In OS X, Address Book is a separate application. Mail and other OS X applications, including iChat, make use of the Address Book database of contacts. Fortunately, Outlook Express addresses are relatively easy to transfer to your Mac.

Start by grabbing your contacts from your PC. First plug a flash drive or external hard drive into your PC. Then create a new folder on that drive and name it something like addresses to transfer. From your PC’s Start menu, open Outlook Express, choose Tools→Address Book, and then choose Edit→Select All. Drag the selected addresses to the addresses to transfer folder. Click the Remove Hardware icon in the Windows system tray. Click the Safely Remove Mass Storage Device line that matches your flash drive in the window that appears. Count to ten, and then unplug the drive.

On your Mac, you then follow these steps: Open the OS X Address Book application — it’s in the Applications folder. Plug the drive into your Mac. Double-click the drive icon and then the addresses to transfer folder. From the Finder menu, choose Edit→Select All and drag the selected contacts to the Address Book window. Right-click the drive icon and select Eject.