Ubuntu, Thunderbird always maximised

I recently switched from Linux Mint back to the old trusty Ubuntu (11.10)

One major problem was Unity, but I got round this by installing Xfce and use that as a shell instead. Much better.

Now, my Thunderbird is proper maximised. Like full screen, so I can’t switch to any applications unless I use ALT TAB. Found help on the net.

1) Close Thunderbird

2) Locate your localstore.rdf file, mine was in:


3) Edit the file, and find the section that looks a little like this:

<RDF:Description RDF:about="chrome://messenger/content/messenger.xul#messengerWindow"
                   sizemode="fullscreen" />

And change it to:

<rdf:Description RDF:about="chrome://messenger/content/messenger.xul#messengerWindow"
                   screenY="5" />

Then, once restarted, Thunderbird should be all nice and accessible again. Thanks to Greg for this one!

7 comments on “Ubuntu, Thunderbird always maximised

  1. Julius December 8, 2013 9:40 am

    Thanks for the solution, but i had to change both
    <RDF:Description RDF:about="chrome://messenger/content/messenger.xul#messengerWindow" and
    <RDF:Description RDF:about="chrome://messenger/content/messengercompose/messengercompose.xul#msgcomposeWindow"
    for being able to launch thunderbird normally.

  2. basteln3rk November 21, 2014 10:28 am

    thanks, that worked for me on ubuntu 14.04!

    • admin November 21, 2014 10:59 am

      Great to hear. Thanks for letting me know

  3. slize12 December 22, 2014 3:42 pm

    Thanks, that worked for me very well (using Gentoo + Xfce 4 + Compiz).

  4. David King January 8, 2015 12:52 am

    Thanks for this, it worked for me, after I accidentally put it into fullscreen mode. What a pity Thunderbird has no easy option to restore it to normal.

    • admin January 13, 2015 9:07 pm

      No worries. Annoying isn’t it!

  5. Roger Munford April 27, 2015 4:03 pm

    Worked for me Ubuntu 14.04 I have had this problem for about a year and had a go at fixing it every month or so. I cant believe that it took so long to find this solution.
    Many Thanks

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