Outlook Folder Management

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UIS provides:

  • 250 MB mailbox size
  • Daily backups with 7-day retention
  • Two week retention of deleted items
  • 20 MB limit on the size of file attachments

When you reach your mailbox limit, you will no longer be able to send or receive messages. The quickest way to free up space is to delete your Sent Items folder and/or empty your Deleted Items folder.

To check your mailbox size:

1. In the navigation bar, right-click your Mailbox and choose “Properties for “Mailbox – XXXXX“, where XXXXX is your name.

Outlook Folder Management

2. Click the Folder Size button.

Outlook Folder Management

3. From this window, you can see your total mailbox size as well as the sizes of each subfolder.

Folder Size


Personal Folders vs. Archiving

A personal folder [or pst] is a data file that stores your messages and other items on your computer. Personal folders are helpful in freeing up server space [and avoiding reaching your 250 MB limit]. You can simply drag and drop messages into folders that you have created or define rules to send them to the appropriate folders. In addition, personal folders are portable – you can move or copy messages from one computer to another or back them up on a CD or data drive.

Archiving moves items from their original location in Outlook to an archive folder. Outlook does the moving for you based on how old the messages are. The messages are automatically moved to a folder named Archive Folders and subfolders are created based on the folders in your mailbox. Any subfolders in your mailbox are automatically mirrored in the Archive Folders folder. In other words, archiving mimics your existing organization system.

Personal folders and archiving have some traits in common. Both store messages locally, which means that if you check your e-mail from any other computer, you will not have access to your personal or archived folders. In addition, both methods move messages, not copy messages. Copying messages is covered in the Copying Messages/Making a Backup Copy section.

In summary, if you want things tidied up and are comfortable with your current organization system, then archiving is a good method to try. But if you prefer to move messages yourself and/or restructure your organization system, then personal folders may be a better fit.