Office 365 - Recover deleted items

The follow document explains how to recover messages that have been emptied from your Deleted Items folder.

When you delete an item (email, calendar event, task, etc.), it is moved to your Deleted Items folder. Depending on your settings, these messages may be periodically emptied from your Deleted Items folder. Once this folder has been empty, some Microsoft clients, including Outlook Web App and some desktop versions of Outlook, allow you to recover deleted items that are no longer visible in your Deleted Items folder.

Important

  • Office 365 accounts/domains are not backed up, even with Bucky Backup.
  • Items can only be recovered within 14 days of when they were emptied from within the "Deleted Items" folder. After this time elapses, items cannot be restored. If items are purged from the "Recover Deleted Items" folder, they can no longer be recovered.
  • The UW-Madison Office 365 team has no additional way to recover deleted items. If the steps below don't work, the deleted item(s) cannot be retrieved
  • The UW-Madison Office 365 team does not have any way to tell what caused the deletion of the messages.
  • Often a "missing message" was not deleted at all but was accidentally moved to another folder. Make sure to check all of your folders for missing messages, including your "top-level account folder" (accountname@wisc.edu/accountname@domain.wisc.edu) by following the instructions in Office 365 (Outlook on the web | Outlook 2016/2013 for Windows) - How to find messages that have been moved to your top-level folder.
  • If a mail folder is deleted, the recover process (if possible) will only restore the message within the folder (the folder structure cannot be restored). The messages will be restored to your inbox regardless of which folder they were deleted from.
  • If a calendar is deleted, it can only be recovered using Outlook desktop client - you cannot use Outlook on the web. Look below for steps to recover a deleted calendar.
  • Items within the recover utility will only show the message headers. The full message will be available after the message has been recovered.
  • In some cases, it may not be possible to recover items that were deleted via a client that is configured via IMAP.
  • It is not possible to recover deleted items with clients configured for POP3.
  • Microsoft does NOT have the ability to restore message(s) that you were unable to restore using the processes below.

Recover Deleted Items

Select your client below for instructions:

Recover deleted items

Outlook on the web

When you delete a message, it's first moved to the Deleted Items folder. You can either let messages stay there, or you can set Outlook on the web to automatically empty your Deleted Items folder when you sign out.

  1. Log into Outlook on the web.
  2. Right-click Deleted Items folder within folder list (not under Favorites).
  3. Click Recover deleted items.

    Recover deleted items sub-menu selection

  4. You will be brought to a screen which allows you to choose all mail you would like to recover, you can search items or scroll down by the date the message was sent or recieved. Once you have selected all items you want to recover click Recover. The item will be moved to its default location. Messages will go to your Inbox, calendar items will go to your Calendar, contacts to your Contacts folder, and tasks to your Tasks folder.

    Recover selection

Note: You can also select 'Purge' to permanently delete an item. If you purge an item, you won't be able to use Recover deleted items to get it back. Purging a message won't remove it from any backups that were made before you purged it.

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Outlook 2016 for Windows

  1. Click "Mail".
  2. Click Folder > Recover Deleted Items.

    Recover Deleted Items

    If you don't see Recover Deleted Items, you're probably not using an Exchange account or you don't have a folder selected in that account.

  3. Click the message you want to recover, and then click OK.

    Tip    To select multiple items, press Ctrl as you click each item, and then click OK.

    Recovered items are restored to the folder you're working in.

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Important: By February 2017, Microsoft will no longer push any updates to Office 2013 suite of applications. Please see the following document for further details: Office 365 - Microsoft Office 2013 path to retirement.

Outlook 2013

  1. Click "Mail".
  2. Click Folder > Recover Deleted Items.

    Recover Deleted Items command on the ribbon

    If you don't see Recover Deleted Items, you're probably not using an Exchange account or you don't have a folder selected in that account.

  3. Click the message you want to recover, and then click Recover Selected Items Recover Selected Items button in the Recover Deleted Items dialog box.

     Tip    To select multiple items, press Ctrl as you click each item, and then click Recover Selected Items Recover Selected Items button in the Recover Deleted Items dialog box.

    Recovered items are restored to the folder you're working in.

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Outlook 2010

  1. In the folder from which the item was deleted, or in the Deleted Items folder, on the Folder tab, in the Clean Up group, click Recover Deleted Items.

    - The Recover Deleted Items command is missing

    An Office 365/Exchange account is required for this command to appear. If you are using an Office 365/Exchange account and don't see the command, contact your Exchange administrator.

  2. Click an item, and then click Recover Selected Items Recover Selected Items button in the Recover Deleted Items dialog box.

     Tip    To select multiple items, press CTRL as you click each item, and then click Recover Selected Items.

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Deleted Calendar via Outlook for Windows

  1. Start Outlook.
  2. Click Folders from within navigational area located at the bottom left of Outlook.
  3. Expand the "Deleted Items" folder.
  4. The calendar you deleted should be listed/visible.

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Other clients

The Recover Deleted Items feature is only available for the following desktop clients: Outlook 2016 for Windows, Outlook 2013 for Windows, and Outlook 2010 for Windows.

If you are not using one of the clients listed above, you will need to use Outlook on the web to recover your deleted items.

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See Also:




Keywords:microsoft office 365 2011 2010 2013 2016 windows mac web app owa client outlook exchange mozilla thunderbird apple mail imap pop help emails calendaring events tasks contacts messages instant searching tasks filtering deleted items recovery trash missing restore o365 mobile devices android ipad ipod iphone windows phone ios cellular retention phone phone 8 8.1   Doc ID:31947
Owner:Ara M.Group:Office 365
Created:2013-07-31 07:13 CSTUpdated:2016-11-03 11:19 CST
Sites:DoIT Help Desk, DoIT Tech Store, Office 365, UW Platteville
Feedback:  14   8