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Old 04-11-2007, 03:45 PM   #1
Registered: Nov 2005
Location: Quebec
Distribution: Fedora Core / Ubuntu
Posts: 37

Rep: Reputation: 15
Migrating Thunderbird maildirs to a Dovemap (imap) compatible format

I've been operating an domestic e-mail server in my house for the last two years. I currently use Postfix/Fetchmail/Dovecot (pop3) on Fedora Core 6, and once setup this thing has worked without any maintenance!

I would like to migrate the whole setup from POP3 to IMAP to gain some flexibility, like accessing my mails via a Windows client and setting up IMP Horde for web-based access outside the house. But in order to do that, I want to migrate the thousands of messages stored in Thunderbird 1.5 mail directories of all my users and convert them (with folders and all) to something compatible with dovecot imap (maildir or mbox, whichever works best).

I've looked around and nothing seems to address this kind of situation. How would you proceed in such a case?
Old 04-12-2007, 12:12 AM   #2
Registered: Nov 2005
Location: Quebec
Distribution: Fedora Core / Ubuntu
Posts: 37

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 15
Lightbulb [Resolved?] There might be a way...

And it doesn't seem to be as tough as I first thought:

Since Thunderbird Mail directories ($HOME/.thunderbird/*default/Mail/) seem to be a series of mbox formatted files, I've found a script to convert from the mbox to the maildir format. It's a perl script called

It took 6-7 minutes to digest and convert 96 mboxes and thousands of messages for my own mailbox. I'll try it on the other mailboxes and report back once I'm setup with imap.

Last edited by bouchecl; 04-12-2007 at 12:13 AM.


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