A client of mine still has a computer running Microsoft Outlook Express and they wanted me to import the address book contacts into their Yahoo Mail account. At first I was a little worried that Yahoo Mail may no longer support the format of Outlook Express address book contacts but then I remembered that you can export contacts into a CSV (Comma Separated Values) file which means I could manipulate the data if it was not supported. Yahoo Mail says that it supports import from Outlook but it doesn’t specify Outlook Express. I assume the format between Outlook and Outlook Express must be similar because Yahoo Mail did import the exported contacts from Outlook Express. Below I describe how to export Outlook Express contacts and then import those contacts into Yahoo Mail. Follow the instructions below that are broken into two parts which include exporting the contacts using Outlook Express and then importing the contacts using the Yahoo Mail web interface.
Export Outlook Express Contacts To A CSV File:
- Open Outlook Express Address Book: First launch Outlook Express and click on the Address Book button in the top navigation bar. This will display the Outlook Express Address Book as displayed in the below image.
- Address Book Export Tool: Now you want to launch the Outlook Express Address Book export tool which can be done by clicking File in the Address Book navigation bar, select Export Tool from the pop down menu, and select “Other Address Book..” from the fly out menu as displayed below.
This will open the Address Book Export Tool configuration window as displayed in the next step.
- Export Contacts To CSV: The first option you need to select in the Export Tool configuration window is “Text File (Comma Separated Values)” as displayed in the below image.
- Save Exported Contacts File: Now click the Export button which will open a new configuration window where you need to specify the file name for the exported Outlook Express contacts as displayed in the below image. You can also specify a location for the file to be saved by clicking the Browse button.
- Select Contact Fields To Export: Click the Next button after you have selected the location to save the file and a configuration window will open where you can select what fields you want to export as displayed in the image below. Yahoo suggests that you export every possible field so go ahead and check every box.
- Complete Contact Export Process: Click the Finish button after you have checked every field for export which will begin the contact export process. Once it is completed a success message will display as shown in the below image.
Now that you have the contacts exported into a CSV file you will need to follow the directions below so you can import those contacts into Outlook Express.
Import Outlook Express Exported Contacts Into Yahoo Mail Contact List:
- Logon To Yahoo Mail: First thing will be to open Yahoo in a browser and then logon to your Yahoo Mail from there.
- Open Yahoo Mail Options: In the upper right corner of the screen will be a link titled Options so click that and then select Mail Options from the drop down as displayed below.
Clicking Mail Options will display the Yahoo Mail configuration screen as displayed below.
- Yahoo Mail Contacts Configuration: Now select Contacts from the left navigation menu to display the Yahoo Mail contacts configuration window as displayed in the below image.
- Yahoo Mail Import Options: From the Yahoo Mail contacts configuration screen click on Import/Export in the right column of the page. This will open the Import/Export contacts screen as displayed below.
- Import Outlook Express Contacts: From the Import contacts configuration screen you need to verify a couple settings and select the location of the CSV file with the contacts from Outlook Express. Make sure that the top option “Choose a program to import contacts from” is set to Microsoft Outlook (CSV). Then under “Specify the file to import” browse to the CSV file. Then press the Import Now button to begin the import process. Once Yahoo is done importing the Outlook Express contacts you will be redirected and a success message will display showing the amount of contacts that were imported as displayed in the below image.
- Verify Yahoo Mail Contacts: Click the Contacts tab to verify all of the Outlook Express contacts were imported correctly into Yahoo.
You can store up to 5,000 contacts in Yahoo so if you have any trouble importing contacts this is the first thing I would check to make sure that you are not trying to import a number of contacts that would put you over this limit. One of the other issues I have noticed when importing contacts into Yahoo Mail is the fact that sometimes the import process has an issue with importing more than a thousand contacts at a time so I would suggest if you have more than 1,000 contacts you are going to import to break the CSV files down into 1,000 contact files instead of one file with 2,000 contacts.