How to Back Up Your Gmail

What would you do if you lost everything in your Gmail account? It’s happened to some people – some Gmail users recently suffered a data loss. Gmail was able to get everything back for them eventually. However, it woke many people up to the possibility of losing everything in their account.

Additionally, more and more hackers are focusing their attention on Gmail accounts. It’s where many people store information for their bank accounts, websites and blogs, and personal information too. If you use Gmail, chances are your life is stored in those archived messages. So how do you protect it?

A Variety of Choices

There are actually many services you can use to back up your Gmail.  Backupify is a paid service that backs up Gmail, Facebook, Flickr, Google Docs, Twitter, and many additional web applications. It’s a “set it and forget it” type of backup security system. Another option is to use TrueSwitch and back up your Gmail into a Hotmail account. If you prefer to have all of your backup data in your possession, rather than stored on an outside server, then consider Thunderbird.

Thunderbird is Mozilla’s free email application. If you use Firefox as your browser then you may be familiar with the application. The steps to backup with Thunderbird are easy.

Step #1 Download Thunderbird

Simply visit the Mozilla Thunderbird download page and click to download. Save the set-up exe file on your computer. Once it is saved, open the file and click “Run” to install.

Step #2 Change Your Gmail Settings

In the meantime, log into your Gmail and change the settings to enable POP for all mail, and set Gmail to keep its copy.

Step #3 Finish Installation

Follow the procedures to finish the installation and set-up for Thunderbird. You can import your Outlook or Outlook Express settings if you use that software.

Step #4 Back In Gmail

On that same settings page “Forwarding and POP/IMAP” in Gmail, you’ll see a link at the bottom of the page. It says, “Configure your email client (e.g. Outlook, Thunderbird, iPhone) Configuration instructions.” Go ahead and click the link. Follow the instructions for Thunderbird and you’ll be good to go. Your information will now be backed up on Thunderbird and you’ll have a second tier of protection.

If you like to have a third tier of protection, consider backing up everything to an online service. This way, if you’re ever hacked and they gain access to everything, you haven’t lost anything.


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