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“Can’t Open MBOX File” – Resolve Query by ImportExport Add-on

Written By Ashwani Tiwari
Mack John
Approved By Mack John  
Published On January 29th, 2024
Reading Time 5 Minutes Reading

Summary: This technical guide will help you to solve the issue of “Can’t Open MBOX File” without facing any hassle. How? Let us read the below sections with easy working steps. Stay with us and get all the possible solutions in just a few clicks.

Table of Content

Many people are familiar with the MBOX file as this file is created in many email clients. It stores email messages that are concatenated one after another. There is a single MBOX file that is created for each folder. But sometimes, due to some reasons, it becomes difficult to access and view Thunderbird MBOX emails. There is a possibility of file damage or any virus infection which makes it unable to read the MBOX file. Like once a user asked a query:

User Query!

“I have some archived MBOX files that I am unable to access. I don’t know the reason behind it but I am getting a warning message that shows ‘Can’t open MBOX file’. Now, I don’t know how to get back all those emails so as to open and read my mailbox. Please suggest any convenient method that helps me a lot to view MBOX emails. Thanks in Advance!”

In the following write-up, we will try to resolve all the issues asked by the users like this thread. But before proceeding to solutions, it is necessary to know the reasons behind such issues. Continue reading to know the symptoms and solutions.

Reasons for Error “Can’t Open MBOX File”

  • There can be many reasons that can lead to these types of issues:
  • Some types of virus infections can also affect MBOX files.
  • Hardware failure can also make MBOX files inaccessible.
  • Sudden opening and closing or corruption in email applications make the file damaged.

Also Read: Use this MBOX Viewer Tool that allow you to view MBOX file mails on Mobile (iOS and Android), Computer (Windows, Linux, Mac, Chromebook), Any Web Browser, etc.

Manual Solution to Open & Access MBOX Files

If you have an email client then you can also access MBOX files in Thunderbird or Outlook email applications. As Mozilla Thunderbird is free and can be installed anytime, it can be a good option for the user who can’t open MBOX file to use that emailing client. You need to follow below steps:

  • You need to download Thunderbird as well as the ImportExport add-in.
  • After installation of the email application, click on Tools >> ImportExportTools >> Import MBOX File.
  • Now, click on Import directly one or more MBOX files in Files MBOX Import.
  • You can also import subdirectories while importing MBOX files.
  • Click on the Open button to import the MBOX file to the Thunderbird email application.

This method may open and access MBOX files as it is easy to open and access all the MBOX emails in the Thunderbird email client. Therefore, try this solution to open and view MBOX data easily.

Drawbacks of Manual Method

There are some limitations of the manual approaches that can’t open MBOX file as mentioned:

  • The method takes too long to execute
  • Difficult to import too many MBOX files
  • User necessary to have a technical knowledge
  • Not easy for non-technical users to execute
  • Not possible if MBOX file is corruption

Alternate Solution to Open MBOX File in Thunderbird

Use this best MBOX Viewer Tool that allows you to preview MBOX emails along with its attachments in a hassle-free manner. Also, provide multiple preview modes like: HTML, RTF, Header, Hex, etc. This tool can auto-fetch MBOX files from the default profile configuration of Email Clients.

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Moreover, this utility has many more advanced features to easily open and access MBOX files in Thunderbird. The interface of the tool is quite easy to use even for a non-technical user. It is completely independent of any third application. It can also open orphan and old MBOX files.

Now, below this automated tool also provides quick steps to easily resolve this “Can’t Open MBOX Files” issue without installation of any other applications. Let’s begin for the same!

Easy Working Steps to Access MBOX File

Following are quick working steps to quickly come out with these types of errors. Check the below mentioned process.

1. Download & run the toll on your Windows machine.


2. Preview “MBOX File” email messages within Forensic MBOX file reader


3. Preview multiple Switch Mode with MBOX Explorer software

switch mode

4. This tool provides Normal Mail & Attachments View.


Observational Verdict

In the following blog, we have tried to solve all the current queries from many users who can’t open MBOX files. There is a manual approach that can let a user read an MBOX file using the ImportExportTools add-on. But, there are some limitations that can restrict a user to try that manual procedure. For that purpose, we have mentioned an alternate or professional solution with an easy user interface for technical as well as non-technical users. So, one can opt for any method for completion of the task of viewing MBOX files in batch easily without any hassle.

FAQs – Can’t Open MBOX File

Ques 1: Can I access and open multiple MBOX files at once?
Ans 1: Yes, users can easily open multiple MBOX files in just a few clicks using this automated tool.

Ques 2: Is this tool compatible with all Windows versions?
Ans 2: Yes, this utility supports all the Windows 7, 8, 10, 11, Windows Server 2008, 2012, 2016, and 2019 versions.

Ques 3: Can I read the HEX value of my saved MBOX message?
Ans 3: Yes, this tool allows you to read the HEX (Hexadecimal Format) of your MBOX file message with complete details intact.