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Missing Mail / Corrupt Mailboxes (Win)

Document ID: 2067HQ


When I Start Eudora OR Open a mailbox, I receive an error telling me that the <mailbox name> has a Damaged Table of Contents and I am given three options. After this step, I open my mailbox to find that all or some of my mail is missing.


Check your other mailboxes to make sure the messages weren't transferred to another mailbox. If none of your other mailboxes contain the missing mail, chances are that the mailbox in question has become corrupted. If you don't have a recent backup, you can try the following steps to recover the mail.

1. QUIT Eudora. Do Not Leave Eudora running.

2. Open the directory that Eudora is installed in.

3. Find the .MBX and .TOC files for the mailbox that used to have your mail. For example, if the mail is missing from your In mailbox, look for the files in.mbx and in.toc.

4. Make backup copies of the .MBX and .TOC files right now. Move them into another safe directory - such as your Desktop. Make absolutely sure that you've made a backup copy of the files.

5. Back in your Eudora directory, delete the .TOC file for the corrupted mailbox. Do not delete the .MBX file - only the .TOC file. For example, if the mail is missing from your In mailbox, delete the in.toc file from the Eudora directory. Do not delete the In.mbx.

6. Now start Eudora and open the corrupted mailbox. It may give you an error message that the mailbox needs to be rebuilt - tell it to create a new table of contents.

NOTE: If the mailbox has a large number of messages in it, do not double click on it more then once. Allow ample time for Eudora to correctly create the Table of Contents for the damaged mailbox.

7 If you are missing emails from the In or the Out mailbox and you are currently using version 6.0 and higher, please see the instructions on

How can I restore my In and Out mailboxes for possible recovery with the backup mailbox files.

If the mailbox does not display your old mail or if Eudora crashes, the mailbox is irreparably damaged or corrupted.

You can make a final ditch effort to try to recover the text of the email. With Eudora completely closed, go to the backup of the .MBX that you saved in Step #4 above. Open that .MBX with a Text Editor, like Notepad or Wordpad. If there's any recoverable data, a Text Editor may be able to read it.


Use the Special: Compact Mailboxes Menu once a day. This procedure will remove all the unusable space in all of the mailboxes so that the TOC and MBX match exactly in their representation of the actual data.

Also, the In, Out, and Trash mailboxes are the primary mailboxes in Eudora. These mailboxes are loaded into memory upon startup of Eudora - so if they get excessively large, you risk causing slowdowns in Eudora and you may increase the chances of Data corruption. It is a good practice to routinely Empty Trash and to transfer old messages from the In and Out boxes to other mailboxes in Eudora.

Most importantly, remember to make regular backups of all your important data.


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