Polarbar Change Logs

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These change log pages provide an overview of bug fixes and new features for each version of Polarbar we've released. The information on these pages also appears in the welcome letter that is automatically loaded into Polarbar when you upgrade to a new release.

View changes for version 1.25, 1.22 through 1.24c, 1.20 through 1.21b, 1.17 through 1.19a, or 1.15 through 1.16c. The following is new or has been fixed in 1.25


  • Switching between accounts could result in a deadlock situation, where restarting Polarbar was the only recourse. This has been corrected.

Address Books:

  • Address book names are once again sorted in the address book list.
  • Fixed bug where import looped infinitely on the first record.
  • Fixed problem where some import and LDAP dialogs weren't usable by making them non-modal.

Attachment Processor:

  • Removed hard-coded text colors, so that the Main Font text colors will be used.
  • Added a bevel panel around the file name and size.
  • Added a separate button panel and moved it to the south side of the dialog, which is where dialog buttons belong.
  • Always allow the dialog to be resized, even when it is not displaying an image.
  • Fixed bug that prevented "remaining attachments" from being stored.
  • Instead of removing problematic characters from attachment file names, replace each with a single underscore. This includes single and double quote marks, semicolon, percent, asterisk, less than, greater than, question mark, reverse quote, and vertical pipe (i.e., '";%*<>?`|). For short file name installations only, spaces, commas, dots (except for the first one in a file extension), and underscores are removed (after the previously mentioned problematic character substitution).

Character Sets:

  • Renamed MSnnn, SJIS, TIS620, UTF8, and UTF16 to MS-nnn, Shift-JIS, TIS-620, UTF-8, and UTF-16.
  • Added GB18030, UTF-16BE, and UTF-16LE.
  • Minimize the creation of duplicate character sets (e.g., "UTF8" will be treated as "UTF-8", "MSnnn" will be treated as "MS-nnn", etc.).


  • All of the dialogs and windows should now respect the color scheme that is chosen in the fonts and colors settings.
  • Fixed problem where the background color didn't change when switching accounts while using the ICE browser.
  • Fixed toolbar background to use the background color instead of gray.

Color Chooser:

  • The color buttons are larger, there are two lines of instructions, the chosen color has greater visibility, and RGB value changes are reflected immediately (instead of only when pressing Tab or Enter or when clicking on the RGB button).


  • Fixed bug that allowed the Persona to revert to the default Persona when altering a message, which lead to a minor change in Draft handling, so that altering a Draft message is treated as an Edit instead of a Compose. Which led to another minor change, so that when a Draft message is saved from a Compose, the signature and/or tagline (if any) are also saved at that time, because neither of them gets added during an Edit.
  • Allow newsgroup style signature when only using a tagline.
  • Don't insert space between tagline prefix and tagline if tagline ends with newline (via the use of ;;) or space.
  • Don't create a new autosave message when altering an existing message.
  • Fixed problem where drafts behaved strangely with double entries and the message list was not updating correctly.
  • Corrected initial compose display when created from address book with multiple addresses selected. Both individual and groups were affected.
  • Always quote file names in outgoing MIME attachments.
  • Fixed problem that could result in draft message accumulation.

Filter Dialog:

  • The current size of the Bayesian message corpus (i.e., the good and bad message counts) is displayed underneath the global "Check Bayesian spam probability" checkbox.


  • Fixed bug that would accumulate addresses when using multiple send and/or bounce actions in the same filter.

Find Again:

  • Fixed bug where "Edit / Find Again" did not resume from the top after switching to another message.


  • Fixed problem where first message in new month folder was marked unread.


  • Allow the help toolbar to be customized.

Menu Changes:

  • Some menus have changed. In previous releases, the Tools menu used to contain a Fonts selection that cascaded out a submenu, which contained selections for controlling fonts in specific areas of Polarbar. We have replaced this structure with a single selection on the Tools menu entitled "Fonts and colors..." This menu selection launches a restricted invocation of the main Settings dialog, showing only the Fonts and Colors panel. The "Personas..." selection on the Tools menu launches a similarly restricted invocation of Settings. The "Settings..." selection itself is a consolidation of another cascading submenu of the Tools menu in previous releases.
  • When running under Java 2, the HotJava browser selections are disabled.
  • Fixed the help menu selection in the address book.
  • Compose and viewing messages in a separate window now have File/Close selections instead of the previously misleading File/Exit selections.
  • Fixed the menus when using the ICE browser for message viewing,
  • Fixed the sticky checkbox on the reveal headers menu selection in the main menu.

Message Browsers:

  • A message parsing optimization makes most large messages display faster.
  • Fixed &; parsing bug in HTML text extraction, where a missing ; results in everything up to the next newline character being thrown out.

Message Color Code:

  • The message color code dialog no longer requires scrolling to reach any of the color code choices and uses beveled panels to make it look nicer.

Message List:

  • Sorting by date/time now correctly handles multiple timezones and will order the messages in the chronological sequence they were sent in. This includes when one time zone is on the next/previous day than the other. Messages may appear mixed up when seeing dates such as Friday sorting after Saturday but that isn't the case. Be sure to make note of the time zones these messages were composed in.

Platform Specific:

  • Fixed bug in the message list to support the mouse popup menu under Linux. May also affect users of Apple's OS X and other variants of this platform.
  • Fixed bug in the attachment toolbar to support the mouse popup menu under Linux. May also affect users of Apple's OS X and other variants of this platform.


  • Fixed bugs in enabling and disabling the "Popper retrieves to another account" setting.

Preview Mail:

  • Deselect all Preview Mail selections before selecting marked messages.
  • Fixed IMAP4 server message retrieval progress indicator.


  • Fixed a printing problem where the margin on all pages after the first came out one line taller than on the first page.
  • Fixed a printing problem where the bottom line on each page would show up on the bottom of the next page instead of the current page.

Receiving Mail:

  • Fixed status line display to indicate the actual message number being downloaded. Prior to this the count would start at 1 and increment by 1. This was misleading to users who keep their mail on servers or access newsgroups.
  • Fixed bug when changing settings from playing a sound file on retrieval to the system sound would continue playing the sound file.
  • Ignore case when mail mapping.

Sending Mail:

  • Fixed PPO Out driver to use the correct settings access methods so that it can properly determine when it is active.

Settings Dialog:

  • The Polarbar Settings dialog resizes dynamically and has a slider bar between the settings tree and the settings panel.
  • Incoming and outgoing server configurations are now part of the standard settings and no longer pop-up tabbed dialogs. Each server definition is shown as a node in the settings tree.
  • Font and color settings are now part of the standard settings dialog and are located on the panel named Fonts and Colors, in addition to being located under Tools. If the stand-alone Font and Colors dialog is active, then this panel will not be present in the Polarbar Settings dialog. If the Polarbar Settings dialog is active when Tools / Fonts and Colors... is activated, then the Settings dialog is given focus and the Fonts and Colors panel becomes the current panel.
  • Separate colors can now be configured for the help window, headings in the settings panels and the gradient title on the settings panels. More details can be found in the help topic.
  • Fixed bug rendering combo boxes when a list control type was requested. It was platform dependent so Windows users are likely to see a difference of combo boxes now shown as list controls.
  • The definition of program launchers (applications that run when opening an attachment) is now part of the standard settings dialog. A help topic covering program launchers has been added to the help facility. The menu selection under Tools is no longer available.
  • Panel titles have been added to each settings panel. For Java 2 users, the panel text is rendered on a gradient background (solid color fading to transparent) based on the title color setting. For previous java users (mainly 1.1.8), the color is fixed based on an image (gradient.jpg) located in the distribution zip file under the image directory.
  • If the stand-alone Persona dialog is active, then the Persona panel will not be present in the Polarbar Settings dialog. If the Polarbar Settings dialog is active when Tools / Personas... is activated, then the Settings dialog is given focus and the Persona panel becomes the current panel.
  • You now have a new system wide setting which allows you to save memory at the expense of longer folder load times. This is especially helpful if you have lots of messages (more than 10K).
  • Corrected PPO Out settings to refer to activating the PPO outbox (instead of referring to the PPO inbox).

Spell Checker:

  • An upgrade to the Wintertree Spell Checker is included in this release. Along with bug fixes, this version will ignore email addresses and URL's when the Ignore words that appear to be Internet domain names option is on.
  • When the Wintertree Spell Checker is selected, the Spelling Files panel has Edit buttons that allow editing the dictionary files stored in regular text format. e.g., dictionary files using the .tlx file extension. The edit dialog should be self-explanatory and is used to add words, remove words and setup actions like auto-correction of commonly misspelled words.
  • Made the Sentry spell checker file locations platform-specific.

Text Fields:

  • Position the cursor after the inserted text when pasting to a text field.

Transaction Log:

  • Fixed transaction log message size value which would display as 0 when a message wound up in the inbox.

Virtual Folders:

  • Corrected display problems when you move items from a virtual folder to other folders.

Known bugs, problems, and/or issues in this release:

  • If you use Java2 and you encounter Java security violation exceptions, messages or tool bars not showing up, or Polarbar not even starting up, you need to override the default security policy by adding a file named java.policy to your Polarbar directory, with the following content: grant { permission java.security.AllPermission; }; Then include both of the following command line options, in the order indicated, on the Java command line that starts Polarbar (ahead of the -cp or -classpath parameter), substituting the appropriate path for the C:/Polarbar part (you must use the forward slash for the path separator, even on Windows and OS/2 systems): -Djava.security.manager -Djava.security.policy==file://C:/Polarbar/java.policy Note for Un*x-like platforms: The "file:" part should look more like "file:///home/my-user-id/Polarbar/java.policy".
  • Many visual display problems that you may encounter with Polarbar can be eliminated by upgrading to a new version of Java. For example, if you are using Java 1.1.8 and you are having strange display problems, upgrading to a newer build of Java 1.1.8 is likely to solve most of the problems. If you are using Java 1.2, you need to upgrade to Java 1.3.
  • When adding enough addresses to cause the Compose window to display the Address Tool button rather than the text entry field, sometimes the button isn't displayed. Resizing the window or other actions causing a redraw will display the button.
  • Address book is initially searched by nickname, however all subsequent access during the compose process is by Email Address. If there are multiple entries with the same email address, only the first one found will be used for sent folder / persona resolution. This can make it appear that sent folder assignment is not working properly.
  • Changing the main font in Compose doesn't always reflect it right away. Closing the compose window and starting another one reflects the change however.
  • Keeping sort order is global across all folders (with the exception of the trash folder).
  • If you run Polarbar on a Windows system with Stardock's Object Desktop Network installed on it and you have the WindowFX child window animation enabled, then you may find that saved pop-up window position is ignored when the window size and position are restored. If you want the windows (such as the Select A Folder window) to always come up in their saved positions, you will need to add the Java VM program that you use to run Polarbar to the WindowFX exclusion list. And if you have WindowBlinds, windows may not redraw properly when you resize them and you may wish to add the Java VM to the WindowBlinds exclusion list. Also, WindowBlinds interferes with the new Polarbar feature of changing the title bar icon to show when there are unread messages. You must exclude the Java VM in order for the Polarbar icons to show up in the title bar. And you must unload WindowBlinds in order for the Polarbar icons to show up on the Windows task bar.
  • If you run Polarbar on a Linux system and settings changes are not being saved, this can be caused by not having the correct permissions set on the settings files. If the file is set with root permissions only, then you cannot write to the settings file when Polarbar exits. The settings files are <base>/Mailer/jstreet.ini (or JSTREET.INI if using short file names) and <base>/Mailer/Maildata/<account>/Account.Settings (or, if you are using short file names, ACCOUNT.SET).
  • If you use JDK 1.3 on a Win32 platform, you cannot correctly copy data from the message text window to the system clipboard by using Ctrl-C. Pasting within Polarbar with Ctrl-V will work fine but external applications will get data from the start of the message. This is a bug in Sun's code.
  • If you are using Linux with a Blackdown Java and you get ">" instead of "<" when you press Shift and "," try either switching your keyboard type to Generic 101 or adding the following two lines to your .xinitrc file in your home directory: # Try to eliminate extra keycode for Java AWT and X bug interaction echo "keycode 94=" | xmodmap -
  • PGP support is still only at PGP 2.6.x

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