Whiney applications…

If there’s one thing I can’t really stand, it’s applications that whinge about everything that goes wrong with an array of practically useless dialogs. One of my biggest gripes at the moment is of all things Thunderbird. It has to be one of the most whiney applications. When things go wrong it pops up a dialog which generally has only one option ‘ok’.
The most regular complaint dialog I get is because it’s incapable of connecting to the mail server. Outlook has solved this years ago with the connection status bar at the bottom of the screen. When things go well, the notification goes away once the communication has completed. When things go wrong you get a ‘send/receive errors’ item in the status bar. It expands to a dialog which gives you the status of each of the activities it was performing at the time.
Thunderbird…. every failed connection is a modal dialog box with ‘connection to foo failed’. I gather my email from many disparate sources and this is no end of an annoyance to me as normally when one fails they all fail.
Is is that there isn’t a graceful way of bringing up failure notifications to users?