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It seems that when you select "Sort by title" mode in the mail/news window, that it does a simple alphabetical sort. As a result, Re: Zounds! will sort BEFORE Zounds! Which is a bit confusing. It would be nice if the sort algorithm were smart enough to put Re: $string after $string in a sort.
Don't forget that you''l also see Fwd:, Aw:, Sv:, etc (bug 108163) ... so it's not always that simple. Can't we just use date as in bug 72493 ?
Created attachment 120126 [details] Screenshot of sorted-by-title with several Re:'d threads Here's a screenshot of what I'm seeing currently, sorting by subject, Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.0; en-US; rv:1.4b) Gecko/20030408 Note that the group on the bottom is sorted according to reporter's desire; but there is another group in the middle which is sorted incorrectly. I didn't include the date field, but those three messages are sorted out of order for date, too. So maybe there's an actual bug there. btw, bug 72493 has to do with sub-sorting within threads, different from this bug's desire to flat-sort alphabetically by title, but be smart about the prefix(es). Sorting by date would be a logical secondary order, but that's related to multi-sort, Bug 57898.
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