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Move VPOP3 Version 5 (or later) to a new PC

Moving VPOP3 Version 5 or later to a new PC is slightly different from moving earlier versions, because of the database system, which was introduced for version 3 and modified for version 5.

The summary of steps is:

  1. Stop VPOP3 on the original PC
  2. Manually make a backup of the database on the original PC
  3. Copy the VPOP3 directory tree from the original PC to the new PC except for the VPOP3\pgsql directory
  4. Install VPOP3 on the new PC, but do not start VPOP3 yet
  5. Restore the database backup (from step 2) on the new PC
  6. Check settings on new PC
  7. Start VPOP3 on the new PC
  8. Disable VPOP3 on the old PC if necessary

Please make sure you follow these instructions in the correct order. Many problems with moving installations are because people have thought we have got it wrong, and so do things in a different (incorrect) order.

If you want, we can do this move for you via remote access. The charge for us to do that is currently £50 (+ VAT). If you want us to do this, make sure that it is possible to copy files between the PCs on your network (or have copied all the necessary files beforehand). Copying the files over the Internet to our office and then back again is not feasible given the large amounts of data that can be present.

You can follow most of these steps if VPOP3 was on a PC that died, and you are moving it to a replacement PC. However, this is less ideal than restoring from the latest daily backup you made. If you were not previously backing up VPOP3, this may be a good time to start

Stop VPOP3

First of all stop VPOP3 on the original PC

Backup the database

To backup the database, go to a command prompt on the VPOP3 computer, and go to the VPOP3 directory. Then run

pgsql\bin\pg_dump -F c -p 5433 -v -U vpop3 -f database.dmp vpop3

Note: the above line (and all subsequent database command lines on this page) assume port 5433 is being used. This will work in the majority of cases, but in certain circumstances, a different port number may be required.

At the password prompt, type vpop3pass (This assumes a standard installation, if your PostgreSQL installation is non-standard, then you may need to change this command appropriately). Note that for security reasons, the password will not be displayed as you type it in.

This will create a file 'database.dmp' containing a backup of the database in the VPOP3 directory so it will be copied by the next step

(NB. If you are moving VPOP3 because the old computer died and you can't do this step, then (by default) VPOP3 makes backups into the VPOP3 directory called DBBACK-x.DMP, you can use the latest one of those files instead)

Copy the VPOP3 directory tree

How you do this depends on your network setup.

The easiest way to copy it all except for the VPOP3\pgsql directory is often to copy everything, then delete the VPOP3\pgsql from the new PC after the copy has finished

Note that if you are moving to Windows Vista/2008/7 or later, we strongly recommend that you do not copy the files to the 'Program Files' (or 'Program Files (x86)') folder on the new PC as that can cause problems for VPOP3, because Windows has restrictions on what can be put into these folders. (Maybe copy it to a C:\VPOP3 folder instead)

Install VPOP3 on the new PC

Install VPOP3 on the new PC as normal, but:

  • Make sure you install into the same directory that you copied the VPOP3 directory tree to, so if you copied it to D:\VPOP3, make sure you install to D:\VPOP3. Most problems with moving VPOP3 are because this step is not followed correctly.
  • If the installer asks you to enter your licence key, you should enter it here. If you do not enter it, make sure you choose the correct edition of VPOP3 - VPOP3 Basic or VPOP3 Enterprise
  • During the component selection stage of the installation, make sure you check the 'Database Server for VPOP3' option. Sometimes this will not be checked by default during a move operation
  • At the end of the install, make sure you uncheck the Start VPOP3 option, so that VPOP3 does not run
  • If you are wanting to install a later version of VPOP3 as well as moving VPOP3, then at this step you would install the later version rather than the original version.

Restore the Database Backup

First, delete the DBCHANGES.DAT file from the VPOP3 directory (if it exists). This contains settings changes wanted by the installer, but they will overwrite the restored data, so you do not want them to take effect in this scenario.

Then, on the new PC, open up a command prompt and go to the VPOP3 directory. Then run

pgsql\bin\pg_restore -p 5433 -U postgres -C -v -d postgres database.dmp

At the password prompt, enter pgsqlpass

This will import the data to the database system on the new PC

Note that during this step you may see a couple of errors which are not important: there may be an error about the database already existing, and also an error that the 'plpgsql' language is already installed. (Each of these errors may have several lines in the output). If there are lots of errors, then there may be a problem and you should contact

If you had previously installed VPOP3 on the new computer

If you had previously installed VPOP3 on the new computer (which is not recommended), then you need to “drop” the existing database before restoring the database from the old computer as above.

To drop the database, on the new PC, open up a command prompt and go to the VPOP3 directory. Then run

pgsql\bin\dropdb -p 5433 -U postgres vpop3

At the command prompt, enter pgsqlpass

In this case, you will need to create the VPOP3 database again during the restore:

pgsql\bin\pg_restore -p 5433 -U postgres -C -v -d postgres database.dmp

At the command prompt, enter pgsqlpass

Moving installation directory

If you are installing VPOP3 in a different directory on the new PC than it was on the old PC, you need to change some settings.

This needs a little utility. You can download it from . Download this file, and extract the contents into the new VPOP3 installation directory

At a command prompt, find the VPOP3 installation directory and run

vpop3settings replacepaths <old path> <new path>

e.g. Run

vpop3settings replacepaths c:\vpop3 d:\vpop3

The utility will display all the settings which used the old location and ask if you want to change them to the new location. Check the settings, and press 'Y' if they are correct

Check Settings on new PC

You should check for common potential issues on the new PC - see the installing VPOP3 topic for details.

Start VPOP3

Finally start VPOP3

Disable VPOP3 on the old PC

If the old PC will still be being used for other things, and you do not want VPOP3 to run on it, you should disable VPOP3 on it.

If you don't do this, you may end up with two copies of VPOP3 running at the same time, which will almost certainly cause strange things to happen.

There are two main options here:

  1. Disable the VPOP3 service
  2. Uninstall VPOP3

Disable the VPOP3 service

Go to Control Panel → Administrative Tools → Services on the OLD computer

Find the VPOP3 service. Double-click it. If the Service Status is 'Started', press theStop button. In the Startup type, choose Disabled and press OK

Find the VPOP3DB service and do the same again

Uninstall VPOP3

Only uninstall VPOP3 if you will not want to run VPOP3 on this computer again, as it will clear all the data.

Go to Control Panel → Programs and Features on the OLD computer

Find the 'VPOP3' program and uninstall that.

More information

The documentation for the PostgreSQL utilities can be useful:

how_to/v5_-_move_to_a_new_pc.txt · Last modified: 2023/02/08 10:48 by paul