File Menu - Import Sub-Menu
Apple Mail - Running Under OS 10.4 Through OS 10.6

This page explains how to import Apple Mail files that were created under OS 10.4, 10.5, or 10.6, and never imported into a later version of Apple Mail. For later versions of Apple Mail, click here.

These files would have originally been located within a series of folders in the user's Library folder (not the general Library folder). There isn't room to show the full path to these files in one window, so here it is in two windows:

If you didn't create folders and Rules for directing all your email messages into folders, your messages may be in the Inbox. The Inbox is in a slightly different place. In the same folder as the Mailboxes (folder listed above), you will find a folder that begins POP- and includes your email address. In that folder will be an INBOX.mbox folder. This is where your Inbox messages are located.

 When you select Import: Apple Mail - OS 10.4 or Later... in the File menu, you will have to navigate to the Library and find the folder that you want to import.

If you created mailbox folders in the Mail application for different kinds of email, those folders will appear here with .mbox after the name. You can import all the emails in an .mbox folder by selecting it in the Open dialog. If you created one or more mailboxes within another mailbox, you can navigate those mailboxes and open them.

Once you have selected the desired .mbox folder, click the Open button. A dialog will appear giving you several options.

If a datafile with the exact field structure needed for email import is not open, the only option will be to create a new datafile. This is always the safest option. You can later adjust the field structure and merge datafiles if needed.

If you have a datafile open with the appropriate fields, you can add or merge the imported records into the existing datafile.

Add to current datafile

This will append the imported records to the current datafile. No attempt will be made to determine if a message already exists in the datafile. To avoid duplicate records, you must be sure that messages you previously imported are not in the folder that you are now importing.

Merge into current datafile

This will sort the current datafile and only import messages that are not already in the datafile. If there is the slightest difference, iData Pro will see it as a new message.

Email Record Structure

iData Pro places the message portion of each imported email message into the Freeform Text Area of a record. In addition, any existing data of the following types will be put into matching fields:

         Reply to
         File Name

To import an email file into  an existing datafile, that datafile must have eight fields, and they should be in the same order as specified above, although the precise names of the fields may vary. (Even though not every email has data in all those fields, there is no way to predict this, so the iData format is generalized to cover the most common cases. When viewing imported email datafiles in List View, you can use the Modify Fields function to specify that some fields should be hidden. Please see the Modify Fields topic in the Edit chapter for details.)

Import Speed

Depending on the speed of your particular machine and the percentage of HTML-based messages, importing a mailbox with, say, 2000 messages may take anywhere from 20 seconds up to about 2 minutes. HTML messages take longer than plain text, as they require an additional translation stage. A single HTML message can take as much as three seconds. Plain text messages mixed in with HTML messages will not take as long.

Old HTML messages that contain links to images that no longer exist on the Web are a particular problem, as the system may spend as much as a minute (which feels like forever) trying to find the image before giving up. In a few cases,  the system will not be able to process such a message, and will return an error code. In these cases, iData will place a message saying, "HTML could not be processed." in the Message area.

If you notice that you have a record containing an unprocessed message, you can look at the File Name field to find the name of the .emlx file. Find that file in the Finder and double-click it to open it in Mail. Then, you can copy the message content in Mail and paste it into the iData record.

If it seems that the import is going on for longer than normal, you can abort the import process at any time by typing the esc key or command-period. However, if you know that the mailbox being imported is large, it's probably best to be patient. When the process is aborted, messages that have already been imported will show up in the datafile.

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