When Outlook Express Won't Delete Email's

This post is from one of my other blogs that I am not updating anymore, but have left up because the content is useful and is indexed in Google. I moved the post here so that my visitors her could take advantage of it. I hope it helps someone that visits.

I’ve noticed a lot of people using Outlook Express on service calls recently. One client was having a problem with deleting emails. They would click delete to get rid of an email, but it wouldn’t delete. It would stay in their inbox and was still able to be read. My first thought was something wasn’t right with the deleted items folder. Here is how I fixed it.

I moved all the messages out of the Deleted Items folder into another mail folder that I created called Backup. I then located where the Outlook Express data files were on the hard drive. You can do this by clicking Tools in the Outlook Express menubar and selecting Options. From the tabs on the Dialog box select Maintenance and click the Store Folder button


The Deleted Items.dbx file is a hidden file on XP. You may need change your view settings to see hidden files. To do this:

  1. Click the Start button
  2. Click My Computer
  3. Click Tools
  4. Click Folder Options
  5. Click View
  6. Click the “Show hidden files and folders” option.
  7. Click Apply, then Okay


You can now go to the store folder and delete the file “Deleted Items.dbx.” Outlook Express will create a new one when it is restarted because it can’t find the old one.

Another problem solved.

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3 thoughts on “When Outlook Express Won't Delete Email's

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