Backing up old emails to external hard drive

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Pontsu, Dec 21, 2011.

  1. Pontsu macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2011
    #1
    Hello,

    I have over 10 years worth of emails in Mail and would like to back them up into an external drive to save hard drive space since I have a MBA and the drive space is limited. I run OS X 10.7.2. Thanks :apple:
     
  2. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #2
    If you use Time Machine they get backed up, but that's not really what you're asking.

    why not use export mailbox from the mailbox menu?
     
  3. Pontsu thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2011
    #3
    Thanks for the reply. I am new to the Mail app. Will give it a try. What exactly does it to? Does it make a replica of my emails? Can I safely erase the old emails after exporting them to an external drive?

    Sorry for these elementary questions. :)
     
  4. maflynn Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #4
    You can export them, but they'll be in a self contained file and if you delete them out of mail, you'll not have instant access.

    Another option is to create a mailbox (mailbox>New mailbox), you can specify the location and then move your emails to that. So they won't reside on your internal drive but still be accessible.

    To be safe, before doing any work on your emails, make sure you have an up to date backup of your system.

    So you can basically archive them messages, via export, or you can specify a new mailbox on your external drive and then move folders/emails to that location and off your internal drive.
     
  5. Pontsu thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2011
    #5
    For testing purpose, I exported my inbox to desktop. I got a file "INBOX.mbox". When I clicked on it, it opened into a folder with 3 files in it. What do I do with them and how do I retrieve the emails? :confused:
     
  6. paulfromstubbins macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2015
    #6
    Hi All,

    I have a similar issue, I'm not a MAC user, but my Director is and he wants me to backup onto an external hard drive once a week, his email, which I am to understand uses "MAIL". ( not Outlook as that is used for another business ).

    I have read the various posts, but they seem quite dated now and wondered if someone could kindly just in simple terms advise the process in being able to back up and restore the email files ( should we need to restore at some point ) if things have changed...?

    As I don't have a MAC I don't know about the for-mentioned Timemachine... I'll look into this as well but would appreciate any advise on the above please?

    I have done this many times on a PC, for Outlook 2003, and 2010 where you can copy the outlook.pst file and restore it in a particular location, however imagine this is different for a MAC on MAIL.

    I just thought I should highlight the point that we need to backup both inbox and sent items, which also include any sub folders within both of those.

    Any advise is appreciated.

    Paul @ Stubbins UK.
     

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