Eudora Rises From The Dead

Dennis Faas's picture

Eudora is back from the dead.

Take that news to any English class and they'll likely think you're referring to famed author Eudora Welty. However, in tech circles Eudora is a well-known email program owned by Qualcomm Inc. (Not surprisingly, it was actually named after the author)

In the mid-'90s, Eudora was one of the most popular and widely used programs on the Internet. However, it soon got overshadowed by the email software Microsoft bundled with Windows. Web-mail sites -- such as Hotmail and Yahoo Mail -- also took a chunk out of Eudora's market. After many rocky years in the marketplace, Qualcomm put its software to rest this past May.

But now it's back -- and open-source! What that means is that anyone with the technical know-how can go into the guts of the program and make changes -- and improvements -- to it.

Mozilla -- the company behind the Firefox web browser and Thunderbird email client -- is taking over the mantle for Qualcomm. Mozilla will keep both Thunderbird and Eudora on its roster of products. (Source:

It is fitting that Eudora is named after author Eudora Welty, because like some other writers, the program is now getting a pseudonym of its own: Penelope.

From the official Mozilla website for Penelope:

"Qualcomm's intention with the Penelope project is to join the Eudora® user experience with the Mozilla platform. We intend to produce a version of Eudora that is open source and based on Mozilla and Thunderbird. It's not our intention to compete with Thunderbird; rather, we want to complement it.

Qualcomm is committed to both preserving the Eudora user experience and to maintaining maximum compatibility, for both developers and users, with Thunderbird. It is our goal to build a single development community around Thunderbird and Eudora, so that both mailers advance faster than they previously have." (Source:

For more information on Penelope, click here:

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