Email Cleanup Tips
General Tips To Keep Your Mailbox Small
- Don't store attachments in Outlook but store them outside your mailbox in a folder on your hard disk or OneDrive.
- If you need to send attachments, send them in a compressed format like zip-files. This will save you some bandwidth and the receiver some mailbox space; hopefully he/she will return you the favor.
- If working in OneDrive, send a link rather than the actual document.
- Periodically check the size of the individual folders by using the Folder Size button in the properties of Outlook Today so you can react on a fast growing mailbox in time. This way you prevent the need to clean your mailbox for several hours at the end of the year and be able to do it with just minutes a week or even a month.
Send as few and small attachments as possible. If you know the receiver can also access the file on the same network like this
<\\servername\sharename\foldername\filename.doc> or use Insert-> Hyperlink (set Word as the E-mail Editor to have a more user friendly interface for this option
- How big is my current mailbox? You are limited to 2 GB
- How big are the emails? – arrange by size
Ways to clean up your email
From your Outlook Client
File -> Cleanup Tools => Mailbox Cleanup
From this view you can
- View mailbox size
- Find larger files
- Empty deleted items
Delete (goes to deleted items folder)
- Skip the Deleted Items folder and get rid of the mail straight away by pressing DELETE use SHIFT+DELETE to delete the message permanently.
- Outlook 2010 has a Delete All option from any folder
- Deleted Items – Empty deleted items folder (right click) (items automatically delete after 7 days)
- Junk E-Mail – Empty junk mail folder (does not delete automatically)
- Inbox, Sent Items and other mail folders
Large messages need to go first – Sort by size – All mail options
Once your trash is empty, continue the cleanup process with first finding the largest chunks in the mailbox. In most cases you'll find that 20% of your mailbox items account for 80% of the size.
Moving email to a folder removes it from your inbox and may make it easier to find, BUT is still part of your email space.
Drag and Drop to your Computer/Network
Move email to a computer folder. This may require resizing your windows so that you can click, drag and drop onto a computer folder with both windows open. Otherwise you can right click and select Copy and then find your computer folder and right click and paste. This actually COPIES the message to your computer. You need to delete it from your email to free up space in Outlook.
Did you know if you drag and drop email from a message onto a task, it stays in the inbox. If you delete it from the task items, it deletes the email message. If you create a task from a message and you delete the message, it stays in your task folder.
Remove attachments from messages.
Open the message and right click on the attachment and select remove attachment.
With Outlook 2010, you can also remove attachments from the Reading pane by clicking on the attachment and selecting Remove Attachment from the Attachments tab on the Ribbon.
NOTE: Messages containing patient and other confidential data must be saved on a network drive or an encrypted device.
Clean up Conversations in 2010
If you are using 2010, you are probably using the Conversation Grouping, as that is the default view. This can be a great tool for saving space:
- You can find all messages which have been replied to (if someone changes the subject, it begins a different conversation).
- Expand the Ø to see all messages in the conversation.
- Some conversations have “sub” conversations. Click the red dot to expand that conversation.
- If you try to delete a specific message, it could delete the entire conversation.
- Use Clean Up (located on the Delete grouping on the Home tab). This will leave only one copy of each message and remove duplicate messages in the thread.
- Ignore a conversation that you no longer need to be a part of. This will place the conversation in the deleted items folder.
Macs - Outlook Cleanup Tools for the Mac – Outlook 2011
Sent Items – delete attachments and consider sending Links in the future
Convert messages to PDF
If you have Outlook 2010, you must have Acrobat X to save as PDF.
If you have Outlook 2007, you can use Acrobat 9 or later to save as PDF.
From Outlook 2011, you can print to Adobe.
From Outlook web (OWA), if you have Acrobat 9 or later, you can open individual messages and click the Printer icon, which takes to you a “Printable View” and from there you will have the Adobe to PDF icon, which will save the Web page (message) to a PDF