Suffering from yet another night of insomnia, I decided to download the last version of TheBat that my 3.x license entails me to, upgrading it from 3.99.24 (which I've been running for over two years) to 4.0.38. This was kinda the last straw for me; why the profanity
have they added profanity
skinning to the app? Even setting "windows default" skin doesn't turn all the profanity
off. There's surely enough bugs and feature requests those profanity
could have worked on instead.
I looked around the net once again for some easy exporting, but it seems there hasn't been any progress (lanux's link to the reveng link hadn't been updated anytime recently), there seemed to be no other offerings, and the plugin API hasn't been updated since October 1st 2005 - and it's pretty profanity
horrible ([...]considered as self-explanatory
, one paragraph is in russian, ...) - furthermore, the SDK is profanity
limited in scope, and basically seems only to support antivirus, antispam and custom macros. Seeing that the ClassName for the account treeview is TXTreeView
and how abysmal the search results are, I dropped the idea of making an export tool that worked within TheBat.
The .TBB and .TBI files TheBat stores your folders in looks like something that could be reverse-engineered without that
much hassle, but honestly I can't be bothered. I did the manual labor of selecting a folder, hitting ctrl+a, tools->export->unix mbox, hitting in filename, enter... across 5 accounts and 42 folders. No, profanity
TheBat won't automatically export all messages in a folder, you have to select them; and it certainly
export a full folder structure. Woe unto he who has more mailboxes than I do.
But now my data is finally out of the clutches of profanity
TheBat's proprietary hands, and in a well-defined well-supported format. Where to go now?
I'm definitely setting up ThunderBird for my active accounts, and I will be running those in IMAP mode. TB isn't perfect, but at least it uses mbox files; while those are by no
means perfect, at least they're easy to port to another mail app.
What will I be missing from TheBat?
- MicroEd - I really dig that editor, in spite of lack of proper hyphenation.
- Virtual Folders (but those were too limited anyway).
I be missing from profanity
- Bugs and quirks - 'nuff said.
- RITLabs - 'nuff said.
- The fragility of it's message store. While I haven't had a full-scale meltdown, weird things have certainly happened, and I never felt confident that I wouldn't lose data in a crash.
- It's clumsy and overcluttered user interface.
I guess I never used any of TheBat's "really powerful" features, otherwise waving goodbye to it might have been harder. And I'll probably get pissed at ThunderBird once my mailboxes grow big... but until then, I have a feeling of relief.
Not sure whether to import my old mailboxes to ThunderBird - I certainly need access to them, but I've been playing around with MailStore Home
. It's a bit tedious importing the various MBOX files, especially since the home version limits you to three sync sources (I only need to sync each file once, but that still means I need to delete the sync entries once imported); fortunately, deleting a sync source doesn't delete the stuff imported from it. Also, the way it names entries in it's tree structure is a bit inflexible, and doesn't have rename/restructure support (not that
much of an issue, but still a minor annoyance). Not a perfect app, but it'll probably suffice for now - and it's pretty fast. I might even be able to import all my old
mails back from the PMMail 2000 days, which would be nice.
Anyway, it was nice to let out some steam. Now I'm going to RAR up the old TheBat data folders, stuff it in the backup folder on my fileserver, and uninstall the application. RIP, The Bat! - 12th January 2005 - 7th September 2009. Then, off to install & configure ThunderBird.