I already tried to manually copy and the paste the profile folder from one instance to another, but the Lightning extension is not added when doing this and thus my tasks and events can't be synced.

For now I don't need to sync emails, just the calendar events and tasks and also the feed subscriptions.

If possible, I would prefer an offline solution, for example via pendrive instead of a storage service such as Dropbox.

  • did you try installing the lightning extension prior to pasting in your backed up folder ? i'do do that first.. then i'd redo all the email profiles (if you have more than one in your backup.. my case..) then close.. and switch with my old profile and/or change the name of the folder randomness with the one specified in the config file .. Commented Oct 19, 2012 at 13:35
  • also.. i wonder.. you use dropbox for backup or for your profile folder's location ? Commented Oct 19, 2012 at 13:36
  • 4
    Possible duplicate of How Do I Sync My Exchange Calendar in Ubuntu (Thunderbird / Lightning)?
    – muru
    Commented Jan 29, 2017 at 4:54
  • @muru: How is this question related to Exchange server? Commented Jan 31, 2017 at 14:40
  • @DavidFoerster a user posted the same answer on both, so I assumed they were dupes. The answer is downvoted, so I should have been more careful
    – muru
    Commented Jan 31, 2017 at 14:42

2 Answers 2


I don't know of any offline solution, but there is an online solution. I'm using Google Calendar and it works really well. Do this to get it up and running:

  1. In the calendar list, right-click and select "New calendar".
  2. Choose "On the Network" and click "Next".
  3. Select "CalDAV".
  4. Enter "https://www.google.com/calendar/dav/[email protected]/events" as "Location".
  5. Specify options on the next page.
  6. Use your full e-mail address as username when prompted.

There are some instructions here:



I got this to work, and here's how I did it:

I use Thunderbird/Lightning as my email/calendar client on my main computer (Thinkpad W541, Ubuntu Unity, 16.04) and my travel Chromebook (Acer C720, Ubuntu XFCE, 16.04), and I wanted to regularly sync the calendar data between both machines. Suggestions online often mention Google Calendar, but I'd rather use open-source tools (that I control) to do the job. I use SeaFile (a FOSS DropBox equivalent) to sync folders & files between my machines.

Step 1: On my new Chromebook, I copy over my entire Thunderbird directory: rsync -zarv user@thinkpad:~/.thunderbird/ ~/.thunderbird/ Then, I install Thunderbird and open it: presto, all my accounts, old emails, and (most importantly) calendar events are accessible. Great!

Step 2: It looks like all relevant Thunderbird data are stored in ~/.thunderbird/blah.default/, with calendar data in ~/.thunderbird/blah.default/calendar-data/. On the Chromebook, I create a new calendar event, save it, and see that ~/.thunderbird/blah.default/calendar-data/local.sqlite has increased in size and has a newer "last-modified" timestamp. I conclude that local.sqlite contains all relevant calendar data.

Step 3: I close Thunderbird on both machines, then use SeaFile to sync the entire calander-data/ folder on both. I see that the newer filesize and timestamp have successfully synced on the Thinkpad. I open Thunderbird on the new machine, and there in the calendar is my new event. Success!

Drawbacks: The main drawback seems to be that if Thunderbird is open on both machines and either calendar is edited, syncing the calendar-data files sometimes causes the other machine's Thunderbird to crash. They just weren't built to handle that sort of I/O. But otherwise: it works great!

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