Is there a library to parse Mozilla "mork" documents?

Tim Roberts timr at
Fri Jan 21 02:48:34 EST 2005

John Reese <jtr at> wrote:
>Mozilla, Firefox, Thunderbird, and so forth use this awful format
>called MORK to store all kinds of things: which messages you've read
>in a newsgroup, headers and indexes into the mbox file of messages in
>a mail folder, and address books.

Yes.  What a crock that is.  The MORK format is a great way to compress
tabular information, IF the information consists of the same pieces of data
over and over.  E-mail boxes do not fit into that class, so I have no doubt
that the typical Thunderbird MORK file is singificantly LARGER than the
same file would be in, say, INI format.

I wrote a Python script to parse it, but it isn't terribly robust.  I was
able to produce a dictionary, but I didn't do anything with the results.
You're welcome to take a look:
- Tim Roberts, timr at
  Providenza & Boekelheide, Inc.

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