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Ask Aggie Mac Master Your Own Question

Aggie Mac Master
Aggie Mac Master, Mac Genius
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 316
Experience:  B.S. Biology from Texas A&M University and Long-time Mac User
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I have a MacBook OS X 10.4.10, and use Thunderbird for my email.

Customer Question

I have a MacBook OS X 10.4.10, and use Thunderbird for my email. I have been getting the message that 'the application has quit unexpectedly' and no amount of 'try again' or 'reopen' is having any effect. It has happened before and my tech support at my university has been able to restore it... I am on a sabbatical away from my university, and am at a loss to know what I could do/should do. Any advice/leads out there? TX in anticipation. Ian W.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Mac
Expert:  Aggie Mac Master replied 8 years ago.
Is it acceptable for you to use another email client besides Thunderbird? I can help you set up another client.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
I need help to recover my Thunderbird mail folders.... so I can continue to work with Thunderbird.

A new email client may become necessary but I would have to be confident that it would be able to import all my current TB email files (51 MB), and be more stable than Thunderbird. My Thunderbird already incorporates some old Eudora files. My tech support at the University encouraged me to move to a combination of Firefox and Thunderbird... meaning I had to drop Eudora (which I was OK with at the time).

Should I be returning to Eudora? Would this mean a change in browser? More importantly, would I be able to import all of my current Thunderbird files into a new email client, Eudora or otherwise? Any other implications that I should be aware of, before deciding to change email clients?

Awaiting your advice. Cheerrrrs! Ian W.
Expert:  Aggie Mac Master replied 8 years ago.
What I would like to get you to try, is to use Mac Mail (the Mail Client that is included with OS X). Mac Mail has a feature that will allow you to import your mail from Thunderbird, and it is much more stable than Thunderbird.

You will be able to keep using Firefox just as you currently are, you will just use Mac Mail for your e-mail access instead of Thunderbird.

Here's what I want you to do:

First, gather some information about your email account. Your Internet service provider or network administrator provides the information:

Type of email account you have (IMAP, POP, or UNIX)
Your email address
Your account password
Mail server ("host") name or names (such as
SMTP password (if required)

Tip: Some Internet service providers may use one mail server for incoming and outgoing mail. Others may use two servers. If only one server is used, use the same server name twice where it is required by Mail. Examples of names would be "" and "".

Next, follow these steps to configure Mail:

1. Open Mail.

2. Choose Preferences from the Mail menu. If you have not yet set up any accounts, the Mail Setup window appears, and you can skip to Step 7.

3. Click the Accounts icon in the Mail Preferences window.

4. Click Create Account.

5. Choose the correct account type from the pop-up menu.

6. In the Description field, type any name you would like to use to identify the account. This is the name that will appear in your list of accounts.

7. Using the rest of the information you gathered, complete the rest of the fields. If your Internet provider gave you an SMTP password, be sure to click the checkbox to enable the "Use authentication when sending mail" option. If your Internet service provider does not require this, simply leave the two fields below the checkbox empty.

8. If desired, click the Account Options tabs to change the default account behavior.

9. Click OK when you are finished.

This will complete the setup for Mac Mail to retrieve and send your email.
To import your Thunderbird Mail follow these steps:

Open Mail, choose Import Mailboxes from the File menu, and follow the instructions that appear.

To see the messages in Mail, look in the mailbox named Imported Messages.

If you don't see your mailboxes in Mail, choose Show Mailboxes from the View menu.

To reorganize imported email, you can create new mailboxes and drag messages from Imported Messages to other mailboxes.

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
I think I need to sleep on this advice... mainly because I don't feel competent to make/undertake all these steps, and am not confident that all my Thunderbird mail will successfully import... (I have much more email archive material than the 51MB I mentioned earler).

Can you directly advise me on getting around this Thunderbird opening problem, without dumping Thunderbird? I was really hoping to get some advice from someone who knows Thunderbird and its quirks... I know that the problem was circumvented before, so I'm looking to try this again, before I give up on Thunderbird.

Expert:  Aggie Mac Master replied 8 years ago.
What version of Thunderbird are you currently running?
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Expert:  Aggie Mac Master replied 8 years ago.

Can you try installing the newest version,, this may solve some of the problems.

Let me know if it works.
Aggie Mac Master and other Mac Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
I have someone coming this afternoon to try to help me with my problem... I'll run your suggestions by them, and will get their help to implement something. Check back with me this evening or tomorrow, and I'll let you know how I got on... Ian W.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
I got some geek help here... we determined Thunderbird had collapsed, and couldn't be revived. Decided to use Mail, and managed to import most of the old TB files... it is a bit of a mess, but I am relatively happy in the circumstances... may start afresh with Mail, and rely on Spotlighgt to search for any old email that I have archived.

Thanks for your efforts - you were on the right track... So I am clicking Accept.

Cheerrrrs! Ian Wight