How do I migrate Thunderbird emails from one computer to another
If we want to change the old computer to a new one, then we will have to migrate the data from the old computer to the new one.
In addition to the data files that will be copied to the new computer, some programs like the email client will also need to be transferred exactly as it is configured and installed on the old computer.
This tutorial addresses users who use the Thunderbird email client
Mozilla Thunderbird uses profiles to save the full data of each email account. To transfer Thunderbird email accounts and accounts, we’ll follow the steps below:
A Thunderbird profile contains all the data and settings of the email accounts that have been associated with it. To copy the profile we want to transfer, we enable the display of hidden files in Windows and then access the following location: C: Users your old pc user AppData Roaming Thunderbird Profiles
To access your location faster, type% AppData% in the address bar in Windows Explorer, and then press enter. Once we have accessed the Profiles folder, we will see that it contains another folder that exactly represents the Thunderbird profile we are looking for.
The profile folder has a name in the form abc123.default, that is, letters and figures generated at random. We copy this folder to a stick or a network location so that we can copy it to the new computer that we transfer the emails from the old computer.
To facilitate the transfer procedure, it is recommended that you rename the profile folder into something easy to remember or identify. In this case, we will rename the MyProfile profile folder.
Depending on the number of emails and their size, copying may take longer. Make sure that when you copy the Thunderbird email profile from one location to another, this normally takes place without any error.
Our advice is not to use the Cut function but just copy it so that if there are any copy errors, the source files will not be affected in order to resume the transfer.
On the new computer we install Thunderbird. Once the installation is complete or if it is already installed, it is very important to open Thunderbird at least once so that it automatically creates a default profile folder.
The next step is copying the old Thunderbird profile (in this MyProfile example), from the saved stick or from the network location to the new computer in the Profiles folder in the C: Users your new pc user AppData Roaming Thunderbird Profiles
Note that the new computer in the Profiles folder already has an automatically created Thunderbird profile and it will not be deleted in any way because Thunderbird will not be able to start the next time to configure the account we are transferring.
After we complete the transfer, we also delete this default profile until the transfer is complete, but it should not be deleted.
Once I have copied my profile (MyProfile in this case) from my old computer to my new computer in the Profiles folder, we will configure a new Thunderbird startup profile to which we will associate the profile folder on the old computer.
To do this we will press the Windows Start button, we will type thunderbird.exe -p and press the enter key. A Thunderbird profile manager window will open and here we can already see that the default profile is created with the default name.
The next step is to create a new profile by clicking the Create profile button. A window named Create profile wizard will open and we will press the Next button to start creating the new profile. In the next step, we will choose a name for the new profile we create, and we will associate it with the profile folder on the old computer (in this case MyProfile).
We click the completion button and return to the Thunderbird profile management window. Now we can delete the default profile as well as the associated profile folder by selecting the default profile and clicking on the Delete profile button.
After deleting the default profile, we have only one profile, one created by us and for which we have associated the profile folder on the old computer. Click the Start Thunderbird button and the email client will start and look exactly like the old computer where the desired profile was copied.
If you have multiple Thunderbird profiles configured for multiple users, you must follow exactly the same steps as the ones above to transfer them.
The advantage of Thunderbird user profiles is that it significantly facilitates the transfer of emails from one computer to another.