Locating and Using Your Thunderbird Profile

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The Thunderbird profile contains everything that makes Thunderbird unique for a certain user, including the user's email, settings, themes, and extensions. The Thunderbird profile's basic structure is similar to Firefox's.

Finding Your Profile

Your profile's location varies depending on which operating system you are using. The location can also vary if the operating system's defaults for certain file locations have been changed as well. Most users find these locations to be representative of their systems:

  • Windows 95/98/Me profiles are usually in C:\WINDOWS\Application Data\Thunderbird\Profiles\xxxxxxxx.default\.

  • Windows XP/2000 profiles are usually in %appdata%\Thunderbird\Profiles\xxxxxxxx.default\.

  • Linux profiles are usually in ~/.mozilla/thunderbird/xxxxxxxx.default/

  • Mac OS X profiles are usually in ~/Library/Application Support/Thunderbird/Profiles/xxxxxxxx.default/.

In all these examples, xxxxxxxx is a series of random letters and numbers. This feature is used to improve security for the user's profile.

What Is in the Profile?

Some of the files and folders located in a typical Thunderbird profile include those in Table 13.1.

Table 13.1. Thunderbird Profile Folder Files and Folders

Filename/Folder Name

Optional

Description

20587344.s

 

Mail account information

abook.mab

 

Default address book

cert8.db

 

Certificate database

chrome

 

Look and feel folder

compatibility.ini

 

Version compatibility information

components.ini

 

Component information

compreg.dat

 

Component registrations

defaults.ini

 

Defaults

extensions

 

Installed extensions folder

history.mab

 

Collected addresses

Imapmail

Yes

Mail folder for IMAP mail accounts, if any are defined

key3.db

 

Key database

localstore.rdf

 

Configuration information

Mail

 

User mail store folder

mailViews.dat

 

View rules

mimeTypes.rdf

 

MIME helper file

panacea.dat

 

Thunderbird files list

prefs.js

 

Basic (initial) preferences; it overrides user.js and updates these settings

secmod.db

 

Security module database

training.dat

 

Bayesian filter word list file

virtualFolders.dat

 

Virtual folder's version number

xpti.dat

 

Thunderbird configuration file

XUL.mfl

 

User interface cache file

user.js

Yes

Additional user preferences; it overrides prefs.js and updates prefs.js

userChrome.css

Yes

Thunderbird look and feel Cascading Style Sheet file

userContent.css

Yes

Thunderbird content Cascading Style Sheet file


Each subfolder in the profile's mail folder contains files for each account folder in Thunderbird. In Figure 13.4, you see nine accounts defined, with a folder in Mail for each account.

Figure 13.4. This profile's Mail folder has nine accounts configured, although most users usually have only one or two.


For example the Inbox for an account's folder would have

  • Inbox A text file that contains all the email stored in this account's inbox.

  • Inbox.msf Message header information and an index for each message stored in the account's inbox.

  • Inbox.sbd A holder for any subfolders for this folder. If no subfolders exist, this folder is empty.

There is no reason to modify many of these files, but a few are editable, either with the about:config extension or a text editor.

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    Firefox and Thunderbird. Beyond Browsing and Email
    Firefox and Thunderbird Garage
    ISBN: 0131870041
    EAN: 2147483647
    Year: 2003
    Pages: 245

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