7 Best Email Clients for Linux Systems

Email, an enduring method of communication, remains a fundamental way to share information; however, the preference has shifted from web applications to email clients over the years

An email client is software that allows users to manage their inbox, send, receive, and organize messages directly from a desktop or mobile phone.

Email clients offer numerous advantages; they have evolved from mere tools for sending and receiving messages to potent components of information management systems.

In this particular case, we shall focus on desktop email clients that allow you to manage your email messages from your Linux desktop without the hustle of having to sign in and out as is the case with web email service providers.

There are several native email clients for Linux desktops but we shall look at some of the best that you can use.

1. Thunderbird Email Client

Thunderbird is an open-source email client developed by Mozilla, it is also cross-platform and has some great attributes offering users speed, privacy, and the latest technologies for accessing email services.

Thunderbird Email Client for Linux
Thunderbird Email Client for Linux

Thunderbird has been around for a long time though it is becoming less popular, but still remains one of the best email clients on Linux desktops.

It boasts a plethora of features, including:

  • Enables users to have personalized email addresses.
  • A one-click address book.
  • An attachment reminder.
  • Multiple-channel chat.
  • Tabs and search.
  • Enables searching the web.
  • A quick filter toolbar.
  • Message archive.
  • Activity manager.
  • Large files management.
  • Security features such as phishing protection, and no tracking.
  • Automated updates plus many more.

To install Thunderbird on Linux, run:

$ sudo apt install thunderbird         [On Debian, Ubuntu and Mint]
$ sudo yum install thunderbird         [On RHEL/CentOS/Fedora and Rocky/AlmaLinux]
$ sudo emerge -a sys-apps/thunderbird  [On Gentoo Linux]
$ sudo apk add thunderbird             [On Alpine Linux]
$ sudo pacman -S thunderbird           [On Arch Linux]
$ sudo zypper install thunderbird      [On OpenSUSE]    

2. Evolution Email Client

Evolution is not just an email client but an information management software that offers an integrated email client including calendar and address book functionality.

Evolution Email Client for Linux
Evolution Email Client for Linux

It offers some of the basic email management functionalities plus advanced features including the following:

  • Account management.
  • Changing mail window layout.
  • Deleting and undeleting messages.
  • Sorting and organizing mail.
  • Shortcut key functionalities for reading mails.
  • Mail encryption and certificates.
  • Sending invitations by mail.
  • Autocompletion of email addresses.
  • Message forwarding.
  • Spell checking.
  • Working with email signatures.
  • Working offline plus many others.

To install Evolution on Linux, run:

$ sudo apt install evolution         [On Debian, Ubuntu and Mint]
$ sudo yum install evolution         [On RHEL/CentOS/Fedora and Rocky/AlmaLinux]
$ sudo emerge -a sys-apps/evolution  [On Gentoo Linux]
$ sudo apk add evolution             [On Alpine Linux]
$ sudo pacman -S evolution           [On Arch Linux]
$ sudo zypper install evolution      [On OpenSUSE]    

3. KMail Email Client

KMail is a cutting-edge email client that seamlessly integrates with popular providers like Gmail, offers tools to enhance productivity, efficiently handles large email accounts, and supports a wide range of email protocols, including POP3, IMAP, and Microsoft Exchange (EWS).

Kmail Email Client for Linux
Kmail Email Client for Linux

KMail boasts many of the same features as the other email clients we’ve discussed, including:

  • Supports standard mail protocols such as SMTP, IMAP, and POP3.
  • Supports plain text and secure logins.
  • Reading and writing HTML mail.
  • Integration of international character set.
  • Integration with spam checkers such as Bogofilter, SpamAssassin plus many more.
  • Support for receiving and accepting invitations.
  • Powerful search and filter capabilities.
  • Spell checking.
  • Encrypted passwords are saved in KWallet.
  • Backup support.
  • Fully integrated with other Kontact components plus many more.

To install KMail on Linux, run:

$ sudo apt install kmail         [On Debian, Ubuntu and Mint]
$ sudo yum install kmail         [On RHEL/CentOS/Fedora and Rocky/AlmaLinux]
$ sudo emerge -a sys-apps/kmail  [On Gentoo Linux]
$ sudo apk add kmail             [On Alpine Linux]
$ sudo pacman -S kmail           [On Arch Linux]
$ sudo zypper install kmail      [On OpenSUSE] 

4. Geary Email Client

Geary is a simple and easy-to-use email client built with a modern interface for the GNOME desktop. If you are looking for a simple and efficient email client that offers the basic functionalities, then Geary can be a good choice for you.

Geary Email Client for Linux
Geary Email Client for Linux

It has the following features:

  • Supports common email service providers such as Gmail, and Yahoo! Mail, plus many popular IMAP servers.
  • Simple, modern, and straight forward interface.
  • Quick account setup.
  • Mail organized by conversations.
  • Fast keyword searching.
  • Full-featured HTML mail composer.
  • Desktop notifications support.

To install Geary on Linux, run:

$ sudo apt install geary         [On Debian, Ubuntu and Mint]
$ sudo yum install geary         [On RHEL/CentOS/Fedora and Rocky/AlmaLinux]
$ sudo emerge -a sys-apps/geary  [On Gentoo Linux]
$ sudo apk add geary             [On Alpine Linux]
$ sudo pacman -S geary           [On Arch Linux]
$ sudo zypper install geary      [On OpenSUSE] 

5. Sylpheed Email Client

Sylpheed is a simple, lightweight, easy-to-use, cross-platform email client that is featureful, it can run on Linux, Windows, Mac OS X, and other Unix-like operating systems.

Sylpheed Email Client for Linux
Sylpheed Email Client for Linux

It offers an intuitive user interface with a focus on keyboard-oriented usage, catering to both new and power users with the following features:

  • Simple, beautiful, and easy-to-use interface.
  • Lightweight operations.
  • Pluggable.
  • Well-organized, easy-to-understand configuration.
  • Junk mail control.
  • Support for various protocols.
  • Powerful searching and filtering functionalities.
  • Flexible cooperation with external commands.
  • Security features such as GnuPG, SSL/TLSv.
  • High-level Japanese processing and many more.

To install Sylpheed on Linux, run:

$ sudo apt install sylpheed         [On Debian, Ubuntu and Mint]
$ sudo yum install sylpheed         [On RHEL/CentOS/Fedora and Rocky/AlmaLinux]
$ sudo emerge -a sys-apps/sylpheed  [On Gentoo Linux]
$ sudo apk add sylpheed             [On Alpine Linux]
$ sudo pacman -S sylpheed           [On Arch Linux]
$ sudo zypper install sylpheed      [On OpenSUSE] 

6. Claws Mail Email Client

Claws mail is a user-friendly, lightweight, and fast email client based on GTK+, it also includes news reader functionality.

It has a graceful and sophisticated user interface, also supports keyboard-oriented operation similar to other email clients, and works well for new and power users alike.

Claws Mail Email Client for Linux
Claws Mail Email Client for Linux

It boasts a plethora of features, such as:

  • Highly pluggable.
  • Supports multiple email accounts.
  • Support for message filtering.
  • Color labels.
  • Highly extensible.
  • An external editor.
  • Line-wrapping.
  • Clickable URLs.
  • User-defined headers.
  • Mime attachments.
  • Managing messages in MH format offering fast access and data security.
  • Import and export emails from and to other email clients plus many others.

To install Claws on Linux, run:

$ sudo apt install claws         [On Debian, Ubuntu and Mint]
$ sudo yum install claws         [On RHEL/CentOS/Fedora and Rocky/AlmaLinux]
$ sudo emerge -a sys-apps/claws  [On Gentoo Linux]
$ sudo apk add claws             [On Alpine Linux]
$ sudo pacman -S claws           [On Arch Linux]
$ sudo zypper install claws      [On OpenSUSE] 

7. Mailspring

Mailspring is an open-source cross-platform desktop email client that is known for its clean, modern interface and its powerful features that supports all major email providers, including Gmail, iCloud, Office 365, Outlook.com, Yahoo!, and IMAP/SMTP.

Mailspring also offers a number of features that make it a great choice for power users, such as:

  • Unified inbox: View all of your email messages from all of your accounts in a single inbox.
  • Snooze: Snooze emails until a later date or time.
  • Send later: Schedule emails to be sent at a later date or time.
  • Mail rules: Create rules to automatically sort and organize your email messages.
  • Templates: Create templates for frequently sent emails.
  • Offline search: Search your email messages even when you are not connected to the internet.

In addition to these features, Mailspring also offers a number of integrations with other popular productivity tools, such as Todoist, Slack, and Trello.

Mailspring Email App
Mailspring Email App

To install Mailspring in Linux, run:

$ sudo snap install mailspring

Whether you seek basic or advanced functionalities, the aforementioned email clients will serve you well; if you use others not mentioned here, please share them in the comment section below.

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Aaron Kili
Aaron Kili is a Linux and F.O.S.S enthusiast, an upcoming Linux SysAdmin, web developer, and currently a content creator for TecMint who loves working with computers and strongly believes in sharing knowledge.

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Leave a Reply
    • @David,

      Betterbird is a fork of Thunderbird, which means that it is based on the same codebase but is developed independently. Betterbird aims to be a more polished and refined version of Thunderbird, with a focus on fixing bugs and adding new features.

    • @Evert,

      Thank you for your feedback! We’ve added Mailspring to the list, recognizing its impressive features and capabilities. We always strive to provide the most accurate and up-to-date information for our readers.

      Your input is invaluable!

  1. Thunderbird is good, but I truly hate the buggy mail composition editor, which shows a prettified version of the text you are editing, not the text itself. Someone made an external editor interface add-on for Thunderbird, but it is abandoned and does not work with later TB versions.

    The issue is enough to send me looking at console mode, curses-driven mail clients like Mutt, about which I’ve heard good things, and Alpine, as I used Pine on my old shell accounts. With these mail clients you know what you are sending and receiving because they show the raw text by default, but do have options to process html, MIME attachments, and etc.

    I started out using text mode mail and Usenet clients on my shell accounts. In my not so humble opinion, I still prefer text mode for these, as the software does not make assumptions about what the user is sending or receiving. A simple, clean user interface with simple but complete functionality seems best to me for news and email.

  2. Seamonkey’s mail client compares to Thunderbird. I know it isn’t JUST an e-mail client, but it’s INCLUDED in the Seamonkey Internet Suite, built from the old and venerable Netscape Suite, revived by Mozilla, and now independent.

  3. Really the only client listed here that comes close to resembling a modern email client is Geary – but it is seriously lacking in features and development of it is slower than snails pace.

    I had high hopes for Trojita on KDE (as a replacement for the horrid KMail) but development of that is in the same boat as Geary.

    • @Mark F

      A lot still needs to be done to improve or possibly develop new, feature-rich desktop email clients on Linux distributions. I believe developers out there are coming up with some wonderful ideas to deal with user concerns such as yours. Above all, thanks for the wonderful feedback.

  4. really there are not much option for email clients in Linux and the options that are available are not very good. While people are making new distro daily, someone must come forward and create a good app for email client for Linux.

    • @Ejaz

      That is true, there are few email clients for the Linux platform. This has been a limitation for several users, nevertheless, the few available still work for now. Probably, new ones will be developed in the future to offer modern features and functions. Thanks for getting back to us.

    • @Leonardl

      This could probably be because the software listed here are still the most used as email clients out there, but you can also make some suggestions as per your own finding, that will be most welcome.

  5. Last time I tried Evolution, I found it very buggy. Besides, it is a one man show, never a good solution to depend your email solution on a single person for maintenance.

    All the remaining four products pale in comparison to Thunderbird, the only valid option in all the six mentioned email clients, unless you are a very basic user.

    Let’s see what happens to Thunderbird in the future, as Mozilla organization publicly expressed their interest in alienate Thunderbird and concentrate their efforts and time on Firefox.

    • Thunderbird has always proved to work exceptionally well, but as you said Mozilla has said its development is no longer a priority.


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