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Thread: How To Reconstruct Hidden Files

  1. #1
    Senior Member The Old Man's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001

    How To Reconstruct Hidden Files

    There have been several interesting threads regarding the Microsoft Hidden Files including the link Magnoon gave in that thread. So, i boot to DOS (actually you can do the same thing by clicking over to DOS from the Windows environment) and do a dir for anything with an extension of *.dbx (and a few others) which brings up a deeply placed (six directories deep) set of files named "inbox.mbx", "outbox.mbx", "sentit~1.mbx", "delete~1.mbx" and "drafts.mbx". These hidden *.mbx files take up about 30meg of space in the directory. So, from the DOS-prompt i "type", "print" etc several of the records, and all i get in plain text is who it's to (like the sheriff) but the rest of the file is a screen of scattered funny-faces, or high-ascii characters, or whatever they are, accompanied by complimentary 'puter-beeps. So my question is, how do you convert these files and these characters into something a carbon-based lifeform can read?
    Well, OK, i should have experimented with it a bit more: The original text says you have to go to DOS to find these, however i just did a "find" under windows and it listed them all in about two seconds, where the DOS-search took a couple minutes. Also, i took one of the files, sent it to a floppy, then sent the file to another email address, received it in Outlook Express, opened the attachment in wordpad, and viola! It had several hundred lines of ascii, but then, down at the bottom, was the original message in plain text! This thing is a great find for me, but i'm sure most of you think it's K-12 stuff!
    Happy day!

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    You can trick outlook express to get the DBX or MBX files (depending on the version of OE) by following these steps. (written for DBX, but works the same if OE is using MBX)

    Create a new directory. Open outlook express, goto tools options, maintenance, store folder point it at the new directory. You will be asked to restart outlook Express, do so. When that is done, right click local folders, new folders, then create a folder of the exact same name as the .dbx file, obviously without the extension, do this for all the dbx files you need to read.

    Then (MOST IMPORTANT) open each folder in outlook express. You need to open the folder for outlook express to create the appropriate file.

    Once thats done. Close outlook express.

    Copy the .dbx files from your store to the mail store directory. start outlook express and you will find the mail and any newsgroups are there to view.

    Note that other e-mail programs may work in a similar fashion, I have not had an opportunity to experiment with them.

    If this doesn't work or you want to use a utility to do this for you download these free utilities:

    DBXtract http://www.oehelp.com/DBXtract/Default.aspx

    MBXtract http://www.oehelp.com/MBXtract/Default.aspx
    If you receive something that says \'Send this to everyone you know,\' pretend you don\'t know me.

  3. #3
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    ok i guess i dont really understand this but i dont use outlook so can i get rid of the dbx files

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2005


    The repair outlook and data email recovery has prompted you a path of the Outlook Express files' storage. And now save the damaged dbx files in the safe folder, they can be useful.

  5. #5
    Senior Member nihil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    United Kingdom: Bridlington

    If the date at the top of the post is flashing, it means that it is old ...............this is very old (almost 3 years)...............so it is not worth responding to, as the software has changed too much.

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