Updated: May 5, 2014

Gmail Buttons

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Gmail Buttons is an extension for the Mozilla Thunderbird email client.


Gmail offers an IMAP interface for their email service, which is great if you want to use Thunderbird to access your Gmail account. However, there are some quirks to getting Gmail and Thunderbird to work well together. Most are listed here. Google also has a list of how to properly interact with Gmail via IMAP here. Thunderbird can handle most of these actions with a single button click, but there are a few actions that require more clicks (or click-and-drag). This extension aims to fill in the gap.

Where to get it

The easiest way to install is through the Add-ons Manager in Thunderbird. See installation instructions below.

Important note on versions:
There are bug fixes in Thunderbird 16 and 17 that affect this extension, so you need to be sure to choose the proper version based on which version of Thunderbird you are using.

What it does

  • Replaces the Junk button with a Spam button that moves a message to the [Gmail]/Spam folder.
  • Adds a Trash button that moves a message to the [Gmail]/Trash folder.
  • Optionally hides the Delete button in Gmail folders.
  • Optionally hides the Junk Status column in the message list for Gmail folders.
  • Starting with Gmail Buttons v0.5.0/Thunderbird 16 you can view and delete Gmail labels associated with each message.

How to use it


  • Option 1:
    • In Thunderbird, select Tools > Add-ons
    • Search for “Gmail buttons”
    • You may have to click “See all 20 results” at the bottom of the list
    • Find “Gmail Buttons” in the list and click “+ Add to Thunderbird”.
  • Option 2:
    • Download the .xpi file from one of the links above.
    • In Thunderbird, select Tools > Add-ons
    • Click the Tools icon (gear next to search box) and select “Install Add-on from file…”
    • Browse to the file and click “Open”
  • Finally


  • NOTE: If the Spam and Trash buttons do not show, you may need to right-click the existing message-specific buttons and select “Customize…” and manually add the buttons to the toolbar.
  • When you open open a message in a Gmail IMAP folder, you will see Trash and Spam buttons in the message-specific button area along with the usual Reply, Archive, etc.
  • Clicking the Spam button will move the selected message to the [Gmail]/Spam folder of that account.
  • Clicking the Trash button will move the selected message to the [Gmail]/Trash folder of that account.
  • Clicking the built-in Delete button will only delete the selected message from the current folder. It does not move it to the Trash folder. This is assuming that you followed the recommended account setup.


Options are accessed by opening the Add-ons Manager (Tools > Add-ons) and clicking the Options button for Gmail Buttons.

  • Show Delete button for Gmail messages will show the regular Delete button in addition to the Gmail Trash button in Gmail folders. (Default: disabled)
  • Hide “Junk Status” column in message list for Gmail folders will hide the “Junk Status” column whenever a Gmail folder is opened in the message list view. (Default: disabled)
  • Show GMail message id and thread id in the message header will show the values for X-GM-MSGID and X-GM-THRID. This option is probably only of interest to developers. (Since: v0.5.1, Default: disabled)
  • Show Gmail labels for message in the message header provides a user interface for viewing and deleting Gmail labels from messages. (Since: v0.5.1, Default: enabled)