How to perform a silent install of Thunderbird

Installing Mozilla Thunderbird across your network is remarkably easy. The options for deployment are pretty much identical to its sibling, Firefox. Check out Shawn’s blog from earlier this year about performing a silent install of Firefox.

The easiest way to deploy Thunderbird is to pass the command line argument of


By doing this you will be installing Thunderbird with all the default options.

If you don’t want to change the default options (such as where you want the shortcuts residing) then you can create an answer file for the installation. The answer file is a standard .INI file and your command line argument would be


When using the /INI argument using the full path is critical, as relative paths do not work. 

Here is an example answer file that I called Thunderbird.ini. In this example I specify that no Thunderbird shortcut should be placed on the Desktop.

InstallDirectoryName=Mozilla Thunderbird

The example below is a screenshot from PDQ Deploy 1.5 beta 2.

7883 Thunderbird

The image below is only important if you are performing the installation via PDQ Deploy 1.2.9 or earlier AND you are using your INI file on a remote file server.

blog spc 2011 12 12 Creds

*** If you are using PDQ Deploy 1.2.9 or earlier AND you are going to have your INI file on a network share you will need to pass your credentials again when you actually deploy the software. This is due to the “Double Hop” security feature in Microsoft Windows. Unless you have Delegation enabled (not likely) you will need to pass your credentials again***

Of course if you are using  PDQ Inventory (it’s also free) you can easily determine which systems have Thunderbird already. 😉