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Tutorial troubleshooting Windows Mail

(2 posts)
  • Started 8 years ago by SarahJames
  • Latest reply from vistual
  • Topic Viewed 7943 times

Posts: 0

When your Windows Mail for some reason get's corrupted, for example by a virusscanner or because you have moved it's storagefolder, you can get stuck with an undeletable message or Windows Mail just keeps on recovering messages.
If all else fails (i.e. letting it run till all messages have been recovered and deleting the undeletable message till your blue in the face) you might want to restore your Windows Mail.

Here are the steps you have to keep in mind.

A) Backing up your accounts and email.
There are two ways to do both things.

1. Backing up your accounts: Go to tools> accounts and select an account and click export. Export it to a location you can easily find back, like Documents. Do this for each account you have.

2. In Vista and Win7 you can also backup your account by going to C:\Users\(username)\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Mail\Local Folders and look for files that are named account{a bunch of numbers and letters}.oeaccount. Copy those files to a save location. Mind you: if you have chosen to give Windows Mail a different storage folder, you'll have to look for the files in that location.

3. Backing up your emails: Go to File>Export > Messages

In the menu choose Microsoft Windows Mail

Browse to the location where you want to backup the files (it has to be an empty folder)

Select the messagefolders you want to backup

Hit next and you're done. Hit finish to close the windows.

4. You can also manually backup your messages by going to C:\Users\(username)\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Mail\Local Folders or the storagefolder you have created for Windows Mail and copy the folders in there to a safe location like Documents.

Lastly you might want to backup your settings for Windows Mail. Those are stored in the registry.
First of all working in the registry is always risky, so make a good backup. You can use Mz Registry Backup to make a true backup copy of your registry. It is also a good idea to just select the keys you are about to change and choose export (which is the first thing we are going to do anyway, see screenshots).

Second point to note: if you are resetting Windows Mail, because you have troubles with Windows Mail, restoring the registry settings is not a good idea, because that's where the problem is.
However, you might want to restore parts of the settings, like your signatures and junkmailsettings.
So I will go into this, though generally speaking I advise you to skip this step.

First open regedit (type regedit in run and it will open).
Go to the key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows Mail
Rightclick and select 'export'. Save it to a safe location like Documents and give it a clear name like 'Complete Windows Mail settings'.

This way you have secured ALL your settings.
But with a corrupted Windows Mail that is not what you are going to need.
So we're going to export only the parts you don't want to lose, like your junkmail settings.
Select the subkey Junkmail, then rightclick, choose export and save with a clear name like 'Junkmail Settings'.
Next do the same for the subkey 'Signatures'. Save as 'Signature Settings'.
And the last thing you might want to backup are your message rules. So export the subkey Rules.

Having everything backed up, we're ready for the next step.

Reboot your system and do [u]not[/u] open Windows Mail.
Open regedit and go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows Mail.
Stay in the lefthand pane and delete the whole key Windows Mail.

Close regedit and in explorer go to C:\Users\(username)\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Mail.
Delete everything in it, but do not delete the folder itself.
Reboot, start Windows Mail and close it again.
First method:
Open Windows Mail again and go to Tools > Accounts > import (see very first screenshot above). Browse to where you stored your accounts (*.iaf files) and select one to import. Repeat till you have imported all your accounts.

Next import your email. Go to File > Import > Messages

Choose Microsoft Windows Mail 7

And browse to the folder where you stored your files

Second method (doing it manually):
Do [u]not[/u] open Windows Mail again.
You can restore your accounts and emails in one go by copying your manually backed up files from C:\Users\(username)\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Mail\Local Folders back to that folder again (or the customset folder you have defined using these steps).

And to finish it off and restore your junkmailsettings and signatures and emailrules: Make sure Windows Mail is closed. Doubleclick respectively your 'Junkmail Settings.reg', 'Signature Settings.reg' and 'Rules.reg' (or whatever recognizable name you gave them) and allow them to be imported into your registry.
(if you have UAC enabled you might get some prompt that I don't)

Open up Windows Mail again and voila, you should see a smoothly working Windows Mail again :)

Posted 8 years ago
Posts: 0

i think this was great!
thanks SJ!

Posted 8 years ago

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