Home > Technical > Import or migrate mbox to maildir in thunderbird

Import or migrate mbox to maildir in thunderbird

Maildir support had been landed in Thunderbird from version 12, but feature is highly experimental.

There is no GUI yet to migrate from Mbox to maildir. So they is no direct method to migrate.

But you can migrate to following steps[some cases may not work].

Select all messages from inbox & save using file –> save as –>files.

Enable maildir option using inform from my previous post .

Create new account from account wizard. It will be of maildir type storage.

Drag & Drop all messages to inbox [or required folder.]

You will have all messages in Inbox.

[If you stored all messages in server, it will be downloaded again, even drag & drop]

  1. June 17, 2012 at 2:23 AM

    Obviously, most will wait until it is marked stable.

    But what benefits does the TB implementation of Maildir bring?

    Currently, my ~/.thunderbird folder is at a space consumption of 715 MiB. It is configured to talk to my localhost Dovecot imap server. Will using TB with Maildir cut down on the 715 MiB of storage ?

    Another question would be performance. Will it be faster than the current setup of talking over IMAP ?

    • June 18, 2012 at 10:07 AM

      Maildir storage is mail storage system in which each mail storage single file. So operating system’s file limit is its limit. There will not be much speed or size changes. But it will remove the mbox [currently used storage in thunderbird] size limit of 4GB maximum storage in single folder/file. So you can store any no of mail in inbox without the error ” folder is full”.

      • June 18, 2012 at 5:15 PM

        My question was the 700 MiB of storage space waste, since it gets cached from the local imap server to ~/.tb. Since now we have a Maildir store support, will there still be a separate cache.

        On the performance front, I at least hoped that it would be faster because now it would have built its index directly on the Maildir rather than over a talk on a client/server model.

        But maybe nothing much will change. Because It’ll heavily depend on *how* the Maildir support is enabled. For example: kmail has pretty good Maildir support but unfortunately does not come close to TB for most of the basic feature requirements of 2012.

    • nonedefault
      September 14, 2012 at 8:50 PM

      It does if you have big mail folders. People that does have lot of folders with lot of mails that get deleted and moved all the time, will not have to compact the folders to reclaim space (hopefully it will depend on the impl) Also if you work in windows and have redirected folders for domain users compacting becomes a nightmare. Maildir should do away with this problem. Also it will be easier for not integrated AV to scan single messages instead the big mbox file.

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