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How can I "remove" an account without deleting messages?

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Hi, I've read multiple questions about people deleting accounts and/or trying to get their emails back so I assume deleting an account from Thunderbird also removes the emails associated with that account. So my question is, how can I get rid of an account without deleting any emails?

I don't care if the account remains. I'm just trying to remove this account I no longer use from the "Get Messages" button so it doesn't pop up with an error every time I check my other email account.

Hi, I've read multiple questions about people deleting accounts and/or trying to get their emails back so I assume deleting an account from Thunderbird also removes the emails associated with that account. So my question is, how can I get rid of an account without deleting any emails? I don't care if the account remains. I'm just trying to remove this account I no longer use from the "Get Messages" button so it doesn't pop up with an error every time I check my other email account.
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JohannHan
  • Top 25 Contributor
3 solutions 83 answers

When you use POP it means all messages are gone after deleting the account in Thunderbird.

When you use IMAP, after deleting the account in Thunderbird, the messages are still on the server of the mail-provider.

When you use POP it means all messages are gone after deleting the account in Thunderbird. When you use IMAP, after deleting the account in Thunderbird, the messages are still on the server of the mail-provider.
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christ1
  • Top 25 Contributor
2151 solutions 15693 answers
How can I "remove" an account without deleting messages?

You can't. You'll need to copy messages you want to keep in Thunderbird to the 'Local Folders' account first. This goes for both, POP, and IMAP accounts. In case of IMAP the messages are copied from the server.

<blockquote> How can I "remove" an account without deleting messages? </blockquote> You can't. You'll need to copy messages you want to keep in Thunderbird to the 'Local Folders' account first. This goes for both, POP, and IMAP accounts. In case of IMAP the messages are copied from the server.
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Question owner

@Christ1 It just so happens I did store the emails in the Local Folders account. So now what?

@Christ1 It just so happens I did store the emails in the Local Folders account. So now what?
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christ1
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It just so happens I did store the emails in the Local Folders account.

Can you explain that in more detail?

Also, please confirm the account type of the account to be deleted.

<blockquote> It just so happens I did store the emails in the Local Folders account. </blockquote> Can you explain that in more detail? Also, please confirm the account type of the account to be deleted.
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Question owner

It's an email account (?) Basically, I selected "Keep message archives" and selected "Local Folders" as the destination. As for Sent mail, I selected the option to save a copy into the "Sent" folder in Local Folders.

It has been many years since this was set up. I think I followed Thunderbird's guide on how to set up a Gmail account using Thunderbird.

So now that sent and received messages have been saved in Local Folders, can I delete this email account without deleting the remaining messages? I can definitely say all emails have long since been deleted on Gmail without affecting the emails saved on Thunderbird.

It's an email account (?) Basically, I selected "Keep message archives" and selected "Local Folders" as the destination. As for Sent mail, I selected the option to save a copy into the "Sent" folder in Local Folders. It has been many years since this was set up. I think I followed Thunderbird's guide on how to set up a Gmail account using Thunderbird. So now that sent and received messages have been saved in Local Folders, can I delete this email account without deleting the remaining messages? I can definitely say all emails have long since been deleted on Gmail without affecting the emails saved on Thunderbird.

Modified by Derek888

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christ1
  • Top 25 Contributor
2151 solutions 15693 answers

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It's an email account (?)

POP or IMAP? Check your account settings.

I selected "Keep message archives" and selected "Local Folders" as the destination.

That defines the Archive folder. It doesn't actually archive messages. That's a manual step. Did you do that?

I can definitely say all emails have long since been deleted on Gmail without affecting the emails saved on Thunderbird.

That sounds like a POP account.

So now that sent and received messages have been saved in Local Folders, can I delete this email account without deleting the remaining messages?

Assuming there are no other folders with messages you want to keep you can delete the account.

It's recommended to create a full backup of your Thunderbird profile before doing that though. https://support.mozilla.org/kb/profiles-where-thunderbird-stores-user-data#w_backing-up-a-profile

<blockquote> It's an email account (?) </blockquote> POP or IMAP? Check your account settings. <blockquote> I selected "Keep message archives" and selected "Local Folders" as the destination. </blockquote> That defines the Archive folder. It doesn't actually archive messages. That's a manual step. Did you do that? <blockquote> I can definitely say all emails have long since been deleted on Gmail without affecting the emails saved on Thunderbird. </blockquote> That sounds like a POP account. <blockquote> So now that sent and received messages have been saved in Local Folders, can I delete this email account without deleting the remaining messages? </blockquote> Assuming there are no other folders with messages you want to keep you can delete the account. It's recommended to create a full backup of your Thunderbird profile before doing that though. https://support.mozilla.org/kb/profiles-where-thunderbird-stores-user-data#w_backing-up-a-profile
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Question owner

It's a POP account.

How about subfolders of Local Folders? I made subfolders of the various categories I wanted to save specific messages into. For example, one of the folders is located at: .../Mail/Local Folders/[subfolder] All messages are either in Local Folders or in a subfolder of Local Folders.

I should probably note my new email address (a POP account) also stores messages in Local Folders. Can I delete my old POP account without losing the messages?

It's a POP account. How about subfolders of Local Folders? I made subfolders of the various categories I wanted to save specific messages into. For example, one of the folders is located at: .../Mail/Local Folders/[subfolder] All messages are either in Local Folders or in a subfolder of Local Folders. I should probably note my new email address (a POP account) also stores messages in Local Folders. Can I delete my old POP account without losing the messages?

Modified by Derek888

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christ1
  • Top 25 Contributor
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I think you can. Make sure to create the profile backup though prior to start messing with it.

I think you can. Make sure to create the profile backup though prior to start messing with it.
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