Recover deleted items or email in Outlook Web App

Accidents happen. When you accidentally delete an email message, contact, calendar item, task or entire folder from your Office 365 or other Exchange-based email account, you will be glad to know that you can sometimes recover such items. For example, you can recover deleted items if they still remain in your Deleted Items folder. You can also recover some items even after the Deleted Items folder is emptied. How long items will be recoverable depends on settings that are controlled by your admin.

This article shows you how to these tasks using Outlook Web App. Outlook Web App is the web browser version of Outlook that is used by Office 365 or other Exchange-based users.

For information about how to recover deleted items using a desktop version of Outlook, see one of the following articles:

If you’re using Outlook.com (formerly Hotmail), see Restore deleted email messages in Outlook.com.

In this article


Recover an item that’s still in your Deleted Items folder

  1. Sign in to your account. For more information, see Sign in to Outlook Web App.
  2. In your email folder list, select Deleted Items.
  3. To restore an email message, do one of the following:
  • To restore a message to your Inbox, right-click the item and click Move > Inbox.

Menu path to to use to recover item from Deleted Items folder in Outlook Web App

  • To restore a message to a different folder, right-click the item, and click Move > More. Then, specify a folder location, and then click Move.
  1. To restore a calendar item, right-click the calendar item, and then click Move to Calendar.
  2. To restore a contact, right-click the contact, and then click Move to Contacts.
  3. To restore a task, right-click the task, and then click Move to Tasks.

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Recover an item that’s no longer in your Deleted Items folder

  1. Sign in to your account. For more information, see Sign in to Outlook Web App.
  2. In your email folder list, right-click Deleted Items, and then click Recover deleted items.

Menu path to to access Recover deleted items dialog box in Outlook Web App

  1. Select the item you want, and then select Recover.

Outlook Web App Recover deleted items dialog box

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.

You can also purge items that are shown in the Recover deleted items box. Select the item, and then click Purge. 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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About the Deleted Items folder

When you delete a message, it’s first moved to the Deleted Items folder. You can either let messages stay there until you remove them, or you can set Outlook Web App to automatically empty your Deleted Items folder each time you sign out.

Your administrator may have set up a policy to remove items from your Deleted Items folder after they’ve been there a set number of days. Your admin may have also specified how long items that have been deleted from your Deleted Items folder remain available for recovery. For example, there may be a policy that removes anything that’s been in your Deleted Items folder for 30 days, and another policy that lets you retrieve items that have been deleted from the folder for up to another 15 days.

If you’re using Office 365, items deleted from your Deleted Items folder remain recoverable for 14 days by default.

Empty the Deleted Items folder

To manually empty your Deleted Items folder, right-click Deleted Items, and then click Empty .

To set up Outlook Web App to empty the Deleted Items folder each time you sign out. In Outlook Web App, click Settings settings > Options > Settings > Mail. Under message options, select Empty the Deleted Items folder when I sign out.

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What if I want to know more?

  • For more information about Outlook Web App folders, see Working with mail folders.
  • For information about how to remove items from your Deleted Items folder every time you log out of Outlook Web App, see Mail settings.
  • For information about how to recover deleted items using a desktop version of Outlook, see one of the following articles:

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Applies to:
Microsoft Outlook Web App for Office 365 operated by 21Vianet - Small Business, Office 365 operated by 21Vianet - Small Business admin, Office 365 Small Business admin, Outlook Web App, Outlook Web App for Office 365 Enterprise, Outlook Web App for Office 365 operated by 21Vianet, Outlook Web App for Office 365 Small Business