A Complete Guide to Export MBOX File to Mozilla Thunderbird

Last Updated on January 15, 2021 by Henry Bray

Do you want to export MBOX to Thunderbird? In this post, you will get all the details related to the requirements of importing MBOX files into Thunderbird. We have mentioned here some of these requirements as a result of which users need to import MBOX files into Thunderbird:

There is no specific reason as circumstances may vary for users wishing to import MBOX files to Thunderbird. The main reason is to open the MBOX file without the native email client. As we already know that various email applications store their data in MBOX file. If users want to open this MBOX files without their native email application, they will need some MBOX compatible email clients. As you know that Thunderbird is a free application and also works on both Windows and Mac system, therefore most of users choose Thunderbird to open the MBOX file.

NoteIf you have just installed Thunderbird on your system, you need add-on to import or export file on your local machine.

How to Convert MBOX files to MSG format

How to Export MBOX files to EMLX format

Before we proceed to the process and import MBOX to Thunderbird, let us take a short brief on Thunderbird and MBOX file format.

What is Mozilla Thunderbird?

Mozilla Thunderbird is an open source, cross platforms and is absolutely free email platform. It has a range of options for PC so you can integrate several mailboxes with POP or SMTP protocols. Thunderbird is responsive, lightweight information which works well. It stores all your contacts, emails and other files in mailbox, which is widely known as MBOX. It might be important to import MBOX file in Thunderbird as it is among the most popular and widely used email platforms.

Now we will figure out the MBOX file location on Windows Vista, 7, 8.1 and 10.

Location of Thunderbird MBOX files

  • Type in %APPDATA% in Search Box on Windows Start menu.
  • Click “Roaming” item which appears on menu.
  • Now go to Thunderbird > Profiles. In this folder, each folder is a profile on the PC.

You can also go to your profile folder directly at this path – C:\Users\<Windows user name>\AppData\Roaming\Thunderbird\Profiles\<Profile name>\

Along with Mozilla Thunderbird, some of the most popular email clients supporting MBOX formats are Apple Mail, Netscape etc. MBOX format is widely used by pro users for business. Here is the complete manual method to import MBOX to Thunderbird client –

Import MBOX Files into Thunderbird (in Mac/Windows)

Here are the ways to add MBOX to Thunderbird. You may need to follow these methods because of different needs.

Import MBOX in Thunderbird (Windows)

First of all, users have to install ‘ImportExportTools’ add on to import MBOX to Mozilla Thunderbird. It is important to ensure that backup of MBOX file is created to avoid any chance of data loss if import process gets interrupted or fails.

  • Go to Tools > ImportExportTools > Import MBOX file on Thunderbird. Import one or more MBOX files directly in the dialogue box appeared. You can also change the option selected according to your needs and click OK.
  • Choose the MBOX file and click “Open”. The MBOX file is imported to Thunderbird.

Import Apple Mail MBOX file for Mac in Thunderbird

If you would like to switch to Thunderbird for Mac OS with manual process, go through this step-by-step process below –

  • Open Thunderbird on local system on Mac to start the process.
  • Go to Tools > Import option.

  • Now, it’s time to choose the Mail option from several options displayed in the existing wizard and click Next.

  • Now it will show up a screen. Choose the option Apple Mail and click “Next” to proceed.

  • You can see Apple Mail folder in LHS of Mozilla Thunderbird after the import process. It will have all your mail data.

Import Gmail MBOX to Thunderbird

Here are the detailed steps covered in the import process of Gmail MBOX data to Thunderbird client. In case of using Thunderbird in Windows operating system –

  • You have to configure Gmail account in Thunderbird client after the Launch Thunderbird on the System.

  • Now restart Thunderbird client and right click on the account and select settings from the list.

Export MBOX file to Thunderbird

  • Go to local directory and copy the path of the location by clicking on Server settings.

free mbo to pst converter tool

  • Paste the copied path on Windows Explorer address bar and click Enter.

Regain Mbox to Pst converter software

  • It will show up some files under the given location.
  • Now move MBOX file to the folder that has been opened.

mbox to pst migration

  • Now restart the Thunderbird email client again and check left side to see content of Gmail under Local Folders in Thunderbird.

mbox to thunderbird migration tool

In Thunderbird for Mac, you can easily import MBOX file of Gmail into Mac Thunderbird by choosing File and proceed to import Mailboxes. Then, select the MBOX file and access the contents without any problem in Thunderbird account.


I have used the above methods almost to import MBOX into Thunderbird. Well, I need to focus some lights on the cons of adding MBOX files or importing them to your Thunderbird manually.

  • It doesn’t allow importing the files in batches.
  • Thunderbird has no tool inbuilt to import MBOX file as detailed above.
  • There is always a risk of data loss.
  • Manual method is vulnerable to file corruption most of the times.

So, I personally recommend you to import files carefully. You can use Regain MBOX to PST Converter to convert mbox file in just few clicks. No Technical skill is require to access this application.

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