Moving Your Mozilla Thunderbird Profile

A picture of a mom on the computer with daughter in background

Tetra Images/Getty Images

Anyone who keeps a lot of email and email attachments backlogged needs lots of storage. If you started your Mozilla Thunderbird adventure on too small a partition or disk, you can move it to a larger place in a few steps and without interruptions.

Locate Your Mozilla Thunderbird Profile Folder

To find the existing name and location of your Thunderbird Profile Folder:

  1. Launch Mozilla Thunderbird.

  2. Select Help > Troubleshooting Information in the menu bar.

  3. Look for Profile Folder and click the Show Folder button next to it to display the path to the Profile Folder, which will have a .default extension, unless you have renamed it in the past.

Move the Thunderbird Profile Folder

To change the location of your Mozilla Thunderbird profile, which holds your messages, settings, filters, address book, spam filter data, and more:

  1. Quit out of Mozilla Thunderbird. It must not be running when you move the Profile Folder.

  2. Open the Mozilla Thunderbird Profile directory that you located previously.

  3. Copy the Profile Folder, which is named [foldername].default, and transfer it to a different computer or paste it in the desired location. If you have a lot of mail, the copying process may take a long time. You can rename the folder if you desire.

  4. Instruct Thunderbird where to find your Profile Folder using the Profile. For example: in Windows 10, right-click the Start icon and click Run. In the Open box, type thunderbird.exe-p. Click OK.

Create New Thunderbird Profile

Create a new Thunderbird Profile for your new Profile Folder in the Profile app.

  1. Click the Create Profile button in the Profile app.

  2. Select Next and enter a name for your new Thunderbird Profile. It doesn't have to be the same as the name of your Profile Folder.

  3. Click the Choose Folder button.

  4. Go to and select the new Profile Folder.

  5. Click Select Folder.

  6. Click Finish.

  7. A Profile app window opens and displays the new profile in your list of profiles. If you want to always use the new Profile with Thunderbird, check the Use the selected Profile without asking box. If you prefer to choose from your profiles each time Thunderbird launches, uncheck the Use the selected profile without asking box.

  8. Click the Exit button to save your changes.