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How Do I Transfer Thunderbird Contacts to a New Computer?

Written By Mohit Jha
Mack John
Approved By Mack John  
Published On August 10th, 2021
Reading Time 4 Minutes Reading

Last week, my system got crashed due to some virus attack and now I am unable to access my data. All my documents, emails, and important files are stored in it. Next week, I have to submit some important files to clients, but I don’t remember their email messages. Thankfully, I have my Thunderbird backup stored in external HDD. Can I anyone please tell me how to transfer Thunderbird Address Book to another computer and access them in it. Thanks in Advance!

As discussed in the above query, the users who don’t have access to their system and want to access Thunderbird contacts in another computer can refer this article. In the following section, we have discussed the step by step procedure to move Thunderbird contacts to new computer.

Additionally, an automated tool is also mentioned below for users who don’t have Mozilla Thunderbird in new system. Using the software, users can convert the contact file into VCF, CSV and PST format. Then, the resultant files can be accessed in their respective applications.

More Information about Thunderbird Address Book

  • abook.mab: Address book contacts includes all contacts that are added by the user.
  • history.mab: Collected address book contains all previously installed email contacts.
  • impab.mab: Imported address book consists of all contact files which are imported by Mozilla Thunderbird.

Steps to Transfer Thunderbird Address Book to Another Computer

The following section explains the complete process in two steps. Perform the steps carefully and you can easily export contacts from one computer to another.

Step 1: Locate & Copy Mozilla Thunderbird Contact File

In this step, users have to locate the directory where all the Thunderbird contacts are stored. It uses MAB file to store all the contacts. You just have to navigate to the destination and copy those files.

  • Launch the Thunderbird email client.
  • Select Options from the Thunderbird Menu.


  • Navigate to the Thunderbird directory by selecting Account Settings >> Server Settings >> Local Directory.


  • Locate to this directory path and you will find abook.mab, history.mab, impab.mab files.


Step 2: Move Thunderbird Contacts to New Computer

In this step, the user is briefed about the method to export the contact files from one computer to another computer.

  • Copy the Thunderbird MAB files to a USB or Pen drive.
  • Insert this Pen drive to your new computer or laptop.
  • Store the Thunderbird contact files to your new computer.

Once, the users are done with the copying contact files to new system. They can access those files in Mozilla Thunderbird. However, if users don’t have Thunderbird installed in their system, then they can use the following third-party application i.e. SysTools Thunderbird MAB File Converter to export thunderbird autocomplete to Outlook PST, VCF, CSF formats.

Here is the step by step working of the software:

  • Open the application and click on Add File button.


  • Choose File or Folder option. Select the Browse button to locate MAB files and click on the Add button.

browse mab files

  • Select CSV, VCF or PST radio button to convert contacts in desired file format. And, click on the Browse option to locate the destination path.

export vcf file

  • Finally, hit Export button to complete the process.


Great Features of the Software

  • The software enables the user to either select a single contacts file or a complete contacts folder to transfer Thunderbird Address Book to another computer.
  • It provides the option to convert contacts to multiple file formats.
  • Users are also allowed to merge multiple address book files to a single file during conversion process.
  • There is no restriction on file size during the process.
  • Users also get the preview of contact details like Name, Phone Number, Profile Picture, Email Address, etc.
  • There is no need to install Mozilla Thunderbird in system.
  • The resultant file is completely free from any kind of virus or malware.

Concluding Thoughts

In this article, we have mentioned the simple steps to transfer Thunderbird address book to another computer. Moreover, we have also mentioned an automated software which allows users to export contacts in PST, CSV or VCF file formats. Later, the resultant files can be used in their supported applications. This way, users don’t have the limitation to access those contacts in Mozilla Thunderbird only.