Backing up Thunderbird Profile

User Help for Mozilla Thunderbird
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Joined: July 3rd, 2009, 6:10 am

Post Posted April 10th, 2018, 9:11 am

Hi all
while using backup software to backup my Thunderbird profile (as part of my daily backup) I notice there's a lot of file and folders that might not need to be backed up - there's cache2, crashes, datareporting gmp, offlinecache, folders amongst many others, and many files whose use or importance isn't readily known.

Is there a list of profile files and folders that are necessary to keep TB running after a recovery? I know strictly speaking all the files are necessary otherwise they wouln't be there, but specifcally, which files/folders are absolutely required to allow restoration and correct operation as opposed to those that will be recreated whilst operating.

I'm simply interested in making the backup as quickly and as small as possible without losing the ability to restore correctly. I'm not interested in a backup extension, this is for my system backup. As I use IMAP, emails will be on the server so I don't think I need to back them up, but filters, extensions, settings etc I do.

Using v52.7


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Post Posted April 10th, 2018, 9:20 am

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Post Posted April 10th, 2018, 12:33 pm

As a minimum I suggest you backup the prefs.js file (settings), the *.mab files (address books) and the entire contents of the Mail subdirectory. The mail directory tree has some files that are not needed such as the *.msf files (cache of the folder listing) but its not worth the hassle to try to backup only the mbox files in that tree as the extra files don't take up that much space. I'm assuming you are using POP accounts. If you also have IMAP accounts you might want to backup the ImapMail subdirectory too if you don't trust your email provider to backup your mail. I'm assuming you have a copy of your passwords written down somewhere safe otherwise you need to also backup logins.json , key3.db and cert8.db too.

See ... hunderbird for more information.

Posts: 280
Joined: July 3rd, 2009, 6:10 am

Post Posted April 17th, 2018, 5:11 pm

thanks all, I'm currently testing new backup sw, and testing your suggestions as well

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