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jOSiAh's ^_~ Haven

Backing Up Old Emails to Gmail

Some time ago, I was trying to find a simple way to backup all my emails from my M.Sc. studies to Gmail. However, I did not manage to find a simple enough solution for me to perform the backup; the "simplest" way seemed to be this one.

A few months back, I stumbled across another article from the same blog, and it hit me: why didn't I think of that before? (Well I suppose it's because Gmail didn't support IMAP at that time). So, I tried to perform the backup: and it works!

The first step is to enable IMAP on Gmail and to set up your email client (I use Opera Mail Client a.k.a. M2 which comes with Opera). That was simple enough.

Then, create a label in Gmail for the emails you want to import. When you load your email client, this label should appear as a new folder.

You should then import your old email into your client (if not yet done). As I have always been using Opera Mail, they are saved in *.mbs format. Then drag and drop all your old emails into the new folder. Then wait whilst your mails are being uploaded to Gmail...

Then, TADA! My emails are now on Gmail!! And they are even threaded!

If your old email account happens to have a "Sent Mail" folder, you can also uploaded these to Gmail's "Sent Items" folder!

It works! And following that success, I have also imported my old emails from work and uploaded them all to Gmail! (^_^) The steps are the same...

Add a new label...

Import your mails...

From the way Opera Mail previously arranged my emails, I ended up with a filter for each *.mbs file I imported. There were about 700-800 filters (>.<)

I initially uploaded my emails one by one for each filter, then suddenly realised that a "filter" in Opera is actually just a label and not a folder. This means that there will be a central database of emails and I do not actually need to click on each email in each filter one by one. I clicked on the "Received" in Opera Mail, and Lo and behold, all the emails appear! (>.<) So I only need to select all mails I want to upload and drag and drop in one go!

The result? Lots of emails stored on Gmail! (^__^)

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