Closed Bug 65111 Opened 19 years ago Closed 11 years ago
delete whole thread (if collapsed when deleting)
When messages shown in threaded mode, in my opinion you should be allowed to delete a whole (collapsed) thread, rather than just the top level item.
We probably won't implement a "delete thread" per se, but we do have "Select Thread" in the works which would select all messages in the thread, hence easier deletion. Ref: bug 21094.
QA Contact: esther → sheelar
change status to new.
Status: UNCONFIRMED → NEW
Ever confirmed: true
Recommend Wontfix. As per email@example.com comments.
Whiteboard: recommending wontfix
I would like the delete/remove key to delete the entire thread when the thread is collapsed. Microsoft Outlook Express (sorry!) does this, and it is most useful. Could this at least be a user preference? Is it likely that a user would intend/desire only to delete the top-most (threadwise) message in the thread when pressing delete? I think one would expand the thread, and then delete that individual message if that was the desired outcome. On a related note, it appears (visually) that the entire thread is selected when clicking on a collapsed thread in the thread pane. If only the top-most message is being selected, perhaps the highlight color should be gray/shaded/lighter.
*** Bug 91276 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 93518 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
I agree with wontfix - I use and like the fact that I can read a thread while not taking up the screen space of expanding it. I can also read mail in threaded mode without thinking about some of the messages being the tops of threads and some being the only message. I can read with the focus on the message text, using cursor keys for scrolling the text and Delete for moving to the next message in the thread or in the next thread. Clicking on the Thread icon opens and selects the entire thread. Is it difficult to make that column not part of the normal visual highlighting of the selected message? Then it can be obviuos whether the message or the entire thread is selected.
Laurel: Using just the keyboard to select the whole thread (Ctrl+Shift+A) is a great help, and would do me except it's not intutitive I think. Note I think working the same way as outlook is "good" for obvious reasons. Scott: I see your point Scott, but it should be configurable IMHO as it's a great timesaver for very high volume lists. Also as you say if the "delete whole (collapsed) thread" is *NOT* selected, it would be really nice if the "thread icon column" would not be highlighted, so logic would be: if (view->mode==threaded && config->delete_whole_colapsed_thread) highlight_threadIcon_column = true; else highlight_threadIcon_column = false;
Oh I forgot to mention one other disadvantage of not being able to delete a collapsed thread. You can not select more than one thread at a time to delete. I.E. you must do Ctrl+Shift+A, Delete for each thread, rather than just selecting multiple (collapsed) threads and hitting delete once.
I agree with others about wontfix. There is no need for this enhancement, just click the little "thread" icon, and hit delete and the thread is deleted.
Another reason should delete whole thread is that it's much faster when doing X over dialup. It's MUCH slower to display all messages in thread (select thread), and then delete. At least allow Ctrl+Shift+A to select all of the selected colapsed threads, not just one thread.
comment 9 expresses my view. The same behavior is used in news with Mark->Read. If I want to catch-up to where I've read by selecting a large number of threads and marking them read, I currently have to expand all the threads before the mark to make sure I mark more than just the top message read. Can the behavior be changed just for the case where more than one thread/message is already selected? (I agree that if I'm reading the first message of a thread and hit delete the whole thread shouldn't disappear).
I want a delete thread function as well. I see the value of single-item delete, within a thread, but there should be a thread-delete, too. For example, why not bind shift+ctrl+del to whack an entire thread? I'd just as soon not see another config option. Also, it should be context sensitive. If multiple messages are selected, I'd expect delete to delete the entire collapsed thread. I can see the "delete each member" logic if you are winding your way through messages, but if there is a marked collapsed thread as part of a group, delete should take out the whole thread. Minimally, a delete thread keybinding is in order.
no no no no no. we don't need dataloss keybindings. a select thread key binding should exist (oh wow, it even does according to earlier comments), and you should be able to type it, and then press <delete>. as for not intuitive, i thought about it just reading the bug summary, as did many other people.
Shift-ctrl-a (break out thread) only works on a single thread. I still have no way to mark *n* collapsed threads and quickly delete them. Unless I unthread first. I stand by my request for a delete-thread key. I get a lot of e-mail, and need to delete a lot of e-mail. Outlook Express (which I am trying to get rid of) allows me this function. Maybe the bug needs to change to "allow ****-ctrl-a to expand multiple threads" but I always dislike having to do two keystrokes for what I expect to be able to do in one.
bug 88593 should work for you. please don't morph bugs. if you can come up with a way to handle keybindings for select multiple threads then file a new bug suggesting it (and feel free to mention its number here). the problem is that mailnews is pretty overloaded for keybindings so i doubt you'll find one that people would be willing to accept.
In my opinion: You should be able to move the entire thread to another folder as well, not just the top item.
Just found this bug after being similarly frustrated by the poster (actually, I came from bug 94765) ... regarding keybindings, I initially hit Shift+Delete, expecting it to work. If this could be bound, it would be a nice feature, if not a necessity, not only for IMAP, but reading news in general (though I must admit I don't read much news anymore). Clicking the thread icon works, though it is a bit hokey when you're trying to delete lots of small threads. Also, when you are not using the mouse ... Delete and Shift+Delete are nice binding, imho.
*** Bug 162269 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
I just ran into this. I have 10000 messages in a folder (mailing list) and I wanted to go through them quicker, and I realized I could thread them and just skim through them by topic. I went through many and then selected all the threads, hit delete and continued reading. The threads I was now looking at looked awfully familiar and some were already read... Now that's unintuitive! There is currently *no* way to delete threads. I would be happy with even a reasonable workaround. You can't even select multiple threads, then do select thread, because that will only select one thread. (More unintuitive...)
but there is a way to delete a whole thread. clicking the thread icon (left of the message) will select the whole thread, then you can hit enter.
I need to delete quickly and with extreme prejudice. I get a LOT of mail. Selecting multiple threads is not possible, and I want a single keybinding to whack a thread of set of threads. Sadly, I have to use outlook express to get delete thread functionality (they don;t have the option to delete single messages in an unexpanded thread. People that insist on linear delete should expand threads and delete by message. I think delete on a collapsed thread should mean to delete the thread. Or at least give me an option to do so. <*thwack*> Take that, dead horse!
I have over 500 threads, I don't want to delete them one at a time!
What is the status on these enhancement bugs? Who needs to buy into a feature? This is an obstacle to my adoption of Mozilla. I know, "boo hoo, who cares?" But I'd really like to dump OE and can't understand the opposition to this enchancement. Or does an enhancement get made only if you submit the code yourself? (as if I can code)
*** Bug 176867 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
This is an interesting conundrum. 21094 is a great start, and I didn't even know about that. 88593 will make it even better when it gets fixed. But you still need a mouse. I guess that is just part and parcel of using a gui mail client. :) I _personally_ would expect that when I'm in collapsed view, pressing delete as is would delete the whole thread. Others disagree, and it's not something that should really be forced one way or the other, yet is such a stupidly small thing that it probably doesn't warrant a config for it. *ponders* I would probably be happy with things when 88593 gets fixed. *ramble ramble further monologue*
I also think this feature is useful especially in very high volumn mail lists.
I'm another of the 'delete should delete entire collapsed thread' people.
One way around this is to expand your threads with *. Then Ctrl-A, delete will delete everything, or you can use your mouse to select particular threads to delete. Its just not as nice as being able to select a set of collapsed threads to delete. ;(
When multiple threads are selected, delete should delete the whole threads. Can anyone explain why it would be intuitive to only delete one message from each thread in that situation?
I would like to support the "delete whole thread" camp. Outlook express, outlook, mutt all do this (albeit with mutt you use a different key). It is highly frustrating to be scanning through a high volume list like, say, the gcc list, marking a whole set of topics you dont care about, hit delete, only to discover that your gcc folder still has 70 new messages in it when visually you are lead to believe that they should all have been deleted. Why are people so adverse to config options? Or alternate key bindings? Surely the more choice you give a user the better the program? A little checkbox in the prefs dialog cannot be either that hard to code, maintain or represent visually. If the conflicting opinions in this bug are anything to judge by, its proof of why it should be a user option and not a developed mandate.
What is the status of this bug? Seems to be WONTFIX, but who gets to decide? People say this is not needed and there have been several suggestions: Suggestion: Click the thread icon and press delete. Objection: Requires a mouse event. I read mail from the keyboard. I want a single keystroke. Suggestion: Expand a thread with shift-ctrl-a, and use delete Objection: Requires multiple keystrokes Objection: Cannot delete multiple threads without multiple expansions Objection: Using X on a slow link, the expand event can take a long time. Suggestion: Go away, our browser is to pure and elite for you. Objection: I am doing that now, but I really want to use Mozilla Mail and News. All I want is a keystroke to delete a thread, like Outlook Express. At least 8 people agree and have voted for it. Why is this such a problem to get implemented? I want the OPTION for a dataloss keybinding. I should be at least given the rope, even if it isn't the default. Even if I do delete a message, it goes to trash or stays around until I purge IMAP. So I disagree with the "data loss" key binding. Is this so hard to implement? Does it really run that far afoul of Mozilla design philosophy? Please save me from Outlook!!! Do I need to build a Mozilla private branch to get this feature?
I'm in full and complete agreement here. We are getting roughly 5 tech support tickets a week from users who complain that deleting threads doesn't work. CTRL-SHIFT-A is way too arcane. If someone wants to delete one message at a time, they would uncollapse the thread anyway! There is lots of existing precedence here, INCLUDING Communicator 4! We need to be compliant with expectation...
I would appreciate such a function very mutch. perhaps you know mutt where this is a keyfunktion for me to still use mutt instead of mozilla mail.
Just for fun, I tried to read one of my busier mailing lists using Mozilla instead of Mutt last night. After more than 100 ctrl-shift-A, del sequences I was ready to drop Mozilla mail entirely. It's simply not usable for mass mail reading in this state. I detest Outlook Express for functionality and usability reasons - not just on principle - but even it allows me to select a dozen threads and delete them in a few simple steps. This simply must be fixed.
I agree. It's rather hard purging undesired threads from high volume lists like debian-user and openbsd-misc without such a keybinding. The ability to select a thread by right clicking the thread icon and selecting delete means Mozilla Mail, and more importantly Thunderbird, *has* this feature. All people want is a keybinding that selects all messages in the current thread and mark them for deletion, without all the pointy clicky. Personally, I think Ctrl-d (the same keybinding Mutt has for this) would be nice, if it's still unassigned.
I hate to disagree with someone who is agreeing with me, but actually a key binding to delete a thread would not solve it for me. If I want to delete a single thread, the current key binding plus delete is enough for me. The problem is when I want to delete dozens or hundreds of threads. I don't care about keys versus mouse, or what the key presses are. I care about the ability to select a dozen threads and toast them all.
But this bug isn't specifically about multiple thread selection. It's about a command to delete the currently selected thread only, just like what other mail clients have. What you want is something like Mutt's pattern match delete. With it, you can use regexps (eg particular subject keywoards) to flag mail for deletion.
Regexs to delete threads is not a sufficient answer. I could spent 5 minutes trying to find a regex that matches the threads right in front of me. That's dumb. This is a visual medium. I see a dozen threads on the screen. I click and shift-click and delete and they are gone. Or shift arrow, arrow, etc. delete. On every mailer except for Mozilla. I talk to many, many people who work on Mozilla and none of them use the mail client. Why is that? Mozilla's insistence on not supporting this means that no technical person who reads high-volume mailing lists can use it as their primary mailer.
Which would take longer? 5 min devising a regexp or using Mozilla Mail to delete your undesired threads? What about having an option to "tag" an entire thread, not just mark it as read, etc? Then, after you've marked allt he undesired threads, 1 delete command purges them all.
Using Mozilla Mail would take longer right now ;-( Anyway, yes tag multiple threads and delete them would be great. Ideal, as far as I know. And I believe it solves every problem listed here.
I think comment 30 says it perfectly, if multiple threads are selected then delete should definitely delete the entire threads, not just the top level message in each. However, comment 38 is also correct, this bug was originally about a single thread (which is an arguable case). Do we need to create a new bug specifically for multiple-select deletions in thread mode?
Really, it is simple. I want a delete keybinding that says "delete this whole thread" and also if multiple threads are selected, it should mean "delete all messages in all these threads." Similarly, I would like to be able to drag and drop collapsed thread(s) to storage mailboxes, which also is not possible (only top message is moved). Perhaps what this bug really needs is a mode which say "treat actions (delete, copy, move, forward) on the top message(s) of a collapsed thread(s) as appying to the entire thread(s)" This is how Outlook Express behaves by default, and I am very fond of it for managing my high-volume mailing list mailboxes and my spam folder.
I also think there should be at least e key binding to delete whole threads, even if I'm not on the topmost message. Just hit (say) shift-delete and the whole thread is gone. If more than one thread is selected, then all are gone. Otherwise, using mozilla/thunderbird for high-volume mailing lists is nonsense and unpractical. Try to read linux-kernel, or even postfix-users, or other list with 300+ messages a day and you will see what we (those in favor of thread-deleting keys) mean.
I agree with comment #43. IMO this is the most convenient way to delete multiple AND single threads (no need to file another bug). Selecting multiple threads are not the issue here (bug #21094 and bug #88593) are about that.
This is how it feels in a folder with a lot of threads. + thread one thread two + thread three + thread four Highlight all 4 threads, press delete. Now you see + thread one thread three + thread four Highlight all 3 threads, press delete. Now you see + thread one thread four Highlight 2 remaining threads, press delete. Now you see + thread one Still not all gone. Now multiply that process 50 times for a large folder with a lot of threads. It just ain't right. "Dataloss keybinding"? Well, we're talking about the delete key, which is intended to lose data, however you cut it. At the moment it just deletes a weird-ass subset of what you were actually trying to delete. Are there any other mail clients that don't treat a selected, collapsed thread as a whole?
you can now cntrl click multiple thread icons to extend the thread selection, so you can do it all with multiple clicks and one delete key.
You still can't de-select a thread with cntrl-click, if you had selected several threads.
firstname.lastname@example.org: true, is there a bug for that? please find/file it and reference it here, thanks.
If someone wanted to implement this, where should s/he look in the code? This has really started bugging me since moving away from newsgroups and into multiple high traffic email lists that I want to read threaded. Seems newsgroup usage is declining in general, so I see more and more need for this feature.
There is now an extension for Thunderbird that supports Delete Thread called "BUTTONS!" (http://forums.mozillazine.org/viewtopic.php?t=53664) which has added Delete Thread. If you use it together with a keyboard shortcuts extension, you can get delete thread capability from the keyboard. It is a clunky solution, but a reasonable workaround. I'm pretty sure this bug is deader than dead.
FYI, the combination of those two extensions DO NOT work together. Tried that. I am really honestly confused as to why non-intuitive and "will never be useful" behavior is being chosen over intuitive behavior that would (if it worked) require multiple workarounds to achieve. Nearly *EVERYONE* wants Delete Thread. In all the conversations I've seen about this topic, not a single individual has ever *EVER* stood up and said that they prefer the current behavior. Even the singular developer that said it made sense to him, admitted that it made less sense and was downright counter-intuitive when someone selects a dozen threads and gets the top message deleted from all of them. I real all my list e-mail from Mail.app. The fact that a mailer as clunky as Mail.app is significantly more useful than Thunderbird should give you pause.
even if the extension worked... * This is a seamonkey suite bug, so Thunderbird extension is not a solution. * WONTFIX recommendation (which I don't buy) is based on developer comment 1 - comment 1 is merely a work around - removed "WONTFIX" from whiteboard * bug has 21 votes This bug should remain open
Ctrl+Shift+A selects only current thread. How could I select ALL messages in a folder & delete them? (as ctrl+a does in non-threaded view). Thanks PS Threaded view on mailing lists is unusable due to lack of easy deletion.
I did moved recently from Outlook Express to Thunderbird and I'm also missing the function to easily delete all messages in a thread like in Outlook Express... I usually handle many mail messages and just use cursor keys to move over messages and del key to delete then, it's the fastest way to handle them and it's not easy to select threads manually before deleting them :( In my opinion I think the best behavior is the one like in Outlook Express: when thread is expanded then deleting 1st message deletes just this message, but when thread is collapsed deleting it would delete all the thread and not just the 1st message. Despite I think this is the best behavior, I respect the other users with different opinion and I think this could be optional in the about:config.
Just to add: also it's interesting that using the "mark as junk" function affects all the messages in a thread (outlook-like behavior), just the delete function doesn't.
Gmail does it too.
QA Contact: stephend
Summary: delete whole thread → delete whole thread (if collapsed when deleting)
Whiteboard: recommending wontfix
Moving to Core since it should affect very little non-shared code (if any).
Assignee: mail → nobody
Component: MailNews: Main Mail Window → MailNews: Backend
Product: Mozilla Application Suite → Core
QA Contact: backend
Version: Trunk → unspecified
Adding my vote to this. How many more are needed to have this 7 year old bug fixed? Yes, I call it a bug. The current behaviour is completely counterintuitive.
Carrying wanted-thunderbird3+ from discussion in 214111. Keeping out of blocking list for now, as per that bug.
Flags: blocking-thunderbird3? → wanted-thunderbird3+
I like comments in #43, and adding my vote to "fix" the "design flaw" (not a bug, and not an enhancement :-) ). I disagree with some comments (in this thread and others) that say selection is for "what you see" and you don't see sub-messages. I think most people understand that a thread is more like a file-folder (or directory/folder in file-system speak). Or perhaps, for those who think that way, it should be an option for them. So a bit of general UI thread thoughts: 1) Configure thread behavior in preferences. Default to treat all messages in collapsed thread in same manner for all functions (delete, move, mark as read, etc.) as this is most intuitive and common behavior. Though to keep consistency with existing functionality/UI, making me change the setting is okay. :-) 2) Keybindings should reflect configured behavior. E.g. if "Treat Collapsed Thread as One" is checked, DEL deletes all. If unchecked, DEL deletes just displayed message (end of thread message). If checked, then CTRL (or command)-SHIFT-A would not have any purpose. If unchecked, it should selected all messages in each thread (is this another bug?) 3) Based on flag, opening collapse thread when it is selected, keeps all included messages selected. When unselected, leaves all unselected. 4) On opened thread(s), CTRL-SHIFT-A selects all messages in thread regardless of "Treat Collapsed Thread as One". 5) Opened thread should have the same sort as the message sort outside thread 6) Changing sort should not turn off threaded view (or another flag for this?) The last few are basically different, but so is the general solution to this and other "bugs". And since it all made more sense together I put them in. BTW, how do you use bug tracker to deal with smaller changes related to one big change? Oh, is there a way to take a poll for certain behaviors for all Thunderbird fans? Or to see what has been decided for inclusion to Thunderbird 3?
Keeping wanted‑thunderbird3+, low priority. Any takers?
Priority: -- → P5
Target Milestone: --- → Thunderbird 3.0rc1
When I hit delete on the first message of a collapsed thread, I want it to show me the next message in the thread; I usually delete messages as I read them unless I feel the need to keep them around for later reference. Unfortunately, since I have it set to mark as deleted rather than move to Trash, currently Thunderbird skips ahead to the next thread instead, so I have to back up and hit 'n' to see the next message in the thread I was reading (bug 367689). I'd also like to be able to use something like shift-ctrl-delete to delete the whole thread at once, but I don't want that to happen when I just hit delete.
This is crazy. I've been using threaded news readers and mail readers for years. Having just now started to use thunderbird I am very surprised by the threading model adopted. It seems to have implemented thread select functionality without surveying the best practices already adopted and refined by other products. This bugs is about deleting threads, but that's a red herring. The actual bug is that selected a closed thread ought to select the entire thread. If you are operating on a closed thread you would expect the "top" entry to represent the entire contents. Then having selected the entire thread the user is able to move or delete or do whatever they want with it. Who owns the threading code?
Status: NEW → RESOLVED
Closed: 11 years ago
Resolution: --- → DUPLICATE
Duplicate of bug: 448288
Resolved exactly 8 years later :) Thanks for looking at it.
The problem is that it is **NOT** resolved. It just got assigned to a newer, active bug. The fact that it is linked to a new bug hides the problem of just how long we have been asking for it. 8 years! Crimeney. And I am still on Outlook Express in the meanwhile. I would LOVE to drop Outlook Express. The replacement client from Microsoft is awful. If we could fix this, Thunderbird would fit the bill.
I don't agree that this is a duplicate of bug 448288. Bug 448288 is Thunderbird specific, while this bug applies equally to Seamonkey.
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