Migrating Email to RUMail

Your existing email service will be using one or both of two common server types: IMAP or POP. POP typically is used to download all mail to folders on a specific desktop computer, while IMAP allows you to have folders on both the account and the desktop.

Always forward your email first

Whichever server type you use, your first step will always be to set up mail forwarding on the old account (here referred to as an "external account") to forward any future mail from the external account to your new RUMail account. Follow the appropriate instructions from your account provider for mail forwarding.

  • A. Moving email from a service using IMAP

    IMAP stands for Internet Message Access Protocol. This type of service allows you to view email in both your account's Inbox and in any number of additional folders you may have created on the account to store read messages. Since your messages are saved on your account, rather than a specific computer, you can read email from any location where you have an IMAP-based mail program, whether a desktop-based program such as Thunderbird or Outlook, or a web-page-based program such as SquirrelMail or Zimbra.

  • Migrating using the RUMail web client

  1. Log into the https://rumail.rutgers.edu website.
  2. Once logged in, click the Preferences button.
  3. Click the Accounts tab.
  4. In the Accounts section, click the Add External Account button. A new External Account Settings section appears below the Accounts section.

     5. In the new External Account Settings section, in the Account Name: field, enter a name to identify this account.

     6. In the Email Address: field enter the full email address of the external account.

     7. Get the account settings information from your email provider. For example, for an OIT Central Services account (Eden or RCI), use the following.

  • Account type: IMAP
  • Username of Account: your NetID (or other account name, such as an organizational or departmental account name)
  • Email Server:

rci.rutgers.edu for RCI

  • Password: Enter the password you use to log on to this external account. To see if you typed the password in correctly, check the "Show password" box, and the password will appear in plain text. If the password is correct, check the checkbox again to hide it. You don't want someone who might be looking over your shoulder at some time in the future to see your password accidentally.
  • Advanced options:

"Change IMAP port:" Do not check this box for an OIT Central Services account. (If your Internet service provider uses a different port than the default one shown, check the box and
change the port number to the correct value.)
"Use an encrypted connection (SSL) when accessing this server:" Check the box.



8. Under Download messages to:, you do not need to make any changes.

  • For an IMAP account type, RUMail will put the messages into a new folder with the same name as you put in the Account Name: field (step 6 above). Any subfolders you have on the external account will also be copies, as subfolders of that folder with the Account Name: name.
  • For an IMAP account type, the "Delete messages on the server after downloading them" box cannot be selected.


9. Under Settings for Sent Messages have the following settings:, make these changes.

  • In the text box below From: type the personal name which should appear with your email address in the From field of your outgoing email messages.
  • If you have multiple email addresses on RUMail, use the pulldown menu to the right of the text box to select the address which should be used with that personal name.
  • If replies should be sent to a name and address different from that which you configured in From:, check the Reply-to: box. A text box and pulldown menu below it will become active. Enter the name and select the email address that should receive replies for this identity. If the address is one which does not appear in the menu, you can enter it in the box which is part of the menu. (For example, you may receive messages at this external address but prefer replies go to a mailing list which others read. You can put the name and address of that list in these boxes. Please see Personas in RUMail for more details.)
  • Use the Signature: pulldown menu select a signature to use for this account. If you have not yet created a signature, "Do Not Attach Signature" will be the only choice. You can come back at any time and change this, once you have created signatures.;

10. Go back to the top left of the page and click the Save button to save the information you have entered for this external account.



11.   RUMail will first test the connection to the external account.

  • If all is correctly set up, a Success message will appear. Click the OK button to move to the next step.
  • If there is a problem, an error message will appear. Click the Cancel button and review the settings for the external account again, then save the corrected information, so that the Success message appears.


12. Once successfully connected, RUMail will start making copies of all folders from your old mail server. When it has finished, the folders will appear in the RUMail folder column, under the account name you gave it in step 6. Click the triangle next to the folder to see any sub-folders.

If the external account that you added to RUMail is being deleted or will no longer exist for some reason, you can delete the external account setting at such time by taking the following steps:

13. Now you can delete the external account settings. Click the Preferences button again.
14. Select the Accounts section.
15. In the Accounts section, select the row for the external account.
16. Click the Delete button.
17. Click the Mail button to return to the Mail window. The folder name from the external account will have become part of your regular RUMail folders.

You have now successfully migrated your email folders to RUMail.

  • Migrating using a desktop IMAP mail program.

    Specific instructions will necessarily be different for different mail programs. See the RUMail documents page for instructions on configuring your favorite mail program to access your RUMail account. Once that has been set up, use the mail program to create new mail folders on RUMail, and copy the contents of your old account's mail folders to the appropriate RUMail mail folders. Once you are finished, you can delete the messages from the folders on your old account (if your mail program has not already done so) and then delete the folders. After all the mail is moved, you can delete the old account from your mail program.

    Here is an example using Thunderbird.
    1. Create a new account in Thunderbird for your RUMail account. (See the RUMail documents page for instructions on how to do this in a given mail program).



2. Create a new folder in the RUMail account for the mail you want to move by right-clicking on Folders and choosing New Folder. Here, we named it Moved Messages.
3. Open the similarly named folder in your other account.



4. Select the messages in the folder. (Some mail programs have practical limits on how many messages you can move at once. Try to move messages in groups of 50 or fewer.)



5. Drag the messages onto the folder under the RUMail account.

6. Wait while the messages are copied to the RUMail account.
7. Repeat steps 2-6 as necessary.

  • B. Moving email from a service using POP

    POP stands for Post Office Protocol. This is an older service which only recognizes your Inbox on your account. Most POP-using mail programs are set to download messages from the account's Inbox to an Inbox in a desktop-based mail client. However, the programs can be set to copy the messages, leaving the originals on the account. This is most often done when someone needs to read the messages from more than one location but does not have an IMAP-using mail program at those locations. The messages are then left on the account until they are explicitly deleted or until they become older than some age limit set for the account (at which time they are automatically erased).

    If you wish to switch to RUMail from your POP-using mail program, where all your old mail is stored, and want to move your old messages from your desktop folders into your RUMail account, you should follow the instructions for connecting to RUMail using IMAP for your mail program on the RUMail documents page. You will then have to create new folders in RUMail and use your desktop mail program to copy the messages in your desktop folders to the appropriate RUMail folders.