content we'll need. If you leave those tabs open when you close Thunderbird, it will reopen those tabs if you run Thunderbird again.

Change into the tab "Calendar". Right click under the Calendar "Home". Within the context menu there's an option to create a new calendar. Afterwards, you can delete the local calendar "Home" with a right click - the entries within this calendar wouldn't be synchronized to Communigate.

A new dialogue will open. Please choose "On the Network" and continue with "Next".

Please choose "CalDAV" on the next page and enter the Location "".

You can choose a calendar name and -color on the next page. All events will be shown in the color of the calendar. Continue.

A authentication prompt will open. Please enter your login data from Communigate. The site says "CalDAV" and/or "UserDAV" (located on the second line inside the prompt). This prompt may appear more than one time. Save the password inside the Password manager, if you want Thunderbird to remember it.
Finish with "Finish" - you can now use your Communigate calendar within Thunderbird. Thunderbird will automatically synchronize your event information with Communigate.

Connecting the Communigate Address book(s) with Thunderbird

The following Add-on needed, is not inside of the Thunderbird Repository - thus you'll need to download it on this website. Save it to your hard drive - for example onto your desktop.

Afterwards you need to open the Add-on-Overview (Tools -> Add-Ons). On the upper right there's a gear-symbol. Click on the gear and choose "Install Add-on from file...".

A explorer window will open - go to the location where you saved the file and choose it. In our chase it's located inside of Downloads. Because the author can't be verified, you'll need to accept the installation with "Install now".

After the installation has been finished, a small bar appear - click on "Restart now".

Now you need to configure the Add-On. Go to "Tools -> SyncCGP Options". A new dialogue will open. Press "New" on the lower left side to create a new configuration.

Enter a configuration name (e.g. communigate) and press "OK". You'll be in the dialogue window from before - click at your configuration on the left (in our case communigate). If you want the Add-on to automatically sync your contacts, you can change the sync interval from '0' to e.g. '60' (60 minutes should be fine). Also, you can tell the Add-on to sync during the start of Thunderbird automatically. This makes especially sense if you are changing/adding contacts when you're home or not at your workstation in general.

Within the drop down list "Address Book" you can choose a local Thunderbird Address book to use for the sync. For every Address Book, you'll need to create an own configuration. At the end you have to choose the contact folder on communigate - by default the first address book on Communigate is called "Contacts". If you have more than one Address book on Communigate, the folder with it's name will appear within your IMAP-Directory.

Finish with "OK" and you're ready to go.

also see:

  • Subscribe a calendar on Communigate
  • Grant calendar access to others on Communigate
  • Add subscribed calendars to Thunderbird