Dec 212015


Since Microsoft has not been updating Windows Live Mail it is likely that they will abandon it in the not too distant future. To be on the safe side you should have a backup plan. There are two choices as follows:

  • Switch to another Desktop Email program such as Outlook, which you have to purchase, or Thunderbird which you can download for free from here.
  • Switch to a Web based email service from Gmail, Yahoo Mail and others.


If you have any trouble with the directions below you can search Google for direction. Different version of the software mentioned may have slightly different instructions.


The first thing to do is to export you contacts so you can import them to your new email service. You can also export your messages.

Follow the steps below to export contacts from Windows Live Mail.

  1. Click Contact tab at your bottom-left.
  2. Click Export in the toolbar.
  3. Make sure CSV (Comma Separated Values) is highlighted.
  4. Click Export.
  5. Now click Browse. Pick a folder to save the exported contacts.
    Type the desired name under File name.
  6. Click Save.
  7. Now click Next.
  8. Make sure all the address book fields you want included are checked.
  9. Note that Windows Live Mail does not export first and last names separately, even though there are First Name and Last Name fields. Do choose Name instead.
  10. Click Finish.

Note: It’s not possible to export your Windows Live Messages into the correct formal to import into another email service. You can copy and paste any important messages to a word processor if you need to keep the information.

Importing contacts

  • In Gmail, go to contacts, click the More button and choose Import
  • In Yahoo Mail, click the Contacts icon as shown below and choose Import Contacts
  • For Outlook, click File, Open & Export, click Import/Export, click Import
    • Select Import from another program
    • Click Next and choose CSV
    • Navigate to where you Exported your contacts to
  • For Thunderbird, go to Tools, Import. Keep the default selection and click Next.
    • Select CSV and click Next
    • Navigate to where you exported your contacts to
  • For other email services you can search for instructions


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