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Cleaning Up your Mailbox - Microsoft Outlook 2010

Learn how to clean up your Outlook 2010 mailbox for better performance and to ensure you do not exceed your allocated server space.

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Auto Archiving

  • AutoArchive will move messages over 6 months old from your mailbox hosted on the Exchange server to a mailbox on your local computer. Please keep in mind archived messages will not be viewable through Outlook Web Access because they are no longer stored on the Exchange server.

Setting up AutoArchiving

  • In the main Outlook 2010 window, click on the File menu and select Options.
  • Go to Advanced, and click on the AutoArchive Settings button.
  • Change your settings to match the picture below or your own preferences.
  • The next time you see the message "Auto Archive Old Items Now?", all of your old messages will be moved to Archived Folders.

AutoArchive configuration settings


  • If you filter your mail into multiple folders, you may want to set different AutoArchive schedules for each mail folder.
  • To do this, right click on the email folder, select Properties, and select the AutoArchive tab. Select "Archive this folder using these settings." After you have made the appropriate changes, click "OK" to save the changes.

Manually running Auto Archive

  • If you wish to manually run AutoArchive now, go to the File menu and select Info, click on Cleanup Tools, then Mailbox Cleanup and then click on the Auto Archive button. 

Accessing the Archived Items folder

  • The Archived Folders will not appear until you have successfully archived your old messages for the first time.

Archive folder list view

Emptying out your Deleted Items folder

  • To empty out your Deleted Items folder, right click on the Deleted Items folder and click on Empty Folder.
  • To set Outlook 2010 to empty your Deleted Items folder on exit:
    • Go to the File menu and click on Options.
    • Click Advanced and check the box marked Empty Deleted Items folders when exiting Outlook under Outlook start and exit and click OK.

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