I want to switch from Mac Thunderbird to Mac Mail. To do so, I compressed all folders of the account in Thunderbird and after that, I used the import wizard of Mac Mail. Unfortunately, a lot of Mails are missing. A folder that contains hundreds of mails in Thunderbird, contains only one message in Mail, but I get no errors or warnings. How can I migrate my local folder? (I cannot switch to IMAP, thank you ;-) )


A friend of mine had a similar problem when migrating local mails from a POP mail account from Windows XP (Thunderbird) to a Mac (Mail.app).

This is what we did:

  1. Create an IMAP account (we chose aol.com, gmail.com is another good choice).
  2. Configure the new IMAP mail account in Thunderbird.
  3. Drag and drop all mails from the local account to the IMAP account. This may take a while.
  4. Configure both your current mail account and the IMAP account in Mail.app.
  5. Copy the files back to your current mail account (again, drag and drop).

(You may consider keeping the IMAP mail address...)

This may be easier than troubleshooting why the import doesn't work properly.

  • Thank you for your answer. In the end, it is really the only way :-( Interoperability is such a nice thing ^^ – strauberry Nov 16 '12 at 12:33
  • Yes, sadly such a workaround is sometimes the only way. Be patient when transferring the mails, I'd recommend copying one folder at a time. – jaume Nov 16 '12 at 12:51
  • The dialog "Window" - "Activity" is very helpful! If you do not open this dialog, it seems that Mac Mail does nothing when you try to copy large folders ^^ – strauberry Nov 16 '12 at 15:41
  • Yes, that's definitely a good trick. – jaume Nov 16 '12 at 15:52

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