OLEXP: How to Back Up and Recover Outlook Express 5.x for Macintosh Data

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Article ID: 304059 - View products that this article applies to.
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For information about the differences between Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Outlook Express e-mail clients, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
257824 OL2000: Differences Between Outlook and Outlook Express
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SUMMARY

This article describes how to back up, recover, and restore the following information from Outlook Express 5.x:
  • Mail files (messages in all default and custom folders)
  • Address Book (Contacts)
  • Mail and Newsgroup Accounts Configuration Settings
  • Preferences
  • Rules (mail and news)
  • Signatures
  • Schedules
The procedure in the "More Information" section can be helpful if you are upgrading to a new operating system after a clean installation or transferring Outlook Express data to a new computer from an old one. This procedure also applies to those who upgrade to a newer version of Outlook Express for Macintosh, and find that their previous data is not appearing in the new version.

NOTE: If multiple users are using Outlook Express, repeat the procedure for each identity.

MORE INFORMATION

There are two available scenarios for creating the backup. The first is with Outlook Express working; this is considered a standard backup. The second is if Outlook Express is not responding; this is considered more of a recovery. To back up the information in the second scenario, skip to "Part 2: Locating the Identity on the Hard Drive."

Part 1: Locating the Identity in Outlook Express

The first action is to locate the name of the identity or identities that are to be backed up. By default, Outlook Express 5.x names the main identity "Main Identity." However, if you are not sure what the identity name is, use the following steps to find the names of the identities configured in Outlook Express 5.x:
  1. From the File menu, click Switch Identity.
  2. The following warning message appears:
    Are you sure you want to close all connections and windows for the current identity?
    Click the Switch button in this message.
  3. In the Outlook Express dialog box that appears, you will see a list of the identities that are currently configured in Outlook Express. Note the name of the highlighted one, as it is the one currently in use.

    NOTE: Also note the names of any of the identities that you want to back up, if you want to back up more than just the identity that is currently active.

Part 2: Locating the Identity on the Hard Drive

After you have located the names of the identity, you need to find the location of the identity files on the hard drive. If Outlook Express is not functioning, you need to search the hard drive for the identity files.

NOTE: The identity files are usually installed in the following location:
HD:Documents:Microsoft User Data:Identities
Here are the steps to locate the identity, if it is not in the default location:
  1. From the File menu, click Find.

    NOTE: If Sherlock starts, verify that the hard disk is to be searched for files.
  2. In the dialog box that appears, type the name of the identity or the word "database" (without the quotes) that you want to back up, and then press the RETURN key to start the search.
  3. In the lower portion of the Find dialog box, double-click the folder with the identity name to bring up a window with the following items:
    • Database
    • Database Cache
    • Mailing Lists
    • Messages
    • Rules
    • Signatures
    • Preferences
    • SchedulesNOTE: These are the files that contain the data of the identity.

Part 3: Backing Up the Identity

To back up the identity, copy the identity files into a folder with a different name and location. To do so:
  1. Create a new folder:
    1. First go to the location where you want to create the backup folder, and make it the active folder.
    2. From the File menu, click New Folder.

      NOTE: It is suggested that you name the folder "Mail Backup" (without the quotes), but it is not required. If you are backing up multiple identities, you may want to create a new folder in the Mail Backup folder for each identity.
  2. Click the identity folder.
  3. Option+Copy the identity folder into the Mail Backup folder:
    1. With the identity folder selected, press the OPTION key, and then drag the folder on to the new Mail Backup folder that you created earlier.
    2. After you drop the folder into the Mail Backup folder, verify that the files from the original identity folder were copied.
  4. Repeat steps 1 through 3 for all the identities that you want to back up.

Part 4: Restoring Outlook Express for Macintosh Data:

If you can no longer access your data in Outlook Express, you need to restore the data from the backup that you created in the preceding steps. To do so:
  1. In Outlook Express 5.x, click Switch Identity on the File menu.
  2. The following warning message appears:
    Are you sure you want to close all connections and windows for the current identity?
    Click the Switch button in this message.
  3. In the Outlook Express dialog box, click the New button to create a new identity.
  4. In the New Identity dialog box, type a new identity name, set the Base initial settings to the Outlook Express defaults, and then click OK.
  5. The Outlook Express Setup Assistant appears. If you are only importing the mail messages, follow the steps to configure an account.

    If you are going to restore all data from the backup, close the Outlook Express Setup Assistant window, and then quit Outlook Express.
  6. On the Desktop, click Find on the File menu.
  7. In the dialog box that appears, type the name of the identity that you created in step 4, and then press the RETURN key to start the search.
  8. When the search results are returned, double-click on the folder that shows the name of the identity that you created in step 4.
  9. Open the folder that contains the files that were backed up, and then place it next to the newly created identity folder.
  10. Copy the files from the identity folder located in the Mail Backup folder to the new identity folder. To copy all of the files, press the SHIFT key, and then click each file once to select the identity folder. To copy just messages and address book, select the following files

    • Database
    • Database Cache
    • Mailing Lists
    • Messages
    press the OPTION key, and then drag the files to the new identity folder.
  11. After dropping the files into the new folder, you receive the following alert message:
    Some items in this location have the same names as items you're moving. Do you want to replace them with the ones you're moving?
    Click OK to continue.
  12. After the files are in the new identity folder, start Outlook Express, and then verify that the data is available.

REFERENCES

299067 OLEXP: How to Back Up and Recover Outlook Express 4.x for Macintosh Data

Properties

Article ID: 304059 - Last Review: October 24, 2013 - Revision: 2.0
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Outlook Express 5.01 for Macintosh
  • Microsoft Outlook Express 5.0 Macintosh Edition
  • Microsoft Outlook Express 5.02 for Macintosh
Keywords: 
kbnosurvey kbarchive kbhowto KB304059

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