Sunbird 0.7
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For some reason I’m really impressed at how fast Mozilla’s Calendar duo is progressing. They just pushed Lightning & Sunbird 0.7 out the door, and they include a completely redesigned event interface along with hundreds of bug fixes. You can see what the new event manager looks like above, and it is much less cluttered than the older version.

Tip: Lightning is the addon for the Thunderbird email client, whereas Sunbird is a standalone application. Only use Lightning if you want your calendar and email all in one program.

Before I get into the other good news why don’t we take a look at the new features for Lightning and Sunbird:

  • It is now much easier to switch between the mail and calendar parts of Thunderbird thanks to a user interface redesign
  • A redesigned event/task dialog has been enabled to gather feedback from the community. It offers a much cleaner user interface and additional functionality including:
    • Events/Tasks can be created in different timezones
    • Attendees can be added from a local or corporate LDAP directory
    • Free-Busy information is available for users of the Sun Java Calendar Server
    • Integrated display of recurrence patterns, reminders and attendees
    • Custom recurrences and reminders
    • Clear separation between tasks and events
  • The new event summary dialog lists all the details of tasks and events for calendar which are read-only
  • The Today Pane gives a quick overview over your current tasks and upcoming events. The Today Pane can be enabled/disabled by a toolbar button
  • Colliding events (events in the same time slot) are shrunk so that they fit into the display of a day. This no longer affects other events on the same day
  • Localized releases of Lightning and Sunbird in Chinese (simplified), Georgian, Lithuanian, Portuguese (European), Spanish (Argentina) and Turkish

Sunbird and Lightning weren’t the only big calendar-related releases at Mozilla today. Remember the Google Calendar extension we wrote about? That also got updated today with several bug fixes, and it now supports synchronizing event attendees.  The new Google Calendar extension only works with Sunbird/Lightning 0.7, so you’ll have to upgrade before installing it.

Congrats to the Mozilla Calendar team on another fine release, and I can’t wait to see what further developments bring to the table!

Mozilla Calendar Homepage

There Are 8 Comments

  1. Good stuff! I’ve been holding off on using Sunbird because it didn’t impress me that much, but I am going to give it another shot!

  2. Sunbird is the most impressive desktop calendar that I’ve used. I’m a bit disappointed with Vista’s built-in calendar application, and would have expected them to at least outdo Sunbird. They definitely didn’t though.

  3. This is really a major improvement compared to the previous version of Lightning. I had some major bugs with that, and even though I believe some were related to the Tbird theme I was using, others were clearly a “Lightning feature”. Really nice work from the dev guys on this one – I’m finally thinking about trying offline calendars again (still syncing online of course)

    I’m still getting a few duplicate entries when importing/syncing online calendars (Google Calendar in this test, has happened with other online calendars before), but at least now it’s much easier and faster to remove the extra post.

    So, how do I get the work calendar synced with this? For some reason the company is stuck on MS products, so of course we have Exchange, Outlook etc, but if possible I’d like to stay away from that at home, especially since I’m collecting info on moving completely to Linux (Sabayon or Ubuntu) at home, but still want to be up to date…

  4. Sorry for a double post – actually started to write the previous to ask this: Is there a way to wrap text entries in Lightning? I have a few long entries in the calendar, and without wrapping it looks something like “E: Meeting with E…” (no, I won’t have a meeting with myself, the other E refers to the person I’ll meet with)

    I actually used to have the same problem with Google calendar, but found an extension to “fix it” (sometimes the text of 2-3 entries appear on top of eachother)

  5. I’ve never actually seen a way to wrap the text, although that is a feature that I would like as well. And unfortunately Sunbird/Lightning haven’t become popular enough where extensions are being made to circumenvent the minor issues. As of right now there are only 29 extensions. ;)

  6. It’ll be more popular if they make a release called “1.0″. 0.x makes it look more betaish.

  7. Anonymous wrote:
    It’ll be more popular if they make a release called “1.0?. 0.x makes it look more betaish.

    I think they are doing that because it isn’t quite ready for general consumption yet. They want to get a majority of the bugs squashed and have unique features implemented before they break the big 1.0 milestone. Just like with Firefox.

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