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How to Convert MBOX to PDF File? – Free Methods

Written By Kristian Wilson
Marco Devin
Approved By Marco Devin  
Published On November 11th, 2022

Are you looking to convert MBOX to PDF format? Well, your search ends here. In this blog, we will guide you on how to export your MBOX files into PDF, and that too, for free.

But, before we come to the steps, let’s get a brief on MBOX and PDF file formats.

MBOX or MailBox is a file format that stores email data in text format. It is supported by various email clients such as Mozilla Thunderbird and macOS mail.

Whereas, PDF (Portable Document File) is another popular format widely supported by multiple platforms as well as devices. It is secure because of its password security feature. PDF format maintains the integrity of the data, images, hyperlinks, and format you store in it.

Now, there are various reasons you might want to convert MBOX to PDF format.

Perhaps, you want to be able to access your important data stored in the MBOX files from any place. Or perhaps, you want to share that data with someone who does not have a compatible resource to access those MBOX files.

Whatever the reason, this article will help you open MBOX files to PDF format. On top of that, there are advantages of converting MBOX files to PDF as well.

Advantages of PDF File Format

  • The PDF file format is supported by multiple platforms, eliminating the email client dependency.
  • It is a widely accepted file format. You can share it with people who do not have compatible email clients for your shared file format.
  • PDF file format can be accessed with various devices too. Whether it’s a mobile phone or a tablet.

Now let’s move on to the procedure of converting the MBOX file to PDF format.

Important Note: To proceed further with the steps users must have Thunderbird and Apple Mail installed in advance.

Tutorial 1: How Do I Convert MBOX to PDF using Thunderbird

If you are using Thunderbird email client then, you can use this technique. As we all know that Thunderbird email clients support the MBOX file format. So, first, if you have an orphan MBOX file, then we will import MBOX file to Thunderbird. And then we will convert MBOX to PDF format.


  • Install ImportExportTools NG Add-on – Open Thunderbird and click on the “Tools” >> “Add-ons & Themes” options, and search “ImportExportTools NG” in the search bar and add the tool. now restart the application.

    ImportExportTools NG

  • Import Orphan MBOX File: – If you have the orphan file, then first import this file to your Thunderbird account, by opening Thunderbird, right-clicking on any folder or clicking on the “Tools” icon and choosing “ImportExportTools NG” >> “Import MBOX File” >> “Import Directly One or More MBOX File” option. And select the MBOX files and import it

    Import Orphan MBOX

Method 1: Convert Multiple MBOX Files to PDF

Follow the instructions given below.

  1. Launch Thunderbird on your device.
  2. In the toolbar, select Add-Ons.
  3. Select Import/ExportTools NG in the Add-Ons dropdown menu.
  4. In Import/Export Tools, click on Export all messages in the Folder.
  5. Select the PDF format in the appeared dropdown menu.

    Convert Multiple MBOX Files to PDF

  6. Click OK on the prompted warning message.
  7. Click on the Select option to browse the destination folder for your exported files.

Print Single Email to PDF Format

  1. Open the required email in Thunderbird.
  2. And then, click on the “More” >> “Print” option to convert MBOX to PDF.
  3. A pop-up will appear and select “Save as PDF” as the destination.
  4. Lastly, hit the “Save” icon and select the location, and hit the “OK” icon.

This method ensures the conversion of your MBOX files into PDF format. To verify, go to the location where you saved the PDF files and check.

But these methods prove to have some limitations which cause some restrictions for many users.

Tutorial 2: Convert MBOX to PDF Mac Using Apple Mac Mail

If you are using a Mac machine, and you want to export your MBOX to PDF file. then, here we will show you how can you convert MBOX files to PDF for Mac using the Apple Mail client.

Step 1: Add Orphan MBOX file

you have an orphan MBOX file and you want to print it, then first we will upload this file to mac mail.

  1. Open Apple Mac Mail email client.
  2. And then, click on the “File” >> “Import Mailboxes” option.

    Import Mailboxes

  3. Now select the “Files in MBOX Format” option >> continue the process.

    Files in MBOX Format

  4. Next, select the orphan file and import it.

    orphan file

Step 2: Convert MBOX to PDF for Mac

  1. Open Mac Mail and the required email that you want to save as a PDF.
  2. Now hit on the “File” >> “Export as PDF” option.

    Export as PDF

  3. After that, browse the location and click on the “Save” icon.

If you face any problems then you can take help from an expert solution to convert MBOX to PDF format.

Limitations Of Manual Method

  • You cannot export attachments into PDF format using this method.
  • This method requires the installation of Thunderbird for execution.
  • If you have separate MBOX files to export then, you first have to import them in Thunderbird. This makes the whole process even more tedious

Final Deduction

In this article, we discussed a free method for you to convert MBOX to PDF format. Although free, however, it is email client dependent and you are not able to convert your attachments into PDF format using this method.