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Im using Mozilla Thunderbird on Ubuntu and it has alot of Message Filters and I want to export them so that I can use them on my home pc . I have gone through each and every menu but found no mention of EXPORT settings.

i will really appreciate how to do this.

If successful I will use Message filters on Mozilla Thunderbird installed on both Ubuntu and Windows 7.


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up vote 4 down vote accepted

You can use the Thunderbird Message Filter Import/Export Enhanced addon to export and import your thunderbird message filters.

enter image description here

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not compatible with TB 15.0. – OmiPenguin Sep 5 '12 at 10:58
Sorry, it was the wrong link. – BuZZ-dEE Sep 5 '12 at 11:08
I just checked it.… – OmiPenguin Sep 5 '12 at 11:09
You should use this addon instead of that addon. – BuZZ-dEE Sep 5 '12 at 11:11
U have done a fine job my friend I just export those filters and will let u know when i import em on my home pc . – OmiPenguin Sep 5 '12 at 11:20

Thunderbird Message filters are stored in your home directory ($HOME)

open terminal

  • cd ~/.thunderbird
  • use find command to grep the message filters
    • find . -type f -name msgFilterRules.dat

msgFilterRules.dat will store all your filters.

You can cat the file and see the contents.

Hope this helps

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ok i found it and will give update when I go home and import them in TB – OmiPenguin Sep 5 '12 at 10:30
Thanks this is the solution I needed because I was moving a lot of filter rules between accounts, which is a daunting task when Thunderbird doesn't allow you to open up the filter rule window twice. I just needed to go into each rule afterwards and set the destination folder properly. – deltaray Jan 26 '15 at 14:31
Check the contents of the .dat file with vi or a text editor before you use it to backup. I found two and assumed incorrectly they were dupes. Only one had the filters in my case. – myol Apr 26 at 13:59

If you copy messageFilterRules.dat from one profile to another, first you must make sure that you are copying the filter from the correct account to the correct account (and from the correct profile folder if you have more than one). Each email account has its own messageFilterRules.dat file--including Local Folders, even if you don't have any filters for that account.

Additionally, make sure that any changes made are reflected in both installations, such as a moved or renamed folder. Even after assuring these steps, you may still get a message saying, "Folder folder name could not be found, filter is disabled," or "Applying of filter filter name has failed. Would you like to continue applying filters?" depending upon how you ran the filter. You need to edit the filter and direct the action folder to the correct existing folder.

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Here are two possible solutions:

  • Copy file msgFilterRules.dat between the profiles on different machines. (Source)

  • Use a plugin to export / import your filters. (Source)

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Well I already tried Solution Two bu it is not compatible with TB 15.0. And I will try Sol One . – OmiPenguin Sep 5 '12 at 10:35
Telling people to "google it" is really unhelpful. I found this page by googling it. It's not just the original poster who wants to know the solution. – Gnuffo1 Oct 22 '15 at 13:42

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