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when renaming an address book through properties, I can no longer see the new address book in my list. Where did it go?

Posted

I have about 30 different address books. Some of them where old but i didn't want to delete them. I no longer wanted them at the top of my list so I went to properties and added "z-" to the folder name to have them at the bottom of the list. Now I can't see the address books that I renamed. What happened to them and how do I get them back?

I have about 30 different address books. Some of them where old but i didn't want to delete them. I no longer wanted them at the top of my list so I went to properties and added "z-" to the folder name to have them at the bottom of the list. Now I can't see the address books that I renamed. What happened to them and how do I get them back?

Chosen solution

Excellent news. You did exactly the correct modifications in the correct places. You could see that the actual filename description for the .mab file was missing - the string was empty and so the actual address book did not show in your address book list, even though it still existed in the Profile folder. Good to hear that all is now sorted.

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Additional System Details

Application

  • User Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; rv:31.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/31.0

More Information

Fabián Rodríguez 70 solutions 557 answers

Hello,

In order to better assist you with your issue please provide us with a screenshot. If you need help to create a screenshot, please see How do I create a screenshot of my problem?

Once you've done this, attach the saved screenshot file to your forum post by clicking the Browse... button below the Post your reply box. This will help us to visualize the problem.

Thank you!

Hello, In order to better assist you with your issue please provide us with a screenshot. If you need help to create a screenshot, please see [[How do I create a screenshot of my problem?]] Once you've done this, attach the saved screenshot file to your forum post by clicking the '''Browse...''' button below the ''Post your reply'' box. This will help us to visualize the problem. Thank you!

Question owner

I had some old address books that I didn't want to delete and I wanted to alphabetize them at the bottom of the list so I used properties and added a "z-" in front of the address book name to drop the address book to the bottom of the list.. Does "Z" have a special command in the address book area of Thunderbird? That could have messed with the files.

I had some old address books that I didn't want to delete and I wanted to alphabetize them at the bottom of the list so I used properties and added a "z-" in front of the address book name to drop the address book to the bottom of the list.. Does "Z" have a special command in the address book area of Thunderbird? That could have messed with the files.
Fabián Rodríguez 70 solutions 557 answers

I can't reproduce this using TB 31.1 in Windows 7. What exact OS version and TB version are you using?

Does "Z" have a special command in the address book area of Thunderbird?

No, ZZ- should not make such address books disappear. I created a few and they were all listed alphabetically with new names (including ZZ-*).

I can't reproduce this using TB 31.1 in Windows 7. What exact OS version and TB version are you using? ''Does "Z" have a special command in the address book area of Thunderbird?'' No, ZZ- should not make such address books disappear. I created a few and they were all listed alphabetically with new names (including ZZ-*).

Question owner

I went to "about thunderbird" and saw that I had 24.6 version but at the same moment it updated my thunderbird to 31.1 I am running window 7. I also went and found the path to my address book files (see attached screen shot) and wanted to view my .mab files but I don't know what program to use to open them to see whats there....Can you help me with that so I can possible restore them?

I went to "about thunderbird" and saw that I had 24.6 version but at the same moment it updated my thunderbird to 31.1 I am running window 7. I also went and found the path to my address book files (see attached screen shot) and wanted to view my .mab files but I don't know what program to use to open them to see whats there....Can you help me with that so I can possible restore them?
Fabián Rodríguez 70 solutions 557 answers

It's unfortunate you had an automatic upgrade :( I would have suggested to upgrade manually to 24.8. Apologies if the following is a bit long, thanks in advance for your patience going through this.

There is a bug preventing sending to mailing lists which have spaces in their descriptions in Tuhnderbird 31.1. This has been reported as Bug #1060901. If you have an account on Bugzilla, please consider voting for that issue.

The exact error message is: XXXX is not a valid e-mail address because it is not of the form user@host. You must correct it before sending the e-mail.

Although not ideal, these workarounds should let you use your mailing lists until a proper fix is implemented:

  • While composing an email open the address book and select the list you are trying to send to, highlight all the names in the list and drag them to the To: box. This uses your existing data without modifying it.
  • Replacing the blanks " " between the words in such lists' descriptions with an underscore "_". This requires modifying your mailing list(s) description(s).
  • Downgrade to a previous version and disable automatic updates (Windows)

Reverting to a previous Thunderbird version and preventing automatic upgrades

In Windows, Thunderbird updates are automatic by default. To avoid similar situations in the future, you could change that and decide to have a more conservative approach to upgrades.

Before trying anything, make a backup of your current Thunderbird profile.

You can uninstall the current Thunderbird version via Control Panel > Programs and Features and reinstall a previous version, download it from here:

Click on the type for your OS. eg: If using Windows select 'win32' then select the language eg: en-GB = English british then download the .exe file

You can customize automatic updates behavior, however, it's under Tools > Options > Advanced > Update.

My suggestion would be to set it to Check for updates, but let me choose whether to install them., specially if you depend on email for critical / important business or personal matters.

It's unfortunate you had an automatic upgrade :( I would have suggested to upgrade manually to 24.8. Apologies if the following is a bit long, thanks in advance for your patience going through this. There is a bug preventing sending to mailing lists which have spaces in their descriptions in Tuhnderbird 31.1. This has been reported as [https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1060901 Bug #1060901]. If you have an account on Bugzilla, please consider voting for that issue. The exact error message is: XXXX is not a valid e-mail address because it is not of the form user@host. You must correct it before sending the e-mail. Although not ideal, these workarounds should let you use your mailing lists until a proper fix is implemented: * While composing an email open the address book and select the list you are trying to send to, highlight all the names in the list and drag them to the To: box. This uses your existing data without modifying it. * Replacing the blanks " " between the words in such lists' descriptions with an underscore "_". This requires modifying your mailing list(s) description(s). * Downgrade to a previous version and disable automatic updates (Windows) '''Reverting to a previous Thunderbird version and preventing automatic upgrades''' In Windows, Thunderbird updates are automatic by default. To avoid similar situations in the future, you could change that and decide to have a more conservative approach to upgrades. Before trying anything, [https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/profiles-tb#w_backing-up-a-profile make a backup of your current Thunderbird profile]. You can uninstall the current Thunderbird version via '''Control Panel > Programs and Features''' and reinstall a previous version, download it from here: * [http://ftp.mozilla.org/pub/mozilla.org/thunderbird/releases/31.0/ Version 31.0] * [http://ftp.mozilla.org/pub/mozilla.org/thunderbird/releases/24.8.0/ Version 24.8] Click on the type for your OS. eg: If using Windows select 'win32' then select the language eg: en-GB = English british then download the .exe file You can [https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/configuration-options-updates?esab=a&s=automatic+updates&r=1&as=s customize automatic updates behavior], however, it's under '''Tools > Options > Advanced > Update'''. My suggestion would be to set it to '''Check for updates, but let me choose whether to install them.''', specially if you depend on email for critical / important business or personal matters.

Question owner

please see my post from 9/7. My problem is not that i can't use my mailing list. My problem is that my address books (roughly 6 of them) have disappeared, got deleted or are hidden. I have a screen shot on 9/7 so could you please re-read my problem?

please see my post from 9/7. My problem is not that i can't use my mailing list. My problem is that my address books (roughly 6 of them) have disappeared, got deleted or are hidden. I have a screen shot on 9/7 so could you please re-read my problem?
Toad-Hall
  • Top 10 Contributor
1668 solutions 11094 answers

Helpful Reply

Make hidden files and folders visible:

First locate all address book filenames in thunderbird.

  • In Thunderbird:
  • Help > Troubleshooting Information
  • click on 'show folder' button

a new window opens. If you were going to alter anything you would need to close Thunderbird, but on this occasion you are just looking for information.

  • organise the list by 'Type'
  • look for all files that have MAB File type

each file will have a .mab extension and these are the address books. Two address books are default address books called: abook.mab = Personal Address Book history.mab = Collected Addresses. Other addressbooks maybe called eg: abook-1.mab

  • Make a list of all the address book.mab filenames. Careful.. as spelling is important.

Now to check what filename = what desciption in config editor

  • In thunderbird:
  • Tools > Options > Advanced > General tab
  • click on 'config Editor' button

it will tell you to be careful :)

now to locate info for each address book.

How to search for each address book using info gained from checking the Profile folder. In top search type: abook.mab you should see this line: ldap_2.servers.pab.filename; abook.mab

notice the 'pab' in ldap_2.servers.pab.filename

In top search type: pab you will now be able to locate:

  • ldap_2.servers.pab.description; Value = Personal Address Book
  • ldap_2.servers.pab.dirType; Value = 2
  • ldap_2.servers.pab.filename; Value = abook.mab
  • ldap_2.servers.pab.position; Value = 2

Using the above method will identify which .mab file in profile uses what info in config Editor.

You can do this same method to check to see if the 'Z addressbook name' is in the list and which .mab file is assigned to that description. In top search type the name you assigned: Z addressbook name it should return a line:

  • ldap_2.servers.XXXX.description; Value = Z addressbook name

make a note of the XXXX part in description In top search type: XXXX - whatever the actual description XXXX said to get the 'description', 'dirType', 'filename' and 'position'

Please report back on results. Did you locate:

eg: ldap_2.servers.XXXX.description;    Value = Z addressbook name

or was this still listed as old name without the Z part?

Did you locate all of these 'description', 'dirType', 'filename' and 'position' for each of the missing address books? or were only some of these shown? Tell us what you found.

Did you find that there were .mab files in Profile folder but they were missing in Config Editor or in Config Editor but not in Profile folder? Please state what was found. You can copy paste from the config editor.

Make hidden files and folders visible: * http://kb.mozillazine.org/Show_hidden_files_and_folders '''First locate all address book filenames in thunderbird.''' * In Thunderbird: * Help > Troubleshooting Information * click on 'show folder' button a new window opens. If you were going to alter anything you would need to close Thunderbird, but on this occasion you are just looking for information. * organise the list by 'Type' * look for all files that have MAB File type each file will have a .mab extension and these are the address books. Two address books are default address books called: abook.mab = Personal Address Book history.mab = Collected Addresses. Other addressbooks maybe called eg: abook-1.mab * Make a list of all the address book.mab filenames. Careful.. as spelling is important. '''Now to check what filename = what desciption in config editor''' * In thunderbird: * Tools > Options > Advanced > General tab * click on 'config Editor' button it will tell you to be careful :) now to locate info for each address book. '''How to search for each address book using info gained from checking the Profile folder.''' In top search type: abook.mab you should see this line: ldap_2.servers.pab.filename; abook.mab notice the 'pab' in ldap_2.servers.'''pab'''.filename In top search type: pab you will now be able to locate: * ldap_2.servers.pab.description; Value = Personal Address Book * ldap_2.servers.pab.dirType; Value = 2 * ldap_2.servers.pab.filename; Value = abook.mab * ldap_2.servers.pab.position; Value = 2 Using the above method will identify which .mab file in profile uses what info in config Editor. '''You can do this same method to check to see if the 'Z addressbook name' is in the list and which .mab file is assigned to that description.''' In top search type the name you assigned: Z addressbook name it should return a line: * ldap_2.servers.XXXX.description; Value = Z addressbook name make a note of the XXXX part in description In top search type: XXXX - whatever the actual description XXXX said to get the 'description', 'dirType', 'filename' and 'position' '''Please report back on results.''' Did you locate: eg: ldap_2.servers.XXXX.description; Value = Z addressbook name or was this still listed as old name without the Z part? Did you locate all of these 'description', 'dirType', 'filename' and 'position' for each of the missing address books? or were only some of these shown? Tell us what you found. Did you find that there were .mab files in Profile folder but they were missing in Config Editor or in Config Editor but not in Profile folder? Please state what was found. You can copy paste from the config editor.

Question owner

Thank you so much for your help. We are definitely on the same page ....

When i hit "show folders" I was able to find 34 .mab files in path OS (C)>users> lea amorosi>appdata>roaming>thunderbird>profiles>XXXdefault. See page #1.jpg . I have circled the folders I am missing. The folder name DID NOT change with the "Z" in front of it. the names remained the same and I could NOT find any folders with the "Z" in front of it.

Then i searched for all my abook files ....see page #2.jpg

Then I specifically searched for my first missing folder (abook-1.mab) called "CP Moms Advertisers" and you can see my results in page-3.jpg . There is no value in the description . so I right clicked and modified the value for description and BINGO my address book was back after restarting thunderbird......I did this for each of my missing address books and all is now restored. You started me down the path and I was able to go from there. Thank you so much!!!!!

Thank you so much for your help. We are definitely on the same page .... When i hit "show folders" I was able to find 34 .mab files in path OS (C)>users> lea amorosi>appdata>roaming>thunderbird>profiles>XXXdefault. See page #1.jpg . I have circled the folders I am missing. The folder name DID NOT change with the "Z" in front of it. the names remained the same and I could NOT find any folders with the "Z" in front of it. Then i searched for all my abook files ....see page #2.jpg Then I specifically searched for my first missing folder (abook-1.mab) called "CP Moms Advertisers" and you can see my results in page-3.jpg . There is no value in the description . so I right clicked and modified the value for description and BINGO my address book was back after restarting thunderbird......I did this for each of my missing address books and all is now restored. You started me down the path and I was able to go from there. Thank you so much!!!!!
Toad-Hall
  • Top 10 Contributor
1668 solutions 11094 answers

Chosen Solution

Excellent news. You did exactly the correct modifications in the correct places. You could see that the actual filename description for the .mab file was missing - the string was empty and so the actual address book did not show in your address book list, even though it still existed in the Profile folder. Good to hear that all is now sorted.

Excellent news. You did exactly the correct modifications in the correct places. You could see that the actual filename description for the .mab file was missing - the string was empty and so the actual address book did not show in your address book list, even though it still existed in the Profile folder. Good to hear that all is now sorted.