Opening a Google Takeout file on your device is quite easy. You only need to understand the file format in which Google Takeout’s data is stored. In this article, we are discussing the free and easy way that you can use to open Google Takeout files. Additionally, we have also listed a couple of third-party tools that can help you access and read Google Takeout data if you find the manual way complex and a bit technical.

Google Takeout is a convenient service provided by Google that permits users to download all the Google data and save locally. Many users use this service to download their Gmail emails to computers. However, Google Takeout downloads all the emails in MBOX file format which makes it quite challenging for users to open Google Takeout files.

If you don’t know, let me tell you that Google does not offer any solution to open Google Takeout files on your system. For this, you first need to download Thunderbird (an email client that lets you open Google Takeout’s output file) on your system. Following that, you will be able to import Google Takeout file in Thunderbird. In the following section, we have explained all these steps in the simplest manner.

Point to be noted: When you get the final file from Google Takeout service, you might get a TGZ or a ZIP file. In order to open it, you first need to extract Google Takeout files. For that, you need to use a utility like Winrar or WinZip. These utilities will help you unzip the TGZ or ZIP file and extract actual files from Google Takeout.

How to Open Google Takeout Files on Desktop for Free

As discussed in the above section, the very first step of this process is to download Thunderbird on our device. It is an open-source email application that we can download for free and open MBOX files.

Important Note: Once you have downloaded and installed Thunderbird, configure any account in the email account to import the MBOX file into it.

Free Step by Step Guide

  • Open Thunderbird and click on the 3 horizontal lines.

Horizontal Lines

  • Following that, choose the Add-ons option.

Add-ons option

  • Then go to the search bar adjacent to Find more add-ons and search for ImportExportTools NG.

Search Add-on

  • You will now see the option to add the add-on to Thunderbird. Click on Add to Thunderbird button.

Add to Thunderbird

  • Finally, click on the Add button.

Add button

These steps will successfully install the add-on in Thunderbird. Now, you can open Google Takeout files on your system following the below steps.

  • Now go to the home screen of Thunderbird and right-click on the ID in which you want to import your data.
  • Click on ImportExportTool NG > Import mbox file.

Open Google Takeout Files

  • Here, choose Import directly one or more mbox files option and click on the OK button.

Import File

  • Now locate the MBOX file on your system and open it.
  • Finally, your Google Takeout file will be open in your system.

One of the major benefits of using this solution is that it is completely free to use and can be used on both Windows and Mac OS. It is because Thunderbird is available for both operating systems.

However, if you are not technically sound or face issues dealing with installations and performing these long procedures, then this solution is not for you. In that case, you can try opting for the third-party tools that you can find in the following section of the article. These are the free tools that will help you open Google Takeout files for free.

Free Third-Party Tools to Open Google Takeout Files

In order to save your time and effort, you can simply download Kernel’s Free MBOX Viewer that will help you access your Google Takeout data. This tool doesn’t require Thunderbird and add-on (ImportExportToolsNG) installation on your system.

Moreover, this is one of the advanced utilities that will not only let you preview your email data, but also lets you search for a specific email within a described date range. This means that you can use the Date/Time filter within the software and filter the emails that fall into that particular time frame. Furthermore, you can use this filter for parameters like Subject, To, From, and Folder.

Concluding Words

Google Takeout is an amazing utility that permits users to download their important Google account data into their systems. Although it is quite easy to download the data, but extracting Google takeout files and then opening them is not that easy. Hence, to make your task simple, we have come up with an informative guide on how to open Google Takeout files.

If you are technically sound and are familiar with installations and setting up applications, then free manual procedure would be good for you. However, users with not that good technical knowledge are suggested to go with the third-party tool discussed in the lower segment of the article.

By Mark Weins

After completing my graduation in Computer Science, I entered the technical world to explore my passion for technicalities. After working for over 7 years in this industry now, I have received over 10 awards as a tech expert.