Tools-> Import -> Mail: Need options for importing Mozilla/Thunderbird/Netscape6-7 mails (mbox)

NEW
Unassigned

Status

enhancement
19 years ago
3 months ago

People

(Reporter: bugZ, Unassigned)

Tracking

(Blocks 1 bug, {helpwanted})

Firefox Tracking Flags

(Not tracked)

Details

(Whiteboard: *** See comment # 55 for a workaround ***)

(Reporter)

Description

19 years ago
Sorry if this is the wrong component. The import options for mail and
addressbooks do not include importing NS 4.x formats. The arguments against
including this have been pretty much that profile migration should take care of
it. This does not take into account combining 4.x profiles to take advantage of
multiple mail accounts.

In 4.x, I have 3 profiles - 1 personal and 2 for work.
In moz, I migrated the personal account and added the 2 work accounts to this
profile. I had to manually export/import addressbooks, and copy mail messages to
get them into the moz profile. Big pain. Importing 4.x formats would indeed be
beneficial for cases like this, as well as when 'normal' profile migration
doesn't work for whatever reason.

Comment 1

19 years ago
Excuse me if I misunderstood your report, but isn't that the reason there is a 
Tasks|Tools|Import Utility?

Updated

19 years ago
QA Contact: gbush → esther
(Reporter)

Comment 2

19 years ago
As of build 121804, Tasks|Tools|Import Utility has the following:

Addressbook import lists formats
   Text
   Eudora
   Outlook Express
   Outlook

Mail lists formats
   Eudora
   Outlook Express
   Outlook

There is no NS 4.x format option for either of these.

adding tony and candice to the cc list.

confirming.  marking as an enhancement.

It's a good idea.  see related bugs #13832 and #41590
Severity: normal → enhancement
Status: UNCONFIRMED → NEW
Ever confirmed: true

Updated

19 years ago
QA Contact: esther → nbaca

Comment 4

19 years ago
This is a frequently requested item as per DecisionOne (support) input.

Comment 5

19 years ago
I was going to report this as a bug, but I won't as someone else already has.

I cannot emphasise how important I think this is. Personally I think 
it should ranked higher than an "enhancement". Currently, a Mozilla user has one 
opportunity to convert a 4.x profile: the first time they run Mozilla. Of 
course, I believe this can be accessed using a specific command-line option, 
but... 

I would like it to be possible to entire 4.x profiles, and also I would like 
an "Understanding Privacy"-esque "How-to" to explain how to copy profiles over
from other machines etc. 

Updated

19 years ago
OS: Windows 98 → All
Hardware: PC → All

Updated

19 years ago
Blocks: 65651
The 4.x addressbook is, if I understood it correctly, a proprietary format and
cannot be read by Mozilla. Feel free to file a separate bug for it (which it
should be anyway), but it will be WONTFIX, I guess. Narrowing SUMMARY to mail
for that reason.

We should be able to import Mozilla mail archives, too, to allow moving mail
between profiles. Since the "database format" (simple mailboxes) is the same
between 4.x and Mozilla, I'm widening the SUMMARY to Mozilla mails, too.

You can import Mozilla (and propably 4.x, with a bit tricking) mails manually,
see <http://www.mail-archive.com/users%40beonex.org/msg00195.html>.
Summary: Need options for importing 4.x mail/addressbooks → Need options for importing 4.x and Mozilla mails
do handle 4.x addressbooks, the magic is all in libabupgrade.so (for linux)
and libabupgrade.dll (for linux).

among other things, in that component is an implementation 
the nsIAbUpgrader.idl interface (which is public)

you can't get the source for that component (as it is netscape proprietary)
but you can get the .so from the mail.xpi that we ship with.

enough hints.
giving all my import bugs to chuang
Assignee: sspitzer → chuang

Comment 9

18 years ago
Another problem is if someone do like I did. After reinstalling WinME I didn't 
want to install Netscape 4.76 but instead just using Mozilla. But I couldn't get 
my old mail imported! Had to install Netscape just so that the profile converter 
could do its work, and then uninstalling Netscape... not very practical.

Updated

18 years ago
Keywords: nsbeta1, rtm

Comment 10

18 years ago
*** Bug 78585 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 11

18 years ago
add self to cc (sorry for spam).

I agree with Nick Johnston that this is more than "just" an enhancement. It
seems weird that a program can import other formats, but not it's own? NS4 also
seriously lacked this feature (it could only import 4.x address books, not
mail). Nominating for 1.0. It seems to me this should not be so hard to fix,
since we already have the code to convert mail.
Keywords: mozilla1.0

Comment 12

18 years ago
eClient team is picking this up for AB - EricP, is there a need for
Communicator Mail import functionality for your team? Can Rajiv pick this up?

Comment 13

18 years ago
marking nsbeta1- and future.  If this gets picked up by a different developer
then feel free to change these.
Keywords: nsbeta1nsbeta1-
Target Milestone: --- → Future

Comment 14

18 years ago
*** Bug 94209 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Definately needed.  Mozilla's first adopters will be those leaving Netscape 
4.x... only then can we look towards the IE cult.

Export would be good as well.... I have a computer that is a bit to old for 
Mozilla, but can still run Netscape 4.x, I like to export on one computer and 
import it to the other every so often to keep my mail and bookmarks in sync on 
both computers.  I doubt I am the only one who would benefit from import and 
export.... but the most important is import.

Comment 16

18 years ago
This is a must for a 1.0 release. Anyone who uses  Mozilla on different
computers (a desktop and a notebook for exaple) and wants to merge the different
accounts one day needs this. I just had a hell of a time merging two Mozilla
accounts.

Comment 17

18 years ago
Is there any kind of workaround for this bug? 

Scenario : My dad's computer got hit by some virus/worm that wiped out Windows
so that the OS and all apps had to be reinstalled.  Although he had been using
Netscape 4.x before, when he reinstalled, he loaded Netscape 6.1 instead. 
Netscape 6.1 did not detect his old 4.x profile because he had not yet restored
his data from backup.
Now that his profile data has been copied back to the hard drive, it seems like
his only option is to uninstall Netscape and reinstall with the hope that it
will detect and convert the profile automatically.

This seems rather silly when obviously somewhere Mozilla has the code to convert
everything over because it does it when first installed.  

Either the Import Utility or the Profile Manager (preferrably both) should allow
the user to convert 4.x data to Mozilla compatible data after the initial install.  

If there is already a way to do it, I apologize for my ignorance.  Feel free to
flame me directly at mark@ky.net -- as long as you also enlighten me.
> Is there any kind of workaround for this bug? 

Yes, read up.
*** Bug 105562 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 20

18 years ago
I cant believe it that mozilla cannot import and export its own mail.
This should be top priority. Also, the wizard is kind of redundant in linux.
What are you going to import?  I view the wizard, and no options are available.
Also, we should export too. Basically, the import mail from mozilla should be a
dumb gui that does a "cp where/my/mail/folder/is/* /my/current/profile/mail/dir
while an export would be the same, only switching folders.
Please take this one for 0.9.7
> Basically, the import mail from mozilla should be a
> dumb gui that does a "cp where/my/mail/folder/is/* /my/current/profile/mail/dir
> while an export would be the same, only switching folders.

I think that we should export to a compressed format (.tar.gz. tar.bz2 or .zip,
removing .msf files), because export is also useful for backup.

Comment 22

18 years ago
*** Bug 111487 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 23

18 years ago
We could export to a compressed file format but:
-File formats to support (tars for unix, zips for windows, weird stuff for 
mac?) I know linux can read zips , etc, but then we would require unix people 
to have the zip command, or windows users to have winzip to read tars... etc 
etc you get the idea, so we would need to do stuff to handle these cases

-We would need to uncompress these files and then copy the results to the 
folders... then risking if the user imports a wrong file... etc etc

This is very trivial to implement, i dont know why this hasn't been done yet. 
One ui listing under "import" and some cases to handle the copying process in 
different platforms.

Of course, we could make this a lot smarter (and harder :) We could concatenate 
mail files, meaning if i have an export dated december 1st, and i run a new 
profile on december 3rd, and get 10 mails dated the same day, an "smart import" 
would do this on linux for example:

cat oldmailbox newmailbox > mymailbox

Voila, you've got your mails merged. I think this is possible because the mail 
format database is frozen and wont be changed right?
--> bhuvan
Assignee: chuang → racham

Comment 25

18 years ago
*** Bug 114183 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 120902 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 124181 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 28

17 years ago
I've been trying to use Mozilla since long before 0.9.6 (that was the version 
still lingering on this particular computer today), but this bug, more than 
anything, has kept me from using it. It seems that it becomes gravely worse for 
someone who is stumped by it the first time. My memory of how bad this bug is 
for an initial setup (many months ago) has faded, but I never got Mozilla set up 
correctly the first time, and ever since then Mozilla will not even look for my 
Netscape email files any more. (Mozilla might be reading my configuration files, 
or it might have already saved my usual settings - I don't know how to test 
this without messing up my Netscape settings.) But I can't get my email at all. 
So I feel (and probably am) completely blocked from using Mozilla. (The related 
Address Book import issue is far less serious: I'm quite willing and able to 
export/import those data manually. I've already exported all Netscape data to 
dBase, combined it with another database, and cleaned it up. If now, once again, 
I can't use Mozilla, all that effort will only make my life more complicated. 
The data will still be good, but there are now more fields, and I'm not going to 
try to squeeze it back into Netscape's proprietary database. OTOH, I don't want 
to go back to using the old Netscape Address Book after having done all this 
work.) So it feels like Mozilla is going to orphan me entirely from 
Netscape/Mozilla, and I've been fighting for a long time not to start using IE. 
This is a SERIOUS bug.
This is a really needed feature.  What would be best is if it could export as 
well, so users don't feel so trapped.  That is one of my fears for moving my 
account over.  With Netscape 4.x, almost all other clients can import mail from 
it.  With Mozilla, nobody can.  So if Mozilla can return a mail account to 
Netscape 4 format, that would be a big plus... then Mozilla could boast "no 
obligation"
> So if Mozilla can return a mail account to 
> Netscape 4 format, that would be a big plus

Mozilla stores mail in the common mbox format - exactly the same format 4.x
uses. Noone is trapped. This bug is about a nice UI for it only.
*** Bug 138998 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
-> Import
Assignee: racham → cavin
Component: Profile Migration → Import
Summary: Need options for importing 4.x and Mozilla mails → Need options for importing 4.x and Mozilla mails (mbox)
*** Bug 144059 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 144393 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 150166 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 37

17 years ago
Could this bug possibly be a dupe of bug 35509?

Comment 38

17 years ago
no. that's for Address Book, this is for Mailboxes

Comment 39

17 years ago
*** Bug 161609 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 164176 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 158980 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 42

17 years ago
I'm very interested in being able to migrate a lot of people away from Outlook &
Outlook Express (for obvious reasons), and the ability to read a .pst file
without having the application actually installed on a machine is EXTREMELY
important. 

This not only applies during migrations or upgrades to new machines, it is also
needed when trying to read really old mail that was archived using Outlook to
recover missing information.

Comment 43

17 years ago
It seems crazy that mozilla doesn't have an option (even in 1.2a) to import 
mbox format as a folder. It seems crazy not to support importing from the 
maildir format as well, considering how easy it would be.

At the very least this could be solved (aside from using the existing utility) 
by giving the option, upon creating a new folder, to specify a file to populate 
the new folder from. Or in other words, the existing mbox file is simply copied 
into the file for a new mail folder. This makes the most sense in terms of the 
easy way to do it, though it may make more sense in terms of being consistent 
to support it through the existing import interface. Since I'm not interested 
in diving into the code and figuring it out, I leave that as an exercise for 
the implementer.
*** Bug 172013 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 176329 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 178279 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 47

17 years ago
I love my moz on win and lin(esp with orbit theme), but I have corrupted
something in two installs (pre 0.9.6 and 1.2b) and cannot get back my carefully
set up mailboxes (with my mail) 
It's fine to have bugs, and is the price of being an early adopter, but losing
data permenantly is not fine.
Please have a go at fixing this soon - it prevents evangelism- it is more than
an enhancemant. 
thanks
*** Bug 180066 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 184619 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Compare bug 22689 for the whole profile (and links to other bugs for other parts
of the profile).

Comment 51

17 years ago
I have found a good workaround. 

The problem is most severe when trying to restore mail from a backup file. 

It is a consequence of:
     a)salting the profile directory
     b)the fact that panacea.dat and prefs.js store absolute (not relative) paths.
      c)The fact that mozilla knows what .slt directory to expect inside any
given profile and will refuse to start with another directory.

Consider a backup called /backup/.mozilla/rjn/xyz123.slt/ which we want to import.

1)Create a new profile in mozilla called rjn

2)This will contain a new .slt directory, let's assume it is abc456.slt

3)copy the backup directory xyz123.slt/ into the NEW /rjn/ directory.

4) rm -rf abc456.slt

5) ln -s xyz123.slt abc456.slt   (Linux only, I'm afraid).

This works because it the symlink fools (c) and the absolute path is still correct.

There is another, rather horrid workaround which I gave in bug 172013 - it
works, but takes about an hour of hackery. 

[My view: (a) has it's advantages, but (b) and (c) are bugs in their own right!]

Comment 53

17 years ago
Mozilla 1.2.1 still crashes in email. What results is I still have all my files
in the Email and News directories but have no way for Mozilla to get to them.
Thus I have to recreate all my email/news accounts, and effectively lose my old
saved emails. Does anyone know how to get these old emails back? 
Chuck Roberts, how about reading this page, e.g. comment 6?

Comment 55

17 years ago
Re: comment 53

>(...) I have to recreate all my email/news accounts (...)

That's bug 170539 ("prefs.js gets wiped - all mail/news accounts settings lost").

To recover your mail messages by hand, see also:

http://www.mozilla.org/start/1.0/faq/mail-news.html#3.8
http://www.mozillazine.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=1901
http://www.mozillazine.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=4837
http://www.mozillazine.org/forums/viewtopic.php?t=2450
http://www.mail-archive.com/users%40beonex.org/msg00195.html

That is to say, in addition to copying the mailbox files (Inbox...) to the
directories of the new mail accounts, it's better to remove the old mail summary
files *.msf, and keep the files with no extension, like Inbox, etc., where the
messages are stored.

And keep a copy of the prefs.js file, just in case, and restore it to its place
if this happens again, to avoid recreating your accounts by hand.
*** Bug 198717 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 57

16 years ago
*** Bug 199243 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 58

16 years ago
I need this too.
I have several computers. I want to migrate my Mozilla e-mail data from the
first to the second computer but the second has already received e-mails on
Mozilla. So I can't simply copy the profile when I want to store my e-mails in
the other PC.

Also when the profile is defect for some reasons, it would be good if a tool
would exist to export the E-Mail data to a special file that  can be imported to
other profiles.

It would be good also when that could be made with account preferences. When you
have got many E-mailboxes (say 6) and three are installed on Computer 2 the
other three on computer 1, it would be good when you could import the
preferences of the other three accounts to computer 2.

Updated

16 years ago
Whiteboard: *** See comment # 55 for a workaround ***
*** Bug 205637 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 60

16 years ago
Thank you for your help.

I often back up to other HDD or CDs, but I have never been able to get Mozilla
to SEE any, let alone restore any of my addressbooks or saved mail - even if
they are clearly *.ldif, etc.

I think the widespread use of CD-RW should encourage developement of a facility
to restore, search and find backed-up adressbooks and mail.

Cheers,

Julian
Brisbane, Australia

Comment 61

16 years ago
on my pc there are currently 7 folders with mozilla-mails,
because i don't use other mail clients.
today i started my pc and ...
... i needed to create a new mail profile for my main mail account,
which i have done before 2 times due to the same unwanted loss of 
memory.
i can bear the setting-up process of the account.
this is done in a minute.
what's hard to understand is, that i can't import mozilla mails.

i've got all my mail-files saved on cd-r,
without the possiblity to import them.

my opinion to the dicussion going on for years now:
what makes you crawl on the floor,
nag on everything nagable
is not a lack of enhancement ...
it's a bug!!!
> what makes you crawl on the floor

We are not crawling on the floor. If *you* have an interest in getting this
fixed, then fix it. If you can't, pay somebody to do it. If you don't want to or
can't that either, then please just vote for this bug and *don't* comment here
<http://bugzilla.mozilla.org/page.cgi?id=etiquette.html>. But don't expect
wonders. Thanks.
*** Bug 196768 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 64

16 years ago
*** Bug 216925 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 232820 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 66

15 years ago
Something strange has been happening for me. with build 2002040808, my mail
accounts keep disappearing. I start up Mozilla and get the Mozilla welcome
screen. My bookmarks are there, but no mail accounts. I have been having a lot
of trouble recreating them. For example, setting the local folder to the same
place does not let Mozilla "see" my pre-existing folders!. 

Is there a way to make a new profile and to migrate all the mail, certificates,
stored passwords, etc to the new profile? Then at least I would be backed up.

Comment 67

15 years ago
Ok, so we are in prior of the 1.7 release and there's still no way to tell
mozilla to take the folder xyz while creating a new account after a system
reinstall ???
That's poor. Sorry.
There schould be additional options in the account-creator assistent:
- create new mail account (already there)
- create new news account (already there)
- import existing mail account
- import existing news account

In the proceeding dialogs you should be asked for the exact folder, where your
old profile lies and given the opportunity to tell mozilla to search for
.slt-folders itself (don't forget the note, that this would take quite an amount
of time...).

Of course the two new options should be available in the import tool to.

The tricky thing is, that the mails and prefs found in the old folder should be
*copied* into the actual, standard user folder for two reasons:
- first, wie don't want to touch the backup
- second, we don't want the mails resp. the prefs to be spread over the whole
system (that's the case, when you do it like I do: create an account with the
right settings and the give mozilla the folder, where it finds the old mails.
problems that arise from that are e.g. that deleting mails is corrupted: even
when they are not displayed, they are still in the mailbox-files. that's bad for
virus-mails, that are detected by the scanner again and again though deleted, so
the user doesn't know where to look for... and another hard problem is, that
it's almost impossible to do a complete backup of all mails and prefs...)

So I think my solution is quite simple to implement. It's just a work of adding
options to the dialogs, searching and copying.

Comments appreciated.

Comment 69

15 years ago
I've just installed mozilla-win32-1.8a1-installer.exe on a notebook with 
MS-W-XP. This user normally reads mail from an IMAP account; to let it have his stuff while offline, I copied his mail-folders (in mailbox format) in his 'Local  folders' dir; Moz didn't noticed them, no way to tell it to refresh folder list.
Then closed/opened Moz, and now got copied folders listed under 'local folders'. 
But: all appear void, seems there's no way to have Moz re-index a (selected) folder. Then again, switching selection between some folders, got 2 of them correctly re-indexed (I mean, Moz made the headers summary). Wierd; no idea why it decided just those 2 are worth attention, and how. Now I'm still stuck with apperently empty folders, hoping for some glitch to kick in and convince Moz to do its duty.
Notebook has gone, back to an ol'MS-W95 pc, installed same 1.8a1, to play a bit 
further. Copied 2 mailboxes in localfolders, on startup Moz sees them and index 
them. Hmmm... too easy; 1 is ~300kB, the other is ~40kB, while those on notebook 
where several MB - maybe the size... tried with a 12MB folder... no problem, as
before, start Moz, select the new folder and it got indexed quickly.
Ah, folders on notebook where sub-folders, ie mailboxes in a directory; except 2, that is; then made LocalFolders/dir1 and copied therein a folder mbx1... Moz sees dir1 and mbx1, but no way to have Moz index it. Select dir1 and got permanent (though non blocking) hourglass, select mbx1 got blank, tried to copy in it a msg, got a 'Can't write / no disk space / compress your folder' error, tryed to search mbx1 for something, got an endless 'searching...' dialog (non blocked).
Grumph... try to make LocalFolders/dir2 from within Moz, then a (void) subfolder
dir2/mbx2... I see that Moz makes a directory dir2.sbd, and a 0bytes mbx2 file therein (plus mbx2.msf); closed Moz, copied mbx1 in dir2.sbd, opened Moz... viola', got dir2/mbx1 indexed!
Ok, the trick is the .sbd, right? No. renamed dir1 -> dir1.sbd, now Moz doesn't see LocalFolders/dir1* anymore.
So there seems to be some trick as well as some possible bug in the way Mozilla
treats (local) (sub)folders / directories. 
I think there's no need for an explict 'reindex' context-menu command, as long 
as that's done autom. on selection.
Also, an 'import mail' for mailbox format may not be needed as well, since all that's needed is copy/paste - problem though is that in eg XP LocalFolders lies in hidden directory, and pushing innocents to play with hidden stuff may lead to
system subversion.
But definitely the glitch on directory/folder should be documented untill it gets fixed: while it's easy to learn the rule, 'first make your directory/folder tree, then copy in your stuff', importing a tree with many subdirs is a pain, and may not work with scripted stuff (eg rsync). 


Comment 70

15 years ago
Same thing for importing mails from Thunderbird. Please change the summary.

Comment 71

15 years ago
*** Bug 256047 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Product: MailNews → Core

Comment 72

15 years ago
The import of Netscape 4.x mails is fixed, see comment 35. But still we can't
import from other Mozilla/Netscape6-7/Thunderbird profiles or single mbox files
(only first time profile migration works). Changing summary.
Assignee: cavin → nobody
Keywords: mozilla1.0
QA Contact: nbaca
Summary: Need options for importing 4.x and Mozilla mails (mbox) → Tools-> Import -> Mail: Need options for importing Mozilla/Thunderbird/Netscape6-7 mails (mbox)

Comment 73

15 years ago
*** Bug 171828 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 74

15 years ago
*** Bug 249981 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 75

15 years ago
*** Bug 256358 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 76

15 years ago
*** Bug 215306 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 77

15 years ago
*** Bug 274920 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 78

15 years ago
*** Bug 276085 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 79

15 years ago
*** Bug 277082 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 80

15 years ago
*** Bug 280787 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 81

14 years ago
Wow.. This problem has been around since at least year 2001!  Mozilla can
migrate from LOTS of mail clients but NOT from Mozilla!  Why?  Is this on
purpose?  Many of us need to buy a new laptop or other computer occasionally and
move Mozilla profiles (easily!) to the new machines.  Yet,  we still have NO
MIGRATION PATH.

If I agree to donate US$500 personally to the person who comes up with a quality
and workable export/import fix for this,  will this help?   (And I do NOT mean a
ten step process!)
Joe Mehaffey

From the Mozilla FAQs.
"Migrating from other Internet client software

Mozilla can import data directly from other popular Internet clients such as
Netscape Communicator, Microsoft Internet Explorer, Microsoft Outlook or Outlook
Express, and Eudora. Mozilla can also import data in several standard file
formats, so migrating from other client software is also possible.

Comment 82

14 years ago
I've been using Netscape\Mozilla since maybe NS 4.03, have done manual backups
in DOS, system restores, NS/Mozilla restores and so forth all along in Win 3.11
and Win98SE. Here are some tips applicable to a batchfile, Unix script or
Mozilla backup utility.

The public prefs includes the Mail & News Account Settings on the Mail edit
menu. On the Server Settings screen is the Local Directory setting for the (POP)
account in question. That specifies where your account's mailboxes are. To
simplify storage and backup (in case you want to reformat and reinstall your
version of Windows), move your user data off of the system partition. Your mail
is typically on C:\Windows\Application
Data\Mozilla\yadda\yadda\mail\servername\the-actual-mail

You can make a new directory on a different partition, copy the contents of your
actual mail directory to the new directory, and then set the Local Directory for
the account to that new directory in your Mail and News Account Settings. The
nwe path is arbitrary, and you can make it shorter and simpler than the
original. From that folder, you can copy your files to backup, or from backup
back into the folder. I have gotten into the habit of renaming Inbox and Sent to
backup names monthly, (ren Inbox.* 2005MarchInbox.*). That closes out the old
Inbox and a new one will be made when you restart Mozilla. Comment #55 says the
files with extensions don't need copying---they're rebuilt as needed. It would
be nice if the backup were done by a utility, but I don't mind doing it manually. 

The other vital piece of Mozilla (mail and everything else) information is
what's in your C:\Windows\Application Data Mozilla folder. Copying your entire
Application Data folder to backup (or at least the Mozilla data) is the way to
save and if necessary restore your Mozilla configuration including bookmarks,
addressbooks, spamfilter data, etc. Xcopy or drag'n'drop does the
subdirectories. Copying the entire Application Data folder is good because a few
programs put data files in the top of that folder instead of in application
folders. One big chunk of data you don't need in backup is what's in the cache.
You can delete everything in the cache before copying.

Main mail directory and Mozilla data backup directory on D:, with backup of both
to CD as desired, might be a good backup plan. A batchfile could do part of it.
You'd probably have to run a CD burner utility in any case to back the data up
to a CD.

Comment 83

14 years ago
Re Comment #82:

1)The annoying thing with the pod2354fd.slt  (or whatever) salting is that it
makes scripts really hard to write. Unfortunately, this is still hardcoded into
prefs.js (why prefs.js can't use the relative path, I don't know), which means
that you can't easily change it. (I found a workaround by symbolic links)

2)You should only delete the .msf files after doing File->Compact Folders.
Otherwise, you'll find deleted messages come back to life etc. Essentially the
.msf files contain the indexes of the mail files, and also a record of when a
message has been deleted, but not removed from the mail file.

Comment 84

14 years ago
*** Bug 291701 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 294204 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 86

14 years ago
*** Bug 314747 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 87

14 years ago
I have my old profiles in a hidden directory (~/.mozilla). Thuderbid offers no
option to show hidden files and directories, so I can't mark the files to
import!

I can't also import the adress-book and the messages automatically, there is no
option for automatically search for other profiles from mozilla programms.

Comment 88

14 years ago
*** Bug 315110 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
*** Bug 333017 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***

Comment 90

13 years ago
I agree with comment 87, that's really a pain. And now that Mozilla support will soon be over, it would be great if we could have an easy way to import messages and address book easily without having to use hacks and workarounds. Else users won't migrate to Tb.
Flags: blocking-thunderbird2?

Comment 91

13 years ago
the 4.x code is proprietary and we can't ship with it. See early comments. We do support profile migration from mozilla.
Flags: blocking-thunderbird2? → blocking-thunderbird2-
Keywords: helpwanted
*** Bug 363730 has been marked as a duplicate of this bug. ***
Duplicate of this bug: 367572

Comment 94

13 years ago
Joe Mehaffey, I'm tempted to add another $500.
Meanwhile another year has passed.
Unbelievable. There are dozens of requests like this.
Nobody is even assigned for this.

Compare this to Eclipse.
I report the bug on Monday.
By Wednesday at last, somebody is assigned.
For small corrections the fix is made within the week(s) after that.

Eclipse has of course more paid developers and other contributors.
Yet... .

Comment 95

13 years ago
(In reply to comment #94)
> I'm tempted to add another $500.

Heh, the funny thing is, that now MoCo is drowning in cash... they could pay someone a hundred times that amount just for fixing this bug and it won't be more than a speck on the balance sheet.
Duplicate of this bug: 380366

Comment 97

12 years ago
I'd love a Netscape/Mozilla/Seamonkey/Thunderbird-to-Thunderbird importer.  It would automate what's done in comment #55.

It's ironic that Thunderbird has a "competitive" importer for grabbing data out of other vendor's programs, but nothing for grabbing data out of previous versions of its own product!

The reason is for what other people mentioned: doing re-installs of Thunderbird on a new computer, testing new Thunderbird versions safely, and so forth.

I'd love a way to use the import wizard to take an existing address book, account settings, local folders, etc. from another directory outside the current Thunderbird installation, and copy them in.  It would handle the directory name salting, folder compaction, MSF file scrubbing, preferences directory renaming, and so forth, all correctly.  Doing this by hand is time-consuming and error-prone.

Updated

11 years ago
Duplicate of this bug: 349333

Updated

11 years ago
Duplicate of this bug: 346229
Duplicate of this bug: 429772
QA Contact: import

Comment 101

11 years ago
I have found a temporary solution at
http://nic-nac-project.de/~kaosmos/mboximport-en.html

Just download and install the ad-on. It works great. Perhaps it could be made a regular feature of Thunderbird. 
Target Milestone: Future → ---
I have formatted a hard disk, of other people, and then installed Thunderbird.

Then, there is no way to import the messages on .mfl files.

I are a fan of Firefox, but I totally discard Thunderbird as a serious e-mail client, because of unbeliably incapability of import his own e-mail format.

This is not a required enhancement, is a totally blocking bug.

By the way, the mentioned (by Martin Pagan) link on:

http://nic-nac-project.de/~kaosmos/mboximport-en.html

Simply does not work.

I could not believe that this bug is 
"Assigned To:  	 Nobody; OK to take it and work on it"

The tool for importing from Netscape, ask for a profile to choose, and gives no option to be choosen from.

... and it NEED to say import from Thunderbird format!!!- No excuses.
Flags: wanted-thunderbird3?
Duplicate of this bug: 442049

Updated

11 years ago
Blocks: 272292
(Assignee)

Updated

11 years ago
Product: Core → MailNews Core
Duplicate of this bug: 377324
Duplicate of this bug: 418872

Comment 106

11 years ago
"Reported:  	2000-12-20"
Hey, this is only eight years old!
Duplicate of this bug: 473524
Duplicate of this bug: 474147

Comment 109

11 years ago
Apologies for the duplicate - hard to believe it is that hard to import mail from TB to TB ! 

Its somewhat of a necessity - if, as I did, you end up with TB corrupting the database, and being unable to restore from Time Machine, and now unable to import the mail back into a new copy of TB

Comment 110

11 years ago
What I think the most shameful thing is that acutally, the developers worked on mail import for Thunderbird 3, but not on this important issue.

The Thunderbird 3 preliminary feature list says:
http://www.mozillamessaging.com/en-US/thunderbird/3.0a2/releasenotes/

# Shredder (this is the codename for Thunderbird 3) can now import mail from Mail.app on Mac OS X
# Outlook Express import now copies SSL and port settings

Have the developers already noticed this important bug here?
Why did they add another mail client but not the own program?
wanted‑thunderbird3-; I can't see us getting to this for thunderbird3 unless someone provides a patch.
Flags: wanted-thunderbird3? → wanted-thunderbird3-
Magnus, I think this is a really important and embarrassing bug, see comment 110. I think it's necessary to put some work in here (I'm not volunteering). Asking for reconsideration.
Flags: wanted-thunderbird3- → wanted-thunderbird3?

Updated

11 years ago
Flags: blocking-thunderbird3?
Duplicate of this bug: 479419
Comment #97 is the key statement in this bug, thanks for writing it, JoSH.

Agreed, it'd be nice.  I don't think we'll block on it, but would love some contributions here.  If you're interested in working on this oft-requested bug, let me know.
Flags: wanted-thunderbird3?
Flags: wanted-thunderbird3+
Flags: blocking-thunderbird3?
Flags: blocking-thunderbird3-
I totally back Comment #97.

Is the most important bug of Thunderbird.

Is the only reason I do EVER install another mail software. And I install hundreds.

Reinstalling Thunderbird is a HELL.

Comment 116

9 years ago
LOL!!! 1 minute ago I was angry, but this is funny!
I just lost my emails thanks to you. Yes I lost them even if they may be lying in an obscure folder, cause they are not in Thunderbird right now!
Let 99,999 users dig in newsgroups to find out how to copy files manually, rather than 1 guy to fix this.
and dating sinse 2000/2003? come on! make a new bug entry and clear your heads guys.. you are confused!

Comment 117

9 years ago
I found your problem, (I know because we had the same problem at work)

On Vista, The updater is elevated to admin (UAC on) to perform the update.
then Thunderbird is restarted.. with admin priviledges!! so the profiles go in %appdata%Local   instead of %appdata%Roaming.

I closed thunderbird, then restarted manually, and boom .. the old profile was there.

So at least dont restart Thunderbird from the updater as a temporary measure. ;-)
You know this doesn't belong here. I just filed bug 553012 based on your comment.
Duplicate of this bug: 587477
Duplicate of this bug: 752180

Updated

7 years ago
Duplicate of this bug: 765047

Updated

6 years ago
Duplicate of this bug: 925533

Updated

4 years ago
Duplicate of this bug: 1184495

Updated

3 years ago
Duplicate of this bug: 436374

Updated

3 months ago
Duplicate of this bug: 1527032

Updated

3 months ago
Duplicate of this bug: 793367

Updated

3 months ago
Duplicate of this bug: 1526794
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