ProtonMail + Thunderbird = impossible?! Well, until now! ProtonMail Bridge integrates ProtonMail email accounts in normal desktop email clients such as Thunderbird, MS Outlook or Apple Mail.
First the bad news first, you only can add ONE account, for more accounts you have to unlock a paid plan. You will see something like “Please upgrade to a paid plan to use this client” whenever you try to add more accounts.
Dear ProtonMail Supporter, We are happy to announce that the ProtonMail Bridge, which adds IMAP and SMTP support to ProtonMail, is now available to all paid ProtonMail members for testing. The ProtonMail Bridge is among the most requested features by the community and allows you to send and receive encrypted emails from within your mail client of choice. The Bridge supports Apple Mail, Thunderbird, Outlook 2011, and Outlook 2015 on macOS, and Thunderbird, Outlook 2010, Outlook 2013, and Outlook 2016 on Windows. The macOS installer is located at: https://protonmail.com/download/Bridge-Installer.dmg The Windows installer is located at: https://protonmail.com/download/Bridge-Installer.exe Linux support is not available at this time, but is planned for later this year. Detailed installation and client setup instructions can be found at https://protonmail.com/bridge.
Does the mail recipient need a key to decrypt the message with bridge?
No, it works same like you would use ProtonMail in your browser.
Well, it’s easy peasy, you download their Bridge and follow the setup wizard which is a straightforward process – there no options given except changing the installation location.
First time you start the Bridge client, you get asked if you want to add your account. After you give him all your details such as password, and Mailbox password your account is listed in the overview windows of this little program. ProtonMail Bridge displays the IMAP and SMTP settings afterwards – it’s also under MailBox configuration. These are important and will be used in your Mail client like e.g. Thunderbird.
ProtonMail’s support site has guides for Thunderbird, Outlook and Apple Mail which you may use to set things up. There all with pictures and easy understandable.