In which folder are my mails?

Hi to all,

after a long reading period… I don´t get the right answer :frowning:
In which folder are my mails?
Android/data/com.fsck.k9/files is EMPTY :flushed:
no SD card installed, all files and folders are visible
Please help.

Greetings from Munich

K-9 Mail stores data in its app directory. This location is not user-accessible.

Hi Christian,

Thank you for this very clear answer “from the source”. - And for all your amazing work on K9 so far.
Congratulations on the agreement found with Thunderbird as well. I have been supporting the Mozilla Foundation for a long while already and now I have to feel a little less bad for not supporting K9 directly. :-))

I’m sure you know, but not being able to export (in any way, not even by copying folders, as seems to have been possible some years back) our mails is an absolute killer for many users who, like me now, suddenly stumble into the situation of having to export and move. (If I had known this limitation before, I would never have used K9 or at least could have taken other precautions.) - I am pretty devastated right now and don’t know what to do.

Is there a reason why you have obviously knowingly blocked the previously existing way even for half-way knowing users to copy files/folders to move their mails?
Or is there still a way, but it is so well hidden that only you could give a helping pointer?

Greetings from a very sad fellow Berliner,

Thilo: Use IMAP instead of POP3. Emails are then accessible from other clients without copying any files.


K-9 Mail has never supported exporting messages. It was never a priority to add a message export feature because it is expected that messages are stored and managed on the server and only a copy is downloaded to the mobile device.
A long time ago someone thought it might be a good idea to allow the user to keep the downloaded copy of a message when the original was removed from the server. In hindsight that was a bad idea. It makes it possible to end up with messages that are only stored in K-9 Mail’s database. However, the app was never designed to manage messages locally, including being able to export such messages.


I leave my mails on the server like you describe.

Only the outgoing mails, I’ve sent from mobile, are stored locally. I would like to retrieve them and merge them in the outmail on the mailserver. How can I do that?
I was hoping to find the mailarchive and then drop .eml messages into the pc mail client.

Do you use POP3? With IMAP, outgoing mails are stored on the server.

K-9 does not have any way to export local emails. That’s why POP3 is not recommended

Sorry to jump in on this q&a, What happens when one switches from POP3 (on K9) to IMAP, as suggested. Are all the stored Sent emails simply deleted as the server has no record of them?

Or is K9 a little bit wiser and will first sync those stored old POP3 Sent emails up to the IMAP server as a running start to the new order.

In my case, my wife, wanted the KISS simple style of POP3 from her PC. I just had a K9 account to read her emails (with permission!) and would normally reply when back at her PC. She now has her own mobile (with K9), plus a few important replies she sent on my mobile, So We are looking for a way to transfer the data we already have (on K9; POP3) onto using IMAP.

Our ISP’s web mail (we had ‘keep on server’ set) still has all her InBox mails, but doesn’t have the Sent emails.

Any help of transfer of those old emails to IMAP would be much appreciated.

My K9 is 5.600 on an old Huawei P8-Lite with Android 7.0 if that makes a difference.

I cannot speak knowledgeably or correctly about a POP3 to IMAP conversion, so I won’t try. However, I have the setting on K9 (running on a Chromebook, not a phone) to always (unless I blank out the field) Bcc: myself (I actually use Cc: to myself) to I get a copy in my Inbox, which I can leave on the server or delete as I choose. That way I don’t have to worry about recovering sent messages.

K-9 does not support switching. You have to delete and re-add the account, which also deletes your local-only emails.

Hmm, that’s pretty rough justice for getting a new phone or updating one’s tech?

Maybe one has to just add a new account and not delete the old account for a while…

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That’s why using POP3 is a bad idea and IMAP is recommended on mobile devices. Personally I’ve never used POP3 on my phone(s) since IMAP has been a thing - I store my mails on the PC but never my phone :slightly_smiling_face:

Isn’t that a “If I were you I wouldn’t start from here” viewpoint?
K9 does store sent pop3 emails on the phone, and then attempts to say that it has quarantined them and you can’t have them back, which is unfriendly.

We should remember that POP3 does reflect the natural viewpoint of many users (a postal delivery service).

There is a large unheard cohort of pop3 users who could be helped to transition away from pop3 to imap, as long as their concerns over keeping their store/archive of older emails is resolved.

(Imap has it’s ‘problems’ in regulated environments where deletion should be ‘move to archive’, but that’s outside this discussion;-)