Steps to Import MBOX to Gmail with or without Thunderbird

Last updated on May 17th, 2023 at 05:39 pm

The MBOX is a file format used by several email clients, including Thunderbird and Postbox. Postbox is a commercial email client, but Thunderbird is open source and can be downloaded for free. You might have used Thunderbird to store your emails and then want to import them to Gmail. Importing MBOX to Gmail can be a bit tricky, but the good news is that several methods can help you do this.

This guide will show you how to import MBOX to Gmail with or without Thunderbird. It will also explain the situations in which MBOX files need to be imported to Gmail mailboxes.

Reasons to import MBOX to Gmail

Undoubtedly, today, Gmail is ruling the email niche, and even for some users, email means Gmail, nothing else. Gmail provides several modern-day working abilities for free. Today Gmail has 1.5 billion users around the globe, and the numbers are growing immensely. Some of Gmail’s features that divert users into Gmail go as follows:

  1. Thunderbird and Gmail both are free email clients. However, if we compare both for productivity, then Gmail is the streets ahead.
  2. Gmail offers a cloud facility that makes Gmail’s data universally accessible anywhere and anytime with an internet connection.
  3. Nowadays, to login into different platforms, it is a must to have a Gmail account even to fulfil ITR and other govt. Related platforms ask for a Gmail account.
  4. Gmail offers Google Meet and hangout facility for video calls and texting with clients, colleagues, and family. All this comes for free.

Apart from these features, there are several utilities in Gmail which make it the most used email client in the 20th century. Now let’s move to our main topic: how to import MBOX files to Gmail with or without Thunderbird.

Instant Solution for Your MBOX Emails to Gmail Transfer

Are you in hurry? and don’t want to read the full blog. We’ve got the ultimate solution for your MBOX email file transfer needs right here!

  • If you want to transfer MBOX Emails to Gmail Personal Accounts: Use the Shoviv IMAP Gmail Backup tool that effortlessly restores or imports your MBOX emails into any old or new Gmail Accounts.

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  • Or Want to Move MBOX Email files to Gmail for business (Usually known as Google Workspace): You can also use the Shoviv Google Workspace backup and restore tool to transfer/import MBOX to Gmail for business (formally known as G Suite).

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These tools effortlessly transfer and import your MBOX emails to your desired Gmail account, saving you time and energy. So why wait? Try our tools now and make your email migration process a breeze!

Ways to Import MBOX File to Gmail

Importing emails from MBOX to Gmail is not a difficult task. However, one needs to follow a certain process to ensure that the email addresses are transferred correctly.

There are two ways you can import MBOX to Gmail. The first method is with the help of the Gmail import option; the second one is with the help of Thunderbird. Let’s start with the first one.

Import MBOX File to Gmail Without Thunderbird

It is a quite simple process, and even non-technocrats can use this option without any hassle. However, there are a few drawbacks of this method which I will mention after the procedure. So let’s start:

  • Login to your Gmail account.
  • Visit the Setting option and go to the Account and Import option.

Login to your Gmail Account

  • Now click the Import mail and contacts option.
  • Following a pops-up, here enter your Thunderbird email address and click Continue.

Following a pops-up

  • Now provide a password of the respective account and click Continue.

Sign in to Gmail

  • In the following wizard, choose which data you want to import. After that, click the Start import option.

Import Option

  • Now your Thunderbird files (MBOX) will start importing into your Gmail account.


This method works for users who are still using Thunderbird and want to import MBOX emails directly from it. Now let’s move toward a few of its drawbacks.

Import MBOX to Gmail with Thunderbird

In this method, you need to configure your Gmail account to Thunderbird and then drag and drop emails from the Thunderbird account to the Gmail account. Let me explain:

  1. Open Thunderbird.
  2. Click the Thunderbird Menu button and choose the Account SettingsImport MBOX to Gmail Step 1
  3. Now click the Account Action option and choose Add Mail Account option. Import MBOX to Gmail Step 2
  4. Following, provide your Gmail account password in which you want to import MBOX files. Import MBOX to Gmail Step 3
  5. Now choose whether to configure as an IMAP account or as POP and click Done.Import MBOX to Gmail Step 4
  6. In the next wizard, login to your Gmail account and allows the asked permissions.Import MBOX to Gmail Step 5
  7. Once done with the above steps, click on the Finish button, and your Gmail account will be listed on Thunderbird.

Import MBOX to Gmail Step 6

Now all you need to do is select all the emails you want to import into your Gmail account. After that, make a right-click and go to the Move to option and choose the Thunderbird account.

Import MBOX to Gmail Step 7

Drawbacks of the method mentioned above:

  1. You cannot filter unwanted items. Hence you’ll have unwanted emails in your Gmail account.
  2. It is a slow process and can take up to 2 days to import a single Thunderbird account to Gmail.
  3. The method doesn’t allow importing multiple Thunderbird accounts in a single process.

Import MBOX file into Gmail account

Import MBOX to Gmail: Directly | For Everyone

These both methods work sometimes, but due to the risk of data loss and slow speed, I’ll not suggest these. Several organizations and businesspersons used and recommend going with the Shoviv Gmail backup and Restore tool. This tool is a picture-perfect solution for users who want to export their MBOX files into Gmail mailboxes with options like data filtration, Incremental Export, Source, Target mapping, and many more.

Icing on the cake: You can install Shoviv Gmail backup and Restore tool’s free version and check its skills. I hope you will, and the tool is worth it.

Below is the process to evaluate the tool and process the first 50 items per folder.

MBOX files Import to Gmail mailboxes

  • Step1: Open the recommended tool in your system.
  • Step2: Click the Export and choose MBOX file option.
  • Step3: Add MBOX folders and map them with Gmail.
  • Step4: Use the filter option to make for desired export.
  • Step5: Setup other settings as per need and click the Ok.
  • Step6: Preview complete settings and click the Finish.

Here the software will start to export MBOX files to Gmail mailboxes. You have not restricted any MBOX file size and number restrictions, so you can process hundreds of files simultaneously. If needed, you can backup the same Gmail mailbox into PST file format on the local disk.

Wrapping Up

Users are frequently moving towards Gmail, especially from Thunderbird. Here I’ve mentioned a few solutions to import MBOX files to Gmail without or Without Thunderbird. I hope it’ll help you to get a swing into Gmail.

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I had an amazing experience with this method! I used it to transfer my MBOX file to my Gmail account with ease. Each step of the process was incredibly straightforward, and I’m really impressed with it. I’ll definitely be sharing this method with my friends and colleagues.

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