Import from Slack

Starting with Zulip 1.8, Zulip supports importing data from Slack, including users, channels, messages, attachments, avatars, custom emoji, and emoji reactions.

This tool has been used to import Slack workspaces with 10,000 members and millions of messages. If you're planning on doing an import much larger than that, or run into performance issues when importing, contact us for help.

Note: You can only import a Slack workspace as a new Zulip organization. In particular, you cannot use this tool to import from Slack into an existing Zulip organization.

Import from Slack

First, export your data from Slack.

Note: Only Slack owners and admins can export data from Slack. See Slack's guide to data exports for more information.

Get a Slack API token.

It will be a long string starting with xoxb-. It is required to fetch data that Slack doesn't include in their data exports, like email addresses.

  1. Create a new Slack app.

  2. Add OAuth scopes to your app. We need the following 'bot token scopes':

    • emoji:read
    • users:read
    • team:read
  3. Install the app to your workspace. You will get an API token that you can now use to fetch data from your Slack workspace.

Export your Slack data

Now, Export your Slack data. You will receive a zip file

This step will also generate a different token starting with xoxe-; you don't need it.

Import into Zulip Cloud

Email with, the Slack API token generated above, and your desired subdomain. Your imported organization will be hosted at <subdomain>

If you've already created a test organization at <subdomain>, let us know, and we can rename the old organization first.

Import into a self-hosted Zulip server

First install a new Zulip server, skipping "Step 3: Create a Zulip organization, and log in" (you'll create your Zulip organization via the data import tool instead).

Log in to a shell on your Zulip server as the zulip user. To import with the most common configuration, run the following commands, replacing <token> with the value generated above.

cd /home/zulip/deployments/current
./ convert_slack_data --token <token> --output converted_slack_data
./ import '' converted_slack_data

This could take several minutes to run, depending on how much data you're importing. The server stop/restart is only necessary when importing on a server with minimal RAM, where an OOM kill might otherwise occur.

Import options

The commands above create an imported organization on the root domain (EXTERNAL_HOST) of the Zulip installation. You can also import into a custom subdomain, e.g. if you already have an existing organization on the root domain. Replace the last line above with the following, after replacing <subdomain> with the desired subdomain.

./ import <subdomain> converted_slack_data

Remove the Slack app used for export

Once the import is complete, you should delete the Slack app (and thus API token) that you created in the earlier step. This will prevent the token from being used to access your Slack instance in the future.

Logging in

Once the import completes, all your users will have accounts in your new Zulip organization, but those accounts won't have passwords yet (since for very good security reasons, passwords are not exported). Your users will need to either authenticate using something like Google auth, or start by resetting their passwords.

You can use the ./ send_password_reset_email command to send password reset emails to your users. We recommend starting with sending one to yourself for testing:

./ send_password_reset_email -u

and then once you're ready, you can email them to everyone using e.g.

./ send_password_reset_email -r '' --all-users

(replace '' with your subdomain if you're using one).


  • Slack doesn't export private channels or direct messages unless you pay for Slack Plus or contact Slack support. See Slack's documentation for more details.

  • (Slack Plus import) Message edit history is currently not imported.

  • Slack doesn't export user settings or organization settings, so you'll need to configure these manually.

  • Import of user roles:

    • Slack's Workspace Primary Owner and Workspace Owner users are mapped to Zulip Organization owner users.
    • Slack's Workspace Admin users are mapped to Zulip's Organization administrator users.
    • Slack's Member users is mapped to Zulip Member users.
    • Slack's Single Channel Guest and Multi Channel Guest users are mapped to Zulip Guest users.
    • Slack's Channel creators have no special permissions in Zulip.
  • The "joined #channel_name" messages are not imported.

  • Messages in threads are still imported, but they are not explicitly marked as to be in a thread.