[neomutt-users] Thunderbird mailboxes to Neomutt and Maildir format

H agents at meddatainc.com
Sun Apr 2 04:46:02 CEST 2023

I am still using Thunderbird as my main email program and will be using Neomutt in special situations where I access (ie. read) email in the Maildir folder, not fetching and sending (at least not yet).

With the above said, I am working on consolidating multiple old Thunderbird mailboxes in mailbox format and have just started looking at mb2md for that purpose. I also created a new profile in Thunderbird using its Maildir format using that going forward.

Out of curiosity I wanted to see if Neomutt could read Thunderbird's Maildir email files and to my disappointment found that /not/ to be the case. Although Neomutt seems to be able to enumerate the number of emails correctly, it cannot open them. I do see that the filenaming convention is very different where Thunderbird's Maildir mail messages are named e.g. 1680276478360183 which I believe is the time in milliseconds the message was downloaded from the mail server by Thunderbird.

Can anyone shed any light on this? (Again, please note that I am using Neomutt to read previously downloaded mail messages, not accessing the mail server.)

I also wanted to see if Neomutt could properly read Thunderbird's mbox format in an old mailfolder. For that purpose I chose the mbox format in Neomutt. I believe I had configured Thunderbird /not/ to expunge deleted messages and was thus expecting to find messages marked D when opening the mbox with messages in Neomutt. This was not the case though. Not sure if I used to expunge deleted messages or if this is some limitation in mbox?

Again, if anyone has experience with this, I would love to learn more.


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