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Address Book and Mailing Lists in Thunderbird

Creating a mailing list from your current Address Book can be as simple as dragging the addresses into a list. In this tip, we'll cover that simple process, as well as what to do if many of the e-mail addresses are not already in your Address Book.

Currently in Address Book Method:

  1. Click on the Address Book icon.
  2. Click on "New List".
  3. Fill in "List Name", "List Nickname" (an easily remembered abbreviation so you type less), and "Description" (optional).
  4. Click OK.
  5. In the left hand windowpane, click on the + beside "Personal Address Book" if that is where you saved the list.
  6. With Personal Address Book highlighted (or Collected Addresses if you have more addresses here), locate the addresses you want to add to your list. Click on the first one. Ctrl-Click (PC) or Apple-Click (Mac) on each additional address. When you have hightlighted all the addresses in this way,
  7. Click and drag them into the List icon in the left hand windowpane.
  8. Double click on the List icon to open it and verify that all the addresses have been added.

New Addresses Method:

If you get a new list of e-mail addresses that don't already exist in your Address Book, you can still create a list using the method above. However, you must first get the list into Thunderbird. You do that by opening and saving the list in Word, then importing the list to Thunderbird. It will be a little tricky at first, especially if you aren't used to using tables in Word, but after a couple of times, you will be able to fly through the steps. Here they are:

If you get a list in "comma-delimited" format (each address separated by a comma), such as class lists from TheHub, copy and paste the list into Word (Mac) or Excel (PC).

Mac OSX :

  1. Highlight the entire list, and go to Table --> Convert --> Convert Text to Table.
  2. Change the number of columns to 1. Word will automatically change the number of rows to the number of addresses you have, and possibly a few more if you have commas at the ends of lines.
  3. If you do get a table with empty rows, delete those. Place cursor in the first blank row and go to Table --> Delete --> Rows. Place your cursor in each of the next blank rows and this time, use the shortcut keys Apple-Y to repeat the delete row function. (This is a very handy trick for many situations.)
  4. Save the list of addresses as a text file. Go to: File --> Save As and in addition to naming the list and deciding which folder to save it in, change the "Format" to "Text Only" (Mac).

Windows PC:

The list may export with several lines of addresses, and several addresses per line, each separated by a comma. The steps below will help you get them all separated and each address on its own line in Column A. If the list is already all in one column, with only one address per cell, then skip to Step 6.

  1. In Excel, though it may look like the addresses appear in different columns, they are actually all in column A. Highlight the cells in column A that contain addresses.
  2. Select Data --> Text to Columns. Click "Next" to accept the default of "Delimited".
  3. In Step 2, uncheck "Tabs" and check "Comma". Click Next.
  4. In Step 3, highlight each column, and check "Text" in the "Column data format" section. Click Finish.
  5. Now the addresses really are in different columns. Click and drag to move the addresses from columns B, C, D and onward all into a single column A list.
  6. Save the file as a CSV (comma-separated values) file. Go to: File --> Save As and in addition to naming the list and deciding which folder to save it in, change the "Save as type" to CSV (comma-delimited).

Back in Thunderbird :

  1. Open your Addressbook.
  2. Select Tools --> Import from the menu and click Next on the first window to accept importing an Address Book.
  3. Select "Text file (LDIF, .tab, .csv, .txt) and Click Next.
  4. In the next window, locate the file (Mac) or change "Files of type" to Comma Separated to locate the file (PC) and Click "Open".
  5. Make sure the first e-mail address in the list is lined up with "Primary E-mail" in the first column. Check the box beside "Primary E-mail" and Click OK.
  6. Click Finish.
  7. Follow Steps 1-5 in the "Current Addresses Method" section above.
  8. In the left hand windowpane, you should also see a new "Address Book" icon with the same name as the file you imported. Click on that and you will see the list of addresses displayed in the right hand windowpane.
  9. Use the shortcut keys Ctrl-A (PC) or Apple-A (Mac) to select and highlight all the addresses that you imported.
  10. Click and drag the entire list of addresses into the list icon in the left hand windowpane.

With your completed list, you can now send messages to this group of people any time you want. If you ever need to add or remove individual addresses, simply double click to open the list, and delete addresses, or go to the end and add new addresses to the list.

If you need assistance in performing the above steps, please call the Help Desk at x5418.

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