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Archive or backup email that is in my MIT account

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This article applies to members of the MIT community that are looking for a way to archive or backup all of their MIT email. This can be useful to make sure you always have a copy of messages in case you accidentally delete one or more or if you're leaving MIT and want to have an archive before your email account is deactivated.

What you'll need:

  • A desktop email client, such as Outlook, Apple Mail, or Mozilla Thunderbird.
    • All MIT students, faculty and staff can download MS Office from the IS&T software download page:
    • It is possible to use any desktop email client that is IMAP-capable in lieu of Microsoft Outlook. This can be useful if you're already using Apple Mail or Mozilla Thunderbird, or if you are not a current student, faculty or staff member and are unable to download Microsoft Office.
  • Know whether your MIT email account is on Exchange or Cyrus IMAP. Please see the following knowledge base article for more information: How do I tell if my email account is on Exchange or IMAP?

Download a desktop email client


  1. Download MS Office
    Visit the IS&T software download page and download Office 2010 if you're a Windows user or Office 2011 for Mac if you're on an Apple computer.
  2. Install MS Office
    Install the application per the instructions on those pages. If you're on a PC, be sure to completely extract the ZIP file to a new folder before trying to install Office.

Mozilla Thunderbird

  1. Download the latest version of Mozilla Thunderbird from Mozilla.

Apple Mail

Apple Mail comes included in all modern versions of Mac OS X. It can be found in the Applications folder.

Setup your MIT email account in your email client

See the email landing page for most popular email client instructions, or the IS&T email setup wizard

Application specific instructions to backup your email to local folders or create an archive:

IS&T Contributions

Documentation and information provided by IS&T staff members

Last Modified:

November 21, 2017

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