Archive Emails in Outlook: Step by Step Details on the Manual and Automatic Options

You can choose to archive your files either manually or automatically


Sometimes, your mailbox might become filled with numerous emails leaving your Outlook application cluttered and making it difficult for your to find specific emails. If you are in this situation, we will recommend archiving old emails to keep your application organized.

In this guide, we will explore all the steps needed to easily archive emails both manually and automatically on Outlook.

What is Outlook email archiving?

Outlook Archive is the process of saving previous emails, tasks, and calendar items from your inbox to an archive folder on your hard drive, helping you free up space in your inbox and also enabling you to gain quicker access to emails you need.

The archived files are saved in another folder known as the archived folder and depending on your computer’s operating system, these files could be found in the C:\Users\<user name>\Documents\Outlook Files\archive.pst or C:\Documents and Settings\<user name>\Local Settings\Application Data\Microsoft\Outlook\archive.pst folder.

How do I archive emails in Outlook?

1. Use the AutoArchive feature

  1. You will periodically get a reminder to turn on Auto Archive. If you get this prompt, click Yes.
  2. If you do not get this prompt, simply open Outlook, navigate to the following path File > Options > Advanced then select the AutoArchive Settings button.
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  3. Once the AutoArchive window is opened, check the box next to the Run AutoArchive every N days option, then modify the settings according to your preference and click OK.
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  4. Doing this will trigger the AutoArchive process.

2. Perform archive manually in Outlook

  1. If you are using Outlook 2016, navigate to Tools > Clean up old items. If you are using Outlook 2010 or Outlook 2013, go to File > Cleanup Tool > Archive.
  2. In the Archive menu, click the radio button for the Archive this folder and all subfolders option, then pick a folder to archive.
    archive emails in outlook
  3. In the Archive items older than section, choose how old an item has to be before moving to archive, click the Browse button to replace the location of the archive file.
    archive emails in outlook
  4. Finally, click OK to begin the process.

Following the guidelines outlined in this guide will help you easily archive your folders so as to create more space in your inbox.

If you enjoyed this guide, you will also like this other article that talks about TLS Advanced Inspection and how to use it.

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David Ogbor
David is a tech guru with extensive knowledge in technical articles. He is passionate about writing and presents technical articles in an easy-to-understand format for easy comprehension. He aims to present easy solutions for day-to-day problems encountered while using PC. In his spare time, he likes traveling, playing sports, and singing.