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  1. #1
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    compose plain text with variable width font (Thunderbird 2.0.0.17)

    I have just moved from Mozilla suite to TB (& FF). In Mozilla mail client I always used 'plain text' not HTML format. TB duly imported my Mozilla mail settings and compose in 'plain text' is the default.

    My problem is that when I composed a new message in Mozilla mail the new message rendered in a sans-serif proportional width font but TB does not do this. It renders the new message in a fixed width font. I have already checked that:
    Tools|Options|Display
    Formatting tab
    Plain Text Messages section
    is set to 'Use the following font: variable width font'

    Once the message has been sent and I look at it again, it's OK. TB displays it in the sans-serif proportional font I expect.

    I have searched the Mozilla forums but can't find a fix to this issue (in fact can't find much about this issue at all).

    Any one here got any ideas? Or is it a known bug that is unlikely to get fixed because nobody uses plain text any more and so I should get over it and join the 21st Century and compose in HMTL format?

    Ken

  2. #2
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    Re: compose plain text with variable width font (Thunderbird 2.0.0.17)

    Try Tools->Options Display->formatting hit the fonts button down at bottom right then choose some fonts <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15>
    John (Unreconstructed Jacobite)

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    Re: compose plain text with variable width font (Thunderbird 2.0.0.17)

    I've already been there. The Proportional font is set to Sans Serif and Sans-serif is set to Arial. That is how messages are rendered after I've sent them but during actual composition it makes no difference if (in ...Display|Formatting tab, Plain Text Messages section) I select either 'Fixed width font' or' Variable width font'. In both cases everything is rendered in Monospace (Courier New, as set in the Fonts dialog).

    My reading of this article on mozillaZine, where it says:
    <hr>Message display
    This refers to what messages look like when you view them or compose them.<hr>
    and also:
    <hr>
    Message composition
    The message display settings in the above section also apply to messages that you compose.<hr>
    is that ,at least in TB 1.5 (and as in my experience with Mozilla Suite mail client), if you set Plain Text messages to Variable width font then TB is supposed to render stuff in something more comfortable to read than a monospace font.

    <img src=/S/shrug.gif border=0 alt=shrug width=39 height=15>

    Ken

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    Re: compose plain text with variable width font (Thunderbird 2.0.0.17)

    OK, I've tried this and it works in Thunderbird version 2.0.0.17 (20080914). Just cheat and in the fonts box where it says "Monospace" just choose arial (or your other font of choice --Possibly not Blippo light <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15> ). One thing, I had to scroll down a looonnng way (past the zed fonts) to get to arial.
    John (Unreconstructed Jacobite)

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    Re: compose plain text with variable width font (Thunderbird 2.0.0.17)

    Thanks. Yyes, that works but I can't help feeling it's supposed to do that when you select the 'variable width' font radio button.

    I've scrolled through the Config Editor (Tools|Options| General tab, Config Editior button) but not found anything that looks like a line that controls this feature.

    Ken

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    Re: compose plain text with variable width font (Thunderbird 2.0.0.17)

    I suppose the variable width button is for html mail. In real terms, I suppose, the font used for composing plain text mail is cosmetic. The recipient's client will decide what font to display your message in anyway.
    John (Unreconstructed Jacobite)

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    Re: compose plain text with variable width font (Thunderbird 2.0.0.17)

    <img src=/S/hmmn.gif border=0 alt=hmmn width=15 height=15> <img src=/S/confused.gif border=0 alt=confused width=15 height=20>, so why is is the radio button in the Plain text section of the dialog box (see attached)?

    On second thoughts don't answer that, it's obviously just me. The way I read it is not the way it works. It does apply once a message has 'real' existence and has been sent but while it is volatile / in memory as it is being typed / edited it renders in monospace. The workaround is as you've already suggested is to set the monospace font to something that's not monospaced.

    Think we're done on this one.

    Ken
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