A while ago, after filling my MacBookPro disk, I (stupidly!) moved my Mail (all IMAP or Gmail) folders to an external disk (using Terminal). After cleaning up my disk, I did

Mailbox > Rebuild

on each of my Mail folders, but on my work IMAP account my files has mostly disappeared, so I had to recover them from a backup performed by the IT dept. at work. However, several problems arose:

  1. the folders are no longer in ~/Library/Mail/V4 (Sierra)
  2. the Message List is often incomplete (but using Spotlight helps locate the missing messages)
  3. the Rules and Signatures have disappeared.

What should I do?

  1. Copy the mailbox contents from another Mac (desktop, High Sierra)? What precise files (and Preference files) should I copy?
  2. Upgrade my laptop MacOS to Mojave (hoping for the Mail folders to magically appear in ~/Library/Mail/V5)?
  • If all the mails appear on the web interface, why not remove and add back the accounts in system Preferences ? and I suppose V6 is for Mojave. V5 is High Sierra.
    – anki
    Jul 22, 2019 at 14:51
  • I just solved my problem by 1) turning off all Internet accounts (keeping them on other iCloud machines), 2) Updating to Mojave, 3) the following appletoolbox.com/…
    – gammarayon
    Jul 28, 2019 at 22:00

1 Answer 1


I just solved my problem by:

  1. turning off all Internet accounts (keeping them on other iCloud machines)
  2. updating to Mojave
  3. following the steps in https://appletoolbox.com/mail-not-working-after-macos-mojave-upgrade-how-to-fix/, which basically deletes several Mail-related files in ~/Library/Containers and ~/Library/Mail.

This allowed me to recover my mailboxes and also recover a lost synchronization in Notes between my Mac and iPhone.

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