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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

How to Recover Deleted Emails From Microsoft Outlook

Accidentally deleted emails from Microsoft Outlook?

You may have permanently deleted emails in Microsoft Outlook and want to recover them. No need to worry, email recovery is possible.

Introduction to Microsoft Outlook

Microsoft Outlook is an email application which integrates email messages, to-do lists, contacts, tasks, and scheduling. It comes as a part of Microsoft Office suite. It manages multiple POP, IMAP, Microsoft Exchange, MSN and Windows live Hotmail accounts. MicrosoftOutlook provides features such as instant email searching, flagging, categorizing and scheduling appointments.

In Microsoft Outlook each email is not stored as a separate file. Usually, a complete email folder like, Inbox is stored as a single file. The email folder used is a.pst file (i.e. Personal Storage database file). Along with emails, it also contains other data, such as contacts and appointments.

Scenarios of email loss

Scenarios in which emails might get deleted permanently are-

* By using shift + Del
* Compacting the.pst file
* Corruption of.pst files
* Exceeding the 2GB size limit of the.pst file
* Accidental deletion
* Virus attack

In order to attain complete email recovery, never compact your.pst files or save any new data on to the drive after you have encountered email loss. Any attempt of compacting/ saving will overwrite lost data.

Is it possible to recover deleted emails?

If you have deleted an email using the delete button, then the emails will move into the Deleted Items folder, which can be restored. If emails are permanently deleted (i.e. using Shift+Del), you cannot recover them from the Deleted Items folder, but there is a possibility to get the emails back.

When you use the delete command, the email moves from Inbox (any source folder) to the Deleted Items folder, i.e. it is copied into the destination folder before getting deleted from the source folder. Hence the emails are not physically deleted from the hard drive; but only marked as having been deleted, and hence Microsoft Outlook doesn't display it. Unless you compact the.pst file or save any new data, there is still a possibility of recovering the deleted emails in one piece.

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