Solved: Cannot Port Thunderbird Profile

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tempusfugitive

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Hi. I copied the contents of my Thunderbird (I think it was version 3.1.6, if not, it was the latest version) profile folder from my 32bit XP Home machine, and now I would like to restore the profile on my new Windows 7 64bit machine! I installed the latest version of Thunderbird, created a profile with the profilemanager, then copied all of the data into the correct profile folder. However, Thunderbird always starts up as if no user profile has been created yet.

There are thunderbird profile folders in both the AppData/Local and AppData/Roaming directories, and I'm pretty sure my data should go in the Local directory version, but, just in case, I tried copying it into both places and it didn't work.

Any idea what might be wrong? I'm worried that that OS's may not be compatible in terms of data format. Thanks!
 

tempusfugitive

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Thanks, but it's too late for backup utilities; the original computer is in another country. All I have is a copy of the profile. I followed the directions on the webpage from the first link (tried it several times), and it did not work.
 

throoper

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The APPDATA/Roaming is the directory you want.
You need to copy the CONTENTS of the old profile into the FOLDER of the profile (usually named ****.default) on the new machine.
Also, if you transferred from a flash drive or other external device, the files may be marked "Read Only".
 

tempusfugitive

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That's exactly what I did, throoper. I checked the permissions on the files and they are all marked "Archive," only, not read only.
 

tempusfugitive

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They're marked Archived? Are they compressed files?
No, they don't appear to be, and I certainly didn't compress them. I was looking at attributes of individual files in the folder, anyhow...I realize now that the folder itself is set to read-only, and I've found that I'm unable to change it, whether as a user or administrator (both have full control of the file), by command line or the properties dialog. I followed the directions on microsoft's website: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/326549
 

tempusfugitive

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Ok, latest update...apparently, the folder is not set to read-only, it just looks that way because the box next to the Read Only attribute is blue by default. I checked the attribute as administrator via the command line and received this output:

C:\Users\Administrator1\AppData\Roaming\Thunderbird\Profiles>attrib av2sf9sk.def
ault
I C:\Users\Administrator1\AppData\Roaming\Thunderbird\Profiles\av2sf9
sk.default

and the code isn't R so it looks ok. Back to square one.
 

throoper

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To make sure we're on the same page, the T-bird profile on the new machine is located at C:\Users\Administrator1\AppData\Roaming\Thunderbird\Profiles\av2sf9
sk.default?
Is that the only Profile? I ask because you said in your first post that you created a profile with the Profile Manager.

Did you set up your account in the new install and/or the new non-default profile?
 

tempusfugitive

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Yes, that is where it is located. I created that profile with the profile manager, exited the profile manager, deleted everything in the folder of the new profile, then copied everything from the profile folder I had backed up. This new profile with old data is the only one that exists on the computer right now.
 

throoper

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Hmm!! You say it starts like there is no Profile.
I'm wondering if it's simply not locating it as it sounds like you did it correctly.

Give this a try.
With T-bird closed, open the Profile Manager.
Click "Create Profile">Next.
On the "Create Profile Wizard" click the "Choose Folder" button and browse to and select the av2sf9sk.default folder and click Finish to exit the Wizard.
Start T-bird and see if it locates the folder.

If that doesn't locate it, I would set up your account in the new install, double check the "Local Directory" location in Tools>Accounts>Server Settings, and then try bringing in some of your mail to see if the new install will recognize and use the files.
Simplest way would be to replace the Inbox(no extension) FILE in the Profile/Mail/Accountname folder with the one from the backup. Delete the Inbox.msf before starting T-bird and let it generate a new one. See if that will populate the Inbox.
If it does, then you can now likely empty the contents of the Profile and replace them with the contents of the backup to clone the old Profile.
If it still won't clone (but the Inbox did populate), you may have to piece-meal your data in.
 

tempusfugitive

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I don't understand. In the files that I've copied into av2sf9sk.default, there no file that is named anything even vaguely resembling "Inbox." There is no Inbox.msf.
 

tempusfugitive

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Some of the entries on the list in your link are in the Mail folder, which I did not make a backup for. Of the others, I have all but the last five: prefs.js, secmod.db, signons.txt, training.dat, user.js are not in the backup folder.
 

throoper

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OK. That explains it.
You won't be able to restore any mail you had without the Mail folder and/or the files it contained.
That also generates the folder tree and any message rules you may have had.

Is there any chance you can obtain the needed Mail files to restore them? You only need the MBOX files (they are the ones with no extension).

The prefs.js is the only one of the 5 missing loose files that you may need. That controls any customizations you made to the interface. Without that, everything will go to the default settings (no big deal, just need to set things the way you want again).

So, with what you have the best thing to do would be create a new Profile and manually set up your account.
Then swap out the *.mab files to repopulate your address books.

Any extensions you had can either be reinstalled or you can try swapping out the files for them.
That would be the Extensions folder and the files
extensions.rdf
extensions.cache
extensions.ini
Not all extensions may work in doing that, so I would reinstall them if possible.
If you can't locate the extensions you need at Mozilla Add-ons, you can repack them into XPI files and update the version info in the install RDF at the same time.
 
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