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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 3/21/2006 11:15:17 PM EDT
I use Thunderbird on my Fedora Core linux partition. I would like to wipe it soon and install from scratch. Before I do this, I would like to archive my emails in a plain text format. Is there a tool I can use to do this?

I used to have a nifty utility that would extract the text from each email in Outlook Express and save it as a text file. Something like this, but for Thunderbird and linux, would be great. I also need a Windows app that does this, but not right away.

Galland
Link Posted: 3/23/2006 9:35:53 PM EDT
I have a program that backs up OE easily. Use it all the time for my clients computers. As for the Thunderbird problem... I did a quick search on google for something, but only came back with Windows apps to backup your Thunderbird stuff.

-d
Link Posted: 3/24/2006 3:12:14 AM EDT
Thanks for the interest. I did a search too and I did come up with two linux applications. Unfortunately the links to both of them are on my Windows partition. But I did write one down:

freshmeat.net/projects/xineo-xma/


* I haven't tried this program yet.
** It is for the mbox file format- which Mozilla apparently uses.
Link Posted: 3/24/2006 3:33:52 AM EDT

I would like to archive my emails in a plain text format. Is there a tool I can use to do this?

Why would you need a program to do that? Thunderbird is like most good e-mail clients in that it stores its messages in plain-text. Just open the file Inbox with a text editor to see it. Each message is separated with a blank line and then a line that starts "From ".z
Link Posted: 3/24/2006 5:11:45 AM EDT

Originally Posted By zoom:

Why would you need a program to do that? Thunderbird is like most good e-mail clients in that it stores its messages in plain-text.



You must be a programmer or an IT worker of some sort. ;) Maybe I wasn't making myself clear. I want a program that can extract each invididual email and store it in plain text format. The last program I used, for example, saved each email by subject (ex: "RE Hello Sue, how are you.txt"), though it had the option to name the file by date and/or recipient/sender.

Galland


Link Posted: 3/24/2006 5:19:30 AM EDT
doesn't thunderbird have a backup utility to backup emails like OE does.

I'll find out when i boot back info fedora later today
Link Posted: 3/24/2006 5:21:28 AM EDT

Maybe I wasn't making myself clear. I want a program that can extract each invididual email and store it in plain text format.

OK, so you want to convert it from the mbox format to the maildir format. Here's a Perl program I've used for almost a decade to do just that:

users.upstate.net/zoom/mbox2maildir.pl

Just save it, do a "chmod +x mbox2maildir.pl" and then run it.z
Link Posted: 3/24/2006 5:24:53 AM EDT

Originally Posted By zoom:
OK, so you want to convert it from the mbox format to the maildir format. Here's a Perl program I've used for almost a decade to do just that:

users.upstate.net/zoom/mbox2maildir.pl

Just save it, do a "chmod +x mbox2maildir.pl" and then run it.z



Cool. Thank you- I will try it out.

Link Posted: 3/24/2006 5:31:03 AM EDT
How do I export e-mail messages to another mail program or computer?
Thunderbird's mail files are in the standard plain text "mbox" format, which almost all mail programs can use or import. Many proprietary mail programs have a function to import from Eudora, which also uses the "mbox" format; this function should read your Mozilla mail files properly.
Your mail files are inside your profile (see the Profile Folder), in the Mail and (if you use IMAP) ImapMail folders. Each mail folder (Inbox, Sent, etc.) is stored as two files — one with no extension (e.g. INBOX), which is the mail file itself (in "mbox" format), and one with an .msf extension (e.g. INBOX.msf), which is the index (Mail Summary File) to the mail file. Tell the other program to import mail from the file with no extension.
If you want to transfer a mail file to another Mozilla profile or another installation of Mozilla, simply put the mail file into the other installation's Mail folder.

link
Link Posted: 3/24/2006 5:40:00 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/24/2006 5:41:43 AM EDT by Galland]

Originally Posted By zoom:
users.upstate.net/zoom/mbox2maildir.pl

Just save it, do a "chmod +x mbox2maildir.pl" and then run it.z



I put mbox2maildir.pl in /home/carolinian/bin and did a chmod +x. Then I created a test directory /home/carolinian/test and tried to run it:

mbox2maildir.pl /home/carolinian/.thunderbird/vnom6bfe.default/Mail/mymailserver.com/Inbox /home/carolinian/test carolinian carolinian

Three empty directories were created in the text directory. I assume I'm not doing it right. Yes? Running it without specifying UID or GID gives the same results.


Link Posted: 3/24/2006 5:40:47 AM EDT

Originally Posted By cruze5:
How do I export e-mail messages to another mail program or computer?

If you want to transfer a mail file to another Mozilla profile or another installation of Mozilla, simply put the mail file into the other installation's Mail folder.

link



I'm not trying to transfer it to another program. I'm trying to archive it.



Link Posted: 3/24/2006 5:48:29 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Galland:

Originally Posted By zoom:
users.upstate.net/zoom/mbox2maildir.pl

Just save it, do a "chmod +x mbox2maildir.pl" and then run it.z



I put mbox2maildir.pl in /home/carolinian/bin and did a chmod +x. Then I created a test directory /home/carolinian/test and tried to run it:

mbox2maildir.pl /home/carolinian/.thunderbird/vnom6bfe.default/Mail/mymailserver.com/Inbox /home/carolinian/test carolinian carolinian

Three empty directories were created in the text directory. I assume I'm not doing it right. Yes? Running it without specifying UID or GID gives the same results.


That looks correct. Check in the new directory under test. That's where the messages should be. If that doesn't work, try something like this:

cd /tmp
cp /home/carolinian/.thunderbird/vnom6bfe.default/Mail/mymailserver.com/Inbox .
mkdir mail
/path_to/mbox2maildir.pl Inbox mail
ls -l /tmp/mail/new

And then you should see a list of files ending in ".mbox".z
Link Posted: 3/24/2006 5:48:46 AM EDT
zoom will take care of you
Link Posted: 3/24/2006 6:00:55 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/24/2006 6:13:37 AM EDT by Galland]

Originally Posted By zoom:

cd /tmp
cp /home/carolinian/.thunderbird/vnom6bfe.default/Mail/mymailserver.com/Inbox .
mkdir mail
/path_to/mbox2maildir.pl Inbox mail
ls -l /tmp/mail/new

And then you should see a list of files ending in ".mbox".z



Same results. All directories are empty.


EDIT:

I tried it again with a another Inbox file I found in a 'Local Folders' directory in /.thunderbird.... I guess there are multiple copies of the thing all over the place. Weird! But I learn something new every day about linux. Thanks again for the script. It is handy.

Galland
Link Posted: 3/30/2006 11:37:30 AM EDT
Are you using POP or IMAP? If you're using POP, the above mentioned tips should work, for the most part, for any local mbox.

If you're using IMAP, Inbox and other folders get created by default on the mail server, and so no client side move is necessary.
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