Scott Hanselman

How to transfer/move all your Email from Hotmail (or Yahoo!) to Gmail

June 23, 2004 Comment on this post [29] Posted in Bugs
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I was lucky today and a friend offered me a Gmail invite (Gmail being Google's 1 gig Free Email BETA if you've been living in a cave without wireless).  I don't need a Gmail account but the wife digs web-based email and suffers with a 1 meg Hotmail account.  She's constantly deleting emails trying to stay under the limit.  (and she's too cheap to pay for more storage :) )

But, how to move all her Hotmail stuff (several hundred emails) over to Gmail?  If I can't move them, she'll hardly find the service useful. 


  • Download Eudora, and install the Sponsored version. 
    • Why Eudora and not Outlook or Thunderbird?  Because you'll want to REDIRECT the emails that come in from Hotmail, NOT FORWARD THEM.  If you just Forward them, they'll all look like they came from you!  You want to hang on to the FROM and the TO.  Eudora is the easiest and most available email client to do this.  (Yes, I was surprised Thunderbird doesn't - it's been a bug for a while)
  • Download Hotmail Popper.
    UPDATEIf you have Yahoo! then you can use YPOPs which does the same thing!   
    • This little gem sits in your tray and creates a localhost POP server that bridges to your Hotmail account. 
      Note: Make sure you check Retrieve messages from folders other than Inbox or you won't get all your Hotmail!
  • Create a REDIRECT Filter that grabs all incoming mail.
    • Make a filter like this.  Mine says match all mail the DOESN'T contain this nonsense word (which is all mail) and REDIRECTS it to the wife's account. 
      Note: Turn off IMMEDIATE SEND in Eudora, we'll want to QUEUE the mails, as we need to change the outgoing SMTP (can't be Hotmail!)
  • Get the Mail.
    • Now, in Eudora, make and account like this:
    • Important: Make sure you check LEAVE MAIL ON SERVER under "Incoming Mail" so you don't delete all the messages in your Hotmail Account.
    • At this point, you should have downloaded all the email from Hotmail, and all the same messages should be in the Eudora Outbox ready to send.
    • Remember, we have to Redirect the emails, so we'll need access to an SMTP server that supports REDIRECTS.  Make sure you have one, or know of one you can use.  I have my one, but it's SMTP (outgoing mail) requires Authentication as all good SMTP servers should.
  • Send (Redirect) the Mail to Gmail.
    • Important: First, change login name in the Checking Mail option (see above) to the name required for your Outgoing SMTP server.  That's the name that is used when sending!  It WILL be different than your Hotmail name.
    • TIP: Have any Gmail Filters that you might wanted applied to incoming messages setup BEFORE you do the big "export/import."  Otherwise you'll have to Search and Apply Label later.
    • Now, in the Sending Mail option set your return mail address to your new account.  (That way your Redirects will list you as the "On Behalf Of" name)
    • Enter your SMTP Server, and select Immediate Send.
    • Now, from the Eudora File Menu, select "Send Queued Messages" - this will send them with the new SMTP authentication info as REDIRECTS.
  • Enjoy your new, fully populated - from Hotmail - Gmail account! Spread the word!
    • Optionally: Uninstall Eudora, Hotmail Popper, and instruct Eudora to delete the local email store.

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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June 23, 2004 15:49
I just got my invite for a gmail account as well, and signed it up.

But before I started using it, I read this and I suggest you might want to read it as well...
June 23, 2004 18:22
You failed to mention that Hotmail Popper only works for the first 100 emails and then costs $18.
June 23, 2004 18:42
Oh you also should tell people to leave a copy of the message on the server so it doesnt delete all their email when it checks in case they have a problem.
June 23, 2004 19:26
Interesting. I didn't run pay for Hotmail Popper, but I didn't run into a limit on messages, and I was transfering hundreds. Hm.
June 23, 2004 20:27
That's pretty ingenious. I bet there's an equivalent process for Yahoo mail.
June 23, 2004 21:34
Does anyone know of an equivalent of Hotmail Popper for Yahoo! Mail?
June 23, 2004 23:41
Interesting, they USED to have this service:

but if you visit the next link it says:

The service you are requesting is not currently for sale.
We apologize for the inconvenience.

So, I guess you can use
June 24, 2004 7:44
Hotmail is going to 250mb free storage soon. So just stay with Hotmail.
June 24, 2004 19:59
Do you really think that "taking storage out of the equation" will cause folks to stop looking at GMail? How much storage is enough? I understand Hotmail will offer 2 gigs for $! I've been collecting mail since 1990 and I've only got like 400 megs (without attachments).
June 25, 2004 7:43
Hey, I'm trying your instructions but instead of using Hotmail Popper, I am using a little java app that I grabbed off of sourceforge called Mr. Postman. It is, so far, allowing me to download the e-mails from hotmail (and it is open source freeware instead of a commercial product) This suggests to me that I'll be able to complete your instructions with Eudora.

It looks like it worked. One thing: set the server port in MrPostman to 110 instead of 11110 (I couldn't find anywhere in eudora to set it to 11110)
June 25, 2004 8:24
Oh, one minor problem. It only takes the messages from the first page of your inbox (but it it can be used for Yahoo or Hotmail) In yahoo, the most messages you can display on one page is 100, so it was a little annoying transfering the 450 messages from my inbox
June 25, 2004 18:32
I just got a notification from MSN saying my hotmail account would be upgraded to 2 GB with 20 MB file attachments. Woot! Although, I don't even use the 10 MB I have now, because I delete old mail messages. I'm a Hotmail+ subscriber. I think I pay 19 bucks a year or something?
June 26, 2004 16:56
Good idea, but the guide was too vauge in places I just couldn't get this to work at all
June 26, 2004 20:31
Are you kidding? Tell me where, and I'll clear it up.
June 29, 2004 14:35
like where you say "create a redirect filter" but you don't say where and in Eudora I don't seem to see those options. also i sent all my messages but they don't seem to have appeared in my gmail account :(
June 29, 2004 20:47
Take a look at the second screen shot, it has a pull down that says "Redirect To" - that's the redirect filter.

When you send the mails to your gmail account, make sure you are using an SMTP server that you control, otherwise you'll get "cannot relay" errors.
July 15, 2004 9:33
So, I just got my GMail account and I am doing something similar to move my Outlook PST file to GMail. There is a third party tool called Gmail Loader ( that takes care of it, but the mail comes in with a received date of today. Does your process preserve the received date? Just curious.

August 21, 2004 11:50
I just tried and it also works with existing mail in outlook.
However, all the imported mail also have a received date as today.
December 25, 2004 6:45
Thank you, now I am completely moved to gmail. ;)
May 30, 2005 23:06
great tip, however,I can't seem to find an option that allows me to close Eudora window without closing the application
June 27, 2005 2:22
In the "Get the mail" section, could you please tell me which "Login name" I need to enter?
Thank you.

July 16, 2005 2:51
Man, thanks so much. You have the only working guide so far.
July 28, 2005 7:39
The problem with the instructions that you made, is not clear. You go off and without giving examples and not telling people where to go such as "filter." Where in Endura has the filter option? I know I have done this method, it was sort of preplex at first to understand.
July 28, 2005 11:00
I am very desperate into transfering my hotmail e-mails to gmail.

I have been searching and searching for the past week, and every single method in the internet does not work. I have tried your method, but it is too complex to understand. It seems as if you give the instructions as if we know the application by heart.

I was wondering if you could go "step" by "step" in detail. Also, giving examples that is replaced by the blank red rectangles.

In addition, what should we set up for the application "Eduara." It is very confusing, I hope you could reply to this message, thanks!
September 01, 2005 18:17
Wow... Ok, I must be slow and .... I have no idea whats going on. First of all, when I download hotmail popper, Microsoft ODBC gets downloaded and I can't see hotmail popper anywhere.

And in Eudora, there's like 25 pages to go through for the setup! Can anypost up screen captures of the important screens for a dummy account such as and have all the fields filled in?

Thanks to everyone and Scott for having this site.

September 23, 2005 8:02
To change SMTP port in Eudora....
Open Eudora.ini
In Settings section I added SMTPPort=2525

Have a look to see if you already have a SMTPPort= line first though.

For Pop I already had POPPort=11110 from another installation.

It's important too that Ypops has the above ports in it's settings.

Keywords how to change Ypops YahooPops pop smtp settings Eudora
December 09, 2005 11:57
For everyone out there that is using thunderbird there is a redirect extension that worked great for me:

January 17, 2006 23:30
Hi all,
I've lately noticed the necessity a server that supports redirection. until that moment i've tried 1st Up Mail Server, QK SMTP Server 3 and PostCast Server Pro. none of them has redirection support. then i found SurgeMAIL. it's very easy to use and i recommend it to everyone.

my way (for yahoo):
-move all mails (including your folders, sent folder) to inbox
-start YPOPs! and download all mails to your client (mine was Eudora)
-close YPOPs! and start SurgeMAIL
-redirect downloaded mails to the new mail address.

headers sent succesfuly accept for the date value. i didn't try it but if you specify a user name for "me" your mails will be more adapted to gmail account.

sorry for my english and thanks for this thread. bye
February 04, 2006 6:48
Seriously, you need to clarify yourself; these instrucyions are far too sketchy. For instance, these two steps:

- Now, in Eudora, make and (sic) account like this:
- At this point, you should have downloaded all the email from Hotmail, [...]

What? When? You never said when or how to download all the email... The "Check Mail" option in Eudora? Probably, but you need to be explicit.

When you say "Create a REDIRECT Filter that grabs all incoming mail" you don't say where (and no, it's NOT obvious that it's in Eudora)

Also, please enter some values instead of the red bars. Just use a bogus account name like Jim suggested. I'm not sure where my Hotmail address goes and where my Gmail address goes and it sounds like I need a 3rd address.

I could go on, but please make the directions more specific, a lot of people come here for help.

Comments are closed.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way.