How to Move Outlook Express

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Vettepartz

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I use Outlook Express in Win98se, and I know how to find my address book (.wab) and the folder with my personal created folders. I am going to XP and am wondering where to move this information to in the new OS.
 
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If you are upgrading (ie. installing XP over 98SE without reformatting first), then all your folders, the address book, e-mail accounts, etc, will be automatically saved and moved/imported accordingly.

If you are doing a fresh installation of XP (which is always the professionally recommended method), then you'll need to do the following backup procedures first:

Outlook Express -> Tools -> Accounts -> Mail
hi-lite each account in turn, click "Export"
This will save each account to an .iaf file (Internet Account File)
Save these .iaf files later to a backup floppy or cd-r (or into a backup folder on a different hard drive, if you have more than one)

Save the .wab file and your .dbx folders to the same backup location.

Just to confirm:
The OE Folders in Win98 are stored wherever it says when you right click the folder in OE and select "properties".
This is usually in a subfolder in:
C:\Windows\Application Data\Identities\.....

The Address Book .wab file is usually in:
C:\Windows\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook Express\..... or
C:\Windows\Application Data\Microsoft\Address Book\

Finally, if you've created any extra folders/subfolders in OE other than the default ones (Inbox, Outbox, Sent Items, Drafts, Deleted Items), then take down a note of your folder tree. This will become more evident later.

Now that you have everything backed up, after you've installed XP, open up OE

Assuming the Folder List is viewable in the left pane (if it isn't, go to: View -> Layout, and checkmark "Folder List") . . . if you did previously have any extra folders, recreate your original tree now (right click on "Local Folders" -> new folder, or rt click relevant subfolder -> new folder).

Now go to:
Tools -> Accounts -> Mail -> Import
Browse to your backed up .iaf files and import your accounts.

To import the address book, go to:
File menu -> Import -> Address Book
Browse to your backed up .wab file

Now, all that remains is to import all your folders and saved e-mails.

Completely close Outlook Express.

Open the folder where your backed up .dbx files are
Now open another Explorer window and go to:

C:\Documents and Settings\(your user name)\Application Data\Identities\{some-big-hex-number-here}\Microsoft\Outlook Express

Copy & Paste all your .dbx files into this folder, thus overwriting the existing ones.

Reopen Outlook Express, and voila!

Hope this helps :)


btw, Microsoft's instructions are here
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;270670
But my method is much better, heyhey ;)

I strongly advise that you make two backups of everything, just incase something like this happens.
 

Vettepartz

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118
Thanks, Egg! That looks like a bunch to do, but I will give it a try later when time permits and I will let you know how it works.
 

Vettepartz

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Jan 27, 2003
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I ran into a problem trying to transfer the .dbx files. In XP, I use Explorer to find C:\Documents and Settings\(user name)\ But I do not have "Application Data". I do have that in the 98SE version, but not in XP. Help! BTW, I have XP set up on one hard drive, and 98SE on another completely seperate hard drive.
 
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Oh, ok then . . . it looks like your folders have been put in a different location.

In Outlook Express, right click on any of the folders, eg. Inbox,
select "Properties"

It will say in the Properties box:
This folder is stored in . . . .

You won't be able to see the full path, so click+drag with the mouse to hi-lite it all, or just left click on it and use the cursor keys to scroll along to the end.

Once you've noted down the full path, close OE
then go to the specified folder and paste your .dbx back-ups here.
Reopen OE and everything should be sweet.

Keep me posted :)
 

Vettepartz

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I looked at the properties of "Inbox" and it said it is located in C:\Documents and Settings\(user name)\Local Settings\..............and on. I used Explorer to get to the user name folder, clicked properties, and it showed it had 148 folders in it. However, only 7 of them show and "Local Settings" is not one of them. Maybe they are hidden folders; how do I Un-hide them?
 
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Aha! It's starting to make more sense now.
Yes, of course, by default, WinXP hides tons of files & folders.

Go to:
Control Panel -> Folder Options -> View tab
Under: Hidden Files and Folders, checkmark:
Show hidden files and folders

If the files/folders still don't show up,
go back to Folder Options -> View tab
and uncheck:
Hide protected operating system files
(you can always undo this later, because this setting is especially useful if you've got any kids who use the pc)

You will now be able to find the exact folder and paste in your backed up *.dbx files.
Remember to make sure that OE is fully closed first.
 

Vettepartz

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Jan 27, 2003
Messages
118
Voila! I got it to work with your expert advice. The .wab did not work with an import command, but I did a cut-and-paste on it when I found where it was located. Thanks again for your help and patience.
 
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