Why won’t Outlook for Mac 2011 import emails?

Lu November 10, 2011
Ads by Google

I am trying unsuccessfully to import my emails from Thunderbird on Mac to the Outlook for Mac 2011, which I stupidly purchased.

Outlook gives an option for import email messages from a text file, then has option “Import messages from an MBOX-format text file”. I exported my email messages from Thunderbird to an MBOX-format file and saved them in a separate folder.

But when I start the import wizard of the Outlook and follow the steps till “import messages from an MBOX-format text file” and come to the folder with the MBOX files, they remain gray and inactive.

I already tried importing .EML and other formats – same problem!  They remain grey and inactive for importing.

Can anyone share with me a tip or experience on how to import my 10 accounts with hundreds sub-folders into Outlook 2011 for Mac?


  1. Kamel
    July 2, 2012 at 3:25 pm

    The solution is located at: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2413370

    In outlook 2011, select File, Import, Click on Contacts or messages from text file, select the mbox file, and you are back in business.

    The key here is knowing that to Microsoft, MBOX (Mail Box) are Messages from TEXT FILE.

    Hope that helped.

  2. Aibek
    November 12, 2011 at 4:04 pm

    Lu? have you tried suggestions above? Let us know.

  3. Mike
    November 11, 2011 at 6:24 am

    If you have your Emails in .EML format all you have to do is drag&drop them into the corresponding folder within Outlook e.g. Inbox, Sent Items, ...

  4. Jay
    November 11, 2011 at 6:03 am

    option 1 :  Rename mbox files to very short ones with five characters, without any special characters. and try the same process.

    opion 2: get a Gmail IMAP account and upload from Mail, then download into Outlook using the Gmail account. You can delete the account after the transfer.