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Poco Forums • View topic - Throwing in the towel ... alas !

Throwing in the towel ... alas !

Help and advice on using Barca

Moderators: Eric, Tomas, robin

Throwing in the towel ... alas !

Postby maxicomm » Tue Aug 04, 2009 8:15 pm

Greetings,

After finding it increasingly frustrating battling with Barca's inability to handle HTML in it's full glory (and various other shortcomings) I have reluctantly decided to switch to Thunderbird, not least for it's easy handling of encryption !

However ... I have encountered yet another short fall in Barca and would be obliged if anyone can explain to me how I can successfully export my data and settings in a compatible format for Thunderbird. The 3 Folder export options in Barca don't seem to be able to deliver the data in a format that THunderbird can read... it's only options are : Eudora, Outlook or Outlook Express.

Therefore, does anyone know how to achieve this exercise ???

Many thanks.
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Postby Cloudy » Tue Aug 04, 2009 8:42 pm

You can try to export for Outlook or Outlook express and see if TB can import that (last time I tried TB it was able to import from Outlook IIRC).

Maybe you will first need to import into Outlook (Express) and then into TB (I don't know exactly how the import system works).

As for the HTML problems I don't see any problems with HTML formatted emails (wel 99% of them since some seem to lack some images or some other small issues but most of them seem to work/display well).

I kinda understand the "encryption" issue (you can use PGP Desktop if you use PGP but integrated into the mail client is better offccourse).
Personally I don't "need" encryption but it's nice to know it's there and able to use it. Maybe some "corporate" users find it more important to have encryption support ?

What I miss the most in Barca/PocoMail is support for Digital Signatures (at least didn't find anything for this yet) like a PGP/GPG signature or S/MIME (or the ability to sign with my electronic ID card) but it's mainly a gadget I guess since most people I send emails to don't know what a digital signature is or use an email client that doesn't support them.

Same goes for PGP, I used to sign every email I send and encrypt the ones of the recipient had a public key (or when I had their key) but that were only a few people and the others didn't even check the PGP signature for validity so there was no real point in using it (especially if it needs to be done from a 3rd party client and not integrated into the software).
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Postby maxicomm » Wed Aug 05, 2009 3:31 am

Cloudy wrote:You can try to export for Outlook or Outlook express and see if TB can import that (last time I tried TB it was able to import from Outlook IIRC)... <snip>


I've just tried exporting the Inbox Folder using the Netscape option ( as advised by the Mozilla Support Forum) but the resulting file has a zero byte count !!! I do have sub-folders in the Inbox, so does this mean that I have to perform this escape act for every single sub-folder ??????

If this is so, then I think the guys'n'gals at Poco need to get their thinking hats on, 'cos it certainly flies in the face of their 'open', no prisoner statements on the web site !!!!!
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Postby Cloudy » Wed Aug 05, 2009 9:16 pm

I've just tried exporting the Inbox Folder using the Netscape option ( as advised by the Mozilla Support Forum) but the resulting file has a zero byte count !!! I do have sub-folders in the Inbox, so does this mean that I have to perform this escape act for every single sub-folder ??????


I have no idea, isn't there an option when you export where you can select what you want to export ?

Exporting with the Netscape options seems logical since Netscape is related to Mozilla.

If this is so, then I think the guys'n'gals at Poco need to get their thinking hats on, 'cos it certainly flies in the face of their 'open', no prisoner statements on the web site !!!!!

I agree. It should be easy to export and import.

I just tried the netscape export for my inbox and it created a 20.5 MB file then I tried a subfolder and it created a 3MB file with the emails from that folder.

So I guess you will need to do this for every folder you want to export to Netscape/Mozilla.

Not the ideal solution I agree but at least it seems to be possible.
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Well ....

Postby maxicomm » Wed Aug 05, 2009 10:03 pm

Yes ....

It's a tedious and labourious process which is TOTALLY at odds to the company's policy which they state on the web site about not making it difficult for people to move out of the program as well as into it !!!!

The import wizard/process is far more comprehensive than the export and is IMHO, a deliberate 'hurdle' which the company has chosen to 'overlook' in order to make it just that bit too difficult to maove away from the program ! All in all, NOT a satisfactory state of affairs!

Advising people to use third party software like 'Aid4mail' is not a satisfactory solution to an in-house problem as there ARE compatibility issues and again this only serves to highlight the company's policy/attitude towards 'capturing' it's users ... implied and actual.

If the product is 'that good' then I have no idea why they are so keen to keep users captured ... the product's features etc should be more than enough to stop people from leaving the program without the need to throw stupid hurdles in the way !!!

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Postby Eric » Thu Aug 06, 2009 9:36 am

Have you tried renaming those *.mbx files to mbox.* files :?:
It worked previously, so I think it should work now as well.

As for HTML-handling it's currently not possible due to the restrictions of the engine used.
However this will change with the next upgrade, as announced by PSI. :)

There are other possibilities to migrate to another client, some not so easy. This doesn't only apply to Barca, but other email clients too.

Migrating to another email client is always a lot of work. Software like Aid4Mail, Mailbag Assistant or another makes it a bit easier.
Of course you'll have to pay to use it. :?

Sorry to hear about your decision. :wink:
Eric
 

Postby Cloudy » Thu Aug 06, 2009 8:18 pm

Eric wrote:
As for HTML-handling it's currently not possible due to the restrictions of the engine used.
However this will change with the next upgrade, as announced by PSI. :)


What exactly is this "HTML-handeling" ? since reading standard HTML-formatted mail seems to work well here (are you talking about composing mail in HTML ?)

Eric wrote:There are other possibilities to migrate to another client, some not so easy. This doesn't only apply to Barca, but other email clients too.

Migrating to another email client is always a lot of work. Software like Aid4Mail, Mailbag Assistant or another makes it a bit easier.
Of course you'll have to pay to use it. :?


I think this is true for most tools out there (not only mail clients) in general they will offer import of data from some other competing products (the bigger ones) and export in their own format for backup but mostly not compatible with the competition.

This is probably also because the companies feel they have the best product so don't see why people would want to use something else :lol:

The problem is also that formats keep changing, just look at MS Office, the word documents made in word 95 were not 100% compatible with word 98 and those documents were not 100% compatible with word 2000 (or was it 2002), and so on.

The only solution for this would be to agree to use free and open standards (like the Open Document standard that OpenOffice.org is using and I think MS Office is also supporting it or going to support it). that wat all the companies know EXACTLY how the format works where with closed (proprietary) formats it's guesswork.

So sometimes it's not the developer of program X who doesn't want to support a format used by program Y but the format used by Program Y that's closed so that the people of Program X have a hard time making their software compatible (this is exactly what Microsoft did with Office and they introduced small "improvements" with every version so that the latest version of Office documents were no longer compatible with competing products (like Sun's StarOffice or Corel's Word Perfect or any smaller one like Hancom Office, SoftMaker Office, OpenOffice.org offcourse but that's basically StarOffice without some proprietary stuff like a Word Perfect codec or whatever you call it for those documents).
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Postby imtrobin » Fri Aug 07, 2009 12:19 am

From experience, ThunderBird is very painful if you want to export it to another program.

There are better clients like DreamMail or even Windows Live Mail, which if Poco does not fixes these problems soon (it's been years), it will be going the way of dodo.
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Postby Eric » Fri Aug 07, 2009 9:29 am

Cloudy wrote:What exactly is this "HTML-handeling" ? since reading standard HTML-formatted mail seems to work well here (are you talking about composing mail in HTML ?)
There have been lots of topics on this subject. :?
It's about composing as well as keeping HTML intact when replying/forwarding such a message. For now I can only suggest to forward it as an attachment, so formatting will stay intact. :)

The current engine is somewhat restricted on that part, but as announced PSI wants to use another engine, so all these problems will be gone or most of them anyway.

-> html display problems

Others to be found when using the Search. :)
Eric
 

Postby Cloudy » Fri Aug 07, 2009 10:22 am

Ah, sorry about that.

I heard about HTML problems in the Bat! aswell but I never knew what they were talking about (and didn't bother to search for it :lol: ).

I personally don't use HTML formatting in my emails (that I know of) and most HTML mails I receive are newsletters so I don't reply to them.

I never realized there was a problem with HTML but now I see that this can be a problem for some people.
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Postby gavinjb » Tue Aug 18, 2009 12:03 am

Hi,

If you are still struggling to move your Mail from Barca there are two solutions I know that work fairly well.

1. Aid4Mail can convert most file formats (including PocoMail/Barca), but it costs! (you might want to download the trial version and test this first as it has been a few years since I last looked at Aid4Mail)

2. Get a free IMAP account (try googlemail or fastmail.fm) and setup Barca with your IMAP account and drag your files to the account, then you can do the reverse with Thunderbird.


Gavin,
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Postby Tomas » Sat Sep 05, 2009 10:15 am

Barca and Thunderbird files are identical. I don't know whether 100%, but they work by simply copying from one to the other.
They each use different file extension but that's it.
File > Export > Folder > Other RFC822 folder, that's it. And that's the same that Barca and Thunderbird use internally so in fact I think there is even no conversion ongoing, just file move.
Most email clients I have ever seen or used, can import RFC822, or directly the .mbx file that Barca produces.
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Postby noramar » Thu Jan 21, 2010 8:11 am

I feel your pain! In my case, I'm coming back to Barca (and Windows) from a 2-year hiatus with a Mac.

Regarding HTML handling, I've noticed that if I use a background picture in my email, the automatic default signature is added, but it doesn't show the background picture. It's more like a white box with the signature in the middle of a background picture. I haven't tested whether this also happens in a template, where the signature is part of the template itself.

Another frustration I'm having is trying to import my contacts. It's very difficult to match up the Barca fields with the incoming fields. Mainly I think it's because of the horizontal scrolling. It's really hard to see what you've already matched, and what else is left over on the right. Is there a way to get a list of the existing fields so that I can "massage" my incoming file prior to attempting the import? When adding a new contact, there seem to be a whole lot more fields than are available when importing an existing contacts file. How come?

Thanks.

Nora
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Postby noramar » Fri Jan 22, 2010 4:38 pm

Just an update. I tried embedding the signature in a template and that works great. No weird white box surrounding the signature. :)

I still would like to get a list of existing fields and the order in which they appear. At this point, it's actually going to be less trouble to enter my contacts manually than to try to import them. :(

Thanks all,

Nora
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