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Developer(s) Qualcomm
Stable release 7.1 (Windows), 6.2.4 (Mac OS) / October 11, 2006
Preview release 8.0.0 Beta 9 / March 4, 2010
Operating system Windows, Mac OS, Mac OS X, Linux[1]
Type E-mail
License Adware, payware, Light;
Free software (Eudora 8.0+/Penelope)

Eudora is an e-mail client used on the Apple Macintosh and Microsoft Windows operating systems. It also supports several palmtop computing platforms, including Newton and the Palm OS. The software was named after American author Eudora Welty, because of her short story Why I Live at the P.O.[2][3] Eudora was developed in 1988 by Steve Dorner, who worked at the Computer Services Organization of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign[4]. Eudora was acquired by Qualcomm in 1991. In 2006 Qualcomm stopped development of the commercial version, and sponsored the creation of a new open-source version based on Mozilla Thunderbird, code-named Penelope.



Originally distributed freely, Eudora was commercialized and offered in a Light (freeware) and Pro (commercial) product. Between 2003 and 2006, the fully featured Pro version was also available as a "Sponsored mode" (adware) distribution.

Eudora (6.0.1) added support for Bayesian filtering of spam with a feature called SpamWatch. Eudora (6.2) added a scam watch feature that flags suspicious links within e-mails in an attempt to thwart phishing. Eudora (7.0) added Ultra-Fast Search, which finds any emails using single or multiple criteria in seconds.

Eudora has support for 'Stationery', a standard message or reply prepared ahead of time to a common question. Eudora stores e-mails in the mbox format, which uses plain text files instead of a database as Microsoft Outlook does. This allows the user to back up portions of their e-mail correspondence without backing up the entire database.

Eudora supports the POP3, IMAP and SMTP protocols. Eudora also has support for SSL and, in Windows, S/MIME authentication, allowing users to sign or encrypt email communications for greatest security.

Eudora is noteworthy for its extensive variety of settings to customize its behavior, many of which are not available in the user interface but are accessed using numbered "x-eudora-setting" URIs that must be pasted into a message and clicked.[5]

At one time, Eudora also offered a webmail version at This service was run by Lycos as part of Mailcity, later renamed Lycos Mail. As of 2006, Eudoramail addresses for users still work (and are redirected to Lycos Mail accounts), but new users cannot sign up for the service.



On October 11, 2006, Qualcomm announced[6] that future versions of Eudora would be based on the same technology platform as Mozilla Thunderbird and be open source. The codename for this project is "Penelope".[7] Penelope is developed by the Mozilla Foundation, and the project is being led by the former Qualcomm team, including original developer Steve Dorner.

Penelope is available as an extension to Mozilla Thunderbird. The Paid mode commercial version of Eudora is no longer available as of May 1st, 2007. The Light/Sponsored mode versions of Eudora continue to be available for download.

On July 19, 2007 the developers announced the first official Beta build (called Eudora 8.0.0b1), and published a roadmap of the planned progress.[8] The project is still in beta stage.[9]

The new Thunderbird-based open-source versions of Eudora does not retain the original mbox data structure, which stores all attachments as individual files, together in one folder. No software is currently developed/supported that can access old Eudora mail archives directly, without import/conversion.

A third party, Infinity Data Systems, is also developing a client designed specifically to mimic Eudora's functionality completely from scratch. Originally titled Odysseus, it is now called MailForge.


See also

External links


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