I'm using readpst to extract emails from a bunch of old outlook .PST files.

It does a great job of pulling out all the emails .EML files, with attachments included.

But how do I bring these into Apple Mail?

Any of the "Import..." options create a separate mailbox for each message.

I want to be able to import groups of messages into a particular mailbox.

(I know that readpst can also generate mbox files, which Apple Mail handles OK, but slowly; but this is not what I want to do.)

  • I've heard some folks have had success exporting .eml files in .mbox format with Microsoft Outlook|Office 2011.
    – IconDaemon
    Feb 17, 2015 at 22:21
  • eml or emlx files
    – Ruskes
    Feb 17, 2015 at 22:37
  • Have you tried just to drag and drop the .eml files into Apple Mail ?? Feb 17, 2015 at 23:09
  • @ReneLarsen yes, that was the first thing I tried.
    – d0g
    Feb 17, 2015 at 23:10

1 Answer 1


If you put the exported e-mails (*.eml files) into a folder structure, then just select the outer folder as the import folder.

The test import I just did is like below:

  1. Select "Apple Mail" as the "Import data from":

enter image description here

  1. Select the outer (root) folder of the e-mails to import:

enter image description here

  1. Confirm the selection:

enter image description here

  1. The imported .eml e-mails is now in an 'import' mailbox (only one mailbox) with the same folder structure as the folder the import came from:

enter image description here

Now you can move all or selected e-mails from the import folder to the mailbox of choice. When all e-mails has been moved, just delete the 'import' mailbox.

  • Thanks, that works ... but did you notice that nearly all messages have an unopenable attachment called "Mail Atttachment"? Or is that just me? Might be because of readpst
    – d0g
    Feb 18, 2015 at 0:01
  • 5
    For some reason, when I try this, each .eml gets its own folder, but both are at the same level in the same folder in the filesystem.
    – Adam Grant
    Jun 3, 2016 at 0:53
  • 11
    @mdomino, @AdamGrant: If you rename the parent directory to have a .mbox extension (so, for example, the structure ends up looking like: import.mbox/message1.eml, import.mbox/message2.eml), then the current version of Mail seems to properly import all of the messages into a single folder (rather than each EML file getting its own folder).
    – Nick M
    Aug 1, 2017 at 3:45
  • 1
    The only problem with this for me is that for emails with attachments the paperclip icon doesn't show where the emails are listed. It still shows on the email itself and the attachment will still open.
    – geoidesic
    Oct 4, 2018 at 11:45
  • 2
    @A.G. I just tried, and it still worked for me in Big Sur - so I don't know what your issue could be. All the steps shown are still the same in Big Sur - at least for me. Jun 29, 2021 at 18:19

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .