How to Open MBOX File in Windows and Mac? Top 5 Ways

Mark Regan
Published: April 12th, 2024 • 6 Min Read

How to open MBOX file? Are you searching for the same query? If yes, then read this post. This article outlines the methods to easily open MBOX file on platforms like Windows, Mac and Chrome. We have described step-by-step procedures for the users, who are unable to open their .mbox files.

Understand MBOX File

MBOX files are a standard file format that stores all the data including email messages and attachments in a single database. .mbox files are supported by many well-known email clients such as Thunderbird, Apple Mail, SeaMonkey, etc. However there are several different applications that allow you to open .mbox files.

Moreover, there are four types of MBOX files supported by different platforms. Such as MBOXO supported by Eudora, MBOXRD supported by Qmail, Thunderbird, and Netscape, MBOXCL, MBOXCL2.

Why Are You Unable to Open MBOX Files?

There are several reasons, because of which you may find it difficult to open .mbox file. Some of the common problems can be:

  • Check whether the MBOX file is missing, damaged or corrupt. To fix this, you need to recover the MBOX file first.
  • Make sure that you are opening the MBOX file from the correct file location.
  • Users can also have difficulty in opening large sized MBOX files.
  • Verify that the email client you are using to open the MBOX files, supports .mbox format.
  • The email client you are using to open a .mbox file might not be configured correctly.
  • The user might not be granted permission to open MBOX files.
  • Ensure that the file extension is “.mbox” as it can be incorrect sometimes.

How to Open MBOX File?

Opening an MBOX file is not a very difficult task. However you just need an email client to open .mbox file or specialized tools. Below we have described multiple manual and advanced methods that can help you how to open MBOX files in Windows and Mac using Thunderbird, Apple Mail, Chrome, Postbox, and Smart tools.

#1 Open MBOX Files on Windows Using Thunderbird

  1. Open the Thunderbird desktop application on your Computer.
  2. Login to your account and go to the File tab.
  3. Tap on Open button then Select Saved Messages.
  4. Choose the MBOX file you want to open from your computer.
  5. Click on Open button at the end.

#2 Steps to Open .mbox File in MacOS with Apple Mail

  1. Download and Install Apple Mail on your MacOS.
  2. Open the application and go to File tab.
  3. Select Import Mailboxes button> then choose File in MBOX format from the dialogue box> Click continue.
  4. Navigate to the MBOX file and click the Open button.

#3 How to Open an MBOX File in Chrome Browser?

To open .mbox files in Chrome, you first need to convert MBOX files to HTML. One done, follow these steps-

  1. Launch the Google Chrome Web browser and drag & drop the HTML file from your computer which you just converted.
  2. However, you can also navigate to the HTML file location on your PC and Click Open with> Chrome.

#4 How to Open MBOX Files/ Folders in PostBox

  1. Start PostBox> Navigate to File Menu> Click Import.
  2. Select the MBOX folder from its path and Hit Import button.

Obstacles of Above Manual Ways-

  • Can be difficult for non-technical users.
  • Applications should be installed on the computer.
  • Repetitive process and cannot open multiple MBOX files at once.
  • Users need to implement multiple lengthy steps which can be time consuming.
  • Moreover, manual ways often fail due to several errors.

#5 Smart Solution to Open All MBOX Files/ Folders with Attachments

The best way to open the MBOX file directly you should go for the professional’s recommended solutions such as BitRecover MBOX Viewer free tool. Why waste time in manual methods when you can take the smart move and open .mbox files in bulk within a few clicks? Use the tool to open MBOX files and folders and get a clear view of all your data with each and every information.

Try this professional way to open your MBOX files instead of laborious methods.

Here are Steps to Open Multiple .mbox Files with Advanced Tool

  1. Download and Install the tool on your PC.
    How to Open MBOX File
  2. Click on Add File or Add Folder button to open MBOX files.
    add mbox files and folders
  3. On the next interface, you can preview all MBOX folders and specify which you want to open.
    select MBOX files and folders to open
  4. After selecting the folder, the tool will show you a complete view of your MBOX data with all details with attachments.
    open MBOX file


In Short, Opening MBOX file is not so complex, hence all you need is proper guidance and easy to understand methods. In this article, we have explained how to open MBOX files in Windows and Mac with multiple different methods. We described all the methods in a very simple way but still users can face challenges like lots of technicalities and time consumption in opening MBOX files manually. However, it is preferred to go for the pro solution in order to open bulk of MBOX files at once with attachment peacefully.

Here are Some User’s Queries

1. Can I Open an MBOX File in Outlook?

Ans. Yes! But first you will have to convert MBOX to PST as Outlook does not support MBOX files to directly open it. After the conversion> Open Outlook> File> Open & Export> Open Outlook Data File (.pst)> Select PST file> Click Open button.

2. Why Am I not able to Open MBOX files though other applications?

MBOX files are supported by a large number of email clients but if you need to open an application that does not support MBOX files, you will have to convert it. You can use MBOX Converter to import and save MBOX files in MSG, EML, PDF, Windows Live Mail, Office 365, IMAP Server, Gmail, etc.

3. What Programs I can use to Open MBOX file?

Microsoft applications like Thunderbird, Outlook, etc you can use to open an MBOX file.