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Problem reading email offline

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ugrUSB
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Joined: 2008-04-14 03:38
Problem reading email offline

I installed the latest version of Thunderbird Portable on a Sony 4Gb memory stick. I set up my gmail IMAP account no problems. I connected to the internet on my W2K home machine and read/deleted etc my email fine. I then synced the mail (and Newsgroup messages) for offline reading and took the USB stick to work. On my work Windows XP, when I launch Thunderbird Portable, the account is there but no email/IMAP folders are visible. (i.e. only the Inbox folder is listed on the account and it is empty)

I checked the following.
- IMAP folder files are in imap.googlemail.com folder under data on the USB stick
- Account settings points to the correct folder
- News groups are visible in Thunderbird portable (so the sync work partially at least)

What am I doing wrong?

Thanks
ugrUSB

ElRay
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Joined: 2008-11-27 03:04
As far as I can tell,

As far as I can tell, nothing. I have the exact same problem, except that TB sometimes works as intended. The problem seem to be greater with the most recent ThunderBird release: 2.0.0.18 rev2 -- In fact, I don't think this feature has worked once since I upgraded.

There's another thread here (that I can't find now) mentioning the same thing. Somebody posted that the behavior you report is the correct behavior, but I strongly disagree. The whole point of offline storage is to be able to read and reply to emails offline. You shouldn't have to copy them to a local folder just to hang on to them. If that was the case, there's no point in using IMAP over POP3.

Ray

ottosykora
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Joined: 2007-10-11 17:48
strange

when I do the same in outlook , same happends.
I mean, this is kind of behaviour of the IMAP?

Otto Sykora
Basel, Switzerland

John T. Haller
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Select for Offline

Only folders that you have explicitly set for offline use will be available. You can right-click on them, select properties and then the Offline tab. Select the box and click the Download button to download all the messages up til now (future will happen when you sync).

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

ElRay
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Last seen: 15 years 4 months ago
Joined: 2008-11-27 03:04
Been there, done that

That's how I have TBP set. With 2.0.0.18 rev2, I've seen this work maybe two or three times since I upgraded. Every other time, nothing is saved, even though TBP appears to synch and download messaged before going offline.

Ray

Hikaru L. Ayanami
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Last seen: 14 years 10 months ago
Joined: 2009-01-07 21:45
Same problem

Someone posted a similar issue on this page.

The exact nature of the problem is that whenever I try to pull up my TB Portable for offline use, almost ALL of the folders under my IMAP account disappear. Now, this problem can be circumvented, if I were to connect online, and then sync my mail. But, what if I can't do that?

Referencing from the above link, I tried manually editing the said files under the Data/profile directory:
1. prefs.js
2. panacea.dat
3. compreg.dat
4. xpti.dat

The manual edit consists of changing the drive letters to the target drive (ie: from G: to E:). It seemed to work on one occassion. However, when I restarted the application (close/open method and unsafe shutdown/crash), the problem occurs: All of my IMAP folders are gone.

I took a close look on the Data/profile/ImapMail/[imap-account] folder, and made a comparison with the Data folder that displays the IMAP folders. I realised that the .MSF files on the former were gone. I think that the NSH script does something (directly or indirectly) to those files. I also think that if the script (or something else) can avoid those files, the IMAP folders can be retained.

Could this be an issue from [base] Thunderbird in the first place? What I mean is, could this be a problem when someone manually copies their profile folder from one computer to another?

Think, then execute.

Hikaru L. Ayanami
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Update: Problem is not on PortableApps

Just made an experiment a few hours ago, and I discovered something. The problem is not on the NSIS script, but on Thunderbird itself.

How was the experiment done?

Experiment 1: Run on another TB Portable installation.

  1. I copied the fresh Data/ folder from a TB Portable that has the complete, offline IMAP folders to a backup folder.
  2. That Data/ folder was copied to the target TB Portable to run on another flash disk and drive letter.
  3. The files, "prefs.js, "panacea.dat" and two .ini files on the Data/profile/ directory were manually edited.
  4. Run ThunderbirdPortable.exe for the first time. IMAP folders show up.
  5. Close Thunderbird Portable, and run it a second time. IMAP folders disappear.

Experiment 2: Local Thunderbird installation

  1. I ran a fresh install of Thunderbird to create a default profile.
  2. I copied the fresh Data/profile/ folder to the local profile and overwrote everything.
  3. The files, "prefs.js, "panacea.dat" and two .ini files on the Data/profile/ directory were manually edited.
  4. Run Thunderbird for the first time. IMAP folders show up.
  5. Close Thunderbird, and run it a second time. IMAP folders disappear.

Conclusion:

No matter what we do on our end to preserve the offline IMAP folders, it will disappear on the second time we try to run Thunderbird (local of portable). We must relay this to the Mozilla Thunderbird team, so that they can do something about it.

That is all.

Think, then execute.

idiota
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Last seen: 14 years 4 months ago
Joined: 2010-03-04 06:54
Arrgh!

I think I have the same problem. All looks good when online, but when I take the flash drive to a computer that doesn't have internet access the folders are visible but there is nothing in them.

HOW are frustrated users supposed to "relay this to the Mozilla Thunderbird team, "??

I'd really hate to have to go back to Microsoft, but having to copy stuff to local folders every time I get mail is just stupid.

Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition.

J Neutron
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Last seen: 2 months 1 week ago
Joined: 2008-06-10 19:26
Workaround

Until it gets officially fixed, why don't you just create a rule on that email account that moves all of the incoming mail to that local folder?

That way, you won't have to do anything except read the mail in the new place.

neutron1132 (at) usa (dot) com

idiota
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Last seen: 14 years 4 months ago
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thanks

Yes, that seems to work, thank you.

Maybe I'll try going back to POP.

Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition.

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