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Windows 7: Migrating Email from Linux to Windows 7 64-bit

01 Sep 2010   #1

Win 7 64
Migrating Email from Linux to Windows 7 64-bit

How To: Migrate email from Linux and get it imported into Office 2010 64-bit.

I thought Id do the world a favor and post this before I forget.

I migrated from Suse 10.1 to Win 7 64, hardware and all. Why? So I could use my new bada$$ machine for my music equip too. Virtualization doesnt allow Firewire and I was tired of switching back and forth between computers. I remain worried about online threats to my work stuff, but Im going to try it, so my main opsys is Windows 7 now.

I used Kmail on Linux. It was maildir format. I bought Office 2010 and installed it as 64 bit on Win 7 64 bit.

1- Convert Maildir mail to mbox. I found a bash script online. It is called . Place it in the kmail directory where you see the folders 'cur new tmp' . (.kde/share/apps/kmail/inbox etc... )
It worked great. Whoever that guy is, I definitely owe him 20 bucks.

Put the files on a USB or something to transfer.

Done with Linux.

2- On Win 7 (or intermediate computer) get mbox2eml command line program which converts the mbox files to .eml individual files. Maintain separation between SENT and RECIEVED files from here on out. (See last bullet in bold)

3-On Windows 7, install Windows Live Mail.
  • Windows Live Mail (WLM) is not the same as Windows Mail.
  • Windows Mail (WM) directories are present in Windows 7.
4-Start Windows Live mail. Set up fake account.
  • Drag and Drop all SENT .eml files into Inbox Window of WLM.
  • Close WLM.
  • Dont open it again for now.
  • Go to Users/<your user>/Apps/Local/Microsoft/Windows Live Mail and find the INBOX files you just dragged and dropped. Select them all for copy.
  • Go to Users/<your user>/Apps/Local/Microsoft/Windows Mail and find the Windows Mail Inbox. If nothing is in it, paste the files you copied from WLM.
  • Outlook 2010 will not import from WLM, but it will import from WM.
  • Outlook 2010 64 bit won't do it at all unless you run this file (worked for me).
WinMailEdit.reg - Find it, download it and run it. Changes some sort of registry stuff that hinders .eml files.

5- Set up Outlook for POP3 even if you are going to use IMAP or exchange eventually. If you use those its going to try and sync the emails you import with the server and you dont want to wait or deal with that. It will cause imported files to drop out too.

6-Go back to linux or count your SENT eml files (without openeing WLM) , note how many.

7- Using the Import utility in Outlook 2010, import from Outlook Exp/Winmail. It will tell you how many it imported.
  • On my setup, it would import a hundred, though I had a thousand. Id wait a few minutes and do it again. It would then import 200 or so. I would wait longer and do it again - it would maybe hit 6 or 7 hundred. Only when I waited a few hours (doing nothing with it) would it get them all. There is something in Windows 7 or in my anti-virus or some kind of big brother BS meticulously going through ALL the files in the WM directory before releasing them as importable files. Thats all I know. I verified this behaviour repeatedly.
  • (Id be interested to know, if someone does this with AntiVir turned off and who has lots of attachments, if the same thing happens. For now Ive had enough.. Ill be importing again in a few weeks maybe.)
Regardless, you can see if it happens to you - if it does, Id say wait about 2 hours for every thousand emails to become 'importable'.

Do not start up Windows Live Mail - it will just render the importing inoperable - That is my next point.

I had to completely remove Windows Live Mail (and whatever installed with it at the time) to re-initialize the importing Pain whenever I started it up and did moe drag&drop with the .eml files into WLM. I had to do more drag&drop because I did my SENT and then my INBOXes.
  • When removing WLM remove the directories under Users/<your user>/Apps/Local/Microsoft/ as well.
  • Restart every time you uninstall.
So then I reinstalled WLM and did the whole drag and drop thing again for my Inbox which was about 3000 messages.
  • My emails have lots of attachments and things so maybe thats why it took so long for whatever that Ghost Process is to render them available for import. So you might not have to wait as long as I did. In any event, you can tell how long it will take you by;
    • In the first instance of importing, just do it every three minutes or so and see how many more it processes.
  • Also - you probably dont have to separate SENT from INBOX because you can do that by just dragging the emails with yourself as sender, into the sent folder. This procedure here is just how I did it. Due to the quantity of attachments I would probably have had to split them in sets anyway.
So after all this pain, I think that when Im done moving info, Im going to rebuild a new Linux platform to duplicate the work functions this thing does for me, just in case. I have a real problem with the weird behaviour I saw during import - plus Windows suceptability to screwing up or getting screwed up really doesnt sit well with me.

Anyway, this is my two day contribution to the puterpeople. I know I got real tired of reading Microsoft support logs where the Experts 90% of the time point the people asking questions I was interested in to the same old generic help file that MS produced on day 1 of product launch. And then I would find one who was actually helpful, but they'd always say "Outlook 2010 64 bit wont import, you have to install 32 bit, or download a trial version and install it on a different computer".

The Internet get more useless every day due to mass quantities of BS, from the cornucopia of shylok pitchmen to the keyword collection sites and all the 'experts' who just quote each other in between. I remember when the internet was quite useful, when it was the other way around and most of it was useful and only a little was this Babylonian Bazaar of BS that we have now.

So here is my post against such nonsense (but to get it, you have to read my rant!).

Hey, its better than downloading something, only to find that you cannot finish what you are doing until you pay 29.95. (that was a site called outlookimport or outlookpost or something - they really pi##ed me off.

Have a nice day.

My System SpecsSystem Spec


 Migrating Email from Linux to Windows 7 64-bit

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