I set up a new system and took the .thunderbird folder from my old home directory and placed it in my new home directory. With most things the applications open back up exactly as I had them on my last system and I expected the same with Thunderbird.

When I open it, it's like a brand new installation and it asks if I'd like to create an email address.

  • I ran 'thunderbird -p' and made sure the correct (and only) profile was selected, but still nothing.
  • I tried removing the .thunderbird directory altogether, opening Thunderbird to generate it, and then replacing the contents with my old profile and still nothing.
  • I checked the permissions on the files and they are correct, and I can go through the folders and see calendar/email/contact data, so I'm not sure what the problem is.

Any ideas?

  • In case the last version of the profile was corrupt I restored the .thunderbird folder from one day before and it worked. I diffed through to see what the difference was and the only file that was different besides actual calendar/email data was the existence of a .parentlock file in the WORKING backup. I would think if anything the existence of a lock file would make it less like to work. I have not tried going back to the non-working profile and adding this .parentlock file to see if it would fix it though. – jchysk Feb 16 '15 at 3:57

I have found that if I keep trying to start Thunderbird, it may or may not eventually start.

What is more telling is that I have the TB profile and all data files on a separate partition, which the TB launcher seems not to like. If I open that partition in Nautilus, for example, then start Thunderbird, it will pick up the profile and will start ok.

Design flaw, as I can see it, because Thunderbird should be able to access that partition straight off.

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