User Help for Mozilla Thunderbird
I am using Thunderbird on a dual boot PC (with Win XP and Linux).
Mail/default folder is located on it's own separate partition (FAT32).
Depending on which OS I am currently using, I am acessing Thunderbird either from Linux or XP.
It works fine for all new messages, but all imported ones are being re-set as unread, despite deleting .msf files, compacting, etc.
This only happens when I switch from Linux to XP (or vice verse) - if I stick to one operating system (regardless of which one) all the folders remain unread (as marked by myself).
The other odd thing is that it only applies to some, not all folders. I have tried compacting individual folders, but it didn't seem to be making any difference.
Of course I keep no messages in the Inbox and all my folders are relatively small (total size of mail folder is 323MB)
I must admit, this little problem is driving me nuts so I will be greatful for any suggestions
BTW, for the record (just in case it matters) - I am using 22.214.171.124 on Linux and 126.96.36.199 on XP
Mozilla/5.0 (Windows; U; Windows NT 5.1; en-GB; rv:188.8.131.52) Gecko/2008120122 Firefox/3.0.5
Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux i686; en-US; rv:184.108.40.206) Gecko/20080312 SeaMonkey/1.1.8
Last edited by bambuko on January 25th, 2009, 12:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
From what system are you importing the messages?
Sorry for missing this - I have imported them from MS Outlook 2003
thanks, I am familiar with them - looked them up before posting.
I have no problems with importing - everything imported fine.
The problem I have is that when I switch from XP to Linux (or from Linux to XP) the status of some messages changes to unread.
If I didn't want to dual boot and run T-bird as a proper cross-platform application I would not be posting this.
I did another experiment to try to understand the problem:
a) I have remained within single OS to eliminate dual boot as an influence
b) I have deleted .msf for one of the imported folders
c) When I restarted T-bird, it has recreated .msf and all the messages changed to "unread"
d) I than restored deleted .msf file and (as expected) all the messages returned to "read" status
So it would appear to me that every time I switch from Linux to XP (or from XP to Linux), T-bird recreates .msf files rather than use existing ones and this is what causes the messages to change "read/unread" status
I have confirmed it by changing OS and yes, T-bird indeed recreates .msf files when I do so. . .
Perhaps somebody (more clever than I) will understand what is happening? and why?
Thunderbird will not create a new MSF file when one exists solely because of a change in operating system access. The profile configuration is the same regardless of operating system. It sounds to me as though the Read status is not necessarily set. Did you go through each message folder after importing from Outlook and mark messages as Read?
John 3:16 and Philippians 4:13
Yes I did (more times than I cared for), over and over again, marking them read and read again . . .
I hesitate to disagree since you are mod and knowledgable and I am a noob, but I know what my eyes are seeing
When I open T-bird in Linux (after using it in XP) and I click one of the folders, rather than open immediately it goes through "building summary file" message before openning the folder . . .
Same happens when I open it in XP after using Linux
Finished playing in XP - all messages marked as read, copied lot of messaged to test folder and than deleted them to force compacting, "compacting done" shows in bottom LH corner
Rebooted into Linux
Opened Thunderbird - lots of folders and messages (but not all) show as "unread"
Marked everything as "read", compacted as above and went back to XP
and guess what . . .
all the same culprits are showing as "unread"
It is possible the problem could stem from a mismatch in Thunderbird versions. Can you upgrade the Linux version to 220.127.116.11?
Are you using the same extensions in each? Which ones?
John 3:16 and Philippians 4:13
It has crossed my mind as well - I suppose I will have to have a go at it, to eliminate this as a possibility.
As for the extensions, I have used none in both versions until today, when I added spell checking dictionary, but the problem was there before and adding dictionary didn't seem to change anything.
Will let you know how I got on.
Are you closing Thunderbird before switching operating systems, or are you leaving it open and having the operating system shut Thunderbird down?
John 3:16 and Philippians 4:13
I am closing it down properly
That's what I thought. I am wondering if a new profile might not help. There could be something in your current profile that is gumming up the works when you switch between operating systems. Do the new profile this way so that you don't move the problem in with the data:
To make this easier, you need to set Windows to "View hidden files and folders" and to not "Hide extensions for known file types". See this for easy instructions for how to do this: http://spywarewarrior.com/viewtopic.php?t=272 Use the instructions for XP if you're using Vista. They are the same.
Close Thunderbird and open the profile manager. http://kb.mozillazine.org/Profile_manager
Create your new profile, naming it something other than "default", and setup your accounts. Make sure it's working including for sending and receiving mail.
Then I want you to install this extension: ImportExportTools: http://nic-nac-project.de/~kaosmos/mboximport-en.html
To install a Thunderbird extension do the following:
Right click the download link and choose "Save Link As...". Then open Thunderbird, in Thunderbird go to Tools->Extensions->Install (Tools>Addons>Extensions in version 2.0). Find the just downloaded .xpi file and select it. The installation will now begin. You will need to close and reopen Thunderbird to complete the install.
When it's installed, first select the folder you want to import into and then go to Tools>Import/Export in Mbox/eml format and under it, Import Mbox File. In the next screen you will get a choice to either import a selected file or to select a directory. Select the third option and when you get to the Windows file navigation window, find your OLD profile under C:\Documents and Settings\*user name*\Application Data\Thunderbird\Profiles\*random string.profile name*\Mail and then select each account folder one at a time. This means that you will need to go through the Tools menu once for each account. The messages will be in a new folder named for the original with three numbers, ex: Inbox123, which you can then move the messages out of and sort as you want.
For your address books, install the MoreCols ForAddressBook extension. When it's installed you will have some new menu items under Tools in the address book manager. First open the manager with Tools>Address Book. Now go to it's Tools and find Actions for addressbook. Under it, select Import addressbook from mab file. It will ask you to create a new address book by naming it. Do so. Then, in the file navigation window that opens, find your old profile and look for the files with the .mab extension. Your personal address book is abook.mab and the collected is history.mab. You may have others that you either imported from another program or created yourself. You will need to do them one at a time. Once in, you can drag and drop the addresses from the imported books into your new Personal/Collected address book.
If you have any filters set in your accounts, the files you want to copy is msgFilterRules.dat This goes in the Mail/*account* folder. For Junk controls training, the file is training.dat and it is kept in the top level of the profile folder.
When you have completed this, compact your folders now and regularly in the future. http://kb.mozillazine.org/Compacting_folders
That should be everything. Let me know how it turns out.
(Thanks to Daifne for this.)
John 3:16 and Philippians 4:13
thanks SK !
that's a fair bit to get on with
but first I wanted to exclude the possibility of different versions on Linux and XP causing problems,
I have left existing 18.104.22.168 on Linux as is (my fallback position ) and created another partition with Linux and installed 22.214.171.124 on it.
Unfortunately it has not made a blind bit of difference to my problem
I will try your suggestion tomorrow (it's 1:20 am and I am getting tired )
no problem - done (and btw I have done it in Linux rather than XP - more comfortable there )
once again - no problem, works equally well in either XP or Linux
easy - no problem
didn't bother with this:
a) because I never had any problems with address book
b) if I didn't import address book to the new profile than it doesn't matter if it was the cause of problem, since it cannot cause any problems in the new profile because it is not there
c) and anyway, no point doing this unless the original problem is solved?
no filters or junk controls yet (waiting until I solve the "unread" problem)
Compacted fine with no complaints
well it should be
but guess what . . . it is still NBG
I have exactly the same problems in the new profile as I had in the original one
I hope you have some more ideas please
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