IMPORT Outlook Express into Outlook
Thread poster: uktony
Hong Kong
Sep 9, 2013

I know Outlook will import email from Outlook express. But if I import it, will Outlook express still work? That is, Can I go back to using Express if the process fails?

Does it leave Express un-touched?

My wife has been having problems with Express, and I want to get her off of it and onto a more robust solution. But he has had compression problems of late as it insists on telling her that it needs to compress, every few minutes. If she does she looses several months worth of email.

No file is greater than 2 GB, but the over all database may well be.

So I need to import some old mail, then archive it, and import more mail until it is all in the new database. But if a file is broken, the whole thing may fail and she would be left with no mail and i would be on my way to the divorce court.


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Tony M  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:38
French to English
+ ...
I've had similar problems Sep 9, 2013

When Outlook Express was dropped w.e.f. Windows 7, I didn't want to go over to Outlook, and was having the same problem, since the Outlook Express message storage format is so awkward to use, and not least, to locate the file!

I ended up going over to Thunderbird, which is much better designed for importing and exporting messages.

I would suggest first deleting any no longer needed messages in Outlook Express (it's odd that compressing loses you messages, I never had THAT particular problem), then sort the messages into a small number of sub-folders.

I haven't tried it, but it should then be possible to export these folders in a more convenient format (I think .csv is offered), save them in a location where you can find them, and then (again, I think) be able to import these into your new e-mail server.

While trying to achieve the same end, I did inadvertently delete about 3 years' worth of e-mails, but that was due to a false manipulation. Basically, I was trying to get my e-mail messages database across from Outlook Express on one PC to O/E on another; what I SHOULD have done was set up O/E on the new PC, THEN replace its message database file with the one from the old PC; sadly, I did it the wrong way round, and so overwrote the wanted file by mistake

But I suspect the same sort of process ought to work into Outlook -- but I would certainly advise keeping backups of your precious files at each stage!

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Christel Zipfel  Identity Verified
Member (2004)
Italian to German
+ ...
I have had OE compress my mails once and will never do it again... Sep 9, 2013

I got back my mails only because I had done a backup just the day before.

OE is such a sneaky programme, but I was so used to it... I happened to lose mails (2 months, or 5...) also when I deleted many mails in a row, but then fortunately in most of the cases I got them back when I reopened the programme. Now, with Windows 8, I cannot use it any more (which for one aspect is a good thing as I finally had to get rid of it) and have passed to Outlook. BTW, I also use Thunderbird, but mainly in order to store my (incoming) mails twice.

Outlook is supposed to import messages and the addressbook as well from OE, but until now I didn't succeed. I am always told: 0 messages/0 addresses imported. So I have still only the mails I got and sent since I had my new OS, and not a single address... But the previous mails are backuped on the server.

Outlook is surely much more comfortable than OE (which I always was told), and I am sure it will not behave in such a sneaky way. But with the little experience I have I can say that moving the mail folder for example (which I always do as soon as possible, as I don't keep my data on C:) is a really cumbersome operation! This works like a charm with OE!

Anyway, if you want to make sure to be able to go back just in case, I would copy the mail folder and have Outlook importing the copied folder, although I am almost sure the original folder will keep staying in its place and will not be touched.

Good luck!

[Bearbeitet am 2013-09-09 19:22 GMT]

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