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Unable to import MBOX files (although I uploaded these yesterday- they disappeared today!)

0 votes

Yesterday I successfully imported approximately 3000 mbox files into ePADD. This morning, I opened ePADD and the emails weren't there (it opened to the import screen). I tried importing them again but received an error message: "Sorry! ePADD error. Please see the debug log, and email it to Peter Chan, pchan3@stanford.edu We'll get back to you as soon as possible." I clicked on the "debug log" and got this message:
Error code:500 type: class java.lang.NullPointerException

Thanks for any help you can provide.

asked Mar 2, 2016 by Laura

1 Answer

0 votes

Hi Laura,

Could you give us more information?
1. Where do the mbox files come from (converted from pst, etc.)?
2. What OS are you using?
3. How many RAM do you have?

Peter

answered Mar 2, 2016 by Peter_Chan (2,730 points)

Hi Peter,

  1. The mbox files are from Eudora Mail. They were acquired in 2012. The documentation notes that they are not the right kind of mbox files for general preservation.
  2. I'm running Windows 7. Using Firefox for my browser- maybe that is the issue?
  3. I have 4 GB RAM

Thanks for your help!

What tool did you used to convert the Eudora to mbox format?

The documentation says that Eudora saves its email in .mbox. So, it seems that there was no tool used because conversion wasn't necessary. (The person who did this is still at UCI- I can ask him to weigh in.)

According to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mbox (see below), Eudora used a modified mbox format.

Modified mbox[edit]
Some e-mail clients use a modification of the mbox format for their mail folders.
Eudora uses an mboxo variation where a sender's e-mail address is replaced by the constant string "???@???". Most mbox clients store incoming messages as received. Eudora separates out attachments embedded in the message, storing the attachments as separate individual files in one folder.[5]

As you can see, email format is not simple. With our limited resource, we decided to concentrate our efforts to develop functions which are not available elsewhere. There are a few conversion programs available in the market to do format conversion.

FWIW- I was able to ingest the files by renaming the "epadd-appraisal" folder on the back end. Not sure it was a problem with the files themselves, seems like a glitch in ePADD. My main concern was that I had uploaded this set of email previously, but then they disappeared, and then I could not upload them again.

As I said, Eudora didn't use standard mbox format. It separate attachments with the messages. So, even it appears to import your messages, the attachments are not imported.

ePADD is a software package developed by Stanford University's Special Collections & University Archives that supports archival processes around the appraisal, ingest, processing, discovery, and delivery of email archives.
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