This is similar to this question but not exactly a duplicate. My Linux laptop has recently been hanging for no apparent reason, and so I have been using a Mac OS X laptop in the meantime. I just installed Thunderbird and wanted to copy all my preferences and account settings to the new laptop. All email accounts are IMAP based.

Can I simply copy the data, or does Thunderbird for OS X store data in a different format from OS X? What about if I wanted to copy the preferences to Thunderbird under Windows?

Finally, what files do I copy? I haven't powered up the Linux laptop yet but I'm guessing there's a ~/.thunderbird/ directory, can I just copy this to the Mac?


Yes, simply copy the contents of ~/.thunderbird to ~/Library/Thunderbird on OS X.


I'm trying this some years later, with my Mac running MacOS 10.15.7 (Catalina).

I installed version 78.10.2 of Thunderbird on the Mac. This version has a slightly different file structure in ~/Library/Thunderbird

There are files profiles.ini and installs.ini at the top level and a folder called Profiles which has a couple of profiles set up after install. I messed around copying my profile into the Profiles folder and tried to edit the .ini files to reflect what I wanted, and failed.

So I copied the contents of my profile folder into a more or less empty one called ~/Library/Thunderbird/Profiles/nlgsvk8r.default

and used Thunderbird -> Help -> Troubleshooting Information -> about:profiles -> Create a New Profile... I called it default and chose the folder ~/Library/Thunderbird/Profiles/nlgsvk8r.default

That worked fine.

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