How To Synchronize Outlook.com Contacts With Thunderbird Addressbook

I have been using Hotmail since 2000 and started using Gmail in 2004 when it was launched. Since then Gmail grew by leaps and bounds and crossed Hotmail in features and active users. That was the point when Microsoft turned the tables round and started investing time on its Hotmail service. First it was renamed to Windows Live and then the name was changed to Outlook.com.

Some time ago Microsoft started offering IMAP and POP service to its users which was available in Gmail for ages. I prefer to use an email client to check my emails. I normally use both Microsoft Outlook 2013 and Thunderbird for this purpose. It’s easy to setup my Outlook.com account in MS Outlook as it supports Exchange Active Sync which works similar to IMAP but its performance is better as compared to IMAP. In addition to emails, Outlook also synchronizes contacts and calendar entries.

When it comes to Thunderbird, its fairly easy to synchronize Google Calendar and Contacts with Thunderbird Address book which Microsoft makes it difficult to synchronize contacts with other email clients. I was in search for a way to cross synchronize Thunderbird Address book contacts with my Outlook.com account and have found one plugin which works perfect for my scenario. It will synchronize the contacts both ways from Thunderbird to Outlook.com and from Outlook.com to Thunderbird.

TZPush is a wonderful Thunderbird Add-on which syncs Thunderbird address book with many services including Outlook.com/Hotmail, Zentyal, Zarafa, Horde etc. The tricky part is to make TZPush work with Outlook.com. Please follow the steps below in order to make synchronization between Thunderbird and Outlook.com/Hotmail work.

  1. Go to Thunderbird Add-ons page and search for TZPush. Otherwise, you can also TZPush directly here. Install it in Thunderbird.
  2. Now go to Tools –> TZ-Push –> TZ-Settings
    TZ-Push Settings Menu
  3. In the AddressBook options, you will see the addressbooks created in Thunderbird. By default, there is only one addressbook called “Personal Address Book”. If you have created multiple addressbooks, select the one in which you want to synchronize Outlook.com contacts.
    Outlook Addresses AddressBook selected
  4. In the Setting Dialog tab, enter the following settings:
    Server: s.outlook.com
    Use https://: Checked
    User Name: complete outlook.com email address (e.g., itechtics@outlook.com)
    Password: Your outlook.com account password
    Device Id: Leave default
    Use “,” as separator: Checked
    TZ Settings
  5. Now Click the OK button and Open TZ-Settings again. Enter the password in the password field if it’s empty and click on “Sync Addressbook” button.

These settings will enable you to synchronize any Thunderbird Addressbook with Outlook.com. Any additions or removals done in Thunderbird will be reflected in Outlook.com and vice versa. One thing to note is that TZ-Push plugin does not synchronize with email. You will need to specify in the settings after how many minutes you want to synchronize the contacts automatically.

Which email client do you use for your emails? And how do you synchronize your mails, contacts and calendars across the mail clients? Don’t forget to leave a comment below 🙂