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Free Ways to Export Thunderbird Emails to PDF – Complete Guide

Published By Deepa Pandey
Anuraag Singh
Approved By Anuraag Singh
Published On November 22nd, 2023
Reading Time 6 Minutes Reading
Category conversion

Summary: The article provides all applicable solutions to convert Thunderbird emails to PDF. One will be able to export mailboxes from Thunderbird MBOX to PDF with and without utilizing third-party products. It is the decision of a person that according to his / her knowledge and need which solution he/she would like to prefer.


Currently, there are many computer users who use Adobe portable documents for one or the other purpose. Among several file formats available in the market, a PDF file is the only format that is supportable on multiple platforms. An individual can open portable documents on MS Windows, Mac, iOS, Linux, etc. Noticing the need of email users, they also need PDF files for several purposes like email sharing, transferring, backup, etc.

Therefore, here we are available for those Mozilla users who want to convert Thunderbird emails to PDF. This blog handles a manual solution to move Mozilla Thunderbird to PDF (Portable Document File) format. It is explained with figures, so it will be helpful for a non-technical user to follow.

Instant Solution: Before going widely into the topic, let us briefly tell you about the best solution available in the market. SysTools software easily transfers the data into required PDF documents without any data loss in a few clicks.

Convert Thunderbird Emails to PDF – User’s Concerns

There are many Thunderbird users who ask for a solution to batch export Thunderbird mailboxes to PDF. They posted their problems on different social networking sites, technical forums, blogs, etc. We have chosen a few queries from these websites to post them here. This will help readers in understanding the need to print Thunderbird mail into PDF.

“I want to save 1000+ messages of Mozilla Thunderbird on my machine and then, delete them from their respective email client. This is needed to be done because I want to improve the performance of Thunderbird, which works very slow. For me, this email backup strategy will reduce the overall size of the database file and hence, a solution to the problem. So, can anyone suggest me a method to convert Thunderbird emails to PDF in bulk?

“Is there any technician who can render me a solution to import MBOX folders into Thunderbird and then save few emails of this file in Adobe PDF? I need this for some of my official purpose (you can consider it as one of my projects). Personally, I tried to do the same but, no technique is working. Please help me

“There are around 10-12 folders with me, which are having more than 1000 messages in each folder. Almost, it is my regular work to do but, till now I haven’t found any reliable method for this. Well, the actual problem is that I want a fast and reliable solution, which supports the conversion of multiple emails from Thunderbird MBOX to PDF with attachments. Does any such approach exists in today’s digital market?

Solutions to Batch Export Thunderbird Emails to PDF


There are two ways by which one can save Thunderbird emails as PDF. Users can go with any of the below-mentioned approaches as per their demand and reliability.

#1. Free Manual Way to Save Thunderbird file in PDF Format

The following steps will help you to convert Thunderbird emails to PDF for free:

  • Download a free add-on of Mozilla Thunderbird i.e., ImportExportTools NG from the official website. When the add-on successfully gets downloaded, open the Thunderbird email client on your PC

open thunderbird

  • Click on the Tools from the menu bar of the email program and select Add-ons from the displayed list

Convert Thunderbird Emails to PDF

General Tip: If your Mozilla Thunderbird does not show a menu bar on the screen then, press the Alt button from the system keyboard to move emails in various file formats like .pdf files.

  • A new tab automatically gets opened in which you have to click on Settings icon >> Install Add-on from File

Convert Thunderbird Emails to PDF

  • Go to the Download folder of your PC and select the setup file of the add-on, which you have recently downloaded in Step (1). Click on Open button

click Download folder

  • The ‘Software Installation’ panel appears in which you have to hit the on Install Now button. This will continue the procedure to convert Thunderbird emails to PDF format

Exporting Thunderbird Emails into PDF

  • Then, click on the Restart Now button to properly configure the new add-on in the Mozilla Thunderbird application

Convert Thunderbird Emails to PDF

  • After that, choose all the Thunderbird messages for highlighting them, which are to be exported in portable documents. Right-click on the same panel

select thunderbird messages

  • Click on Save selected messages >> PDF Format to batch export Thunderbird email as PDF

Exporting Thunderbird Emails into PDF

  • A warning dialog box will appear in which you have to click on OK. Again, messages appear where you have to hit on OK
  • Then, move towards the path where you want to store the resultant Adobe PDF files and click on Select Folder

select folder to save pdf files

  • Wait for a while and close Mozilla Thunderbird from your machine. Finally, you have to Export Thunderbird Folder to PDF format with a simple add-on.

Convert Thunderbird Emails to PDF

Also Read: How to Export Thunderbird to Outlook 2016/2019

#2. Convert Thunderbird Emails to PDF File Automatically

The manual solution explained above is reliable for a person who wants to save Thunderbird mailbox to PDF from one or two folders. This approach fails when users have to export emails from several Thunderbird folders. For example: if there are around 100 folders then, you have to repeat the procedure a hundred times.

In order to avoid this kind of situation, users should go for a third-party utility. It is so because the manual method will consume lots of time in carrying out the procedure completely.

One such third-party application is SysTools software to convert MBOX files, which provides bulk conversion of emails without any hassle. Users just need to browse mailbox files in the software and the rest of the operations will be carried out automatically. It can migrate Thunderbird emails as PDF along with attachments easily.

For Windows:

Download Now Purchase Now

For Mac OS: 

Download Now Purchase Now

Some Advanced Features Provided by the Software:

  • Provide Naming Conventions: Subject, Subject +Date, and more.
  • Gives the option to set page margins: Top, Bottom, Left, Right.
  • Allows setting up of Paper Orientation: Portrait/Landscape.
  • Provides Page Size option: Letter, A4, Envelope C5 & 20 more.
  • Option to include the complete MIME header on each page.
  • Embeds Attachments in PDF file for the associated email message.

convert thunderbird emails to pdf

Steps to Export Thunderbird Emails to PDF

  • Step 1: Start Thunderbird MBOX to PDF converter on the system.
  • Step 2: Click “Add File” to select Thunderbird mailboxes.
  • Step 3: Preview the emails in “Normal Mail View”.
  • Step 4: Click “Export” to start converting Thunderbird to PDF.

Related Thunderbird article: How to Export Thunderbird Mail to Office 365?

The Bottom Line

SysTools provides solutions to the most common problem of Thunderbird users, which is to convert Thunderbird emails to PDF format. If a person is having only one or two email folders then, they can go for the manual method to export Thunderbird MBOX to PDF format. Else, the rapid, fast, and reliable approach is to go for an additional application.

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