Recently I’ve been researching the process of archiving my ancient email from the turn of the millenium. The whole process got started when I decided to cull my collection of old Mac hardware, including 4 old laptops from the basement which don’t work anymore. The day I’ll need to resurrect another Pismo is long since gone, so I’m ditching three carcasses as well as a Titanium shell.
So, what I’ve got is a CD with an Outlook Express 5 (Mac) database, and I’d like to (in the best possible outcome) convert the email to text so that it’s out of a proprietary format. I got a version of OE5 running on a spare laptop (my venerable old Powerbook 1400) and found a script that converts an OE mailbox into individual .EML files. I should be able to crack open an .EML file into text to at least read the headers and message data.
The other method I found was to set up a spare IMAP mailbox and point OE5 at it; uploading mailboxes and messages to the IMAP folder converts them, and then they can be pulled down by a newer email client which can save them out as something else.
In the meantime, with all of the spare time I’ve got, I’m gonna re-burn the CD with the database, the converted files, a copy of the script linked above, and an install of OE5 for the future, when I’ve forgotten what I did with the text archive and I need to do this all over again.