Eudora 5.1.1 released, for OS X

At long last and after what seemed to many to be an interminable public beta testing period, Qualcomm Inc. has released a "final" version of Eudora for Mac OS X, its popular e-mail client software. The new version, 5.1.1, can be downloaded alongside similarly numbered versions for "Classic" Mac OS and Windows.

Eudora's history on the Mac is almost as long as the Mac's history on the Internet. One of the earliest and most successful freeware POP/SMTP e-mail clients for the Macintosh, Eudora was developed by Steve Dorner at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Eudora was later acquired by communications company Qualcomm Inc. and ultimately repurposed as commercial software.

While Eudora continued to be updated for Windows and Mac OS, a Mac OS X native version of the software took a back seat last year, eliciting an apology and a promise to do better this past December from Dorner, who remains with Qualcomm as vice president of Technology. In the months following Dorner's comments Qualcomm did indeed update Eudora for OS X with new public beta versions, culminating in this recent "final" 5.1.1 release.

New features in Eudora 5.1 included the addition of Secure Sockets Layer (SSL), enhancements to MoodWatch, an enhanced address book with photo support, new address book settings dialog, support for vCards, the ability to save address book entries in Comma Separated Values (CSV) format, the ability to see signatures in messages you compose and more. If you've stayed up to date with recent changes to the "Classic" version of Eudora, however, the most important change here is the release status of the Mac OS X version.

Eudora 5.1.1 is available as a free upgrade if you've registered your copy of Eudora within the past 12 months. Others can either switch to Sponsored mode, which enables you to use the software for free if you're willing to view advertisements, or pay a US$29.95 upgrade fee.

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