Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.

After creating a new Hotmail account many people want to transfer messages from one account to another. You can't. But there are alternatives.

I've created a new Hotmail account. Is it possible to transfer all information and contacts from my old Hotmail account to my new one?

The short answer is yes and no.

The longer answer contacts: yes; email: no.

Let me explain...

I've discussed in a prior article that it's possible to move your contacts from one Hotmail account to another. In fact that's gotten even easier of late since Windows Live Hotmail now appears to support both import and export of contacts making it much easier.

Unfortunately, the same is not true for email messages. In fact, I actually know of no way to move email messages or folders from one Hotmail account to another.

But I do have another solution. Unfortunately it involves changing the way you access your email.

"I actually know of no way to move email messages or folders from one Hotmail account to another."

My recommendation is that you choose one of the solutions to download Windows Live Hotmail to your machine:

  • Set up a mail program like Windows Live Mail on your computer.

  • Configure that program to access the Hotmail account containing the messages you wanted to move.

  • Download all of your email from that Hotmail account into your mail program.

  • Reconfigure that mail program to now access the new Hotmail account you want to begin using.

  • Use that mail program to manage your email on your PC from now on.

  • (Make sure to backup your email along with the rest of your PC regularly.)

One of the nice approaches to downloading your mail in this fashion is that you can actually change the email accounts you're using as often as you like without losing the messages that you've received. In addition the address book you'll build in the email program will also transfer as well. In fact, using an email program on your PC makes it easier not only to change from one Hotmail account to another, but also to any other email provider that provides downloadable or POP3 access.

Yes, you do lose the ability to manage all your email via Hotmail's web interface. You can still use the web interface, but unless you configure your email program to leave the messages on the server and not all the messages you have will be visible there, they'll have been downloaded to your PC and will be available in your mail program.

Article C3248 - December 25, 2007 « »

Leo Leo A. Notenboom has been playing with computers since he was required to take a programming class in 1976. An 18 year career as a programmer at Microsoft soon followed. After "retiring" in 2001, Leo started Ask Leo! in 2003 as a place for answers to common computer and technical questions. More about Leo.

Not what you needed?

December 26, 2007 4:35 AM

While it may be time consuming, depending on how much email you have to move, you can simply forward each individual email from the old address to the new one.

December 28, 2007 7:04 PM

another approach that may be useful is to link your old hotmail to your new account so that you can easily acess both. It's a feature that I have been waiting years for and works pretty well.

Eli Coten
December 29, 2007 10:15 AM

Windows Live Mail does not download the messages to a "Local Folders" whilst you might be able to manually use it to copy messages from one set of folders to another reconfiguring it to use a different Hotmail account will not automatically do as described above. However that said, Windows Live Mail could probably be used somehow or other to copy all the email messages from one account to another.

Eli Coten
December 29, 2007 10:16 AM

Another option would be to try a programme like TrueSwitch, which is supposed to be able to copy emails from one account to another.

March 18, 2008 7:29 PM

Trueswitch is a program you can use to transfer your emails to another account.
However, it sometimes doesnt transfer all of them and it doesn't include the time and date the email was originally sent. It is still pretty accurate:)

Ann Hood
May 2, 2008 2:05 AM

I wanted to copy the entire contents of a folder (149 email messages) on my husband's Hotmail account onto a folder on my own Hotmail account.

I never use Outlook Express but I thought it might be useful for this purpose and it was. I opened up OE on my Hotmail account and added my husband's Hotmail account. I could then see all the folders on both sccounts, so I did "Edit...Select all" for the required folder on husband's account and copied and pasted the lot into a new folder on my own Hotmail account, all within Outlook Express. Worked like a charm. Only prob was that the original emails in Hotmail itself lost their front-line dates (not on the message itself) but they still retained the correct date order.

Hope this helps.

Ann Hood.

May 2, 2008 3:51 PM

Hash: SHA1

Good suggestion.

Many people are losing their access to their Hotmail
accounts via Outlook Express as Microsoft is slowly removing
that feature. However They do support Windows Live Mail, and
I'm hopeful that this same technique might work there as



Version: GnuPG v1.4.7 (MingW32)


William Powell
May 13, 2009 7:05 AM

I was on msn and they changed my account to hotmail, now i can't transfer my contacts and folders.

September 19, 2009 1:23 PM

to transfer your contacts, go into 'more options' and you'll see some tools there.

now to transfer all your mail from one account to another is very easy.

i downloaded windows live mail, set up the 2 accounts i want to merge, then simply selected my entire inbox and dragged it over into my new inbox.

i set up duplicate folders in my new email account and just dragged everything over. in order to forward to your new email, go onto the server, "more options" and you'll see some tools there too that will walk you through it.

i know this thread is 2 years old, but i'm responding anyway

katee simon
November 17, 2009 2:41 AM

how do i transfer my mails from windows live to aol mails that i can veiw them on one screen or the other way round.

January 27, 2011 5:32 PM

i need a easy simple way to get my chat contacts from my old windows live account to my new hotmail account. i dont wana email them or anything of this account i only wana chat to them. can you do it? and can u do it in an easy waay?

June 16, 2011 8:32 AM

Better use GMAIL instead! GMAIL is the best emailbox so far. With one single GMAIL add you can access all Google services attach them to your email : RSS feeds, Youtube videos, Chat, Igoogle, News, Speed Dial, Google Docs... And you can also easily transfer all your mails from an old Gmail add to a new Gmail one in (almost) one single click...

Master Chief
August 21, 2011 7:23 PM

i have a problem too i have another acount but i have only 1 inbox..why?

December 9, 2011 5:59 PM

thanks a bunch, you helped me a ton more than the website page itself! I'm working on fixing my email, can't wait for it to be done.

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