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Thread: Best e-mail archive tool

  1. #1
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    Best e-mail archive tool

    Hi

    I'd like to download all the mail from an old web mail account I have into either Evolution or Thunderbird.

    As I like to do clean installs (not upgrades) when a new version of Ubuntu is released, I'd like some way of archiving all these old mails, and then being able to re-import them into Evolution or Thunderbird.

    What's the best way to do that?

    cheers

  2. #2
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    Re: Best e-mail archive tool

    Here is one approach I'm looking at myself .. not necessarily the "best" way ..

    http://www.enkive.org/

  3. #3
    psusi is offline Ubuntu addict and loving it
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    Re: Best e-mail archive tool

    Just transfer the mail to a local folder, compact it, then back up the file.

  4. #4
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    Re: Best e-mail archive tool

    Having downloaded the one time, all the mail messages will be in the hidden folders .evolution and/or .thunderbird in your home. Simply backing up those two folders should do everything, along with all your contacts/address book etc etc.

    When you do a clean install of the next version of ubuntu, just copy those folders back into your home folder and everything will be there. Alternatively use a separate home partition and updating will suddenly become very much simpler.

    Do you need more?
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  5. #5
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    Re: Best e-mail archive tool

    Hi,

    I'm not sure how I transfer to a local folder? Ah it's OK I see the answer above now. Thanks all.

    cheers

  6. #6
    psusi is offline Ubuntu addict and loving it
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    Re: Best e-mail archive tool

    Backing up all of .thunderbird will get the caches of the remote folders as well. Under .thunderbird there is a XXXX.profile directory that contains Mail/Local Folders. In there you will find foo and foo.msf files for each local folder ( foo ) in thunderbird. You only need to back up the main foo file for each folder you want to keep. The msf files are indexes to speed up access and will be regenerated when not found.

    When you reinstall, simply drop the mailbox files into your new .thunderbird/XXX.default/Mail/Local Folders/ directory, and they will show up when you open thunderbird.

  7. #7
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    Re: Best e-mail archive tool

    Quote Originally Posted by psusi View Post
    Backing up all of .thunderbird will get the caches of the remote folders as well. Under .thunderbird there is a XXXX.profile directory that contains Mail/Local Folders. In there you will find foo and foo.msf files for each local folder ( foo ) in thunderbird. You only need to back up the main foo file for each folder you want to keep. The msf files are indexes to speed up access and will be regenerated when not found.

    When you reinstall, simply drop the mailbox files into your new .thunderbird/XXX.default/Mail/Local Folders/ directory, and they will show up when you open thunderbird.
    Agreed!

    But if you want to make sure you have all the email account(s) info as well, you may as well backup and restore the whole .thunderbird folder
    DISTRO: Xubuntu 12.04-64bit --- Code-tags --- Boot-Repair --- Grub2 wiki & Grub2 Basics --- RootSudo

  8. #8
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    Re: Best e-mail archive tool

    All my msf files are in the home folder, but when I try to import everything into Thunderbird, the only option I get is to import from Communicatorx.

    If I try to import mail only, the "import preferences" option does not activate, i.e. there is no way that I can select any preferences. The window says to import from: then there is just a "dead" window.

  9. #9
    psusi is offline Ubuntu addict and loving it
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    Re: Best e-mail archive tool

    Quote Originally Posted by Jan Greeff View Post
    All my msf files are in the home folder, but when I try to import everything into Thunderbird, the only option I get is to import from Communicatorx.

    If I try to import mail only, the "import preferences" option does not activate, i.e. there is no way that I can select any preferences. The window says to import from: then there is just a "dead" window.
    You don't import them; you just drop the files back in the right place in the .thunderbird directory.

  10. #10
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    Re: Best e-mail archive tool

    On your old system, run:

    Code:
    tar czvf thunderbird_backup.tar.gz ~/.thunderbird
    Then copy thunderbird_backup.tar.gz to a USB stick or whatever you're using to store your files during your reinstall.

    On your new system, drop it into your home folder and run:

    Code:
    mv .thunderbird thunderbird_old
    
    tar xvf thunderbird_backup.tar.gz
    The mv command is only necessary if you've opened thunderbird already on the new machine, since we don't want any new settings to interfere with the old profile.

    When you next start thunderbird you should get all your old stuff just like nothing's changed.
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