Note: this approach only works for Macs laptops and desktops and only gets your iMessage history. Green bubble messages unfortunately are not captured. If you just want to see the good stuff you can find the notebook with the minimal code to extract and prepare the data here. You can usually find your username folder on the side bar of the finder. Once that works, you can go and find the Messages folder, which contains the chat. A very simple way to understand what a database file is is to think of it a a folder that contains a bunch of excel-like tables.
Much like larger or enterprise-grade databases you can connect and access the data in the database in a variety of ways. Above we connect to the database and explore what tables are in there. I found that there are a few tables in the database including one called message and others names chat , handle and attachment. I do that by transferring the table into a pandas dataframe, a type of file that is much easier to explore and manipulate for data analyis projects. We hit bingo!
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The message table indeed seems to hold all the saved iMessages. It has a text field with the actual sent or received message, a date field more on that below and a handle id. This can be useful when doing analysis on chats with multiple people in them. Moreover, the way that this column is recorded is a little different in newer version of Mac OS X compared to older ones. Credit to this stackoverflow page that helped me figure this out. So now we need to divide by 1,,, before we apply the same code snippet we applied above.
You can find the notebook here with all the code in order for you to extract your iMessages from your laptop and start analyzing! It should only take a few minutes and by the end of it you should have a basic history of your iMessage data that includes the phone number or email , the text , a unique chat for each unique group of people you had a chat with and the timestamp in UTC timezone of each message sent.
You can actually find more data in the database such as details if the message was delivered and read as well as attachments. This post also only instructs on how to get iMessage data from your Apple computer. Gary Walker says:. February 24, at am. Tom says:. June 2, at pm. Rhonda says:. July 9, at pm. Yesnot says:. June 5, at am. Jim Greer says:. April 29, at am. CanturkIsci says:. April 22, at pm.
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