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Can't migrate thunderbird data from mac to windows

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Hi everyone, I'm having the same issue as others on here, and have tried everything listed in several threads, as well as a few other things I've read online. But when TB starts it is still not showing me all my old (migrated from mac) stuff. I'm pulling my hair out trying to figure it out as my wife works from home and needs access to her emails on the computer, where all her invoices etc are stored. Please help before I get bumped off and buried under the patio...

Hi everyone, I'm having the same issue as others on here, and have tried everything listed in several threads, as well as a few other things I've read online. But when TB starts it is still not showing me all my old (migrated from mac) stuff. I'm pulling my hair out trying to figure it out as my wife works from home and needs access to her emails on the computer, where all her invoices etc are stored. Please help before I get bumped off and buried under the patio...

Chosen solution

As you have recreated the actual mail account, if it is a POP account: you could import all the mbox (no extension) files from MAC profile into the POP mail account.

Use this addon: https://addons.thunderbird.net/en-US/thunderbird/addon/importexporttools-ng

Right click on pop mail account in folder pane or specific folder and select 'ImportExportTools' > 'Import'

If you did have a POP account but have now created an imap account, then import into 'Local Folders' mail account.

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Toad-Hall
  • Top 10 Contributor
1808 solutions 12184 answers

MAC stores profiles here: ~/Library/Thunderbird/Profiles/<Profile name>/

Windows 10 stoes profiles here: C:\Users\<Windows user name>\AppData\Roaming\Thunderbird\Profiles\<Profile name>\

Not sure what you did when copying over profile etc as you do not mention it.... Both MAC and Windows PC must not have Thunderbird running whilst copying / pasting the Thunderbird profile folder.

If you copied the MAC 'Thunderbird' folder and then on Windows computer deleted the default 'Thunderbird' folder and you pasted in the copied mac 'Thunderbird' folder into the 'Roaming' folder, there will be issues because the profile will contain path directory of a mac and not Windows.

Now you will need to get the mail accounts to look in the correct place and get the 'prefs,js' file updated.

If you move your profile between dissimilar operating systems (Windows to Mac OS X or vis versa for example) the path names in the 'prefs.js' file may have the wrong syntax.

eg: Windows - a pref may say something like this: "C:\\Users\\User Account name\\AppData\\Roaming\\Thunderbird\\Profiles\\abc12345.default\\Mail\\Local Folders"); But that location does not exist in a MAC especially the part I've marked in bold. So your copied Thunderbird folder will still have all the mac locations.

You can update the information stored in the prefs.js file by using the "Browse" button for the local directory in each mail account 'Account Settings' > 'Server Setting's And also Local Folders: Account Settings > Local Folders to specify the correct local directory.

Or if no access via Thunderbird you can do this manually by carefully editing the 'prefs.js' file. The 'prefs.js' file will be in the 'profile name' folder. Thunderbird must not be running. Create a copy of the 'prefs.js' file and save to desktop as temp backup just in case of error. You can open the 'prefs.js' file using Notepad.

Carefully work down through file checking for incorrect directory data and editing as necessary. Look at these prefs in particular:

  • user_pref("mail.root.imap",
  • user_pref("mail.root.none",
  • user_pref("mail.root.pop3",
  • user_pref("mail.server.server1.directory",
  • user_pref("mail.server.server2.directory",
  • and other ones like above with server number.directory.

then save the file. Start Thunderbird.

MAC stores profiles here: ~/Library/'''Thunderbird'''/Profiles/<Profile name>/ Windows 10 stoes profiles here: C:\Users\<Windows user name>\AppData\Roaming\'''Thunderbird'''\Profiles\<Profile name>\ Not sure what you did when copying over profile etc as you do not mention it.... Both MAC and Windows PC must not have Thunderbird running whilst copying / pasting the Thunderbird profile folder. If you copied the MAC 'Thunderbird' folder and then on Windows computer deleted the default 'Thunderbird' folder and you pasted in the copied mac 'Thunderbird' folder into the 'Roaming' folder, there will be issues because the profile will contain path directory of a mac and not Windows. Now you will need to get the mail accounts to look in the correct place and get the 'prefs,js' file updated. If you move your profile between dissimilar operating systems (Windows to Mac OS X or vis versa for example) the path names in the 'prefs.js' file may have the wrong syntax. eg: Windows - a pref may say something like this: "C:\\'''Users\\User Account name\\AppData\\Roaming'''\\Thunderbird\\Profiles\\abc12345.default\\Mail\\Local Folders"); But that location does not exist in a MAC especially the part I've marked in bold. So your copied Thunderbird folder will still have all the mac locations. You can update the information stored in the prefs.js file by using the "Browse" button for the local directory in each mail account 'Account Settings' > 'Server Setting's And also Local Folders: Account Settings > Local Folders to specify the correct local directory. Or if no access via Thunderbird you can do this manually by carefully editing the 'prefs.js' file. The 'prefs.js' file will be in the 'profile name' folder. Thunderbird must not be running. Create a copy of the 'prefs.js' file and save to desktop as temp backup just in case of error. You can open the 'prefs.js' file using Notepad. Carefully work down through file checking for incorrect directory data and editing as necessary. Look at these prefs in particular: * user_pref("mail.root.imap", * user_pref("mail.root.none", * user_pref("mail.root.pop3", * user_pref("mail.server.server1.directory", * user_pref("mail.server.server2.directory", * and other ones like above with server number.directory. then save the file. Start Thunderbird.

Modified by Toad-Hall

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Question owner

Thanks for the reply Toad,

I have 8.72gb of data to bring over as we want to keep hold of old emails as well. I tried copying the whole thunderbird folder to begin with but that didn't work. Guessing there may be some kind of conflict between system I deleted everything, uninstalled everything and started again. I copied the profile only from the mac (let's call it D123ABC4) and put it in the profile folder alongside the (non-accounted) profile in the fresh install of TB on the Windows 10 PC. I tried a few ways of getting it to work, but essentially I ended up with the method I thought would work following guides online. Using profile manager I swapped profiles, so TB now (you would think) grabs it's D123ABC4 8.72gb profile from the right place. Everything seems to be pointing to the right places and the profile is the right size (when I look into the profile files there are the folders, inbox etc etc in there. But still I open TB and there is an empty sidebar with no accounts in it. The first thing to happen is the bloody new account wizard pops up....grrrr !!

I gave up in the end and have manually created the basic accounts for my email and my wifes email. I'm not too bothered as my .me email shows me emails going back three years. But my wifes email only goes back a month and she really needs to cross reference stuff with old emails for home-work.

I am downloading a fresh copy of the mac data onto a usb stick, making sure to not have TB open whilst doing so. At least I have a copy on a stick so I can wipe the mac and sell it before Christmas.

From what I have said, do my actions give any further info for a fix?

Thanks for the reply Toad, I have 8.72gb of data to bring over as we want to keep hold of old emails as well. I tried copying the whole thunderbird folder to begin with but that didn't work. Guessing there may be some kind of conflict between system I deleted everything, uninstalled everything and started again. I copied the profile only from the mac (let's call it D123ABC4) and put it in the profile folder alongside the (non-accounted) profile in the fresh install of TB on the Windows 10 PC. I tried a few ways of getting it to work, but essentially I ended up with the method I thought would work following guides online. Using profile manager I swapped profiles, so TB now (you would think) grabs it's D123ABC4 8.72gb profile from the right place. Everything seems to be pointing to the right places and the profile is the right size (when I look into the profile files there are the folders, inbox etc etc in there. But still I open TB and there is an empty sidebar with no accounts in it. The first thing to happen is the bloody new account wizard pops up....grrrr !! I gave up in the end and have manually created the basic accounts for my email and my wifes email. I'm not too bothered as my .me email shows me emails going back three years. But my wifes email only goes back a month and she really needs to cross reference stuff with old emails for home-work. I am downloading a fresh copy of the mac data onto a usb stick, making sure to not have TB open whilst doing so. At least I have a copy on a stick so I can wipe the mac and sell it before Christmas. From what I have said, do my actions give any further info for a fix?
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Toad-Hall
  • Top 10 Contributor
1808 solutions 12184 answers

Chosen Solution

As you have recreated the actual mail account, if it is a POP account: you could import all the mbox (no extension) files from MAC profile into the POP mail account.

Use this addon: https://addons.thunderbird.net/en-US/thunderbird/addon/importexporttools-ng

Right click on pop mail account in folder pane or specific folder and select 'ImportExportTools' > 'Import'

If you did have a POP account but have now created an imap account, then import into 'Local Folders' mail account.

As you have recreated the actual mail account, if it is a POP account: you could import all the mbox (no extension) files from MAC profile into the POP mail account. Use this addon: https://addons.thunderbird.net/en-US/thunderbird/addon/importexporttools-ng Right click on pop mail account in folder pane or specific folder and select 'ImportExportTools' > 'Import' If you did have a POP account but have now created an imap account, then import into 'Local Folders' mail account.
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Toad-Hall
  • Top 10 Contributor
1808 solutions 12184 answers

Image below giving you an idea of what mbox files look like.

Image below giving you an idea of what mbox files look like.
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sfhowes
  • Top 10 Contributor
1683 solutions 8167 answers

How did you migrate from Apple Mail to TB? If the mail is still on the Mac, try this method for transferring to TB:

https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/questions/1274129

How did you migrate from Apple Mail to TB? If the mail is still on the Mac, try this method for transferring to TB: https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/questions/1274129
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Question owner

Toad......the ⏳ is present. it's thinking about it!

SFHowes - I had TB on the mac too. Never used apple mail as I found it too buggy

Toad......the ⏳ is present. it's thinking about it! SFHowes - I had TB on the mac too. Never used apple mail as I found it too buggy
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Question owner

Toad,

you are a legend. you've saved me from pulling out any more of my hair.

That has sorted it. Thank you so much

Toad, you are a legend. you've saved me from pulling out any more of my hair. That has sorted it. Thank you so much
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Toad-Hall
  • Top 10 Contributor
1808 solutions 12184 answers

Good to hear all is now ok.

Good to hear all is now ok.
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