Restoring a KMail folder from a generic backup

John M Cavallo johnc0102 at
Tue Jul 15 14:27:52 BST 2014

On Tuesday, July 15, 2014 01:28:10 PM Frank Steinmetzger wrote:
> On Sun, Jul 13, 2014 at 01:04:57PM -0400, John M Cavallo wrote:
> > I am using KMail 4.10.5 on a Linux system and have a regular backup of my 
> > entire home directory. I was manually cleaning up my KMail folders using 
> > 'Archive Folder...' with the 'Delete folder and subfolders after 
> > when I accidentally overwrote an archive of another folder. Is there a way 
> > restoring the lost mail folder from the backup? 
> Well, go to the backup folder and live folder¹ with $file_manager and copy it
> back. AFAIK, KMail uses a Maildir “dialect”, so you can even copy single
> mails. If you don’t trust that or fear you would overwrite even more in the
> process, then create a new subfolder in KMail, exit KMail, and copy your
> backup in there. You can then start KMail again and sort out the emails from
> there.
> ¹ In the past, emails were stored in ~/.kde4/share/apps/kmail/Mail. But with
> KMail 2, at some point the switch was made to ~/.local/share/local-mail for
> your local folders.

Thanks Frank, unfortunately things have changed recently. I checked both 
~/.kde/share/apps/kmail and ~/.local/share/local-mail, and came up empty. I 
have previously restored the plain text files when I made this type of blunder 
before. Some recent changes in kmail have moved the mail storage to someplace 
else. I fear that it might be in a database (akonadi?) along with all of the 
rest KDE configuration, which would make a targeted restoration very difficult.

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