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Lost emails when moving from one folder to another

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  • 21 views
  • Last reply by meyer99

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Hi, I needed to clean up my Inbox as there were a few corrupted emails there which couldn't be deleted and prevented the Compacting process. Firstly I created a new temporary folder and moved (dragged) all the good emails to this folder. I then ran a Repair Folder on the Inbox and all the corrupted emails disappeared - all good so far. I then attempted to move all the emails from the temporary folder back into the Inbox folder - this removed all the emails from the temporary folder but nothing appeared in the Inbox. I checked all my other folders and the emails are nowhere to be found. Please advise how I can get all my missing emails back. Thank you

Hi, I needed to clean up my Inbox as there were a few corrupted emails there which couldn't be deleted and prevented the Compacting process. Firstly I created a new temporary folder and moved (dragged) all the good emails to this folder. I then ran a Repair Folder on the Inbox and all the corrupted emails disappeared - all good so far. I then attempted to move all the emails from the temporary folder back into the Inbox folder - this removed all the emails from the temporary folder but nothing appeared in the Inbox. I checked all my other folders and the emails are nowhere to be found. Please advise how I can get all my missing emails back. Thank you

All Replies (5)

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re :I then attempted to move all the emails from the temporary folder back into the Inbox folder

You mention 'Inbox: Is this an Imap account Inbox or a Pop account Inbox ? Where was this 'temporary' folder - in the same account or in 'Local Folders' mail account ?

Do not compact anything.

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The Inbox is Pop3. The temporary inbox is located in the same account (not in Local Folders). I think that I did compact the Inbox before trying to move all the emails back in.

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  • Menu icon > 'Help' > 'More Troubleshooting Information'
  • Under 'Application Basics - half way - Profile Folders - click on 'Open Folder'

a new window opens showing profile folder name

  • Close Thunderbird now - this is important
  • click on 'Mail' folder
  • click on pop mail account name that has missing emails.

you should see the 'temporary inbox' mbox file - it has no extension.

  • Open the 'Temporary Inbox' file using Notepad (if less than 500 MB ) or Notepadd++ (If less than 2GB)

Emails are written to the file one after the other, so oldest will be at the top and newest at the bottom. Each email will start with these lines: this is an example

  • From - Sun Dec 28 18:14:40 2014
  • X-Mozilla-Status: 0001
  • X-Mozilla-Status2: 00800000

Use 'Edit' > 'Find'

  • Look for this line: X-Mozilla-Status: (not X-Mozilla-Status2:)

Work down through the file from top to bottom. I'm hoping this 'temporary inbox' still has the emails but they are now marked as deleted and hidden'

  • Make sure all the X-Mozilla-Status: has the number 0001
  • Save the file.
  • delete the 'Temporary Inbox.msf' file. A new one will be auto created upon restart.
  • Restart Thunderbird.

This should recover any emails in the 'Temporary Inbox' where you altered that X-Mozilla-Status to 0001.

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Personally, I would not attempt to put them back into the 'Inbox'.

You really should not have a single text file document storing all your emails. This is more risky, if something goes wrong then everything is at risk. Also, you may need to access those files - as on this occasion - which are only simple text files. It gets more difficult to open those files if they get too large. It puts a load on the RAM and you may need to download additional programs just to access them.

Advise you use folders to organise and store emails and only have the Inbox used as an inbox for incoming mail and stuff you need to sort. If you have any products than might scan those files eg: Anti-Virus, CCleaner etc then I would advise you make your Thunderbird profile folder exempt from scanning and they may cause corruption if they attempt a fix. Either way, never allow anything to auto fix anything in Thunderbird.

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Thanks for the advice. Unfortunately there is nothing in the Temporary Inbox mbox file now, it is just blank.

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