Thunderbird 3.1 hobbles into beta

Mozilla has pumped out the first beta of Thunderbird 3.1, aimed at ironing out problems caused by the switch to the Gecko 1.9.2 rendering engine.

Thunderbird 3.1 hobbles into beta

Gecko 1.9.2 is the same rendering engine powering Firefox 3.6, and while the change should bring a raft of improvements including interface tweaks, bug fixes and memory management improvement, the Thunderbird team acknowledges there could be “possible problems caused by the changes in the underlying platform”.

Among these problems are broken add-ons, “crashes and bugs and potentially data loss in profiles,” according to the release notes.

The beta, codenamed Lanikai, is available for PC, Mac and Linux, with a second beta expected to be available in early April, followed by a release candidate at the beginning of May.

The team has not ruled out the possibility of a second release candidate to mop up the bugs. The final release of Thunderbird 3.1 is slated for 1 June.

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