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How to Back Up or Copy Your Mac OS X Mail Junk Mail Training Data

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Apple wants you to synchronize all your essential data on multiple Macs via your .Mac account. That's a smart strategy for Apple, and you get to see an up-to-date copy of your contacts, bookmarks and what not very convenient and hassle-free.

To keep multiple computers' email in sync, all you need is an IMAP account, though. Mac OS X Mail supports IMAP nicely, and you can even profit from its great spam filter.

Now, to connect the dots—or, rather, to see how they do not connect, .Mac does not synchronize your junk mail filter training data and Mac OS X Mail does not keep that data on the IMAP server for automatic synchronization either.

While you can't keep your spam filter training data in sync automatically, you can still back it up or copy it to another Mac so you don't have to re-teach Mail everything. It's also quite easy.

Back Up or Copy Your Mac OS X Mail Junk Mail Training Data

To create a backup of your Mac OS X Mail junk mail training data or move it to a new computer:

  • Make sure Mac OS X Mail is not running.
  • Open your Mail data folder in the Finder.
  • In OS X Mail 5 and 6:
    • Open the MailData sub-folder.
  • Copy the LSMMap2 file either to a back up location or the new Mac.
    • If you copy or recover the junk mail data, simply place the LSMMap2 file in your Mail directory on the new or recovered computer. You may want to copy any existing LSMMap2 file to LSMMap2.orig before overwriting it just in case you're copying the wrong file.

(Updated August 2012)

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