As you may have read, for reasons known only to Gmail, my original Gmail account was disabled.
Being a sucker for punishment, I still want my Gmail for both its archiving and storage capabilities. Setting up a new account was easy. Figuring out how to move the 3000 odd emails I have in Outlook express was another matter!
Naturally, I am not the first to try this (for which I am TRULY grateful!) and some judicious Googling helped me out. In essence, emails in outlook express (and outlook) are stored in what seems to be a non standard/proprietary format. Or at least one not in common with Mozilla’s Thunderbird and I guess Gmail. Therefore, the files need to be converted FIRST and then uploaded.
The way I did it was detailed here and here. In essence, I download and installed Firebird, Let it import all my outlook express emails (yep it left the originals in place) and then uploaded them to my new Gmail account using Gexodus .
Couple of pointers:-
Firstly, after installing Thunderbird and allowing it to convert my outlook-express files, I could not see them in the inbox area! I then had to IMPORT the files (about 3 seconds work) with the TOOLS -> IMPORT dialogue.
Next I went looking for the profile folder , and was surprised it seemed so small. It was only AFTER I opened each sub-folder in my Thunderbird email interface that the profile folder seemed to populate properly.
Secondly, I found the default SMTP server in Gexodus was unresponsive, and used gsmtp183.google.com instead.
I initially pointed the system at my Inbox file in my profile and set the system running.
It ticked away, about 200 emails – then stopped. Said it was finished ! HUH!
Then I figured it out – Gexodus does NOT recursively work its way down through the sub folders of the inbox – you have to select each one individually – if that’s the way you want to go. The easy solution – simply move ALL email from the sub folders to the inbox within Thunderbird.
The upshot – all my 3000 emails (including their attachments) are back in Gmail. The original sender IDs are intact. Unfortunately the Dates simply reflect the upload date; I can cope with that.
I am still using Outlook Express, and forward a copy of all incoming and outgoing email to Gmail as I outlined some time ago.
NOW if only Gmail can explain why they deactivated my old account in the first place!