Scenario: The old IMAP Server is no longer reachable. There's one Mac that has had access to all company accounts and holds copies of all emails, fully sync until the minute the old mail servers have been shut down. There are new mailservers now (entirely different data center). All mail accounts and addresses have been created on the new server. Unfortunately, since the old data center (1&1) has dropped all associated data (the domain has been moved as well), we'd like to copy the local copies of the old, offline accounts (mails still showing and opening with all attachments) into the new IMAP accounts which have as well all been added to said Mac. This all sounded too easy to work from scratch, Apple Mail hangs in "preparing to copy" from the offline accounts. Any ideas? PS feel free to improve my question, my english is not the very best and I am yet not too familiar with formatting text on stack either. Since I believe I won't stay the only one with this problem and since I did not find a similar question that fixes my issue, I think this is the correct place to ask for advice. Cheers in advance.

Edit: It must be possible somehow, because a few mails have been copied after ages of waiting. There must be a way to do this faster. I've copied like 10 out of 1000+ E-Mails yet.

  • My current workarround (posting it in the hope you don't have to waste hours to find a solution, like I had to), I'm using this tool currently cosmicsoft.net/emlxconvert.html
    – Chris S.
    Dec 3, 2018 at 16:28

2 Answers 2


Sorry I can't add this as a comment, not enough reputation.

Your suggestion does work, but everything is separated into different folders. So I have 10 different folders, name 0 through 9, all containing some emails at different levels of subfolder, which won't import properly to apple mail.

So this is my (kind-of) solution if anyone is interested. I extracted all the emlx files in the terminal:

find /path/to/mailbox -name "*.emlx" -exec cp {} /path/to/output/folder \;

I then just dragged and dropped these into thunderbird. I couldn't get apple mail to import them properly, but thunderbird suits me fine anyway since I am just archiving emails from my old job and I won't need access to them very often.



The good working solution without third party tools:

  1. Do not export anything, just go to /Users/(You)/Library/Mail/

  2. Browse through the folders and identify the desired mailbox by looking at some of the .emlx files

  3. Import that folder into Apple Mail (Select Apple Mail, not MBOX)

Now you have a folder Imported/INBOX in your mailfolder from which you can drag the mails from.

I'm just pretty disappointed it took me over a half day to figure that out.

  • Note it DOES work but due to the now not missing attachments, it can take pretty long for changes to show up.
    – Chris S.
    Dec 3, 2018 at 16:55

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