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How to Save IMAP Emails Locally? Complete Guide

Published By Jamie Kaler 
Rollins Duke
Approved By Rollins Duke
Published On October 5th, 2023
Reading Time 5 Min Read

Are you also one of those who are looking for methods to save IMAP emails locally? If yes then you are on the right page. here we will mention complete information and a step-by-step guide to download emails from IMAP locally.

As we all know that IMAP is the mailing server, which allows users to send and receive emails for personal and professional work. Most of email clients use IMAP by default or provide separate options to enable it.

Those email clients which used IMAP mailing servers are called webmail or cloud-based email clients. And it is very important to save IMAP emails locally due to multiple reasons such as:

  • IMAP server-based clients required an internet connection to open emails and send/receive emails.
  • Saving IMAP emails locally is a better option to save your emails locally for future safety.
  • To prevent our emails from accidental deletion, scamming, or server-down situations.

How to Download IMAP Emails Locally?

Here we are going to mention 3 methods to save all your IMAP emails to your local computer. We will take the help of Outlook and Thunderbird email client help, and then we will use the expert tool to download IMAP emails locally.

Method 1: Save IMAP Emails Locally using Outlook

First, you have to configure your IMAP account in Outlook by following these short steps: Open Outlook >> File >> Add Accounts >> Login Details >> IMAP Details and finish the process.

Now we will export IMAP emails in PST format using mentioned steps:

  1. Open an Outlook account.
  2. Select the File >> Open & Export >> Import / Export option.

    Import / Export

  3. Select the Export to a File option from the list and hit the Next icon.

    Export to a File

  4. Choose the “Outlook data file (.pst)” option and again click on the Next button.

    Outlook data file

  5. Choose the IMAP folders and enable Include Subfolders and apply filters.

    IMAP folders

  6. Lastly, browse the location to save IMAP emails locally and click the Finish icon.

    browse the location

And your emails are successfully saved in PST format, but there are some limitations that you must read before using this method.


  • Outlook installation is required with a proper license.
  • Exported PST files can only open with the Outlook email client.
  • There is a high risk of data loss and corruption with PST files.

Method 2: Store Emails from IMAP Accounts using Thunderbird

Download the Thunderbird email client on your system and configured it with a proper account and then follow the mentioned steps:

  1. Open a Thunderbird account.
  2. Click on the Tools >> Account Settings option.

    Account Actions

  3. From the Account Actions option choose Add Mail Account icon.

    Account Actions

  4. Enter the login details and IMAP details of the IMAP account.

    IMAP details

  5. Lastly hit the Finish button to save IMAP email locally.

    save IMAP email locally

Now we will export the IMAP emails through Thunderbird in MBOX format.

  1. Restart Thunderbird again.
  2. Right-click on the folder that you want to export.
  3. Choose “ImportExportTools NG” >> Export to Folder options.

    Export to Folder

  4. Browse the location to save IMAP emails locally.

    Browse the location


  • Thunderbird should be installed on your system properly.
  • If your emails are not synced properly then reconnect the accounts.

Also Read: How to Save IMAP Emails to Thunderbird Locally?

Method 3: Save IMAP Emails Locally using the Expert tool

If you don’t want to face any limitations, then you should download the RecoveryTools Cloud Backup Software. The tool is one of the best and highly recommended tools to accomplish your task related to migration. Most of the experts choose this tool because it comes with advanced features and filters.

Also, this tool has been created with highly advanced algorithms, which makes the tool more usable for all technical and non-technical users. Users can download the software on all Windows OS including Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, and all previous versions.

Working Steps to Save Your IMAP Emails to Local Computer

  1. Download and install the tool and read all the instructions.
  2. Choose your IMAP account from the list, or choose the IMAP Server option.

    IMAP Server

  3. Enter the login details of your account and enter the IMAP Host details.

    login details of your account

  4. Next, all the folders and subfolders, check and uncheck the required folders.

    all the folders

  5. Click on the Select Saving Option and choose the required standard file format such as PDF.

    choose the required standard file

  6. Apply the Advanced Filter Option to save specific emails.

    Advanced Filter Option

  7. Lastly, click on the Backup button to save IMAP emails locally.

    Save IMAP Emails Locally

Prime and Advanced Features of the Software

  • The software allows users to save emails from all types of IMAP accounts by simply putting the IMAP details of the account.
  • This tool will load all folders and subfolders on the panel automatically, where you can check the required data according to their choice.
  • Users can easily save unlimited emails from IMAP accounts in bulk at once without having file size limitations.
  • This utility maintains the original folder hierarchy with email elements including Bcc, Cc, To, From, Subject, Formatting, Images, Signature, etc.
  • Users can easily save IMAP emails locally from all types of folders including Inbox, Sent, Trash, Spam, Draft, and other created labels and folders.
  • The file naming option allows users to maintain resultant emails via Date Range, To, From, Subject, Title etc.

Time to Say Goodbye

Here we have mentioned one of the best and safest methods to save IMAP emails locally using manual methods and expert solutions. For manual methods, here we have used the Outlook and Thunderbird email client but these methods have some limitations. So, it is better to use the expert solution store and download IMAP emails locally. Because this tool comes with advances and amazing features, which makes it the first choice of users. we have tried our best to provide complete information, hope you find the article helpful.