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Due to various and persisting problems, I had to reinstall 10.8.2.

What I did

  • Shut down iMac with internal system disc A.
  • Started 10.8.2 recovery system
  • Copied iMac's system disc A to an external disc B as an image using Disc Util
  • Erased system disc A as HFS / journaled
  • Run a clean install on A

Then, I told OS X Mail to import old mailboxes from B into the fresh Mail system.

Ugly result

Unfortunately, I got tons of tons of deeply nested folders, which eventually contain email:

                            <this folder finally contains some emails>

Not hardly to see, I can't use these imported folder structure any more.


Is anybody aware of a tool to fix such problems?

share|improve this question
There's a Rebuild Mailbox menu item in Does that help? – Global nomad Mar 10 '13 at 2:09
Did that with various folders. The ugly structure persists. – SteAp Mar 10 '13 at 2:11
Restore from Time Machine backup? – Global nomad Mar 10 '13 at 2:20
What should I restore? The contents of ~/Library/Mail/ – SteAp Mar 10 '13 at 2:23
What problem are you trying to solve? Do the messages appear correctly in Mail? – bneely Mar 10 '13 at 4:05

That "ugly" result is not a corruption or mistake, it's the way the Mail folder is structured now.

If you've been messing with its contents, I'd suggest emptying ~/Library/Mail/V2 and starting over again from your original source, re-importing or using Migration Assistant.

No, I don't know why either.

share|improve this answer
The reason is an often used one, to limit the number of files in a directory so to give faster access. Unix has always used its file system for storing lots of small files rather than put the data in a database as you tend to on other OS – Mark Mar 11 '13 at 9:50
I didn't know that, and it was a pretty big surprise this long-time users, don't blame others for being confused! Thanks! – Zo219 Mar 13 '13 at 0:41

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