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Transferring Email using Mozilla Thunderbird

The following instructions will show you how to transfer your messages from your Hamilton email to your personal email account using a free email client called Thunderbird. Please note that Thunderbird is used here only to facilitate the email transfer and can be uninstalled after it has served its purpose.

Note: The following instructions will work for most email providers (Gmail, Yahoo Mail, Hotmail,etc). If Thunderbird does not find your settings automatically, you will have to enter them manually.  If you do not know the correct settings, you will need to obtain them from your account provider (Yahoo Mail, Hotmail, etc.).

Also note that you can view a larger, clearer version of the images in this document by clicking directly on the image.

  1. First, login to your Hamilton email account. Go to Settings. (This is accessed by clicking on the gear shaped icon along the top right corner.)

  1. From Settings, select Forwarding and Pop/IMAP then choose Enable IMAP. Reminder: You can click on the image below to see a larger version of it.

  1. Please repeat this step for the personal Gmail account.

Note: If transferring mail to a non-Gmail account, you will have to enable IMAP from the settings for the account.  If you don't know how to do this, you can check the online help that comes with your other account.

Installing Thunderbird

Go to http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/thunderbird/ to install the latest version of Thunderbird on either your Windows or Macintosh computer and follow the instructions built-in to the installation. Once Thunderbird has been installed, follow the instructions below.

Transferring Email Messages

Reminder: click on the images below to see a larger, clearer image.

  1. In Thunderbird, click the Tools menu and select Account Settings.

Click to Expand

  1. Click on the Account Actions option found on the bottom of the left pane and Choose Add Mail Account...

  1. Enter your account details for your Hamilton account and select Continue.

  1. Verify that IMAP is selected and click Done.

  1. Repeat Step 2 and Step 3 to add the email account that you want to transfer the emails to and then select OK to close the Account Actions pane.
  2. Depending on the number of messages, it can take a while for Thunderbird to download all your mail.  WAIT FOR THIS TO FINISH before continuing with the next step.
  3. Once all your mail appears in Thunderbird, you can begin the transfer process by highlighting all the messages you want to transfer.  You can highlight all the messages in any given mail folder (the Thunderbird equivalent to a Google label) by clicking on "Edit" in the menu bar and then clicking on "Select All". 
  4. Once they are highlighted, go to the Thunderbird menu, click on “Messages” and then mouse over "Copy To" and then move the mouse to select the inbox or other mail folder into which you want to copy the messages. Once you click on the folder to which you want the messages moved, a transfer will begin. Thunderbird will display the progress at the bottom of the page.
    Note: Depending on the number of messages you've selected, this can take anywhere from a few minutes to an hour or more.  It is important to be patient.
  5. Once the process is complete, login to your gmail.com email account in the traditional way by opening your preferred web browser (Safari, Firefox, etc.) to verify that the messages have been transferred.
  6. You can now uninstall Thunderbird as it has served its purpose.


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