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Migrating Thunderbird from Mac to Windows

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What's the right way to migrate a Thunderbird profile from a Mac to Windows 10, in a way that preserves multiple email accounts and identities?

I use Thunderbird 60.6.1 on macOS 10.14. I have 9 email accounts with about 20 email identities between them. I would like to copy all these to a Thunderbird profile in a Windows 10 VM that I'm running on the same machine under VMware, so that I can access all my email accounts in Thunderbird under both OSes. How can I do this?

I have tried copying the contents of my ~/Library/Thunderbird/Profiles/<whatever>.default profile directory over to the %USERPROFILE%/AppData/Local/Thunderbird/Profiles/<whatever>.default on the Windows VM. It kind of works, in that mail appears there and I can log in to my mail server, but only 1 of my 9 email accounts shows up on the receiving end.

I have tried doing the transfer both with a .zip file of my profile that I transferred over using Dropbox and VMware shared folders, and a FAT-formatted USB drive that I first attached to the Mac side and then the Windows side. When I did the zip file, I got a couple errors when extracting it. No errors when copying the profile over using the USB drive. But same results with both procedures: only one (my primary) email account shows up on the receiving Windows side.

Any ideas?

What's the right way to migrate a Thunderbird profile from a Mac to Windows 10, in a way that preserves multiple email accounts and identities? I use Thunderbird 60.6.1 on macOS 10.14. I have 9 email accounts with about 20 email identities between them. I would like to copy all these to a Thunderbird profile in a Windows 10 VM that I'm running on the same machine under VMware, so that I can access all my email accounts in Thunderbird under both OSes. How can I do this? I have tried copying the contents of my ~/Library/Thunderbird/Profiles/<whatever>.default profile directory over to the %USERPROFILE%/AppData/Local/Thunderbird/Profiles/<whatever>.default on the Windows VM. It kind of works, in that mail appears there and I can log in to my mail server, but only 1 of my 9 email accounts shows up on the receiving end. I have tried doing the transfer both with a .zip file of my profile that I transferred over using Dropbox and VMware shared folders, and a FAT-formatted USB drive that I first attached to the Mac side and then the Windows side. When I did the zip file, I got a couple errors when extracting it. No errors when copying the profile over using the USB drive. But same results with both procedures: only one (my primary) email account shows up on the receiving Windows side. Any ideas?

Chosen solution

First, you're copying into the wrong location in Windows. It should be .../AppData/Roaming/Thunderbird/... To make it simpler, copy the ~/Library/Thunderbird folder from the Mac to .../AppData/Roaming on Windows, replacing whatever Thunderbird folder that may already exist. Make sure TB is closed when you do the copying on the Mac and pasting on the PC.

https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/moving-thunderbird-data-to-a-new-computer

Once you have the Thunderbird folder in the right place in Windows, open the profile folder, <whatever>.default, and delete pkcs11.txt to allow TB to read the passwords for the accounts (it's because of a path-naming difference between OS X and Windows).

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sfhowes
  • Top 10 Contributor
1438 solutions 6814 answers

Chosen Solution

First, you're copying into the wrong location in Windows. It should be .../AppData/Roaming/Thunderbird/... To make it simpler, copy the ~/Library/Thunderbird folder from the Mac to .../AppData/Roaming on Windows, replacing whatever Thunderbird folder that may already exist. Make sure TB is closed when you do the copying on the Mac and pasting on the PC.

https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/moving-thunderbird-data-to-a-new-computer

Once you have the Thunderbird folder in the right place in Windows, open the profile folder, <whatever>.default, and delete pkcs11.txt to allow TB to read the passwords for the accounts (it's because of a path-naming difference between OS X and Windows).

First, you're copying into the wrong location in Windows. It should be .../AppData/'''Roaming'''/Thunderbird/... To make it simpler, copy the ~/Library/Thunderbird folder from the Mac to .../AppData/Roaming on Windows, replacing whatever Thunderbird folder that may already exist. Make sure TB is closed when you do the copying on the Mac and pasting on the PC. https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/moving-thunderbird-data-to-a-new-computer Once you have the Thunderbird folder in the right place in Windows, open the profile folder, <whatever>.default, and delete pkcs11.txt to allow TB to read the passwords for the accounts (it's because of a path-naming difference between OS X and Windows).
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Bingo. Thank you!

Bingo. Thank you!
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