iPhoto-Thunderbird Bridge

Posted by cwright on 2007.08.22 @ 06:59

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iPhoto logoFor years, iPhoto users have been stuck using a limited number of email clients to send their photos easily. This was mostly remedied by the iPhoto Mailer Patcher, but it left out non-applescript aware applications because, after all, iPhoto uses applescript to interface with them. One of the more notable omissions is Thunderbird.

Finally, this void has also been filled, via the iPhoto Thunderbird Bridge. It’s still quite primitive, but all the basics are there for iPhoto-Thunderbird integration.

If you’re an iPhoto/Thunderbird user, give it a whirl.

Nice job Chris. Is having to shutdown Thunderbird first a limitation of IPhoto or your hack? It seems a little hard to use if you have to shutdown thunderbird every time you want to send a photo.

It’s actually a limitation of Thunderbird, which refuses to run multiple instances. I’ve figured out a workaround, but it requires creating a profile for thunderbird (it’s quite content running multiple instances if each has its own profile). This can (hopefully) be automated by the installer.

Great tool. Thanks for publishing it!

Regarding the thunderbird multiple instance issue there may be another way to ‘talk’ to thunderbird: it wouls be to behave like a mailto: link. Indeed if you click on a mailto: link within any application while thunderbird is the default mailer, then it correctly open a new compose windows even if thunderbird is already running (it works at least from firefox, safari an MS Word). Sadly, behind the hood, I have no idea of how the mailto: links work. All I could witness from my console log is that a process called ‘SyndicationAgent’ seem to participate in doing the magic…

Unfortunately, that’s using the mailto: method, which does not allow attachments.

for example, in a terminal you can do this:

open “mailto:foo@bar.com?subject=test&body=blah&attachments=requests.jpg”

and you’ll get a mail with To, subject, and body filled in, but not attachment. variations that change “attachments” to other forms (“attach”, “attachment”, etc) have no effect.

So, we can create new messages with existing instances, but it doesn’t allow attachments… can’t win.

Please can you help. I installed the bridge okay; but when I click compose having selected iphotos the thunderbird email does not come up? Thunderbird is selected as email server. Many thanks, Theo.