Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

My 11.10 installation is broken (long story) and I cannot boot to it. I have installed 12.04 on a separate partition, and can mount the drive containing my old Evolution files.

What I want to do is: Import all the data from my Old (11.10) evolution location (~/.local/john/share/evolution is the location I've seen in other posts, but I'm not sure which sub-folders I need) into evolution on the new (12.04) partition. Since the old OS is totally hosed, I can't boot to it in order to use Evolution's functionality to export and move folders around, etc, like I've seen in other posts.

Any suggestions on how I can rescue all the emails and contains from the old location would be greatly appreciated!

PS. I have a POP account and a Gmail account at the old install. The Gmail I'm not too worried about, but the pop mail is no longer on my ISP server, so I need a way to save it from the old location.

edit: I don't care whether I end up with evolution or Thunderbird as a result - whichever will work to import or migrate the old emails.

share|improve this question
Although it's outdated, have you given this documentation a try? - Migrate Evolution To a New Computer – Nitin Venkatesh Jul 10 '12 at 5:32
Using the above method from Live Usb or Live cd would be better. – atenz Jul 10 '12 at 7:14
@nitstorm, if you rephrase as an answer, I'll mark as the correct choice. The folder was actually ~/.local/share/evolution for my installation but the gist was the same. Appreciate it! – JohnKeller Jul 13 '12 at 2:29
@JohnKeller Thanks, done :) Please do feel free to edit the answer if you did something else to fix it :) – Nitin Venkatesh Jul 13 '12 at 11:20
up vote 0 down vote accepted

The following is an excerpt from the Ubuntu Community Documentation for Migrating Evolution to a New Computer with a slight modification according to your installation:


  1. Run these two commands on both the source and the target computer (these stop the programs that might interfere with your copy):

    gconftool-2 --shutdown
    evolution --force-shutdown
  2. Copy the directories ~/.local/share/evolution, ~/.gconf/apps/evolution and ~/.gnome2_private/Evolution from the source computer to the same place on the target computer.

  3. Start Evolution on the target computer (this will automatically start the programs that you stopped in step 1).

Note: Take care not to start any Gnome applications between steps 1 and 2, as these will automatically restart the programs that you want to have stopped.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.