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Thread: Thunderbird corrupt data

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    Elliott Heads, Qld, Aus
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    Default Thunderbird corrupt data

    Not sure whether this should go here, or in a Thunderbird forum, so will try here first!
    Have recently upgraded to Suse 11 (well, more a reinstall), and have been using Thunderbird/Lightning on a dual boot machine (Suse/XP/Vista) for several years now, successfully. Since the upgrade, Thunderbird has been having trouble starting occassionally, until now it won't start at all (outline of the app comes up, greyed out - as far as it gets...). This is due to corrupted data, as if I change the data directory it works fine. Question is: How can I 'clean out' my existing Thunderbird data? (don't care about preferences etc, basically just want my email.)
    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Oklahoma, US
    Posts
    822

    Default Re: Thunderbird corrupt data

    hornetster wrote:

    >
    > Not sure whether this should go here, or in a Thunderbird forum, so will
    > try here first!
    > Have recently upgraded to Suse 11 (well, more a reinstall), and have
    > been using Thunderbird/Lightning on a dual boot machine (Suse/XP/Vista)
    > for several years now, successfully. Since the upgrade, Thunderbird has
    > been having trouble starting occassionally, until now it won't start at
    > all (outline of the app comes up, greyed out - as far as it gets...).
    > This is due to corrupted data, as if I change the data directory it
    > works fine. Question is: How can I 'clean out' my existing Thunderbird
    > data? (don't care about preferences etc, basically just want my
    > email.)
    > Thanks.
    >
    >


    If you're looking to just 'wipe out' thunderbird and set it up again, you
    could remove the .thunderbird subdirectory. That's a period (dot)
    before 'thunderbird'. The leading dot makes the subdir 'hidden' in your home
    directory. If you were to open a console/konsole/shell, then this command
    would work:

    rm -rf .thunderbird

    Remember, this removes ALL of your saved thunderbird information, emails,
    folders, addressbooks, and so on. Pretty drastic.

    If you only want to remove the email folders, it's a level or two deeper, in
    something like this:

    ..thunderbird/randomletters.default/xxx

    The 'randomletters' is a bit of security scrambling preventing viruses and
    nasties from being able to immediately guess your folder name (wait, virus?
    What?)

    And the 'xxx' is another folder name, probably 'mail' I think. I'll admit I'm
    terribly old fashioned and I use Alpine (formally Pine) for my email. Ya,
    old-school

    If you poke around in there a bit, you will find your email folders (each
    folder is represented by a file with that name, delete the file, the folder
    is removed). Absolute worst case, remove the entire .thunderbird
    subdirectory and you can start afresh.

    Hope that helps,

    Loni

    --
    L R Nix
    lornix@lornix.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Elliott Heads, Qld, Aus
    Posts
    199

    Default Re: Thunderbird corrupt data

    Hi, thanks for the reply... What I want to do is keep my email. Don't mind if I have to delete everything else. eg Create a new thuinderbird folder and copy/import existing emails into it (I don't think it is the actual emails that are corrupt...)

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Location
    Oklahoma, US
    Posts
    822

    Default Re: Thunderbird corrupt data

    hornetster wrote:

    >
    > Hi, thanks for the reply... What I want to do is keep my email. Don't
    > mind if I have to delete everything else. eg Create a new thuinderbird
    > folder and copy/import existing emails into it (I don't think it is the
    > actual emails that are corrupt...)
    >
    >


    Yeah.... I realized I had it backwards AFTER I clicked 'send' (as usual!)

    In that same subdirectory (.thunderbird), go one level deeper (into
    the 'random.default') and then look around. there will be other files, which
    specify the preferences and stuff.

    You could rename .thunderbird to .saveme or something, and run Thunderbird
    again, it'll create a whole new profile, you can copy the email files back
    into the profile subdir after you verify it working.

    Loni



    --
    L R Nix
    lornix@lornix.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Elliott Heads, Qld, Aus
    Posts
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    Default Re: Thunderbird corrupt data

    Well, almost have it sorted...
    Don't think you can just copy the mail back in to a new directory. Found a post on the Mozilla forum which suggested using the ImportExportTools addin. So I created a new profile and VERY LABORIOUSLY copied all the mailboxes over, renamed (it added numbers to all the boxes..) and am ALMOST back to a point where it is usable.
    One good thing, I s'pose, is that all my mail should be nice'n'clean now, so ready for another 5 years of additions!!
    Thanks for the suggestions.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Oklahoma, US
    Posts
    822

    Default Re: Thunderbird corrupt data

    hornetster wrote:

    >
    > Well, almost have it sorted...
    > Don't think you can just copy the mail back in to a new directory.
    > Found a post on the Mozilla forum which suggested using the
    > ImportExportTools addin. So I created a new profile and VERY
    > LABORIOUSLY copied all the mailboxes over, renamed (it added numbers to
    > all the boxes..) and am ALMOST back to a point where it is usable.
    > One good thing, I s'pose, is that all my mail should be nice'n'clean
    > now, so ready for another 5 years of additions!!
    > Thanks for the suggestions.
    >
    >


    Glad you're back in business.

    Take Care,

    Loni

    --
    L R Nix
    lornix@lornix.com

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