Delete your completed tasks

Applies to
Microsoft Office Outlook® 2003
Microsoft Outlook® 2002

If you use Outlook Tasks (task: A personal or work-related duty or errand that you want to track through completion.) as your online to-do list for work or home, you probably check off each task as you complete it. You might also want to keep track of the tasks that you complete over a particular period of time. Because completed tasks don't expire and aren't automatically deleted or hidden, you need a way to prevent them from cluttering the list of tasks that you still need to complete.

What does a completed task look like? In your task list, the Complete column check box is selected, and the subject of the task is displayed in strikethrough text.

Completed Task

The following are three ways for dealing with completed tasks in your task list:

 Note   Whether it's to fit your work style or to address a particular need, you can use the methods in combination or stay with a single method.

ShowDisplay only the tasks you haven't completed (recommended)

By using the appropriate view (view: Views give you different ways to look at the same information in a folder by putting it in different arrangements and formats. There are standard views for each folder. You can also create custom views.), you can display only your active tasks — the ones that you still need to complete — without having to delete the ones that you have completed. Use this method if you want to keep a record of the tasks that you complete and when you completed them.

  1. In the Navigation Pane (Navigation Pane: The column on the left side of the Outlook window that includes panes such as Shortcuts or Mail and the shortcuts or folders within each pane. Click a folder to show the items in the folder.), click Tasks.
  2. In the Tasks pane, under Current View, click Active Tasks.

Your task list displays all tasks except the ones marked completed.

ShowDelete completed tasks one at a time

Use this method if you're the type of person who prefers to check off and delete each task as you complete it.

  1. In the Navigation Pane (Navigation Pane: The column on the left side of the Outlook window that includes panes such as Shortcuts or Mail and the shortcuts or folders within each pane. Click a folder to show the items in the folder.), click Tasks.
  2. Right-click a completed task, and then click Delete on the shortcut menu.

To delete more than one completed task at the same time, press CTRL, and then click each task that you want to delete. With the tasks selected, right-click the tasks, and then click Delete on the shortcut menu.

ShowDelete all completed tasks at the same time

Use this method if you prefer to keep track of and perhaps record the tasks that you complete over a period of time. For example, after using a number of completed tasks to summarize what you accomplished during the previous week or month, you can delete all those tasks at the same time.

  1. In the Navigation Pane (Navigation Pane: The column on the left side of the Outlook window that includes panes such as Shortcuts or Mail and the shortcuts or folders within each pane. Click a folder to show the items in the folder.), click Tasks.
  2. In the Tasks pane, under Current View, click Completed Tasks.

Your task list displays only the tasks marked completed.

  1. On the Edit menu, click Select All.

ShowTip

You can also select all completed tasks at the same time by pressing CTRL+A.

  1. On the Edit menu, click Delete.

 Note   If you delete a task by accident, you can easily retrieve the task.

 
 
Applies to:
Outlook 2003