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backing up email folders

New Poster

backing up email folders

Anyone one know how I might back up my email folders?

Expert

Re: backing up email folders

Enable the account in a desktop email client like Outlook or Thunderbird.  That way the messages are on the server and on the computer.  To be on the sage side I would put important emails into local folders in the client.  Using a client lets you also back up your email on an external drive if you like.

New Poster

Re: backing up email folders

Thanks.  Too bad.

Expert

Re: backing up email folders

There are third-party browser add-ons that claim to be able to backup your email, but I've never tried any of them.  It's not the same thing as a real client at any rate.  But you might want to look into it.  Another option would be to auto-forward your Comcast email to some other account you have like Outlook.com or Gmail.  That way you can have them on both the Comcast servers and those for the other email provider.

 

 

Just a thought.

Frequent Visitor

Re: backing up email folders

Can you verify that statement, please?

 

From my understanding, if you use SMP, when you connect to the server you can have a choice to download from it to your computer email account, which would remove it from the server, and you'd have on your local computer which you could also backup to external disk or web or similar.

 

But, if you use IMAP...you only SEE what's on the Comcast server, nothing is downloaded to your computer, and...if something is deleted, it's gone.

 

I ask, coz I switched from SMP to IMAP back in June...and just found out that for whatever reason, while the Automatic Delete for Received Email is Never...for Sent Email it's only 30 days...so, all my Sent Email, including critical ones, over 30 days old was deleted.

 

And, after talking to a real Comcast support person (not the ones who you chat with), I'm told Comcast doesn't backup email, so, it's gone forever...

Expert

Re: backing up email folders

You want me to verify what statement?  And what is SMP in regard to email?

Frequent Visitor

Re: backing up email folders

Sorry...brain dead, meant POP, not SMP...

 

If using IMAP, where else would Sent email be stored but on the Comcast server?

 

Thanks.

Expert

Re: backing up email folders

POP3 will download the emails to your desktop client and then delete it from the server by default, unless you set the client to leave a copy on the server.  But that's only for the Inbox.  It doesn't have any effect on the other folders.  IMAP will sync everything on any device you have the account enabled on, but they all have to be using it.  For a more detailed look at the two protocols see here---------------------

 

https://askleo.com/what_is_imap_and_how_can_it_help_me_manage_my_email/

Frequent Visitor

Re: backing up email folders

Latoque,

 

I read your reply to this question and also read the "Ask Leo" link.  In my case, I am on Comcast, use Outlook and have my basic email (inbox, sent, trash, etc.) in an imap account.  However, when I set this up, I decided to keep a pst file with extensive folders and contacts for backup purposes.  If I read everything correctly, I could move those folders to the imap account and still be able to do a local backup/restote function since a copy of the ost file is on my PC.

 

Is that right?

 

Thanks,

Dan

Expert

Re: backing up email folders

I don't have any experience with Outlook, but I do use Mac Mail.  In that I can import files that end in .mbox.  I'm assuming your pst files are similar?  I would think Outlook would have a way to do the same thing.  If I export a folder, then import it, it shows up under a new folder called "Import" in the local folders in Mac Mail.

Frequent Visitor

Re: backing up email folders

Thanks for the prompt reply.  I think the question is more about how backup works in any imap situation.  From the article, it indicates that a local copy of the imap file is kept on the desktop.  That is the case in Outlook and it is called an .ost file. I assume that Comcast has backup procedures in place although one poster indicated that wasn't the case.  Hard to believe that.  

 

However, being a belt and suspenders guy when it comes to backup, I like my own off-line backup.  I have actually been proceeding on that assumption to date and backing up the .ost file.  So I guess I am trying to determine if the server file gets messed up in any way (by me or them), can I restore it from my local backup before I commit all my folders to an imap file.

Expert

Re: backing up email folders

If you are running a backup utility and using an external drive, then yes you should be able to recover any emails or folder by just restoring from an earlier backup.