How can I reduce or manage my mailbox size?

  1. Delete what you don't need to save. While this is a very simple point, it is extremely helpful in keeping your mailbox size down to delete what you don't need.
  2. Delete your JUNK folder items. Most of the mail in this folder is SPAM. Review the subjects and sources of e-mail in this folder occasionally and delete all of the email that is not needed. If there is something in this folder that you want to keep, move it into another folder.
  3. Empty your DELETED folder items. Items in the DELETED items folder count against your quota. Keep in mind that even after you delete from the DELETED folder, Exchange automatically keeps deleted files for seven days so you can recover those files for up to seven days.
  4. Enable the "Empty Deleted Items upon Exit" Feature. In Outlook for Windows, go to the File tab, Options, Advanced, Outlook start and exit, check the box "Empty Deleted Items folders when exiting Outlook." This will empty your deleted items folder every time you exit the Outlook Client.
  5. Don't save emails with large attachments. If you receive a message with a large attachment, save the attachment to your hard disk and delete it. Attachments often take up a large amount of space and can cause you mailbox to go over quota.
  6. If you use the Outlook client, consider archiving your old or large mail to a .pst file.
  7. Use Microsoft's Outlook Built In Tools. You can use the mailbox Cleanup Tools, which allows you to manage your mailbox and individual folders. You can also archive older items to an archive Personal Folders file (.pst) and empty your Deleted Items folder.

On the File tab in Outlook for Windows, click Cleanup Tools and you will be given several options.

Mailbox Cleanup

  1. Here you can View Mailbox Size.
  2. Find items older than X number of days or items that are larger than X number of kilobytes.
  3. Setup AutoArchiving
  4. Empty the Deleted Items folder

Empty Deleted Items Folder

This does exactly it is says: empties all items out of your Deleted Items folder.


Archiving is one solution for those users that need to keep a large amount of email. Archiving copies old email messages and attachments to an Archive.pst file on the computer, removes the data from the server, and decreases the overall size of your mail file. This will optimize Outlook's performance while still allowing you to access email messages and folders you need on a daily basis.

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