A Surprisingly Alternate Accurate Approach to Migrate EMLX to Thunderbird!
I had been a user of Apple Mail for as long as I can remember. Naturally, the database had gotten to an extreme size over the years with thousands of emails and other items. So, I had to move to Thunderbird for official reasons as required by my business. I had to face a massively frustrating task of moving all the emails to Thunderbird.
Migrate EMLX to Thunderbird
The reason why it was such a frustrating undertaking was that neither of the client offers an in-built support to import/export emails from the other one. And the lack of a common data file made it even harder. Both clients support MBOX file for storing data. Apple Mail didn’t natively use the standard MBOX file in the first place.
I realized this later on. I always thought MBOX is a native Mac Mail file that I can recover from its primary profile database. But I was wrong.
Apple Mail doesn’t use MBOX file, at least not the standard MBOX file. It uses EMLX file, one for each email message. All these EMLX files are stored within .mbox file packages, which are more like folders with .mbox as an extension.
That apparently left with only few options, all of them felt unintuitive and time consuming:
- I can either use a third-party EMLX to Thunderbird converter
- Or I could use a third-party extension to archive data to a standard MBOX file first, and then use another converter to convert MBOX to Thunderbird
- Or I could use a totally manual method using IMAP sync-based email account as an intermediary between both clients and sync data using internet to and from Thunderbird and Apple Mail respectively.
I wasn’t so sure about the last option. All the blog articles that I read about how to manually move data that way seemed to end in frustration. It was also a great way to lose some of my important data elements that an IMAP sync approach can’t handle accurately. Not to mention, it would require a lot of time, high internet, and a high data usage to sync data two times.
Then comes along the other two options – EMLX to Thunderbird converter or MBOX to Thunderbird converter. At first glance, it didn’t seem like the worst method. And so, I got some of the trial version of third-party applications that claim to convert these files without losing the data integrity. But the results weren’t so satisfactorily.
The most common problems I faced with almost all of these file converters were that they couldn’t convert some of the more complex information within Apple Mail files, like graphical content, non-English text characters (especially Chinese), folder hierarchy, and some of the metadata (like headers).
Solution to Migrate EMLX to Thunderbird
Finally, I came across a third-party tool by USL Software called “Mail Extractor Max”. The reviews were mostly glowing and it looked like a way to approach this task in a more professional manner, which up to now had been quite frantic and messy.
And sure enough, “Mail Extractor Max” worked efficiently, quickly, and professionally.
Mail Extractor Max
The best part about this tool was that it was neither an EMLX file converter nor was it an MBOX file converter. “Mail Extractor Max” can directly load the Apple Mail profile database, where everything is stored natively. So, without having to manually find any data file or to manually archive data to MBOX file, I simply selected the Auto-load option and the tool got the entire database ready for conversion itself.
Auto Load Apple Mail Database
Obviously, it made matters much easier and quicker for me. But what wasn’t so obvious was by directly targeting the identity database directory, it also made the output much more accurate and free of any data integrity errors.
Where most other generic file converters failed to pick on several tiny data components like non-English characters and metadata, “Mail Extractor Max” had no such limitation. It pretty much converter the entire database without a single mishap. Everything was at its original place and I observed no missing items or inconsistencies in the output Thunderbird files.
“Mail Extractor Max” also allows you to load your backup “Mail” folder from any location. You can also choose your Apple Mail export folder that you may have saved earlier.
Convert Apple Mail to Many Other file formats
The tool can also convert Apple Mail to many other formats, not just Thunderbird. You could simply choose any of the available option as output formats including Thunderbird, like Outlook 2011 for Mac, Entourage 2004/2008, and even EMLX and MBOX files.
And finally, USL Software backs up “Mail Extractor Max” with a 24 x 7 tech support. I never had a chance to contact the support for any reason. Because the entire process was flawless for me and didn’t require any help. But if you do, or if you have any queries, having a tam of experts ready to help you at any stage is a massive positive point that most generic solutions don’t have.
Related Topic: Migrate Mac Mail to Thunderbird
Free Trial to Migrate EMLX to Thunderbird
You can also try out the free demo version that converts ten items per folder. This is perfect for you to see the tool’s features up close without getting any paid license immediately.
Get the free trial here – https://www.mailextractormax.com/ and migrate emlx to Thunderbird easily.