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Export messages and folders from Thunderbird to Outlook / Outlook Express / Windows Mail

I was tired of some problems I experienced with the Thunderbird database and the lack of support of Windows Desktop Search.  So I decided to migrate from Thunderbird to Outlook.

I found several tutorials explaining how to do it using the free tool IMAPSize.

The problem with this procedure is that email conversion using this tool requires you to manually select each Thunderbird directory that contains the messages of each folder. It is fine for a few directories but a very long task if you have more than a hundred.

In addition to this issue, I found some export problems using the tool: it works with most of the messages but there are some problems with certain messages that are created with a wrong structure or with problems in the header (e.g.: empty subject and wrong received timestamp) when importing into Outlook Express / Windows Mail.

Looking for another method, I found a free tool Tbird2OE from PractiSoft. It is rudimentary but it does the first job: it exports all the messages to eml format keeping folder structure and no errors.

To import messages into Outlook Express / Windows Mail, the tutorial suggests to drag them in each exported folder. Again, this is simple for small amount of folders but it could take considerable amount of time if you have lots of folders.

For that reason, with the help of our Custom Software Development and Outlook Plugin Development teams I wrote a tool to import the exported messages using our product OEAPI to store messages in Outlook Express / Windows Mail.

Here is the step-by-step tutorial:

  1. Compact messages (recommended but optional)
  2. Make sure you have lots of disk space free to store the messages (from Chuck).
  3. Use Tbird2OE to export messages from your Thunderbird profile:
    • Top edit box your mail root in the top edit box, usually something like this: C:Documents and SettingsUserNameApplication DataThunderbirdProfilesawfiwoeu.defaultMailLocal Folders
    • Bottom edit box: any path where the emails will be stored in eml format keeping folder structure
  4. Install OEImportEml:
    • Set the same directory that you specified in Tbird2OE as export path (the bottom edit box)
    • Set Thunderbird ‘Sent’ folder if your installation is not English (the folder specified here is forwarded to ‘Sent Items’ in Outlook Express / Windows Mail)
  5. If you want to use Outlook, run Outlook and select to import messages from Outlook Express / Windows Mail

Windows 7

User Edgar reported that the process works using Outlook 2007 and Windows Live Mail but no account set up.

Another option reported by Johnny Y.: To Migrate messages from an XP to Windows 7 PC, use Outlook on the original XP PC to import from Outlook Express. Then Export to a PST and transfer PST files to the new Windows 7 PC and import, since Windows 7 does not come with Outlook Express.

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  1. Thanks for this. I’m unfortunately enough to be running Vista, which means I can’t use OE (and possibly this first tool).

    Do you suppose this song and dance would work with Windows Mail?

    Part of me thinks I should just tough it out until someone comes up with a decent export tool for Thunderbird, so we don’t have to deal with all this foolishness.

  2. I think that it should work in Vista because OEAPI works in Vista also.
    I was waiting this tool to be developed but I got tired of Thunderbird and finally, I wrote this code by myself.

  3. Thanks for that. Sadly, I also came to the conclusion that I have to make a move back to OE. Thunderbird is just too buggy – and the expectation seems to be that you have hack this and hack that in order for it to work properly. A pity, I love the calender functionality and the scan for duplicated functionality. But when message filters just keep disappearing and I struggle with getting the default fonts to work properly – well – I just give up.

  4. Thanks! You’re a life saver. I just migrated over 8,000 emails in 45 folders/subfolders from Tbird to Outlook and at the same time from my previous machine to a new one.

    One additional step I would suggest for everyone:
    1.5 Make sure you have lots of disk space free. I filled my hard drive and Tbird2OE cranked away, silently failing to save anything. I didn’t discover what happened until I got everything all the way to Outlook and found that half my files were gone. I had to start over.

    I added my own step 2.5, “copy the exported directory to the new computer” and revised step 3 to set the directory I copied to. It worked great. Thanks again.

  5. Do you have to use Outlook Express to do the export? I seem to only have the full version of Outlook on my computer.

  6. You need Outlook Express (or Windows Mail in Vista) to run this application. I thought that it comes installed in any Windows. Isn’t true?

  7. Excellent! Thanks! Worked perfectly, shame and I feel a tad guilty, but the relief at being able to migrate back to outlook from thunderbird is enormous. 😀 😀

    Sorry tb, your just too buggy

  8. I felt the same at the beginning but after receiving no response of bug my reports about the database, I felt free.

  9. WOW! Almost too easy. I had tried the other methods (IMAP) without success. Follow these three easy steps and you’re done. The conversions take a while (15,000 messages) but no problems at all.


  10. THANK YOU. I have been looking for an easy way to do this for months…. this was it! 1.5GB and 15 years worth of e-mail all transferred to Outlook.

  11. Great work! I had an email mess between Eudora 7, Thunderbird, and Outlook. For a variety of reasons and personal preference, I had to get everything consolidated to Outlook 2007. Such a shame Eudora is gone. I tried T-Bird, but it just wasn’t working for me. Finally decided resistance was futile. It was a bit tedious, but your tools made it doable and worked exactly as advertised. THANKS.

  12. Hello,

    unfortunately OEImportEml does not work for me. I just get an error message and the program terminates:

    I exported all my mails into the EML format. Then I start OEImportEml, select the directory where my exported mails are and press “Import” => a runtime error occures.

    I tried it with admin rights, I changed “Sent” from “Gesendete Objekte” or empty (I have a German OS but I use all programms in English) but it didnt work 🙁

    Any hints?


  13. Hi,
    It’s weird because the application should be language independent.
    Are you sure that you have Outlook Express or Windows Mail installed?

  14. Hi there,

    I also want to migrate my mail from TB back to Outlook (2007 in my case) and looked to use your tool and action plan. Unfortunately, I’ve seemed to encounter a problem.

    First I converted my TB mail folders (approx. 1750 messagg from 20 folders) using Tbird2OE to a new blank folder in which the new eml files should appear. After a while conversion seemed to have finished and the run button had turned green again, but I got no message from Tbird2OE that conversion had actually finished. How do I know it had successfully?

    Although I wasn’t sure the first step completed successfully, I also couldn’t find any exported files in my newly created folder.

    It was no surprise to me that running OEImportEML didn’t seem to work either. It hang for about 30 minutes analyzing before I shut the programme.

    I seems that I messed up step 3 and/or 4, but can’t figure out what exactly. Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thnx!


  15. 1) Tbird2OE is not very verbose so ‘no news’ means ‘good news’. If it took a while and then is not working and the button is clickable again, see the target folder if it contains the folders you had in Thunderbird. If the answer is Yes, it was successfully.

    Although I wasn’t sure the first step completed successfully, I also couldn’t find any exported files in my newly created folder.
    2) I think that you made a mistake when choosing the target folder. I found an issue while converting my messages with Tbird2OE in english. Then I choose default language and it worked fine for me. Try that or just download Filemon ( and see where is writing the data.

    3) If you don’t see any data in the source folder you are using for OEImportEML, it won’t see it neither. You need to see data files exported in eml format using Tbird2OE before using OEImportEML.

    Hope it could help!

  16. Hi Pipaman, thnx for your quick help. FileMon (now ProcessMonitor) worked after it took me an hour or so to understand the tool. Seems that the files/folders are being written somewhere I didn’t actually order them to be converted to, but I’m able to track them down now and I’ll get on it again tomorrow!

    Will let you know how I got on! Thnx again!


  17. Hi again,

    Finally I got these tools to work the way they were dedigned to work; and what an easy way to fix my conversion from TB to Outlook it was! Thnx so much for the help, it saved me much work compared to manually dragging-and-dropping files & folders.

    I’ll enjoy my Outlook again!


  18. hi,
    I had some mail folder(physical folder) in my D : drive. I configurd my outllok today and need to configure this folder as my personal folder, since I have lot of mails I stored in that folder.
    I installed the tbird2oe and Outlook Express EmI importer also. executed the first step abut comes to Outlook Express part I donot know what to do.

    Please help me

  19. I don’t understand you. You have Outlook today or Thunderbird. These tools are to export from Thunderbird to Outlook.
    Please, be clear specifying your current configuration.

  20. hi,
    I have Outlook now. I had used Thunderbord and have some personal folders on that. Need to attach that folder( i mean need to get that folder contents) in outlook.

    Please help me. I am using Outlook 2003.

  21. Start in step 3. In the folder that contains Thunderbird folders should only that.
    After converting to eml using Tbird2OE continue with step 4 and your Thunderbird folders will be added to OE (you can check that your data is there running Outlook Express).
    Then import emails from Outlook Express using Outlook and you’re done.
    Hope it can help.

  22. Hi. I converted and stored the same in one folder (d:Convert). after that installed I couldnot understand next steps you have mentioned. Please clear about the steps.


  23. AWESOME!! Thank you so much for posting this! Everything worked exactly as you described! I had been using Thunderbird for years for work and personal email. Recently, I had come to the conclusion I needed to move back to Outlook. Finding a simple method to preserve my folders and emails was essential. I now have moved over 13,000 emails perfectly into Outlook Express and just need to run Outlook now to finish the job! Thanks again!

  24. Thanks a bunch pipaman! I just converted 250+ folders and 4200+ emails in couple of hours (my pc is little slow). I also would like to propose a minor modification in Tbird2OE prg. that it’d be helpfull to inform user when all the files are converted. Because in my case percentage bar was around %70 eventhough all files are converted (I think) and I kept waiting to see a 100% but I couldn’t.
    Anyway thanks again for saving our time.

  25. My .eml files were created on a Mac using OS 10.3 (I think. Will this still work? I am trying to convert to OE 2007 (Win XP SP2)

  26. I didn’t test it in that platform but if Mac uses the same .eml format it should work.
    You don’t loose anything just trying… Please, tell me the results of your experience.

  27. aloha pipaman
    found your postings. am attempting to transfer my thunderbird mail and addresses to outlook via OE using the software you identified.
    have loaded the tbird2oe and clicked run…but there doesnt seem to be any action….should i notice something different

  28. You have to complete the paths of your database as indicated in the tutorial. If you are not able, tell me what part you don’t understand.

  29. I installed tbird2oe without problem, but when I try to run it the green “run” button stays green and does nothing when I click it. Any idea what I’m doing wrong?

  30. I shoould have added that I did fill in the path to my Thunderbird email (“…..useridMailLocal Folders”) as well as to the folder I created for the exported files.

    The “run” button does not act as if its clickable.

  31. One more update:

    I had been pasting in the paths to the two folders when it didn’t work. I just browsed to each of them and the run button became active. Its in the process of converting now.

    If it goes as smoothly as everyone has said, I should be all set.


  32. It looks as you have more than one root. If that is the situation you should select each root to export it.

  33. Thanks for your tutorial, but I do not understand one thing and namely, “Set Thunderbird ‘Sent’ folder if your installation is not English (the folder specified here is forwarded to ‘Sent Items’ in Outlook Express / Windows Mail)”. What does this mean?

  34. I mean that in each language the ‘Sent’ folder would have a different name in Thunderbird. I can identify the ‘Sent’ folder in Outlook Express through the API but I cannot tell which is the sent folder in Thunderbird. You should fill that field with your ‘Sent’ folder. Just go to the Thunderbird and see the name of the folder where the sent messages are stored and put that name.

  35. This application is amazing…thank you so much for providing this when no one else could.

  36. I’m back to this and it looks like I’m the only one still having problems. Pipaman – I know its not your app but do you have any insight into Tbird2OE that you can share? Here’s my issue:

    Its not that I have a lot of Tbird folders (only 26) but I do have a lot of msgs stored (~ 31K). Tbird2OE does exactly the right thing with 25 of the folders, but the last one doesn’t make it. The failing one has 3829 msgs in it, but the program ONLY converts 167 of them. Every time.

    I’ve stripped out all the other folders, I’ve compacted the one with the problem, and I’ve rebuilt the index. Doesn’t matter – it always converts 167 messages then stops. No error messages – everything looks normal.

    Any ideas? If I can’t move this over, I’ll have to rethink the whole conversion!

  37. It looks as you should workaround the problem. Try using IMAPSize with the folder with problems and see if you can do that part of the job by hand. IMAPSize could have problems with certain emails but most will be converted. Then you can just drag & drop the results of IMAPSize convertion to the Outlook Express.

  38. I too had a few speedbumps working with tbird2oe. I’m using Windows 7 64-bit. I couldn’t get the RUN button to work just like Baftap. Turns out it’s true (at least for me) that you can’t paste the path into the source and the Output boxes. You must use the browse buttons. The reason I didn’t use the browse is because initially they only worked on the first click. After that they didn’t work. Secondly I was unable to get it to display the folders under the C drive other than ‘Program Files (x86)’. To get additional folders to display I had to reselect the C: drive under “DRIVE” to get the window to refresh properly. At this moment it seems to be converting ok. Looks like it will take about 10 minutes on my computer.

  39. Ok. Since Windows 7 doesn’t have Outlook Express, am I stuck with using IMAPsize?
    I just installed Windows Live Mail to temporarily make this work.
    I’d like to use oeapi. I installed it but it doesn’t seem to do anything after the install. The OEAPI folder just has documents, demos and an uninstaller.
    There doesn’t seem to be any executable application. Does it only run within Outlook Express?

  40. As you say Win7 doesn’t include OE so you cannot use my tool to import emails.
    OEAPI is a library to access to the storage and UI of Outlook Express and Windows Mail so you cannot use it for this job.
    We are developing a product similar to OEAPI for Windows Live Mail. The first release will be next week. Then I can make something similar for Win7.

  41. I can’t use the browse function to navigate past the ‘ek08cduf.default’ folder to select the ‘xul.mfl’ file. I tried typing it into the path without success. What should I try next? Thanks…

  42. Thanks! I was an Eudora user for many years, and an Eudora 6 user since it came out. I really liked that program, it was quick and streamlined, and I liked it’s file system. Then last year my webhost beefed up security and I needed individual settings/options that that program didn’t have. I then downloaded Eudora 8 which is Thunderbird based. Which allowed me access to those email accounts again. But it was buggy, the spam killer sorted/worked better in the old Eudora 6. And there were other annoying issues. Improvements, upgrades I haven’t seen any the past year. So, I switched to Windows Live Mail desktop. Which is much more stable. But I had to open my Eudora8/Thunderbird each time I needed to reference past messages there, which is several times a day.

    After compacting my in and sent messages. Using the system/steps above, I copied over 2,368 folders with 72,910 messages from Eudora8/Thunderbird, into a folder in My Documents, followed next into Outlook Express 6 (which I had empty).

    Then from Windows Live Mail desktop, I used that email programs “import – messages” to import from Outlook Express 6 into the Windows Live Mail “Storage Folders” all these important folders and files for business, clients, non-profit groups, personal. I did a number of spot checks on a number of folders, and the messages look good!

    Thank you for providing this option, and making email life bearable. I just could not take the time to transfer all these folders and files “one at a time” with other options that are available on the Internet.

  43. Run on Win7 64-bit.
    Seems to be OK.
    Thank’s a lot !

  44. I find it ridiculous that I am having to go through two intermediate mail clients to get my e-mails from one Microsoft product (Entourage, Mac) to another (Outlook 2007, Mac).

    So angry!

  45. Err… Outlook 2007, PC.

    (So angry I got confused!)

  46. thanks somuch …………..

  47. Excelente utilitario, realmente funciona, yo tenia una base de datos de mas de 15000 mensajes en thunderbird y lo pude pasar exitosamente gracias a estos datos

  48. Same problem as Damiën. I have no eml files. TBird2OE ran for half a day, and created numerous folders in the target directory, but all of those folders are empty.

    Before I realized the folders were empty, I looked in OE. The folders were in OE, but all of the folders were empty.

    Tbird2OE would not allow me to navigate anywhere near the Thunderbird 3.0.1 directory, so I copied the directory to the same directory as the Tbird2OE program – there was nothing else I could do.

  49. Windows 7 user here, the program seems to hang too. It creates the folder structure but doesnt convert any mail. When I run the procedure one folder at the time (i.e., first inbox, then personal folder #1, #2, etc) it does generate the email. Perhaps it has to do with the fact that there are a few big .msf files in the ‘Local Folders’ (around 80MB).

    How does the program work technically? What does it use to convert the files?

  50. Never mind, it does work 😉
    Just needed some patience.

  51. Thanks pipaman,
    I have migrated mails/folders from ThunderBird to Outlook as per your instruction, they migrated successfully.
    I have one problem is that all those mails are in folder, are also available in Inbox, means get duplicated. Advise me is there any mistake i did on import process?


  52. Thank you. If the emails are in 2 places, they will be located in both places in Outlook as well.

  53. These programs worked flawlessly. thanks a ton!

  54. Hi Pipaman, have you managed to get the import for Windows Live Mail (for Windows 7) working? I like what you have done and I am quite tired of Thunderbird right now. I just lost a ton of emails and it is very upsetting.

    Unfortunately, I am not able to get your program or steps working properly. Maybe it is the way I am doing it.

    I have 6 folders for my Thunderbird email. So, I created 6 folders and use Tbird2OE and converted each of them seperately. All converted with no problems.

    Then I used your program to convert the first folder and tried to my emails in Windows Live Mail. I can see them all under Storage Folder (as I do not know how to create seperate physical directories for Windows Live Mail). I do not mind importing each folder at a time because I have only 6 folders.

    I then tried to import into Outlook (which is what I want to use as my mail software) but there is nothing to import.

    So, any idea where I went wrong?

  55. Good show, Pipaman. Thanks very much for the tools. They worked O.K. – with some little exceptions below you might find worth noting. I was very surprised to find your tools within 20 minutes of searching for them. I migrated from Eudora 7.1.x Pro a few months ago to Eudora’s Beta series, ending with 8.x Beta 9. When yesterday Eudora Beta garbled some headers on an incoming e-mail, and it was already slow to begin with, I finally threw in the towel waiting for Penelope’s final release.

    On my machine, Windows Media Center 2002, I did notice some funny behaviors. Running Tbird2OE was especially slow – and the machine’s power supply would frequently peak and overwork. But I let it run anyway; I’m not one to complain about a free tool, right? Tbird2OE said after a few hours it had converted 16K e-mails and nearly 400 folders. I was impressed it left the directory structure intact.

    In using OEImportEml, the import into Outlook 2003 worked pretty well, and again left the directory structure intact. I haven’t yet checked the attachments to see if they’re all in good shape. But I did notice it seems that some of the folders which remained open while Outlook 2003 ran its conversion seemed to change the date of the e-mail in those folders. As long as it’s only a few folders that’s not a problem.

    Thanks again, and this is a product for which I’d pay. I know other users who need it.

  56. Thanks Pipaman – excellent piece of software. Worked fine with Thunderbird 3 running on XP as needed to revert to Outlook for business purposes.

    All I would add is that choosing “Local folders” will not automatically pick up all your different email addresses so go into your Thunderbird profile directory first to see what lives where and then choose each email account accordingly. Also, check your junk mail settings; I had set all junk to be deleted and sent to local folders which I then remembered after a very long conversion process, so clear out as much of this as possible before conversion… But after doing this it worked very quickly so thanks again – this has made life considerably easier!

  57. To those who wants to export to Outlook 2007,
    first you import it all via Outlook Express,
    Then use the button Export under File

    tq pipaman

  58. I am a bit confused about OEImportEml does it not work on Win7 x64 and Windows Live Mail so that I can get Thunderbird email to Outlook 2010?

  59. OEImportEml doesn’t support Windows Live Mail. I’ll port it using WLMailApi but I didn’t have time to do it.
    Another option is to use an XP to migrate to Outlook, you can use any virtualization tool.

  60. Pipaman – thanks for an awesome tool. This has worked for me in most cases.

    I have a couple of machines that are throwing a runtime error that I’ve been unable to resolve. WinXP Pro, 32bit… Runtime error! Program: C:OEImportOEImportEml.exe / abnormal program termination

    Can anyone offer up a suggestion on fixing this?


  61. Does this issue happens in all the tested computers or only in some specific. If the issue is presented in specific computers see the configuration of those computers and ensure that Outlook Express or Windows Mail is working fine.

  62. Pipaman

    Wanted to let you know that we’d made a stupid assumption… that OE was actually on the machine. Once we installed OE, everything started working properly.

    Thanks again for this program. I will be sure to add it to my arsenal of tools.

  63. Pipaman,

    This is awesome!! Thank you so much pipaman, I’ve been struggling with this for months. Almost too easy – had some issues initially, but once I figured how it worked, went off without a hitch!!

    I feel bad for leaving Thunderbird, but it wasnt working for me anymore……it was a great relationship, but I needed to move on. Unfortunately, we all live in a Micro$oft world 🙁

  64. I just wanted to know the format of the file it will be in when it moves all .eml files to outlook express. There is no .dbx files. Also, which path does it copy the file?

  65. The format that uses Outlook Express / Windows Mail is independent of this application because it uses the database API.

  66. Finally I got my Outlook back. Thanx man, if it wasn’t for your util or I would have spend 50 bucks for one time app.

  67. hey, how do i export my sent items from thunderbird to outlook

  68. Thunderbird is an excellent application as far as size limit, compacting and other feature and addon is concern. I have switched over to TB some 3-4 years back and I have used TB for all these years without any problem but now my requirement has changed and I need some additional feature which TB is not supporting so planning to switch again back to MS Outlook. I have some 200000 mail in more than 200 folder. I dont know whether I will be able to do but I will give it a patience try. Now I realize that I made a blunder while deciding a email client. I am fixed. If you have any suggestion please advice

    I am really surprise to see that TB does not support other email client as far as exporting is concern

  69. Ram, in point 4 you can find:
    Set Thunderbird ‘Sent’ folder if your installation is not English (the folder specified here is forwarded to ‘Sent Items’ in Outlook Express / Windows Mail)

    In OEImportEml there is a edit box to fill your Sent folder in Thunderbird for those that has a non-english version. Copy & Paste your Sent folder name and you’re done.

  70. B.R.Singh, I had a similar volume of emails when migrating and I coded this application because the IMAPSize generated lots of invalid emails.
    OEImportEml process worked smoothly.

  71. I have gone thru the various blog postings which have been quite helpful. I am on TB moving to OL due to my corporate needs. I am able to export emails from TB to eml files. But stuck on importing into OL as I can’t setup OL Express on my machine due to my company’s IT policy. Do you have any alternatives? Appreciate any solution.

  72. Kind Attention: pipaman
    I have successful migrated all mails from Thunderbird to Outlook Express and then to MS Outlook in all windows XP Machine but I am having problem in migrating in windows 7 machine while I am following the same procedure i.e converting TB data to eml using Tbird2OE and then using OEImportEml to transfer all eml data to MS Outlook. I have transfer some 45GB of data in three machine simultaneous. It took around 36-40 hours to transfer 20 GB of Data. Two machine are pending. These machine are having windows 7 OS. Using OEImportEML it shows data is transferring but god knows where is goes. PLease also tel where I can find this data Please help

  73. Windows 7 doesn’t come with any email client installed, neither Outlook Express nor Windows Mail.
    OEImportEml insert messages in these email clients. In Windows 7 you could try installing Windows Live Mail to see if that email client recognize the old messages.
    If so, then you can import to Outlook after.
    Please tell me the results.

  74. OK I can see all my folders and email in Windows Live mail on my WIN 7 PC…but when in Outlook 2003 I can’t import anything. What am I doing wrong??

  75. after trying 360 degree I came to the conclusion the windows 7 (Windows Mail does not recognize the file format imported by OEImportEML. I have tried to search all drive to know where all these mail goes but could not succeed. PLease suggest me some other method. Other wise I will create one virtual machine on win 7 and load windows xp and do it with the same methot as I have done earlier

  76. I used TB for quite some time but due to the enormous sync problems with mobile phones i decided to go back to Outlook (2007).
    I used Tbird2OE and placed everything on the desktop.
    Than used OEAPI annd after some time it was finished.
    Now the most exciting moment, will outlook 2007 be able to import all these files under windows 7 without OE?
    It worked seemlessly and no mails are lost as far as i can trace the hughe amount of emails.

    SO, it does work under windows 7 and outlook 2007, but i think the trick is to compress your mail in TB before using the tools.
    Also I do have Live Mail installed but no account set up, just run it once and don’t create any account. Cancel from that moment. Apparently windows than created the files neccesary for OEAPI to do it’s trick.

    Anyway, million thanks for this.

    Pipaman, hopefully this info is usefull for you and ofcourse other users.
    This is by far the easiest way to switch from TB to Outlook or OE.

  77. Thank you Edgar, I’ve added your comment to the article.

  78. Welcome, this is truly the easiest way to do the transfer.
    Can i use this to publish in Dutch?

  79. thanks..very useful and workable

  80. Edgar, you can translate the article but you cannot link directly to the binary, link to the article and it’s ok. This is because we want to keep people visiting our blog, it’s the only we ask for free staff. Thanks.

  81. Hi Pipaman,

    I really need some urgent help.

    I have been using OE6 since ages. I now have OE6 emails worth almost 15-20 years of my professional life. (9.82GB, 2045 files, size between 2KB ~ 527,629KB)

    Requirement : Need to convert OE6 emails, rules, addresses in Outlook 2010 .pst format.

    Tried using the following:
    OE6 to Outlook XP (which I could import into Outlook 2010) incomplete email conversion (about 22,000 or my 88,000 emails)

    OE6 to Eudora or Windows Live Mail (crashes half-way through)

    OE6 to Thunderbird (seems to convert the emails (not rules).

    Tried IMAPSize – doesn’t work.

    Please help!!

  82. RJ, I suggest to post your problem in Outlook forum. Microsoft MVP should help you because this is a normal migration task that is supported by MS products.
    To do an ad-hoc migration you should code an add-in that get messages from OE6 and create them in Outlook. I think rules cannot be migrated if Outlook doesn’t support such migration. I mean, everything can be done but coding that will take much more time than doing it by hand.

  83. Worked like a dream for > 6000 emails in 40 sub folders. Thanks to get me out of the Thunderbird bind.


  84. using Windows 7 and Office 2010 – did not have to actually import into Windows Live Mail first – simply ran tbird2oe, then the Outlook Express eml Importer, then ran Outlook 2010/File/Open/Import/Import Internet Mail and Addresses…

    The only problem was that Outlook Express Eml Importer seemed to be spinning its wheels forever – green bar continued to pulsate, yet every folder in the list said complete – finally took my chances and closed it – everything was there. Only other issue, and maybe because I jumped a step, each folder had a ghost folder appear in the final import that had a mosilla msgs tag – had to delete those, but otherwise smooth!

  85. Harold,
    I am also using Windows 7 and Office 2010 and it did not work! OEImporteml worked for 10 minutes, all the folders were done but couldn’t find any files and when I tried to import in Outlook 2007 (or 2010), nothing was imported! Do you have windows Live Mail Installed? I have Windows 7 32bit and did not install Windows Live Mail. Do I have to install it first?

  86. Paulo, a user reported that using the tool with Windows Live Mail installed but no account setup -> it worked fine.

  87. Hello,

    I got this problem: my computer’s motherboard gone, I had to change the hardware and I copy all the files in the new one, very easy, the problem is: in the outlook I was using I create personal files that now are completely gone and I don’t have any idea how to got them back. I am not an expert, as you can imagine, but any help will be very very appreciate!!!!
    Thank you
    Antonino Benigno

  88. You should look for a crash recovery tool for Outlook.

  89. Just wanted to thank you for the Thunderbird->Outlook guidance and tools. It worked a treat. I was amazed to find my folder structure preserved.

    I took some time to make a copy of my T’bird profile, then went through and deleted all emails prior to 01/01/10 frm that copy. I then migrated the reduced file (800 Meg rather than 2 Gig)- I can always go back to T’bird and the original file for old stuff if I really want it.

  90. ps…I should have said that this was under Vista, with T’bird 3.1, Windows Mail and Outlook 2007.

  91. Hello,

    I have problems. I thought I copied my profile, but finally after 4 hours when I checked the profile at the destination folder it was only the empty folders, without any massages,and any diskspace.

    What did I make wrong?

    Thanks in advance


  92. Thank you for this tool! Just moved 9GB/23000 emails from TB to Outlook 2010, via Live mail in win7 x64.

  93. To Migrate messages from an XP to Windows 7 PC, use Outlook on the original XP PC to import from Outlook Express. Then Export to a PST and transfer PST files to the new Windows 7 PC and import, since Windows 7 does not come with Outlook Express.

    Thanks for the writeup. It helped alot!

  94. Thank you! I’ve added this way to the article.

  95. Thank you! This made the job of going back to outlook from Thunderbird so easy!

  96. k70 – how did you do that? I am running Windows 7 x64 and want to export from Thunderbird into Outlook 2010.

    I compressed all my folders in Thunderbird, and closed Thunderbird down. I then opened Tbird2OE – it starts converting to a folder I created under Program Files(x86). It converts 40 off folders and 10 000+ emails, and then abruptly disappeared. I assumed it was done.

    I then opened OEImportEml and it brings up one line that says “Done” – although the green bar still pulsates.

    I then opened Windows Live Mail – couldn’t figure out how to get the folders and mails in there – it only received today and yesterday’s emails.

    I then closed that down and opened Outlook 2010 and went File/Open/Import/Import Internet Mail and Addresses and it imported only 359 messages but no folders?

    Please please please help me??

  97. Do you think perhaps it could be causing problems because I have 2 email accounts running simultaneously in Thunderbird?

    Also, I don’t mind copying folders across one at a time even though there are approx 60 folders – but I am desperate, so I will do it if someone can tell me how?

  98. Thanks a lot for this!
    I had a very big problem because of my Thunderbird; I was a Thunder’s fan until that I had to change to OU.
    I used W7 and Windows Live Mail to export more than 10K mails. It was not easy but, finally, it worked.
    Thanks again.

  99. How will this work if I am also switching computers?

  100. I can’t get the first step in #3 to work — when I go to select the correct folder for the top edit box (my mail root) Tbird2OE doesn’t show all the folders in my Application Data folder (it stops halfway through the alphabet). I tried renaming the Thunderbird folder so it shows higher up in the alpha listing, but Tbird2OE doesn’t seem to like that — it wouldn’t react to clicks to open folders after that. Crashed my system in the process, too. Help?

  101. Used another method — all set now. Thanks anyway.

  102. Nice work. Once I figured out that I didn’t tell it to do my regular inbox it worked flawlessly. Nice work.

  103. Hi there,
    first, thnx for this clever and handle program. I wanna ask; it exports mail as 00000001,2,3, etc. When its finish mails subject change? or stay as 0000x,etc.?

  104. Hello.

    I have ubentu in my Dell laptop and was using Mozilla Thunder bird 3.1.12 version. We are now migrating back to Windows. I now want to export my mails MS Outlook.

    Can some one give a solution on how to proceed and if this is possible.

    Appreciate help.


  105. First, migrate your Thunderbirt to Windows. Then, do all the steps of the article.

  106. What do you need to do with the ending ‘=’? I mean does the tool need to remove such character?

  107. That worked perfectly. Thank you for the easy to follow process and steps.

  108. I found that it is compatible with Outlook 2016 on Windows 10 PC.Now, i am enjoying Outlook 2016 on Windows 10 PC with old emails of Thunderbird.

  109. Thanks for sharing such a helpful post. MailsDaddy MBOX to PST converter is another good solution for migrating Thunderbird emails to MS Outlook.

  110. I know It’s too late but I have good information for you. As we know that Thunderbird, Window Live Mail and Outlook Express all email clients supports EML data files. So, we don’t need any third party solution to Migrate Thunderbird mailbox to Outlook Express and Window Live Mail. Install ImportExportTool and export Thunderbird files in EML format then use Drag n Drop method to import into WLM and Outlook Express.
    While, if you want to move Thunderbird data to Outlook then you need a best solution that is MailsDaddy MBOX to PST Converter. This is the best GUI based application that easily imports single or multiple Thunderbird files to Outlook without any hurdle. It supports all Window and Outlook versions.

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