Transfer AOL email to Google's Gmail

A Simple Way to Move to Gmail

Q. I have America Online , but since I already have a broadband connection, I'd like to change over to a Gmail account. Is it possible to move all my addresses and messages from AOL to Gmail?

A. Extracting your digital life from your old e-mail account has gotten a lot easier. In the spring, Google introduced a feature — made possible by the TrueSwitch e-mail switching service — that lets you import your address book and old messages from several other mail services into a new Gmail account.

First, sign up for a Gmail account ( ) if you haven't done so. Once you have created an account and have your new mailbox on screen, click the Settings link at the top of the Gmail window.

Click on the Accounts and Import tab and then click on the “Import mail and contacts” button. A new window opens, asking you to type in the e-mail address you want to bring into your new Gmail account. Once you type in your AOL e-mail address and password, you are presented with checkboxes you can mark off to import the contacts and old mail from AOL.

You can also have Gmail import new incoming mail from the old AOL account for 30 days — and even slap a label on the messages from the old address so you can keep them separate from mail coming directly to the Gmail address. Click on the Start Import button to kick things off. It may take anywhere from a few minutes to two days to move everything.

A post on the official Gmail blog at illustrates the process and provides a link to step-by-step instructions, along with a list of e-mail providers that work with the switching service.


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