How to migrate from the Mail App to Outlook on Windows 10 and 11

The Mail App (MA) is a free email client provided with Windows 10 and Windows 11. It is notable for its extreme simplicity and offers only basic functionality, which is nonetheless entirely sufficient for occasional or light email users. However, as a user’s email software needs grow, a more sophisticated solution is needed. Many justifiably select MS Outlook, because this application offers extensive functionality and is tightly integrated with other MS Office products and Microsoft services.

The problem is that, on one hand, the MA has no built-in tools for exporting messages and the address book into a PST file, and on the other hand, Outlook is unable to import messages and contacts from the Windows 10 MA. In some cases, online service accounts like Gmail or Outlook.com can be used to transfer messages and contacts from the WM into Outlook, but this approach is not always appropriate as it is quite complicated, time-consuming, and may not meet privacy requirements.

There is a quick and effective solution to this problem. In this article, we will show you how to use the dedicated software, Export Tool for Windows Mail App, to migrate from Windows Mail App into Outlook. The program allows you to carry out a complete migration from the MA into Outlook or simply to convert messages and contacts from the MA into a PST file in order to, for instance, move them to a different computer or back them up.

How to migrate from the MA to Outlook

Watch a short video demonstrating the transfer of two mailboxes (a POP3 mailbox and an IMAP mailbox) from the MA into Outlook with the aid of the Export Tool. As you can see, to convert from the Windows 10 MA into Outlook, the bare minimum of steps is required, and all you have to do when the migration completes is to enter your account passwords.

Migrate from the Mail App to Outlook with Export Tool on Windows 10 and 11

First of all, download and install the Export Tool. You can also use this software as a Windows 10 Mail to PST Converter because it offers a separate option of exporting MA data to a PST file.

To migrate MA mailboxes to Outlook, perform the following steps:

  1. Close the Mail и People apps and launch the Export Tool. As soon as the application starts up, the Open Windows Mail App database dialog will appear. Select the user whose data you want to transfer into Outlook, and press the Open button. Wait while the program scans the data of the selected user.

    Open MA database by username

    Instead of the name of the user, you can specify the directory path to the folder containing the MA data. The database is stored in the folder "C:\users\username\AppData\Local\Comms\". This option is helpful if you need to access the domain user data, because the list of users only reflects the local users.

    Open MA database by folder path
  2. By default, all the mailboxes and the address book will be moved over into Outlook. You can cancel the migration of any mailbox or contact by removing the checkmark in the checkbox next to the name of that mailbox or People folder. To begin migrating data into Outlook, press the Export data button.

    the Export data  button
  3. Click on Export each mailbox to a separate PST file. Specify the hard disk directory where the newly created PST files should be saved. Place a checkmark in the checkboxes next to Attach the generated PST files to the default Outlook profile and Create POP3/IMAP email accounts in Outlook.

    migration options

    Press the Export button to begin. Wait for the data migration process from MA and People into Outlook to complete.

    Important note!

    • For POP accounts, files with the PST extension will be created. These PST files will be saved in the directory you specified. Messages stored in the MA local folders will be copied over into the newly created PST files.
    • For IMAP accounts, files with the OST extension will be created. These OST files will be located in the directory that Outlook uses for storing PST/OST files. Typically, this is "C:\Users\user\Documents\Outlook Files\". Messages stored in the MA local files (local cache) will NOT be copied over into the newly created OST files; instead, these messages will be downloaded from the server during the initial sync.
    • Address book. If the first MA account is a POP account, the contacts will be copied over into the PST file created for that account. If the first MA account is an IMAP account, the contacts will be copied into a separate PST file named "People.pst".
  4. Close the Export Tool and open Outlook. Enter the passwords for the email accounts created in Outlook. IMAP accounts will now sync; this may take some time.

    MA data in Outlook

Export Windows 10 Mail messages and contacts to a PST file

You can export all the mailboxes to a single PST file or create a separate PST file for each mailbox. You can also convert all mailboxes or only some of them into an Outlook PST. The MA uses the People address book to save contacts. You can export these contacts into a PST file as well.

To export messages and contacts from the MA to a PST file, perform the following steps:

  1. Download and install Export Tool software.

  2. Close the Mail and People apps and launch the Export Tool. As soon as the application starts up, the Open Windows Mail App database dialog will appear. Select the user whose data you want to transfer into Outlook, and press the Open button. Wait while the program scans the data of the selected user.

    Open MA database by username

    Instead of the name of the user, you can specify the directory path to the folder containing the MA data. The database is stored in the folder "C:\users\username\AppData\Local\Comms\". This option is helpful if you need to access the domain user data, because the list of users only reflects the local users.

    Open MA database by folder path
  3. By default, all the mailboxes and the address book will be moved over into Outlook. You can cancel the migration of any mailbox or contact by removing the checkmark in the checkbox next to the name of that mailbox or People folder. To begin migrating data into Outlook, press the Export data button.

    the Export data  button
  4. You can export the messages from each MA mailbox into a separate PST file; in that case, the contacts will be exported into the PST file created for the first MA mailbox. Alternatively, you can export the messages from all MA mailboxes and the contacts into a single common PST file.

    • To export each mailbox into a separate PST file:

      Click on Export each mailbox to a separate PST file. Specify the hard disk folder where the newly created PST files should be saved. If you want to link the PST files to an Outlook profile, check off the checkbox next to Attach the generated PST files to the default Outlook profile. Press the Export button.

      settings for exporting into separate PST files
    • To export all the mailboxes into a single PST file:

      Click on Export all mailboxes to a single PST file. Specify the name of the PST file. If you want to link the PST file to an Outlook profile, check off the checkbox next to Attach the generated PST file to the default Outlook profile. Press the Export button.

      settings for exporting into a single PST file

Advantages of the Windows 10 Mail App to PST Converter:

Exporting contacts to an Outlook PST file

Copying over contacts from the People address book to a PST file is a required part of the migration process from the MA into Outlook. The Mail App to PST Converter ensures an accurate mapping of contact card fields. You can also use this utility separately to export the People contacts to PST.

Copying accounts and their settings into Outlook

Depending on your needs, the Export Tool can copy the settings of the email services you use in the MA into Outlook. All you will have to do is enter the passwords when you first launch Outlook after completing the conversion from the Mail App to Outlook.

Transferring several mailboxes at once

The Windows 11 Mail to PST Converter allows you to export all the mailboxes at once, or only some of them. You can also choose to place each mailbox in a separate PST file or copy the data of all the MA mailboxes into a single PST file.

Exporting only selected folders

The Export Tools offers a lot of flexibility in the conversion process from the MA into PST. If necessary, you can transfer only selected folders into Outlook.

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