Closed Bug 1496042 Opened 2 years ago Closed 2 years ago

Transparency effect (Aero glass) in new version 60.2.1 makes the status bar unreadable


(Thunderbird :: Theme, defect)

Not set


(thunderbird_esr6063+ fixed, thunderbird63 wontfix, thunderbird64 fixed)

Thunderbird 64.0
Tracking Status
thunderbird_esr60 63+ fixed
thunderbird63 --- wontfix
thunderbird64 --- fixed


(Reporter: brad.bannon, Assigned: Paenglab)





(3 files)

User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; Win64; x64; rv:62.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/62.0

Steps to reproduce:

Update from Thunderbird 60 to 60.2.1.

Actual results:

The status bar changed from standard (opaque) to Aroe glass.

Expected results:

Well, what should have happened... nothing! One of those "improvements", which just makes it harder to take this project seriously. Please take a look at the attached picture. 3 screenshots:

1) Thunderbird 60.2.1 with a lighter background (wallpaper).
2) Thunderbird 60.2.1 with a dark background (wallpaper).
3) Thunderbird 60.

With a dark background, the status bar messages are completely unreadable.

Unfortunately, I couldn't find an option to disable the Aroe glass effect.

So, what I'd be really interested in: who of the developers thought, it would be a good idea to enable aero for the status bar???
Windows 7, right?
Version: 62 → 60
Yes, Windows 7 (x64).
Most of our developers have moved to Windows 10, so this went unnoticed, but we'll get it fixed in TB 60.3 later in October.
Assignee: nobody → richard.marti
Ever confirmed: true
I agree fully with Brad (the reporter).  I can tolerate it until an update comes out, but my wife now has no clue what t-bird is doing.  I don't suppose there's a prefs tweak that can either disable Aero support or possibly change the font color only in the status bar?  Unless there is, I'm likely to roll back to 60.0 given there's no security fixes according to the release notes (correct?).

Aero Glass makes things looks "cute", but IMHO in most cases provides limited benefit for an active window.
In your profile, you can create a directory "chrome" and in there you can create a text file called "userChrome.css". Add this into the file, then (re)start TB.

#status-bar {
  color: #FFF;

Of course you can use any other HTML colour.

TB 60.2.1 has many improvements but no critical security fixes, as far as I'm aware.
@Jorg K

Thanks for the userChrome.css hint. Setting the background color works just as well:

#status-bar {
  background-color: #F0F0F0;
  color: #000;
Excellent!  Both work great, although I'll probably use the black on white "traditional".  Many thanks.
Or you use the built-in Light theme.
Thanks Richard. That's the best suggestion as no "undocumented" tweaks are required. I didn't even think about trying a different theme, perhaps because themes are "hidden" under add-ons.  Maybe it would be useful to put the built-in themes under the Tools -> Options -> Display settings?  That's where I first looked when I came across this problem.
Attached patch statusbar.patchSplinter Review
Instead of having the same rule in four files, I moved it to messenger.css. I reproduced it on Windows 8.1 and it should also work on Windows 7.
Attachment #9015001 - Flags: review?(jorgk)
Comment on attachment 9015001 [details] [diff] [review]

I can't test it right now, but I trust you have. Nice code simplification.
Attachment #9015001 - Flags: review?(jorgk) → review+
Does the patch apply to beta and ESR as well?
Comment on attachment 9015001 [details] [diff] [review]

It applies to both.

Tested only on Win8 which normally behaves as Aero, except when I use -moz-windows-glass a media query, and Win7 Basic. So it should work on Aero too.
Attachment #9015001 - Flags: approval-comm-esr60?
Attachment #9015001 - Flags: approval-comm-beta?
Keywords: checkin-needed
Pushed by
Set a background-color for the statusbar on Windows 7. r=jorgk
Closed: 2 years ago
Keywords: checkin-needed
Resolution: --- → FIXED
Target Milestone: --- → Thunderbird 64.0
Comment on attachment 9015001 [details] [diff] [review]

I'll do a build soon and then the reporters can try it.
Attachment #9015001 - Flags: approval-comm-esr60?
Attachment #9015001 - Flags: approval-comm-esr60+
Attachment #9015001 - Flags: approval-comm-beta?
Attachment #9015001 - Flags: approval-comm-beta+
Duplicate of this bug: 1496910
Reporters, please test one of the following TB 60.2.1+ builds that contain this fix:


Those are English builds, so you might want to install them into a different directory. They are safe to use on production data (as safe as the released version, no warranties).
1) The fix works for me, though I'd prefer to have less contrast in the border color (see attached picture: thunderbird-60-vs-fix.png). But thats a non-issue.

2) I'm glad to see that you are paying attention to bug reports like this. Thanks again!

3) According to, Windows 7 still has a market share of about 37% (among all Windows OS). So - assuming that the change wasn't intended - please set up a virtual machine and also test your releases on Windows 7.
Thanks for testing. Our volunteer Richard who looks after the themes already has a zoo of hardware and virtual machines: Various Linux'es, Mac, Windows. We also use modern hardware to keep build times under 30 minutes. He said on IRC:
13:09:52 - Paenglab: wsmwk: Yes. But with my Ryzen I have no computer that can use Aero. But I know what we could do fix this.
13:10:57 - Paenglab: Win7 says my Ryzen is too new for it. :(
his hardware no longer allows to run a Win7 VM. I'm not sure he can simulate another processor.
It seems that the patch uses light theme, which has a bit higher contrast indeed.
I have a working Win 7 VM but Aero doesn't work any more.
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