bugzilla.mozilla.org has resumed normal operation. Attachments prior to 2014 will be unavailable for a few days. This is tracked in Bug 1475801.
Please report any other irregularities here.

open url (links) in a new browser window or new tab (browser specific feature)

NEW
Unassigned

Status

Thunderbird
Mail Window Front End
--
enhancement
15 years ago
10 years ago

People

(Reporter: Johan Prins, Unassigned)

Tracking

Firefox Tracking Flags

(Not tracked)

Details

(Reporter)

Description

15 years ago
User-Agent:       Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; Windows NT 5.1)
Build Identifier: 0.3rc3

Open url (links) in (html) e-mail a new browser window, shortcut: SHIFT-CLICK, 
and option in right-click menu. Should work with all browsers.

Reproducible: Always

Steps to Reproduce:

Comment 1

15 years ago
This would require the support of the operating system.  Currently, Windows only
takes a URL and passes it to the browser.  If you want this to work for Mozilla
Firebird, see <http://texturizer.net/firebird/tips.html#beh_reuse>.

Comment 2

15 years ago
I don't buy that there is no way for thunderbird to control how links are
opened.  Trillian, an instant message program, gives you two options when you
right click on a link that someone IM's you: Open in Browser, and Open in New
Browser (and it works with firebird).  Maybe they use some trick or other, but
it works.

Comment 3

15 years ago
I'd vote for this bug if I could (voting seems to be disabled for this bug?).

This is a real user-friendliness factor that needs to be considered.  It is
irritating to lose an open browser window when it is replaced after the user
clicks on a URL in an email message!  Opening clicked links in a new window
would seem to be the best approach.  It would be great if it was user-selectable.

Comment 4

15 years ago
I would also like to vote for this bug, but for some reason cannot.

This bug in Thunderbird irritates the hell out of me. If I want to open a url in
an email (and already have a browser window open) I need to cut/paste the url
after creating a new browser window manually. Absolutely crazy!

Comment 5

15 years ago
I'd vote for this, too.  If it really can't be fixed, I'd say the entire
Thunderbird/FireFox program should be scrapped and effort rechanneled into
integrated Mozilla.

Comment 6

15 years ago
Can we consider this a dupe?  I believe there is a bug for firefox with a
summary along the lines of "launch external links in new window".  The goal of
that bug is to have a pref in firefox which determines how any link sent to
firefox is opened.  You can already change the pref manually in your user.js
file, it's just a matter of giving it a UI.  

On the other hand, _can_ Thunderbird control how the OS/Browser opens an URL?  I
know the Trillian IM client has options for browser window reuse or open in a
new window when you right click on a URL that has been IM'ed to you.

Comment 7

14 years ago
*** Bug 243593 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 8

14 years ago
I would modify this request slightly from "new browser window" to "new browser
window or tab".  As http://www.mozilla.org/projects/thunderbird/index.html says,
the target customer is a FF user who wants a mail client that "plays nice" w/FF.

One of THE nicest things about FF (IMHO) is to be able to right-click on a link
and choose "Open link in New Tab".  This is -so- handy when, for example, doing
a Google search, and opening a dozen tabs to look through; e.g., r-c T r-c T,
r-c T, etc.

That same feature is truly needed in Thunderbird.  Many emails contain a series
of links, usually to different documents.  On ThB 0.7.3 on WinXP, left-click
starts a new copy of the browser; {shift-click | ctrl-click | Alt-click} do
nothing; right-click only offer "Select All", "Copy Link Location" and "Save
Link Target As".

While writing an extension for this would likely be simple (or already done?),
IMHO this really needs to be an essential part of the product.

As to Comment #6, I brought up about:config in Firefox (release 0.9.3), changed
the setting of browser.tabs.opentabfor.windowopen to true, closed all instances
of FF and restarted.  No change.  Is there a different setting, or is it just
not in FF yet?  What is its bug #?

I understand if it is recommended that this request be split into a different bug.
Summary: open url (links) in a new browser window → open url (links) in a new browser window or new tab (browser specific feature)
*** Bug 255504 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Most browsers can't let the calling program (ie Thunderbird) specify whether or
not to open in a new tab, new window, or the same window. That is something that
is usually a global browser pref (like in Firefox). Having this implemented in
Thunderbird would require having a way to tell the browser how to open a link
using either the command line or DDE. Something like "firefox.exe -T <url>" to
open the link in a new tab would work for Firefox (does this exist?).

For this to be possible in all browsers (including those that don't have a
tabbed interface), some kind of standard calling method would be required, and
as it stands would be nearly impossible. I suppose some kind of default browser
detection and workarounds for common browsers might be possible, though quite
inelegant.

Although some sort of arrangment could be made to integrate Firefox and
Thunderbird in this way, this bug as it is will probably be marked WONTFIX.

Comment 11

14 years ago
With firefox the way a new page should be opened can be specified via the call
to mozilla-xremote-client "openURL(...)"

In the active(?) window: openURL(http://some.page.com)
In a new tab:            openURL(http://other.page.com, new-tab)
In a new windows:        openURL(http://www.test.com, new-window)

So with mozilla / firefox there is would be way to distinguish between these
different choices.

By the way this bug is also a linux bug.
(In reply to comment #11)
> With firefox the way a new page should be opened can be specified via the call
> to mozilla-xremote-client "openURL(...)"

I should have noted that my previous comment dealt entirely with Windows. That
is useful on Linux, but I don't think an alternative is available on Windows. 
And again, that only works for firefox. Is there a standard method for all
browsers on linux?

> By the way this bug is also a linux bug.

The implementation on the two platforms are so different, I think this should be
left as a Windows enhancement request. Another bug could be filed for linux
where it would likely be easier (as you indicated above).

Comment 13

14 years ago
*** Bug 242780 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 14

14 years ago
See comment #2.  Somehow Trillian can do it, so while you may not know how to do
it, it is possible.
I'd be surprised if Trillian can still do it in the latest builds considering
bug 17296 is fixed.

If you have any solutions you'd like to contribute please do.

Comment 16

14 years ago
Oh sure Gavin, when I have some solutions to contribute I will.  In the mean
time, I will continue to point out your mistaken assumptions when I come across
them.

Comment 17

13 years ago
We know perfectly well that this feature is possible because Netscape
Communicator has it.  In fact, this was the biggest annoyance for me in
switching to Mozilla.

Comment 18

13 years ago
tm@antikewl.com wrote (in this bug report):
>> 
>> This bug in Thunderbird irritates the hell out of me. 
>> If I want to open a url in an email (and already have a browser 
>> window open) I need to cut/paste the url after creating a 
>> new browser window manually. Absolutely crazy!

I agree 100 % .  ( and I just voted for this bug, bringing the total votes to 5
now).  

Huge productivity killer, to manually copy+paste the url from a Thunderbird
email, to then open a new (clean) Firefox browser window, to then paste in that
same URL from the Thunderbird email.  ( all to ensure that the web content in
any one of your current [already populated] Firefox browser windows is not
clobbered ).

The sooner, the better, for this new Thunderbird RFE feature...!!  Please !  :>

And I agree that ideally there should be a new menu item added to the existing
Thunderbird context menu that appears when you right click on a URL in a
Thunderbird email message, that would now have (new) context menu items such as
 "Open Link in New Window" ,  and ideally "Open Link in New Tab", as well.

( that would be the most intuitive, for users of Thunderbird, and also should be
consistent with the same Firefox context menu items, when you right click on a
URL in a Firefox window )

==================

Gavin Sharp wrote (in this bug report):
>> 
>> I'd be surprised if Trillian can still do it in the 
>> latest builds considering bug 17296 is fixed.
>> 
>> If you have any solutions you'd like to contribute please do.
>> 


Here are the results of some testing I just did, on Windows XP, to try and help
get this important and useful Thunderbird RFE implemented soon:

[1]
Action:  Using Trillian's "Open in a new Browser" context menu item, with
Firefox 1.0.7 as the "default browser" for Windows XP.  I already had several
Firefox browser windows open with different web sites.
         
Result:  Clobbers content in one of my already-web-content-populated Firefox
1.0.7 windows, with the web content of the Trillian chat window URL.  ( bad  ---
acts the same as the Trillian context menu item "Open in Browser" )

[2]
Action:  Using Trillian's "Open in a new Browser" context menu item, with Deer
Park version 1.6a1 as the "default browser" for Windows XP.  I already had
several Deer Park browser windows open with different web sites.

Result:  Opens a new tab in an already-existing Deer Park window, populating it
with the content of the URL from the Trillian chat window.  ( great )
         
[3]
Action:  Single left click on a web URL from a Thunderbird 1.0.6 email,  with
Deer Park v 1.6a1 as the "default browser" for Windows XP.  Already have several
Deer Park browser windows open with different web sites.

Result:  Opens a new tab in an already-existing Deer Park window, populating it
with the content of the URL from the Thunderbird email ( great --- and same
result / behaviour as experiment #2 above ).

==================

So:  This is great progress to see that Deer Park Alpha 2 already has made
in-roads toward this RFE ( with the default action of always opening the new URL
in a new tab, and not clobbering any content that was already in an existing
browser window / tab).


Ideally, though:  There should be a new menu item added to the existing
Thunderbird context menu that appears when you right click on a URL in a
Thunderbird email message, that would now have (new) context menu items such as
 "Open Link in New Window" ,  and ideally "Open Link in New Tab", as well.  
Total (end user) control, and consistent (the context menu items) with what you
see when you right click on a URL in a Firefox window.

==================

Note: The above version names refer to these exact versions:

  "Firefox 1.0.7" = Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US; rv:1.7.12)
Gecko/20050915 Firefox/1.0.7
  "Thunderbird 1.0.6" = Thunderbird 1.0.6 (20050716)
  "Trillian Basic 3.1" = Trillian Basic 3.1 - build 121

  "Deer Park v 1.6a1" = Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-US;
rv:1.9a1) Gecko/20050926 Firefox/1.6a1     
http://ftp.mozilla.org/pub/mozilla.org/firefox/nightly/latest-trunk/firefox-1.6a1.en-US.win32.installer.exe
 


==================

Hope this helps...   Glad to see Deer Park already has some partial relief,
toward this RFE...

Jay

Comment 19

13 years ago
There is an available workaround in Firefox, which is substantially easier than
the procedure quoted at the beginning of comment #18.

From Firefox's menu bar, go to Tools -> Options -> Advanced -> Tabbed Browsing.
 Then under the first heading, "Open links from other applications in:", click
the radio button for "A new tab in the most recent window".

Hope this helps.

Comment 20

13 years ago
Ah, very helpful, John.  Did not know that particular pref setting even existed,
so that is very much appreciated.

A very very good workaround, for now. 

Thanks again!
Jay

Comment 21

13 years ago
(In reply to comment #20)
> Ah, very helpful, John.  Did not know that particular pref setting even existed,
> so that is very much appreciated.
> 
> A very very good workaround, for now. 
> 
> Thanks again!
> Jay
> 


Yes, works for me too. 
With this I consider this bug to be resolved, or what do you think? 
Thanks for the info. 

Werner

Comment 22

13 years ago
No.  I still believe that the choice of whether to open a new browser window
should be part of the right-click menu in the mail client.

Comment 23

13 years ago
jdg@diogenes.sacramento.ca.us wrote:
>> 
>> No.  I still believe that the choice of whether to open a new browser 
>> window should be part of the right-click menu in the mail client.
>> 


I agree also.

When you right click on a URL in a Firefox (whether previous versions, or
whether Deer Park alphas), the context menu (for that URL) shows both:

      Open Link in New Window
      Open Link in New Tab

Ideally these exact same menu options (and exact wording) would be consistent in
Thunderbird, when right clicking on a URL that is in a Thunderbird email message.

( Users of Thunderbird would likely expect this consistency, with Firefox, if
they use Firefox as well as Thunderbird.  I know that I did / do, even though
they are separate programs, and was surprised earlier to not already see it
there, in Thunderbird's right click (on a URL) context menu. )

Possible implementation issues (to figure out), though, might include:

[1]

If this were to be implemented (in Thunderbird), perhaps you might need to also
work with an existing Firefox core developer, as well ---> As I'm not sure if
there is currently a way for a non-Firefox external programs (like Thunderbird,
or Trillian, or any program other than Firefox) to communicate to Firefox that
it wants this new URL to be opened in a new tab versus a new window (?), etc.

[2]

I'm assuming that if item #1 above was coded / implemented in some way, then
this same implementation (just in cases when activated by the end-user) would
likely also need to override the default Firefox pref that was just recently
talked about:

   "Tools -> Options -> Advanced -> Tabbed Browsing"

So this override would only happen when an external program (like Thunderbird)
explicitly communicates to Firefox that it explicitly wants the URL to be opened
in a new window, or a new tab, that the default Firfox pref setting (under
"Tabbed Browsing") gets overriden.

[3]

If the user's default browser is -not- Firefox, and they are using Thunderbird,
and they right click on a URL in a Thunderbird email, then I'm not sure how to
handle item #1 above.   (since Firefox is not their default browser)

Perhaps the solution is that Thunderbird needs to look first (before drawing the
right click context menu UI itself, when you right click on a URL in a
Thunderbird email) at whether the default browser is "Firefox" or not:


   If Firefox:  "business as usual"  ( implements this RFE )

   If non-Firefox browser:  That "other" browser may not have the tabbed
   browsing feature, or even if it does, might have a different
   method for external programs to communicate whether they
   want to open the new web content in a new tab versus
   in a new window (or "no" option :>).  So maybe then the context menu 
   is drawn in Thunderbird as it is currently drawn now, which is not having 
   these extra context menu options, since "not safe" (we just don't know, 
   about the default browser being used).

=======================

I think this possible implementation issue #1 above is what people were
discussing earlier in this bug report, saying they were not sure how / if this
was even possible (?)   If not currently possible, without adding new code to
Firefox itself, then perhaps that can also be done, and a corresponding (new)
Firefox RFE can be filed, that is connected to this RFE.

My .02c.    Hope this helps further the discussion.

Jay

Comment 24

13 years ago
(In reply to comment #23)
> jdg@diogenes.sacramento.ca.us wrote:
> >> 
> >> No.  I still believe that the choice of whether to open a new browser 
> >> window should be part of the right-click menu in the mail client.
> >> 
> I agree also.
> When you right click on a URL in a Firefox (whether previous versions, or
> whether Deer Park alphas), the context menu (for that URL) shows both:
>       Open Link in New Window
>       Open Link in New Tab


yes, i agree exactly with jay.  this bug/rfe whatever is two years old now.  
it's basic; netscape 7.2 communicator has rt click menu working perfectly with 
ns browser/ns browser tabs.

i use tb for rss (would like to convert email too but it's not ready with 
little big things like this).

the hangup with what to do with non ff browsers is stopping a solution.  make 
it work with ff.  simply open a new window for nontabbed or non protocol 
exposing browsers if new tab selected.  done.  if methods become available they 
can be added as extensions; if they are currently unknowable then you can't 
help that but shouldn't let it stop this fix.

on a larger note, thunderbird message pane should be an embedded firefox 
rendering engine, with tabbed browsing and the whole works.  an email message 
and a web page are becoming the same thing.

my 2 ¢.
QA Contact: front-end

Updated

10 years ago
Assignee: mscott → nobody
Duplicate of this bug: 340058
You need to log in before you can comment on or make changes to this bug.