In Mozilla Thunderbird, how do I disable selective quoting when replying?

Selective quoting is where one can select a part or portion of the message, hit reply and have only that part show up in the reply. If one doesn't select anything then the entire message will show up in the reply (if configured).

When replying, I always want to quote the original text in its entirety not just the part which is selected. How do I do that?

2 Answers 2


In Thunderbird 68.7.0 on Linux, there is no Tools > Options menu. Instead, the sequence to fix this is:

  1. Edit > Preferences > Advanced > General tab
  2. Click Config Editor in the lower right, then I accept the risk.
  3. Change mailnews.reply_quoting_selection from true to false (by double clicking).
  4. Change mailnews.reply_quoting_selection.multi_word from true to false.
  5. Close the Config Editor.

I figured this out from this post, which shows what options need to be changed: https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/questions/1002362#answer-579063

and from this post, which says how to access the Config Editor in my version of Thunderbird: https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Mozilla/Thunderbird/Thunderbird_Configuration_Files

Here are screen shots (which I'm not allowed to embed directly):

Config Editor

Changing the options


In Thunderbird 68.8.0 on Windows, do the following:

  1. Click on the menu Tools > Options
  2. Click on the tabs Advanced > General
  3. Click on the button Config Editor...
  4. Click on the button I'll be careful, I promise!
  5. Search for mailnews.reply_quoting_selection
  6. Double-click on the respective entry to set it to false

Close all of the dialog windows and select some text in an email and hit reply. If nothing of the original message shows up in the reply, do the following:

  1. Click on the menu Tools > Account Settings
  2. Click on the account > Composition & Addressing
  3. Check mark Automatically quote the original message when replying
  4. Set the 2 drop down menus to your desired configuration
  5. Hit OK

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