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How do I transfer my Thunderbird email (including addresses) to my new PC?

Probably the easiest way to do this (particularily if you use POP and/or local folders) is to use a freeware utility called MozBackup which can be downloaded from

When MozBackup starts up the wizard will ask some questions:

  1. Whether you wish to Backup a profile or Restore a profile
    Choose Backup a profile and then highlight Mozilla Thunderbird <current version> from the list in the box below.
  2. When you are told Select the profile you want to backup choose default (unless you have more than one profile) then select Next.
  3. You will then be asked Do you want to password protect the backup file? The choice is yours - you can write down the password if you do in case you forget it (keep the note in a safe private place!).
  4. You will then be presented with the Components selection screen. If you are simply transferring your files and not changing your configuration then it is probably best to accept the defaults.
  5. However if you are changing settings eg from POP to IMAP then it is probably best to untick General Settings or you will find that when you restore your profile your account will be automatically setup as POP.
  6. MozBackup will now make a backup of all your Thunderbird data (including your Hermes configuration if you ask it to) to a single file called <current date.pcv>.
  7. Select Next and then Finish.

Then copy the <current date.pcv> file to a USB pen or CD/DVD.

To restore your Thunderbird setup onto your new PC:

  1. Install MozBackup on your new PC.
  2. Insert the CD/DVD or USB drive with your backup file on.
  3. When prompted choose Restore a profile.
  4. Tell MozBackup where your backup file is.

You should then find that you have all your settings, your addressbook and your local folders back.