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Mozilla Thunderbird - Backup & Restore

By Freeola Support on 1st May, 2019 | 2 Comment(s)

Welcome to the Freeola Internet customer support pages. This guide is designed to help with ensuring that you fully back up your mail client, Mozilla Thunderbird, should you need to upgrade your mail service.

 

This guide was written using Windows 10 and Thunderbird 60. The process of backing up this software on other versions will be similar, but may feature slight wording differences.

 

Backing Up Mozilla Thunderbird

 

Saving your messages


  1. Open up Thunderbird.

  2. Right click the main Inbox folder for the account you wish to backup from the left hand side menu and select the Properties option.

  3. Copy the text from the location folder, without the prefix ('mailbox:///') and remove the very last mention of 'Inbox', the result should look like this:

    'C:/Users/*yourusername*/AppData/Roaming/Thunderbird/Profiles/*****/Mail/*your mail server*/'
    Thunderbird Mailbox Location

  4. Now you will need to open this folder. To do so, click your Search Icon or Bar and type Run. This search should return the Run Application, which you should open. In the box that opens, paste the information from the previous step into the provided field and click OK.

  5. You will now be shown all of the files that contain your messages, simply copy and paste these to a safe location, such as your Documents folder or Desktop.
    List of Thunderbird storage folders

Your messages will now be backed up, should you need to delete the account.

 

Saving your Address Book


  1. Open up Thunderbird.

  2. From the Tools menu, select Address Book.

  3. From the left hand side menu, select the Category of contacts you wish to save. Please Note: Selecting All Address Books will result in a blank file.
    Personal Address Book in Thunderbird

  4. From the Tools menu select Export.

  5. Ensure that Comma Separated is selected and that you name your backup sensibly. Use the Save button to save your files in a safe location, such as your Documents folder or Desktop.Back up Address Book in Thunderbird

Once complete your Address Book will have been saved.

 

Restoring backups to Thunderbird

 

Restoring your messages


  1. Open up Thunderbird.

  2. Right click the main Inbox folder for the account you wish to backup from the left hand side menu and select the Properties option.

  3. Copy the text from the location folder, without the prefix ('mailbox:///') and remove the very last mention of 'Inbox', the result should look like this:

    'C:/Users/*yourusername*/AppData/Roaming/Thunderbird/Profiles/*****/Mail/*your mail server*/'
    Thunderbird Mailbox Location

  4. Now you will need to open this folder. To do so, click your Search Icon or Bar and type Run. This search should return the Run Application, which you should open. In the box that opens, paste the information from the previous step into the provided field and click OK.
    Windows 10 Run

  5. Close Thunderbird.

  6. Copy and paste your previously backed up messages into this folder, overwriting any files that prompt you to do so.
    List of Thunderbird storage folders

Your mail will now have been restored.

 

Restoring your Address Book


  1. Open up Thunderbird.

  2. From the Tools menu, select Address Book.

  3. From the Tools menu select Import.

  4. From the list of options provided, select to import an Address Book and press Next.
    Thunderbird Import Window

  5. You will now be asked to specify which type of file you are trying to import, if you are restoring a file backed up by using this guide, please select the option named Text file (LDIF, .tab, .csv, .txt) and press Next.
    Thunderbird Import Text File

  6. Use the Open window to find your backed up Address Book and click Open.

Your address book will now have been imported and can be found from the left hand side menu in your Address Book.


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Article Comments (2)
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Avatar
RAM 0112TB commented on 23rd June, 2012:
yes!but not in my case. the scenario is that the HDD of my computer are crashed down and the hard drive is no being detected by the BIOS. Bad thing is i don't have any backup. so? is it possible for me to access my existing account? because it always says that failed in connecting in my IMAP.
Avatar
Butch [staff] commented on 3rd July, 2012:
If your HDD has completely failed, and you had yet to backup the messages, then these are likely lost. However, somebody trained with computer hardware may be able to assist you in recovering some data from the drive.

As it seems that you do not have any Freeola e-mail addresses, I cannot assist you with your second query. This is something you will need to discuss directly with your e-mail service provider.

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