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Batch save Mail messages as PDF's

10917 Views 24 Replies Latest reply: Apr 14, 2014 10:24 AM by Ginger234 RSS
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rumshizzle Calculating status...
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Jul 9, 2011 12:50 PM

I am in need of saving all of my email messages in my inbox as individual PDF documents. I know you can do it one at a time via "Print>save as PDF" but we are talking about a few hundred email messages here.

 

Is there anyway to take advantage of something like automator or could someone show me some software to batch save all of these messages?

 

Thanks so much for the help.

 

-Christian

Apple Mail, Mac OS X (10.6.8)
  • Dansyacht Level 4 Level 4 (2,120 points)
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    Jul 9, 2011 1:59 PM (in response to rumshizzle)

    You can also save multiple files with Print > Save as PDF.  Just select the emails to save and Print > Save as PDF.  It works!

  • radio50 Level 1 Level 1 (65 points)
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    Sep 12, 2011 6:06 PM (in response to Dansyacht)

    I'd like to save a whole set of email messages into one single pdf file, for archiving.  Is there a way to do this?

  • AdamKB Level 2 Level 2 (330 points)
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    Sep 12, 2011 6:24 PM (in response to radio50)

    Seems to me that multiple PDF files would be more efficient than one giant PDF file. Less risk of corruption for one thing.

  • radio50 Level 1 Level 1 (65 points)
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    Sep 12, 2011 6:39 PM (in response to AdamKB)

    I know what you mean, but I want to put the single pdf on a DVD for infrequent use.  For that use, I'd want to do a search for a keyword in that one file.  I'm thinking that the keyword search would work best with just the one file.

  • Dansyacht Level 4 Level 4 (2,120 points)
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    Sep 12, 2011 8:50 PM (in response to radio50)

    radio50 wrote:

     

    I'd like to save a whole set of email messages into one single pdf file, for archiving.  Is there a way to do this?

    In Mail, select all the messages to print (a smart mailbox may help).  When all are selected do a file > save as (RTF or plain text).  This will create one printable file with all the messages.  You can then load this file into TextEdit and print it as a PDF.

  • radio50 Level 1 Level 1 (65 points)
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    Sep 13, 2011 6:49 AM (in response to Dansyacht)

    Dansyacht wrote:

    In Mail, select all the messages to print (a smart mailbox may help).  When all are selected do a file > save as (RTF or plain text).  This will create one printable file with all the messages.  You can then load this file into TextEdit and print it as a PDF.

     

    Thanks -- this may be what I go with.  However, when I tried this the rtf file did contain all of the messages, but did not show the header information on each (To:, From:, Date: ...), so I continued my search for a solution.  I think I found something that works.  My project is actually larger than what I described.  Interested people may be able to use some or all of the following.

     

    The project started when I asked a friend to send me all of the emails that I have sent him over the last 15 years.  He had archived them all in Windows / Outlook Express.  I had not archived them.  He was able to give me a .DBX file containing them all.  I used a free program called DbxConv in Windows to convert the .DBX file to a .MBX file.

     

    In Apple Mail I did File/Import_Mailboxes/File_In_mbox_Format to import them.  Then, View/Organize_by_Conversation (checked on).  Select all messages and File/Print/PDF/Save_As_PDF into a new folder on the desktop.  This will generate many pdfs.

     

    Now the new part:

     

    Next, drag all of the PDFs into Preview.  Finally, in Preview, File/Print/PDF/Save_As_PDF.  This will create a single pdf file with all messages, including imbedded attachments, with info displayed in your current Apple Mail format -- dependent on how you like your Apple Mail messages displayed (minimal header, expanded header, etc.) . . . . .  I think!

     

    At least it worked for me, once.  I try it again and see what develops.

  • llw212 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Oct 3, 2012 1:24 PM (in response to radio50)

    Hello,

     

    I read radio50's solution which created MULTIPLE folders - one for each email pdf.  My problem is:  I'm selecting multiple emails, but print/save as pdf will only create ONE pdf. 

     

    Older Mail app used to print all selected  emails into one pdf.  How can I achive this apparently removed function?

  • radio50 Level 1 Level 1 (65 points)
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    Oct 3, 2012 2:20 PM (in response to llw212)

    Now when I try printing-as-pdf more than one email (combined), I get "Error while printing."  Something sure is different.

  • ejdub Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Oct 18, 2012 7:32 AM (in response to radio50)

    I'm getting the same error. Unfortunately, when I select multiple files and choose print, It only prints the first one.

  • Jake15 Calculating status...
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    Nov 1, 2012 8:50 PM (in response to ejdub)

    I am also having the same problem - it used to work on previous verisons where you could print all of them in one shot to a folder.  Now I get the same error and it only prints the first one.

     

    Apple please fix!!??

  • Pilot Dags Calculating status...
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    Nov 8, 2012 9:21 AM (in response to rumshizzle)

    Christian,

    I created an online way to export emails in batch as a PDF file at emailexporter.com for free. There are programs that allow you to cut or paste PDFs if you want one huge file, or several small ones. I wanted to create back up files on subjects or from specific senders which is why it is designed the way it is.

  • LexSchellings Level 5 Level 5 (5,505 points)
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    Nov 8, 2012 9:48 AM (in response to llw212)

    llw212 wrote:

     

    Hello,

     

    I read radio50's solution which created MULTIPLE folders - one for each email pdf.  My problem is:  I'm selecting multiple emails, but print/save as pdf will only create ONE pdf. 

     

    Older Mail app used to print all selected  emails into one pdf.  How can I achive this apparently removed function?

    Do not forget: when all the mails are in preview, you have to goto the menu/select all and THEN do the print/save as pdf.

  • techietype Calculating status...
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    Dec 24, 2012 9:26 PM (in response to rumshizzle)

    Did anyone ever figure out how to fix the "error when printing" that occurrs when you select multiple emails and try to print to pdf?

  • LexSchellings Level 5 Level 5 (5,505 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Dec 25, 2012 12:14 AM (in response to techietype)

    As I said: set preview to open all emails in one window (first line in Preferences). Read all emails in. In the sidebar click one, then in the Preview menu/edit click "select all", then click 'Print' in Preview menu/file, and then choose 'Save As PDF' under the "PDF" button on the bottom left.

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