How to Convert MBOX to EML Files? Top 4 Techniques

Rollins Duke   
Published: April 17th, 2024 • 8 Min Read

Numerous users have a desire to convert MBOX to EML files for various reasons. But they don’t know how to do this, if you are one of them then don’t worry. This blog post explains several techniques to export MBOX to EML format including all mailbox attachments, attributes, and components.

Ever thought of retrieving all email header information within an email message? Well, this query is highly demanded by forensic and legal practitioners. The formatting of the EML file is made in such a way the sender can share a particular email with the recipient without revealing the data in any other file format which may influence the confidentiality of that email.

An EML file stores one email message. Whereas the MBOX file stores multiple email messages in a single file. If lost, it can ultimately result in the loss of entire mailbox items. Hence, if you want to switch this file format, here are a few tips to convert MBOX to EML that are sure to help.

MBOX Vs EML Extensions

MBOX: MBOX is an email storage file format utilized for storing the bulk of email messages. This file format stores email messages of a complete folder in a single mailbox file and all new emails are attached to the end of the file. It was originally produced for the Unix system. But now various mail services support MBOX file extensions such as Thunderbird, Apple Mail, Eudora Mail, Entourage, SeaMonkey, etc.

EML: This file format is extensively used even by those who don’t have an email client installed on their system. It’s because if we compare it with MBOX, many more email applications support the EML format. EML is a file format that saves a single email in one file. This is a standard and highly recommended file format to store emails separately.

Why Export MBOX to EML Files?

Compatibility: A lot of email clients and applications support EML files. So, when someone wants to use MBOX files with EML-supported programs, he prefers to export MBOX to EML.

Flexibility: An MBOX file stores multiple email messages so technically it is not possible to open an MBOX file with double click. While you can double-click on the EML file to open it with the associated client.

Email Management: EML files store individual email messages, so it is easy and recommended to manage specific emails. After completing the conversion process, you can easily share, forward, archive, and read EML file data.

Easy Sharing: EML files seem suitable for sharing purposes due to their smaller size and wide compatibility. While practically it is not recommended to share MBOX files because it stores multiple emails.

#1 Convert MBOX to EML Using Thunderbird

  1. Firstly, download, install, and run Thunderbird client.
  2. Then, configure an email account with Thunderbird.
  3. Add “Import Export Tools NG” add-on.
    ImportExportTools NG
  4. Import MBOX file to Thunderbird using Add-On.
    Import mailbox option
  5. Choose Imported MBOX file from local folders.
  6. Select required emails, right-click, and choose “Save As“.
    Save As
  7. Browse a specific destination path and click “Save“.
    Save button
  8. Lastly, open the destination and get converted EML files.
    Converted EML files

Note That: Often when a person tries to find a standard solution for email conversion, then a dilemma arises. Because such approaches have certain shortcomings. Try this manual method to convert MBOX file to EML format. Please note that this method requires Thunderbird installation.

Important Aspect of the Save As Option

  • Thunderbird does not provide any option to import mailboxes, so this is mandatory to add ImportExportTools NG Add-On.
  • The Save As option allows you to export EML files from a single mailbox folder at once.
  • Windows and Mac OS users can change .mbox to .eml extension using open source Thunderbird client.

#2 Export MBOX to EML Using Apple Mail

  1. Launch Apple Mail client on MacBook or iMac.
  2. Then, select “File” << “Import Mailboxes” option.
    Import mailboxes
  3. Enable the “Files in MBOX Format” option and tap “Continue“.
    Files in MBOX format
  4. Choose MBOX mailbox from MacBook and press Continue.
  5. Import MBOX to Apple Mail process completed.
  6. See imported mailbox in Apple Mail under “On My Mac“.
    Imported successfully
  7. After that, choose imported mailbox from On My Mac.
  8. Select the MBOX email message.
  9. Click the “File” menu and select the “Save As” option.
    Select Save As
  10. Lastly, select the “Raw Message Source” and click the “Save” button.
    Export MBOX to EML

Key Points to Use Apple Mail

  • This technique is only recommended for Mac OS users who want to convert MBOX to EML format.
  • Manually, you can export Apple Mail to EML one by one, so this is time-consuming for batch MBOX to EML conversion.
  • This is a lengthy process that requires basic technical knowledge of Apple Mail clients.

#3 Convert MBOX File to EML with Drag and Drop

  1. Import mailbox in MBOX supported client i.e. Thunderbird.
  2. Select imported MBOX mailbox from email client.
  3. Choose email messages to convert them into EML.
  4. After that, drag and drop selected emails into a folder.
  5. Emails exported successfully from MBOX to EML format.

Core Points of Drag and Drop Method

  • This is mandatory to install an MBOX supportable email client to perform the drag and drop technique.
  • Some email clients allow exporting emails in bulk while some are limited to exporting emails one by one.
  • If you use Thunderbird, then you can convert Thunderbird to EML in batch so it is highly recommended.

#4 Export MBOX to EML via Software

With the free version of MBOX converter software, users can export the first 25 emails from any folder completely for free. Users can add the MBOX mailboxes in the application window in two ways, using Select Files or Select Folders. The application is easy to install and use on Windows and Mac computers.

In the meantime, you can opt for the full version to convert as many mailbox files as you like. This MBOX to EML converter supports batch conversion of multiple emails at once while preserving the email attributes.

How to Convert MBOX to EML in Bulk?
  1. Firstly, start MBOX to EML Converter and choose one option from Select Files or Select Folders for adding mailboxes in the software catalog.
    Start MBOX to EML Converter
  2. Now you can see your selected MBOX files in the software panel, choose desired mailbox files, and press the Next button.
    Add MBOX files
  3. The tool offers several saving formats, choose EML as the saving format because, in this blog post, we are especially discussing the process of converting .mbox to .eml extension.
    Select EML
  4. Then, select the file naming option as per your need for storing resultant emails by subject, date, from, auto increment, etc., and hit the Next button.
    File naming option
  5. Now, the MBOX to EML conversion process is running, please wait.
    Convert MBOX to EML
  6. Once the software successfully converts MBOX to EML files, click the OK button.
    Convert MBOX file to EML
  7. After completion, it will maintain the folder structure and automatically open the destination path. Here is your resultant data in .eml format.
    Your resultant data

From the above, we can easily conclude that this is one of the best solutions available in recent times. Also, it is very comfortable for non-technical users. It is not necessary to have advanced technical knowledge or guidance to perform the MBOX mailbox to EML conversion process.

MBOX to EML Converter Features & Benefits

The application proves to be the best and most powerful utility for converting selective or multiple MBOX files into EML file format. Some key features of this toolkit are as follows:

  • It supports MBOX files of all origins, whether orphan or associated with an email application.
  • MBOX to EML converter offers several advanced filters for selective conversion with different criteria.
  • Users can batch convert multiple mailbox files to EML without any restrictions.
  • The utility provides the ability to transfer emails with all properties such as To, Cc, Bcc, E-mail headers, etc. into the EML file format.
  • Provides various file naming conventions for renaming resultant EML files in multiple styles.

The MBOX to EML converter is one of the best ways to get the intended results. You can download and try the free trial version. It will convert the first 25 emails from MBOX format to EML. After receiving the desired results, you can purchase the license to complete the conversion.

Of course, you can use the aforementioned manual methods to convert MBOX file to EML for free. They are quite easy and convenient to use if you have the associated email applications.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q 1: How do I convert an MBOX file to EML?

Above we have disclosed 4 best techniques to convert MBOX to EML, you can choose any accordingly. Just follow the above-mentioned steps to resolve your query using free and paid solutions.

Q 2: What is difference between EML and MBOX?

EML is a standard format to store single emails while MBOX is a mailbox folder that can store multiple emails.

Q 3: How to create hard copies from MBOX files?

You will need to print MBOX files to create hard copies.