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Export messages and folders from Thunderbird to Outlook / Outlook Express

I was tired of some problems experienced in Thunderbird database and the lack of support of Windows Desktop Search and I decided to migrate from Thunderbird to Outlook.

I found several tutorials explaining how to do it using the free tool IMAPSize.

The problem with that procedure is that email conversion using this tool needs to select manually each Thunderbird directory that contains the messages of each folder. It is fine for a few directories but a very long task if you have more than a hundred.

In addition to this issue, I found some export problems using the tool: it works in most of the messages but there are some problems with certain messages that are created with a wrong structure or with problems in the header (e.g.: empty subject and wrong received timestamp) when importing into Outlook Express.

Looking for another method, I found a free tool Tbird2OE from PractiSoft. It is rudimentary but it does the first job: it exports all the messages to eml format keeping folder structure and no errors.

To import messages into Outlook Express, the tutorial suggests to drag them in each exported folder. Again, this is simple for small amount of folders but it could take considerable time if you have lots of folders.

For that reason I wrote a tool to import the exported messages using our product OEAPI to store messages in Outlook Express.

Here is the step-by-step tutorial:

  1. Compact messages (recommended but optional)
  2. Use Tbird2OE to export messages from your Thunderbird profile:
    • Top edit box your mail root in the top edit box, usually something like this: C:\Documents and Settings\UserName\Application Data\Thunderbird\Profiles\awfiwoeu.default\Mail\Local Folders
    • Bottom edit box: any path where the emails will be stored in eml format keeping folder structure
  3. Install OEImportEml:
    • Set the same directory that you specified in Tbird2OE as export path (the bottom edit box)
    • Set Thunderbird ‘Sent’ folder if your installation is not English (the folder specified here is forwarded to ‘Sent Items’ in Outlook Express)
  4. If you want to use Outlook, run Outlook and select to import messages from Outlook Express




3 comments:
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Alexis said...
May 18, 2009 at 1:38 PM  

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Alexis said...
June 7, 2009 at 5:17 AM  

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gravatar
Alex said...
June 26, 2009 at 9:53 AM  

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