Feature request list

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This page lists features requested from users


App Icon in Tray

Would be nice to get a little notification in the systray/app icon that says I have a new message(s) with the number of messages. Like skype or most other IM clients do.

User Experience

  • Make bitmessage:<bm-address-here> links open up in PyMessage. Like how Bitcoin clients are opened if you click a link on the internet that has bitcoin:<bitcoin-wallet-address-here> used.

<a href="bitmessage:BM-2DBqvaVF2s6yKDg1xdFhd4j2DTKZpbnr9G">chovy - BM-2DBqvaVF2s6yKDg1xdFhd4j2DTKZpbnr9G</a>

  • Avoid putting user in "Sent" tab after replying to a message from Inbox. Its much more natural to keep them in Inbox.
  • Add the ability to "Flag" a message to bring attention to it in the Inbox.
  • For the Inbox, add the right-click menu items as buttons below "Search" box. This will make going through the inbox much easier w/o all the required clicking.
  • An option under Settings to group emails with similar subjects, ie: threads. I find with lots of BMs, there is too much noise and collapsable threads based on subject would be a little more manageable.
  • First-Time start-up should provide better help for a new user, walking them through an echo test and providing other helpful info and links.
  • When Bitmessage is run, if the local client needs a lot of time to sync with the message backlog, there should be a progress bar or a time indicator (much like Bitcoin-QT, estimating how much time is necessary to get sync'd). Perhaps Bitmessage could query other nodes, asking how big the current message store is (message.dat file size), and then provide a progress bar comparing local message.dat size against the average response from connected nodes, as a measure of the backlog.
  • Consider moving the User Interface toward more of an IRC interface: No subject, no attaching the previous message; simply short messages into a channel.
  • Add support for Mac OS's full screen mode
  • Add keyboard shortcuts for cmd+(number key) to go to the different pages
  • Like bitcoin miners get revenues, nodes in the bitmessage network could get revenues from serving adds, and possibly by providing other services.
  • CPU is busy; the bitmessage application should check to see if the CPU is > 15%; if so it will save decryption to a later time. This prevents "frameskips" in some games.
  • Option to not process messages if bandwidth < X KB/s, which may indicate that a mobile phone is being used for a data connection; instead of a broadband connection.



  • Backup/Restore your data

Essentially this would just drop me in the directory called ./backup that has all my inbox, keys, and whatever else I have. So I can backup to a remote location and restore everything easy.


  • UI setting to stop trying to send messages after X hours/days/months.
  • Setting for font-size/font-face to be used in the UI. (at least font-size) it is very small on my screen.


  • Exact steps for setting a home router to accept all TCP/IP connections - for users willing to help out but REALLY uncomfortable with network settings
    • Link to http://portforward.com/ (This page may lead to bad user experience due to massive advertisments and product placement)



  • A search feature
  • Sort inbox by the time the message was sent, not received (could be a sorting option if a 'sent' column is added or if you could switch between 'sent' and 'received')
    • Because there are no servers, we can't tell when a message was sent with any certainty- the sender of a message can lie.
    • Is there another way to accomplish this then? (Maybe the nodes send the messages out in the order that they received them?) Something to add a little bit of order to this issue. Yes, people could lie (or have a clock this is very off) but for the most part it would help keep it in some order. Also they couldn't send one more than 2 days old, nor could they send a message from too far in the future (this is checked isn't it?).
    • Atheros: Yes, it is checked (messages from more than 3 hours in the future are ignored). I agree that this would be a nice feature but I'm not sure how I would implement this. When people click the column header to sort by the received time they will expect that it sort by the date shown so if I were to have it sort by the timestamp date but show the receive date (which would be easy to do) I have a feeling people would complain that it is buggy.
    • What about the ability to right click on the sort-by bar and specify what fields are shown. That would allow you to keep it like it is by default but add the following fields; "Sent Time", "Size", "Address Version", "In address book", etc. I agree that sorting by received time should do just that. Are messages not transferred in the order they are received by the node? Essentially, the node would keep up with the order that it received the message and when my client downloads them, it gets them in that order?
    • Atheros: They aren't and even if they were they would still get mixed up because you connect to multiple peers.
    • What about getting a time signature from outside? Either referring to a random, but stable source (like holding up the newspaper in a kidnapping video) or (decentralized) by creating a Blockchain like Bitcoin does (but throwing away old timestamps and limiting it to only parts of the streams).
  • Mark a read message as unread (In addition to the star/flag/highlight feature that should be added).
    • (Merged) Pull request #335 --Nimda (talk) 21:55, 25 July 2013 (CDT)
  • Ability to star or otherwise highlight a message (to find easier later). Open to other methods of accomplishing this.
    • Current workaround: edit one of the fields (like Received) to include a character like !. Then sorting by received time will show those messages first.
  • Ability to create subfolders and move inbox items into them. Also a rules dialog for automatically classifying new mail into subfolders. Rules would be too much to program unless someone else wants to tackle it. Folders we could do someday but it will not be high on my list of priorities.
  • Do not display broadcast messages in the inbox that you sent. EX: I send a message to a mailing list and I get a reply of my own message in the inbox.
    • Could be checked by comparing incoming broadcasts with sent messages to the same address, if the text is exactly the same, do not display. Open to suggestions.
  • When you are replying to a message, populate the 'from' field too. It should be the address the message was sent to. (Wish: High priority. Really useful.)
  • Option to automatically add new subscriptions to address book list and/or add option 'Add to Address Book' to context menu in Subscription list
  • Option (or hard-coded) for delay before "new message" tool tip appears, especially when starting the client (maybe set separately): e.g. wait 30 seconds (after the first message is received) before alerting about 10 new messages. Or, better: change the "new message" tooltip text to "x new messages" without issuing a new popup (plus its sound that gets annoying when repeated frequently in a row).
  • Simple filtering by identity/chan/subscription/contact (through context menu from the respective tab). This would cover most "folder" uses. Same thing for threads: filter for the subject line and you're pretty near the thread. The easiest way to do it should be populating the search field with the mentioned text. Btw, filtering for addressbook names should be possible too.
  • Save column width. By now it resets to default every startup.
  • Read out #hashtags from messages and create a tag-list or tag-cloud that sorts itself according to the recent frequency of that tag (to see trending topics like in twitter). Enable pinning of tags you are interested in, to get a seperate favorite tags list. Clicking on the tags should trigger a search in the inbox (or whatever folder you are in) for that tag.
  • right click "Save message as ..."
    • file name suggestion: 20140827-031433_senderFirst10Characters_subject.txt (or 20140827-031433_subject.txt) instead of only subject.txt
    • when several/all messages are highlighted and then "Save message as ..." chosen, then save all messages not only one.


  • Built in image inlining (I guess I'll work on this) --Nimda (talk) 22:09, 14 July 2013 (CDT)
  • Built in text editor to send rich text natively. Someone else may work on this but I would prefer to keep it simple. It isn't as simple as just sending HTML as the client doesn't display HTML from strangers.
    • What about Markdown or similar structured Text? It would still be readable in plaintext and provide danger-free rich-text.
  • Show a percentage complete on "Doing work necessary to send the message" and maybe even display the time it took once finished.
    • This is like showing a percentage complete on a Bitcoin block. Vanitygen shows the time until 50% probability, but I think that's a bit too much. Time POW took sounds fine, though.
    • Atheros: Indeed, there is no such thing as being some-percentage complete. The amount of time until you reach 50% probability-of-completion is constant even while doing work. This is important with Vanitygen so that you don't sit there for 1000 years trying to find a particular address but with bitmessage everyone knows how long things take: a number of minutes or possibly hours.
  • View the PoW required for an address. UI warning when sending to an address that has a very high PoW setting.
  • UI setting to stop trying to send messages after X hours/days/months.
  • Ability to create subfolders and move outbox items into them. Also a rules dialog for automatically classifying new mail into subfolders. Rules would be too much to program unless someone else wants to tackle it. Folders we could do someday but it will not be high on my list of priorities.
  • Add 'Cancel' when sending message to clear form fields. Please check the accepted requests section below before adding requests.
  • Add ability to send a copy to oneself. Like this one could keep the "sent" out-box in sync on several computers. (Being optional, only those who need it would use it as it increases the POW.)
  • An option to "re-send" a message (doing the POW again) that doesn't result in double messages for those who are online all the time (e.g. through a header and a hash).
  • Possibility to compose more than one message in parallel or to save an unfinished message for completing it later ("drafts" box). (wish: Prioritize - because I just lost a long typed message when I answered to another message).
  • Forward messages with the original cryptographic signature (if technically possible). This could also be used for signed mailing lists (instead of "ostensibly from").
  • Add a "Reply To" field. The sender should specify a "To" address, a "From" address (which could be a channel address or a personal address), and a "Reply To" address (which would default to the Channel, if the message is TO a channel). This would allow the sender to self-identify and sign their message, without having the inconvenience of receiving all the replies.
  • If the protocol supported "Reply To" (like smtp does), the Send tab could simply have a check box as to whether to send a chan message anonymously or signed. The benefit of signed messages is continuity of conversation: You know message "A" and message "C" are from the same person (since they were digitally signed with a BM-number), so you understand the communication better.
  • CTRL-SHIFT-V (not only CTRL-V) for paste-without-formatting. I get a weirdly looking text when I copypaste sth from facebook into the send...message window.


  • A search feature
  • Ability to cancel sending a Message if POW has not yet been completed.
  • right click "Save message as ..." (like in 'Inbox')
  • right click "Edit as new message" - to recycle a message; to a new recipient, or to resend a message.

Your Identities

  • Ability to delete addresses from "Your Identities" (Keeping the current enable/disable options). (easy)
    • It's not difficult to remove identities from keys.dat with a text editor. Maybe we should keep it this way to prevent accidental deletions. --Nimda (talk) 20:37, 12 June 2013 (CDT)
      • I disagree with this. It's incredibly unwieldy to delete the identities from keys.dat, especially when you have a lot of addresses, and you need to select a few specific ones to delete. Besides, if accidental deletion should prove to be a problem, I can't imagine that it would be hard to implement some sort of mechanism to prevent such an occurrence. I think this is an important feature request, and, being quite easy to implement, I would call upon the benevolent creator of BitMessage to implement it soon. --NimrodTheMighty
  • When creating adresses: Field for "Label (not shown to anyone except you)" for deterministic addresses too.
  • Identities should have "passive", "active" and "dual" mode. Passive for only receiving messages (already discussed somewhere) and "active only" for not receiving messages. The latter may sound absurd, but in regards to broadcasting it could get essential not to get flooded with responses to the broadcasts (e.g. hatemail). Imagine a celebrity broadcasting with many subscribers; s/he might not want to answer all messages to the broadcasting address. Additionally, the chans (broadcasting from chan and subscribing to it) would be able to force it's users to use anonymous broadcast (beeing the chan), as messages to the chan could be blocked (by each user individually).
  • Possibility to set address to "chan" from the Special address behavior context menu.
  • Context Menu item "Send message to this address" for chans (like in address book). "Send message from this address" for all identities.
  • Let user's update the labels of their identities.
  • Some explanation of why you would want multiple identities would be helpful here.


Address Book

  • On Address book tab, add right-click option to add person to subscription list (easy)
    • (Merged) Pull request 212. --Nimda (talk) 21:00, 12 June 2013 (CDT)
  • Groups in address book, sending a message to the group will message all of the users of that group. (keep the 'name or label' and 'address' but allow the address section to contain multiple addresses separated by semicolon?)
  • View the PoW required for an address.
  • Double clicking on address in Address Book should 'send to' rather than edit the field. Right click to edit would be better since this is a much less often used feature.
  • (Regardless of what double-click does) could "edit label" please be added to the context menu. It will not occur to Windows-only users to double-click.
  • Show 'Name or Label' in/beside To: field after adding address, or even just show the name/label if it is found in the address book and do translation when sending.
  • Alert "address already in addressbook as 'name of contact'" when trying to add contact with BM-address that is already in the list. For now the GUI just accepts the new entry and does nothing at all. You might want to suggest to rename the old contact to the new name.
  • Creating an address (deterministic or otherwise). Either there or in the help section explain the impact on message receiver. If none, say none. Thanks.
  • "Subscribe to this Address" could be a checkbox (or a checkable context menu item) instead of copying the address to the subscriptions. Then show the subscribed addresses in the subscriptions as ghost copies in a different style. Alternatively, merge the Address Book and the Subscriptions.


  • Blacklist should also scan the mailinglists to filter out "ostensibly" blacklisted addresses.
  • There should be a third option ("mood") to "use whitelist" and "use blacklist" that says "use neither". They should be colored in red, yellow and green respectively (just like a traffic light).
  • Enable per-recipient and per-sender filtering. I suggest keeping a recipient-list (A,B,C,...) and a sender-list (1,2,3,...) and then set the status for each intersection, e.g. A3:whitelisted, A2:blacklisted (with black and white icons). Then allow setting the "mood" for each recipient by coloring them in red, yellow, or green (compare suggestion above).


Network Status

  • Network info in the status bar. Current upload/download speeds as well as total uploaded/downloaded since startup. ATHEROS EDIT: The current bandwidth usage is almost always 0. I suppose I could add a total uploaded/downloaded counter.
  • Clicking the red/yellow or green balloon now shows the explanations. Can it also point to he help which would describe the exact steps on how to set up a home router to accept incoming connections - for people who wish to help but are REALLY uncomfortable with routers


  • Version 0.3.5 volatiles SRP policy (if configured) by loading DLLs from temporary directory. This is potentially risky because one has to run bitmessage as admin or make exceptions in srp (allow execution in system wide writeable directory).

Windows System Tray

  • Clicking the Windows notification balloon (New Message) will bring the Bitmessage window to focus. (----)
  • Change the tray icon graphic to reflect when a new message comes in. This could be standard and used when the balloon is disabled (or in conjunction). Also allows the user to see that they have messages if they missed the popup.
  • Clicking the "Connected" item in the tray context menu should bring up the "network status" tab (just like "send", "subscribe" and "address book" bring up the respective tabs). Also, all of them should bring the BM window to front.

Windows Installer

  • Provide an installer for Bitmessage.
  • Allow for optional shortcuts in common locations.
  • Allow installer to ask if it should be started at login.

Overall or otherwise unclassified

  • Should check for known security issues in the libraries it uses. i.e. OpenSSL v1.0.1 — up to and including 1.0.1f is affected by the "Heartbleed bug" - the software should check and warn the user to up/down grade to a more secure version.
  • Add Multi-language Support (add to site .xml file with language strings )
  • Sounds (easy. This is turning out to be more difficult; there doesn't seem to be a simple cross-platform method of playing sounds)
  • User can adjust font and font size for easy reading.
  • GUI interface for adding attachments to outgoing message and opening incoming attachments.
  • The ability to inform and update the client via the GUI.
  • A GUI interface to send and receive public keys and to set levels of trust. So, if I set a high level of trust for a public key signed by John Smith, subsequent messages received that are signed by that key will indicate that they are from John Smith. Maybe optional color coding to indicate the level of trust?
    • Atheros: Messages received that are signed by that key already indicate that they are from John Smith. Isn't this just the same thing as adding colors to address book?
  • Some kind of visual representation of the keys, like Identicons. As malicious people could try to spoof someone into believing two identities are the same by creating an address with the same or a similar identicon (although i believe it to be difficult), it should be possible to enable local identicons that get salted with a random number or with a password (then you could recreate the local identicons on other machines or in case of data loss).
  • Bodyless operation - the opposite of headless, run only the GUI and connect to already running headless instance (posisibly running somewhere else, like for example on an always-on home server).


  • Ability to add a node to 'defaultKnownNodes' via IPv4, IPv6, or DNS (easy)
  • Ability to disable the built-in defaultKnownNodes, useful for LAN use or people running their own BitMessage network (no need to interact outside of the designated network). (easy)
    • ATHEROS EDIT: I'm having trouble figuring out a good UI for this. Can there simply be an option which you can add to keys.dat, for example: 'ignoredefaultnodes = true' which would cause Bitmessage to not only ignore the defaultKnownNodes but also addr messages? Then you can use the as-yet-to-be-added UI feature that lets you add your own IP?
    • That sounds good to me. Can is also be a DNS entry instead of just an IP for adding a node?
  • Allow LAN operation (or option to allow LAN operation (disabling non-private WAN ip ranges?)).
    • ATHEROS EDIT: How about being able to add an IP in the user interface?
    • I think that should be an option as well (see above define your own known nodes feature request) but would not allow a p2p style network unless you input every ip in use (since private ip addresses are blocked).
  • Enable optional acknowledgment for authenticated chan members, where the chan member does the PoW.


  • API ackdata lookup (easy, although I would like to make some internal Bitmessage changes first- for example, 'sentmessage' isn't a very useful status, but 'ackreceived' is better)
  • Refresh GUI inbox (for example after deleting messages)
    • This is actually done automatically
  • Retrieve the private key for an address. ATHEROS EDIT: What is the use case for this one?
  • Add/Remove and Retrieve addresses from address book.
  • Add/Remove addresses to/from Blacklist/Whitelist.
    • Change the status between blacklist and whitelist
  • Add/Remove address to/from identities.
  • Extending the get Method to get the complete address block from an address.
  • Change labels on identities (also fixes the problem of not being able to assign an label to deterministic addresses via the API)
  • Ability to check the status of sent messages and being able to trash them.
    • Status check can be done with the getStatus Method already
  • Find the PoW requirement for an address (not local).
  • Get the Label for an address in the Address Book (e.g. for BitMail and bmwrapper to be able to forward addresses like this: "John Doe <Bm-...@bitmessage.ch>" or this: "that programing expert i met <Bm-...@bm.addr>").
  • API endpoint to relay messages to the network. (e.g. messages provided by an API-client, that isn't running Bitmessage, can create a Bitmessage and send it to the endpoint for the bm client to relay to the network)


  • Encrypt keys.dat file and messages.dat file with a password. (difficult) EDIT: I spent some time searching for a way to encrypt the messages.dat file and only found proprietary solutions*. EDIT: Bitcoin does this with it's wallet.dat, I'm sure the source code would reveal the method, also I don't see why gpg in symmetric mode wouldn't work. Atheros Edit: Because it is a database. You'll notice that Bitcoin doesn't encrypt its database. Encrypting the keys.dat file is easier. *EDIT: does this help at all? -> https://github.com/sqlcipher/sqlcipher
  • Integrate encrypted database access into PyBitmessage: even after the client is launched, messages and keys should not be readable until passphrase is entered (ideally, passphrase should be demanded upon client launch).
  • Offline mode (easy)
  • Option to export keys.dat and messages.dat files to an encrypted backup (medium, possibly difficult)
  • Separate messages.dat file into message.dat and addressbook.dat (easy. I might not do this.)
  • Multi Threading up to the number of cores installed when creating addresses or sending Messages (Medium. Now supported for non-Windows systems.)
  • Special Address Behavior, Allow setting for maximum message size to be broadcasted by pseudo-mailing-list. Currently they can be bogged down with very big messages.
  • Process two messages instead of one at a time. A client could get caught up on one hard POW and not be able to send other messages until they delete it from the sent tab.
    • The ability to set the maximum POW time per message before suspend it and going to the next would probably be better.
    • Alternative: Ability to set the number of processed messages according to the number of cores.
  • Make this work without causing any issues (it is an un-intended use): Many users with the same address (created by a passphrase or shared key) sending p2p and broadcast messages in-between each other.
    • Option to set an address as DML
  • Allow white-black lists per address (White-listed mailing list without dedicating a client would be one of the uses).
  • Include the version of bitmessage in the keys.dat file. Or provide it over the API. That way applications interfacing to bitmessage know what version they are dealing with.
  • Prioritize outgoing messages. The priority order should be, Marked urgent, Contact in address book, Contact in subscriptions list, Standard, Low priority. PoW should be paused to allow the completion of any message in a higher tier. This would allow non-urgent (low priority) messages to be sent as a part of the backend to clients, without interfering with the user. Example would be a twitmessage (twitter) client sending notifications. Even if this was possible with only two tiers, one for user messages, another for backend messages, then that would be great.
  • Option to use keyfiles when generating either type of address. (or encrypting the keys.dat/etc files in the future)
  • Add CPU and Network Usage control.(easy)--Arthur200000 (talk) 23:27, 30 May 2013 (CDT)
  • Create a Maildir interface so normal MUAs can be used for incoming mail.
    • This is actually not "normal". The Windows world does not has this "feature"
  • Create a SMTP interface so normal MUAs can be used for outgoing mail (like [1]). Non-bitmessage message could/should be forwarded to a regular SMTP server.
    • Forwarding sounds dangerous, it can happen accidently, also you need a gateway, that accepts your sender.
  • at the cost of getting scorned, but dead serious: a controlled backdoor, with an automatic audit trail, to be used by lawful agencies for keeping us safe. Bitcoin by design supports criminal activities, which undermine the community. A community messaging system should have a way of cleaning itself.
  • Authentication and multiple accounts (with multiple identities). This way the remote access would become way more useful, as a group of people could use the same bitmessage instance(?) together, without being able to impersonate the others.


  • Add MD5 KECCAK/SHA256/512 checksum and PGP signature to the download area. (easy)
    • Why not just sign the application? (answer: redundancy offers better trust model)
  • Package in a compressed format (zip,7z,tar.gz,etc) and include the Bitmessage version in the container name.
  • Add ability to specify bitmessage address for wiki/forum password recovery/reset
  • Add a ed2k link for faster downloading.(easy)
  • Provide optimized apps(SSE,etc.)for lower CPU usage and faster working.(easy)

Accepted Requests (Implemented in version 0.3.0 and before)

  • Show addresses without the hyphen (easy, under discussion) abandoned
  • Accept addresses without the hyphen (easy) Done, accepts address without "BM-"
  • Ability to trash sent messages(easy) Done
  • Clear the 'Send' tab after sending message or when acknowledgement received. (easy) Done
  • Trim input when adding an subscription or address book address (very easy) Done
  • Do not open new messages automatically, and indicate if a message has been read. (----) Done
  • Confirm delete? (Doing the above might fix this issue as well, I was deleting a message and a new message came in so I deleted the new message). (----) Basically done- see above.
  • Ability to select multiple recipients on the Address Book tab before clicking "Send message to this address" Done
  • Don't remove focus from current message when a new message arrives and denote unread messages (should be relatively easy, will require database changes) Done
  • Allow a label to be set when creating addresses. A number is appended when creating multiple addresses (easy) You can already do this.
  • Ability to disable and re-enable a subscription address. (easy) Done
  • Cancel messages in the sent folder before they are sent. (Sending them to trash does not work.) Done. After trashing a message, restart Bitmessage immediately. There currently still is no notification that restarting Bitmessage is necessary.
  • Cancel sending a new message (clear all of the fields) I would rather not add another button; please clear them manually for now.
  • Add support for SOCKS5 proxies (difficult) Done
  • Notification or Warning when sending a broadcast that broadcasts are sent in plaintext and anyone can receive it "Broadcast to anyone who is subscribed to your address" is vague and could give a sense of false security. Done
  • RPC API (difficult) Done
  • Portable mode (easy) Done
  • Headless operation.Done