[Tip] Create Portable Version of eM Client for USB Drives
Many people like me prefer to use Desktop email clients to access email accounts on computers. Using an email client program helps in managing, reading and sending emails quickly and easily even if you are offline. The email client saves the composed email in drafts and sends the email as soon as you connect to Internet.
There are many email client programs such as Mozilla Thunderbird, Windows Live Mail, Postbox, Opera Mail, etc. Personally I use Windows Live Mail program which is a part of Microsoft's official Windows Essentials pack.
Recently I decided to give a try to other email client programs as Microsoft doesn't seem in mood of maintaining and updating Windows Essential pack any more. I tried lots of free as well as paid email clients and the program which finally impressed me a lot was eM Client.
eM Client is a free email client program for Windows which looks very close to Microsoft Outlook program. It also resembles the older versions of Windows Live Mail such as 2009. I found that the program has become very popular among people and provides lots of settings and options to customize its functionality as well as its user interface. Surprisingly it also supports "Exchange ActiveSync" (EAS) synchronization protocol to access Hotmail and Outlook email accounts.
The first thing which I look into every software program is the availability of portable version. I found that eM Client doesn't provide any portable version so you can't use it without installing in your computer. Also you can't carry it on your USB drive.
I didn't find any guide to create portable version of eM Client so I decided to create a portable edition of eM Client myself. I tried to look around in its settings and finally found an interesting option which can be used to make a portable version of this program.
So if you are also using eM Client program and want to create eM Client portable version which doesn't need to be installed and can be carried on USB drives, following steps will help you:
If you don't have eM Client installed in your computer, first of all install it and then copy eM Client folder from "C:\Program Files\" (in 32-bit Windows edition) or "C:\Program Files (x86)\" (in 64-bit Windows edition) folder and paste it to any desired location.
For example if you want to create portable version of eM Client on a different drive like E:\, then copy the folder to E:\ drive. If you want to put eM Client portable edition on USB drive, then copy the folder to your USB drive.
By default eM Client stores all required data such as your customized preferences, email accounts, email messages, contacts and everything else in following location:
Since we want to create eM Client portable version, we'll move this default database location to the new eM Client folder which we copied to a different drive or our USB drive.
Open eM Client folder on different drive or USB drive and create a new folder inside it. You can give it any desired name such as database or db or profile or any other name.
Now launch eM Client program and click on Tools -> Settings option. It'll open eM Client settings window.
Now go to "General -> Storage" section and you'll notice that here you can change the database folder location to store all data used by eM Client.
Click on Browse [...] button and select the newly created database folder present inside your copied eM Client folder present on different drive or USB drive as mentioned in Step 2 and apply changes.
If you are using eM Client for the first time and didn't customize any setting or didn't add any email account, you can skip this step and go to next step!
If you were already using eM Client program and you have customized various settings according to your requirements and also added your email accounts, you'll need to move all this data to the new database folder.
First of all go to following folder:
Replace Username with your current user account name in Windows.
You can directly open this folder by using following command in RUN dialog box:
Now cut or copy everything and paste them in the new database folder created in Step 2.
It'll force eM Client to use your existing settings and email accounts otherwise it'll work like a fresh installation and will ask you to create new email accounts and everything else.
Now the final step which is the most important and tricky step!
eM Client uses a Registry key to detect the location of database folder. So we can take a backup of the Registry key and keep it at safe place. If you are going to put portable eM Client on your USB drive, keep a backup of Registry key's .REG file on your USB drive.
To take the backup, type regedit in Start Menu search box or RUN dialog box and press Enter. It'll open Registry Editor. Now go to following key:
Right-click on "eM Client" key and select "Export". Save the .REG file in your USB drive or any other partition.
Now there are 2 cases:
- CASE 1: You want to keep and use the portable version on your computer even after reinstalling Windows
- CASE 2: You want to use portable version of eM Client on USB drive
CASE 1: You want to keep and use the portable version on your computer even after reinstalling Windows:
Run the Registry .REG file first to restore eM Client settings in Registry.
Now launch eM Client program and it'll detect the new database location and will use your customized settings and email accounts.
CASE 2: You want to use portable version of eM Client on USB drive:
When you'll attach your USB drive containing portable version of eM Client in different computers, the drive letter assigned to your USB drive will be different for different computers. That's why restoring backup of Registry key will not work as it'll contain reference of the database folder location present on a different drive.
To make the portable version working on USB drives, you just need to launch eM Client program and repeat the Step 3 to tell eM Client the new location of database folder.
That's it. Now eM Client will perfectly work like a portable program and you'll never need to reconfigure the program or re-add your email accounts and re-download messages, etc.
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