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HOW-TO: Import contacts (vCard/vcf) from seamonkey/thunderbird/evolution to Replicant6/CM13

Added by mea ron about 3 years ago

Hey everybody.

tl;dr
Importing vcf files from Seamonkey/Thunderbird/Evolution to Replicant/CM doesn't work?
Import them to the tool 'abook' first, then just export them again. -> now it should work :)

I just had a problem and finally got to solve it -- now I want to share my solution.

I wanted to import my contact addressbook (in .vcf / vCard format) to my phone running Replicant6. I have nothing in the cloud, or google sync or something, just plain old local vcf file.
As my addressbook on my old phone became quite cluttered up, I wanted to edit it first (conveniently) on my computer. The problem was: No matter whether I exported my addressbook using Seamonkey/Thunderbird/Evolution -- everytime I could not import it properly to Replicant, instead it would import all the contact names without numbers, then add all my numbers as new contacts without names. Or it would not get imported at all. Very confusing, at least not really usable ;P (edit: I tried both: importing through contacts app, and importing using 'Import Contacts' app from F-Droid)
Side note: When I reviewed the various exported vcf files, I noticed some differences between the files from Seamonkey/Thunderbird/Evolution and the files my old CM11 phone / Replicant exported. Using Seamonkey, etc., all the keywords are written lowercase, while Replicant exports vcf files using uppercase keywords. Also, in the vcf files from Replicant/CM there are some more semicolons.
However, I tried it with the cli tool abook, and it seems that Replicant/CM can read the vcf files which abook exports correctly. Only about 5% of the contact names had some character encoding issues (not a big issue for most people I think).

By the way, that is very simple:
- run abook (invoked by 'abook')
- import contacts: press i > select 'vcard' > enter file name
- (maybe edit them)
- export contacts: press e > select 'vcard' > enter file name
- voilà :)

In my case, I could have also edited them on the android phone -- but I a) like it more to do that on my computer, and b) just wanted to figure out how one can use vcf files exported from Seamonkey, etc.

So for some people having large addressbooks on their computer, that might be helpful -- if they not use some online sync thingie, like me.

Regards,

mearon