A Simple Useful Modification to MS Outlook's Deleted Items Folder

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By Ryan Williams, TechBetter.com - This is my inaugural post to AccountingWeb and I am happy to be on board. In this blog I will focus on simple ways to improve communications, organization and productivity. I hope you find this blog to be full of useful information. In this post we will focus on a simple modification to Microsoft Outlook’s deleted folder.


This is a simple modification to MS Outlook’s deleted items folder that saved me a lot of time. It seems that I was constantly deleting emails by mistake. Being a “happy clicker” is what we call it (clicking the mouse button out of habit instead of with a purpose). Anyway, after realizing that I deleted a good email by mistake I would venture into the wasteland that is the deleted emails folder in search of the deleted email so I could restore it. However, the emails in the deleted folder are, by default, sorted by received date. If I had deleted an email that was two weeks old, the email would be buried under 100’s of junk mail and finding the email took more time than it should.

The simple modification was to add and sort by the column “Last Modified” (the time of the deletion is the last modified date of the email). Now when I delete an email by mistake, the email is always at the top of the deleted items view. No more having to search for deleted emails. Simple modification, big time savings. Instructions for making this modification are below.

1. Navigate to your deleted email items folder.
2. Right click on one of the column headers (i.e. Received Date)
3. Click “Field Chooser” on the context pop-up menu.
4. In the drop down box at the top of the “Field Chooser” window select “Date/Time Fields”
5. Drag “Modified” to the column position where you want it to appear.
6. Now click on the Modified column header to sort by that column.

Simple time saving modifications like this seem trivial but each incremental improvement adds up and the cumulative effect can be substantial. More time saving tips to come.

Happy Teching,

Ryan Williams


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